Pokemon Go Update


I have now reached Level 47! Still going strong as I try to catch them all. Closing in on the max level of 50, that will be quite the milestone.

My Hero Academia: The Strongest Hero Review


The next mobile game I gave a whirl was the My Hero Academia title. This one was getting a good amount of promotion and it’s clear that there was a good budget behind it. As MHA is really big right now they wouldn’t want to weaken the brand with a total cash-in. The title definitely delivers on that front although at the same time it’s so high budget that it has the same weakness as the Sword Art Online title in that it’s a lot harder to just pick up and play.

The game starts you off with a nice introduction movie complete with cinematics and voice acting. You learn about who Deku and All Might is before being thrown further into the story. You’re working with pro heroes on taking down crooks so I want to say at minimum this takes place midway through season 2. Deku seems to have a good handle on his Full Cowl already after all and while the gameplay uses his shoot style, that may be more of a mechanic than confirming that this is in season 3.

The story is separated into chapters which are separated into acts. Each act has a few missions which range from finding civilians to taking down villains. You can also navigate through the city to locate radio towers and collectibles which increases your view of the city. I have no doubt that the objectives in each level will continue to expand as you play through the game.

For the combat this is a 3D action title. You use the buttons on the touchscreen to attack, use super moves, and dodge. By mixing light and heavy attacks you can also perform various combos to take the enemy down more quickly. The gameplay is pretty versatile with each hats yet having many moves and they are all upgradable.

The hub world is also quite large. You aren’t really allowed to explore until you cover the first 2 chapters but after that you can have some fun looking around. The graphics are really solid and would not be out of place on the home consoles. Once again I wonder why mobile games are not automatically ported to console at this point, perhaps there is some kind of licensing angle that would make it slightly more expensive than being a mobile exclusive. Since being a mobile title can be super profitable anyway, I could see that as a reason on why you would not port it. 

The soundtrack has a lot of the classic tunes from the show so you’re in good hands there. It goes without saying that there is a tremendous amount of content here. Just completing the current story chapters available will take you several hours. After that you also have all of the bonus missions to go through and then you can work on leveling up your characters as you wait for the updates. Usually this kind of game will update fairly quick with new levels and event missions so I don’t think you will have anything to worry about on that front. Each special event gives you the chance to farm materials and gems. Right now I’m not too familiar with each of the gem mechanics but one important rule for all gatcha games is that you want to save your gems for a long while. Never spend your gems early on because you need time to understand their true value and the game itself. Only then should you start spending them. The replay value here is quite extensive.

As mentioned, the game’s only weakness is in how expansive it is. One of the strengths of mobile games is being able to just turn it on real quick and knock out some levels. Perhaps while you are on the train or playing a bit before bed. This one needs a solid WiFi signal at all times so the train is out of the question. It also isn’t easy to just play for a few minutes because the loading times are quite long to boot up the game as it goes through the companies and loads the environments. It’s something you don’t really care about if you’re about to play the game for hours but if you’re looking to play for 20-30 minutes then suddenly that seems a little less worth it.

The Strongest Hero is definitely a game meant to be played like a console title. To make the most of it you really need to have some time and then crack down on it. It will be a very rewarding experience but at times you will feel like this should have gone on the PS4. I haven’t rolled too many characters yet so I can’t speak to how good the gotcha system is. At first they always appear to be pretty good and this one’s no different. Of course it’s easy to roll a new character when I only had one previously. I got Kaminari on my first spin which is cool, his gameplay is definitely fun to have. Naturally I was hoping for Bakugo but I suppose you can’t get there best character on your first spin. Right now characters are still being added to the game but we already have most of the important Class 1A characters waiting in the lottery zone.

Overall, My Hero Academia The Strongest Hero is definitely a mobile game I would recommend. It may need some more time than the others on the market but at the same time that speaks to the level of effort that went into this game. As I mentioned many times, it really could pass for a console experience. I definitely couldn’t complain if all mobile games were at this level. I’ve had a rather rocky string of mobile games up til this one so I was glad that it broke the streak.

Overall 8/10

Kaiju Brawl: Godzilla vs Kong Review


Over the years there have been quite a few Godzilla app games. One of them was really quite great while a lot of the others have been fairly mid to even awful. Unfortunately this one’s not very good either. It definitely does beat some of the others I’ve played but it’s weighed down by constant ads and glitches. Not exactly the mobile atmosphere you were hoping for. I’ll give the developers credit for actually getting this published though because it does not look official in the slightest.

The game has 2 real modes, Arcade Mode and Survival Mode. Survival puts you in nonstop matches against monsters while Arcade mode is sets of 3 rounds. When you clear them all you’ve completed the first level, then rinse and repeat as you go through. The game only has a small handful of monsters so expect to be fighting them over and over again. You have King Kong, Godzilla, Mecha Godzilla, the Skullcrawlers, and some jello thing. That’s it, so each level you will see one of these guys.

As for the gameplay, it’s a 2D brawler. You move the character by tapping on the screen and then you can use a few moves. You have the close quarters combat attack which is what you will mainly be using. If you wait a bit, your special meter will charge and then you can fire your ultimate attack which does a good deal of damage. The final button lets you jump but there’s no scenario where that is even slightly helpful so you don’t need to bother using it.

There’s not much point to playing Survival mode but I made it through around 10 rounds to be safe. You get money to level up your characters so that’s a start. Arcade Mode is where you feel like there is at least some progression. I think there are 60 sets available in the game currently so clearing all of those should take some time. The main issue is that after playing 1 set you will already have seen exactly what the game has in store for you. It’s not a very elaborate title.

Now that’s not a bad thing per say but the game also feels very low budget. It crashes quite a bit and sometimes the icons will disappear from the game. You won’t be able to see your level or attack meters so you have to hope for the best. It doesn’t look like the game was formatted all that well to the screen size so some things will usually get cut off. That’s all the tip of the iceberg though. I could get around that but not the next part.

After each set you have to watch an unskippable commercial for another app game. This is also true if you click the wrong button after finishing a survival mode or when trying to navigate the menus. If this happens you have to either wait or just close the app and re-open. The game feels incredibly greedy with how frequent the ads are. The ads should be something you watch as a bonus but not something you have to watch. That’s an easy way to take someone out of the game immediately. Ads have no place being an intrusive mechanic when you’re just trying to play for a bit.

That alone meant that this game wasn’t going to get a positive score. Still, it had help from all the other aspects of the game being underwhelming. Just take a look at the graphics, it’s not that good. I’ll give them credit for the drawings I suppose as someone probably had to work on those characters models but it doesn’t look nearly as good and detailed as it should. The lack of content is also quite telling since the game has to throw a bunch of levels in just to inflate the count.

There are no good themes to listen to hear so you can forget about that. The menu says there is a Story Mode coming soon but I have serious doubts on that. It’s one of those “I’ll believe it when I see it” kind of things. Not that I’ll have the game still downloaded on my phone by the time this review pops up though. Space isn’t exactly unlimited so these games get the boot as soon as I’m done. The only nice thing about the ads was I found another Godzilla ripoff game so I’ll be checking that one at some point.

What does the game do well? Well, I suppose the actual combat gameplay is really not that bad. It actually has some reasonable mechanics to it even if it’s extremely basic. Like I said earlier, I could get behind this if you just take away all of the negative aspects. Then you would really have something here. Maybe if they worked on it another year or so to add content before throwing it in the app store then I’d be singing a different tune.

Overall, As it stands there just isn’t anything to really keep me here. A story mode of some kind would have really helped. There isn’t a lot of replay value and earning coins seems like a long process from what I got so far so unlocking the other characters without paying the big bucks would take way more of an investment then I was planning to give. If you want to play a Godzilla mobile game definitely give this one a pass.

Overall 5/10

Run Godzilla Review


Oh no, this one was bad. This one was reeeeeally bad. It has to be one of the worst mobile games out there so my good run of mobile titles is definitely over between this one in Crash. This is an extremely lazy game to the point where you have to wonder how it’s official. Burning Godzilla is blue!! Yes you head that right…in this game Burning Godzilla is just the normal character model but turned blue. Oh no……this game wasn’t even trying.

Okay so lets get into it. The game only has a single main theme so get ready to hear this forever. The game starts with two guys throwing info dump at each other. Effectively they decide to pray to a shrine and Godzilla appears. These two can create Kaiju out of prayers…..but only temporarily. After 9000 seconds the Kaiju will die of old age or just wander off. The cutscene’s kind of meta so maybe he just leaves. Now that they have a Kaiju I suppose we’re going to save the world, fight other Kaiju or do something like that right? WRONG!

The two guys decide to have Godzilla race against other Kaiju. And that’s the extent of the game. Now you may be thinking this can be cool as you control Godzilla against these other Kaiju and use attacks to slow them down though. That’d be fun so of course that’s now what happens. The A.I. controls Godzilla completely. Wanna know what you can do? You can change the camera angles which has absolutely 0 impact on the race and you can cheer for Godzilla which makes him happy and speeds him up ever so slightly. Fortunately there is a skip option so after a few seconds you can skip to the end of the race. Your cheers barely have an impact as he’ll usually win even if you skip the race so I recommend doing that.

You can already see how futile this feels. I’m just getting started too. So in the hub world you can feed the people praying to Godzilla so they pray harder….it also extends their life. They’ll die in around 600 seconds otherwise. You can use gems to buy(?) more followers so maybe instead of dying if you stop feeding them it just means they won’t bother to pray anymore. You can also use gems to upgrade your forest.

Now the kicker, the game uses a time system. So all those upgrades you spent on the shop? All gone as soon as you participate in any kind of race…which you’re supposed to do. Your Kaiju also loses a lot of his remaining time left on the planet if you race. Yet, that’s the only thing to do in the game so why wouldn’t you race? There are 38 levels in the game. I managed to clear around 24-25 of them. Its a little tedious though because only 2 levels show up at a time and sometimes they’re both old. You have to keep exiting and re-entering the menu to shuffle the levels until a new one shows up.

At least you have a sense of progression though right? Wrong! When your Kaiju dies all of your data is erased as well. Yes, any record of your completing a single level is gone. You lose all of your apples, gems, followers, milestones, everything. The only thing that carries over is a fraction of your original Kaiju’s stats so your next one will be stronger. At least you’ll get a new one next time right? No, not that either. You have to pay 2 bucks a piece if you want any other Kaiju. Otherwise you’ll keep on getting color swapped Godzillas to play around with.

I admit that as it is I never like when games don’t let you control a character at all. Still, it could have at least tried to be decent but with the game completely erasing your data every time your Kaiju dies (Every 9000 seconds and you lose 200 seconds every time you enter a race) then there is really no point. The entire game feels completely pointless if it’s going to be erasing your data like that. Why bother getting invested or trying to have a good time if it’s just going to be like that? The game is punishing you for playing it a lot since you can keep the game off which will postpone how long your Kaiju has until it dies.

The writing is terrible as well. The info dump from the two characters at the beginning is handled poorly. They’re both talking in circles about things that don’t even matter while not even properly touching on the mechanics of the game. Instead they lazily tell you to just read the help section in the menu at the end. If you’re going to do that then don’t have a half hearted tutorial at the beginning.

The graphics are also awful. This is the kind of game that will forever taint the image of mobile games for someone. These have to be the least detailed character models I’ve seen in a long time. I’m sure a Godzilla fan with some good computer programs would be able to churn out something better in a day. It feels like the studio was given the budget of a snickers bar to come up with this. It would explain why there is only a single mode here and virtually no budget. The game still has the nerve to ask you for a lot of money to upgrade your facilities and buy new Kaiju. They’ll all be deleted within 9000 seconds anyway so why would you possibly spend that kind of money (20-50 for bundles)?

Overall, maybe I got spoiled by the first Godzilla mobile game which was actually great but this one was shockingly bad. It’s the kind of game you want to finish up and delete right away. Having the game delete my data made that a whole lot easier. This is the first of the 3 mobile games from Toho that were being hyped up and now I’m worried for the next two. I just downloaded the second game. While it’s too early for me to pass judgment I am a little worried. The next game has the exact same musical track, character designs, menu layouts, etc. It seems to be a clone, only this one is about destruction and you can move around. I just hope that doesn’t mean it also has a time system because that will absolutely be super annoying. This is easily the worst mobile game I’ve ever played in my life, I highly recommend staying far away from it.

Overall 2/10

Crash Bandicoot: On the Run! Review


Whenever you think of a free to play running game you’re probably thinking of high energy titles with a ton of content and amazing replay value. The highest values of quality are associated with these titles because there’ a lot you can do with it. Unfortunately Crash ends up fumbling the ball on this one and it’s easily the weakest free runner that I’ve played. Sonic, Ladybug, and the others are all a lot better because they embraced the free to play elements while this one seems a little more hesitant.

First off, the gameplay is fine. It’s your standard auto runner so you can crouch and jump to avoid obstacles. There are power ups in the levels and even a little boss fight at the end where you have to tap the screen with precision. These are good mechanics that work well. I did not have any qualms with the gameplay. The levels are also nice and bite sized so there is a whole lot of replay value there.

What is my main issue? It’s the energy system. Now, longtime fans of mobile games will recognize that this isn’t new. A lot of mobile games have something like that to prevent you from beating all of the content instantly. The most confident games though like Pokemon Go, Godzilla, and Dr Mario have no such system. Others like Fire Emblem Heroes, Dragon Ball Legends or any other big gatcha game have it as a formality but it’s hard to reach. In those games you could play effectively with no limit for about a month and then after that you’re limited to about 4-5 hours a day. That’s fine, I’m unlikely to play a mobile game longer than that anyway and it seems like a pretty fair tradeoff.

The problem with Crash is that it’s immediate. Within about an hour you’re going to start running into a shortage of items. Your options at that point are to wait, buy the items, or play old stages to try and get more materials. Why should I need to play an old level when I just started the game though? That was my main issue throughout the game. It felt like you were always needing to go and grab other collectibles so you couldn’t really appreciate the game.

It feels greedy because most of the time your gaming experience won’t be interrupted until you’re fairly deep into the story. Imagine having to go back and raise more Pokemon in Pokemon Masters instead of blasting through all of the available levels? Or needing to go back and clear more Witch rooms in Madoka instead of continuing? That’s my issue with the Crash game, it seems like they heavily steer you towards playing a fee right off the bat rather than enjoying your free experience. If you ask me, that’s the real shame here.

Not even adding in the famous mascot “The Noid” was enough to save the game. I had already finished my playthrough of this one before he came out but let me say that he was not enough for me to change course and go back in. You would need to fix the fundamental issues of Crash’s item system first. Part of the issue is that there are several different kinds of items, materials, and levels you have to get. This should be simplified so there is only one kind of vial for example. Instead of 3 tiers to each item, make it 1.

I would also add a new player bonus like most games where clearing story levels for the first time replenishes your energy. That’s a great way to keep you playing uninterrupted for a long while and then you can really enjoy going back to clear up loose ends. I don’t see why the game decided to be so different from the other auto runners. At the very least the unique approach didn’t work this time.

The graphics are really good though. It’s clear that a lot of work went into making the game look as good as possible. The character models are really on point. They wouldn’t be out of place in the big budget PS4 games. Then the soundtrack and level designs are good. Each theme sounds good and is fittingly high energy for a running game like this. The levels all look like the traditional Crash levels as well.

In terms of replay value, there is a lot here even if we don’t count all of the material farming. The game launched with well over 50 levels and I expect new updates will bring more and more. You can unlock costumes, in game achievements and things of that sort. As with most mobile games, you can probably expect to keep finding things to do here all the way until the game eventually runs out of steam and just ends naturally.

Overall, My main issue here is just that the game feels rather greedy. You can make the case that all mobile games exist to make money since the free to play model is built on using ad revenue but some games certainly use it better than others. In a lot of mobile games you never even get tempted to pay money and it’s all rather harmless. Additionally, if there’s a mobile game you seriously enjoy and will play for 50+ hours anyway, then spending a few bucks may not sound bad. This one just won’t be that game though. I’d highly recommend playing just about any of the other free runners instead but if you have some time then I suppose this isn’t a bad bet. Getting around the time limits is really the most annoying part so if you get past that then there are the fundamentals of a good game.

Overall 5/10

Godzilla Defense Force Review


When they announced that three new Godzilla mobile games were coming to the app stores I quickly ran to see if they were already there. At the time none of them were, however there was an old Godzilla game that I hadn’t even known about. Needless to say, I needed to check that out right away! The mobile game is actually a lot of fun to the point where I have a hard time picturing the other 3 beating this one. I poured in over 20 hours in an instant and had to tear myself away from the game before all my time was spent. This is definitely a very addicting title.

The basic plot of the game is that you are an army commander, the final one on Earth. Everyone else has been wiped out by the aliens who have mind controlled each Kaiju including Godzilla himself. Furthermore, they have gone through time and plucked out different versions of each Kaiju. They have over 20 different Godzilla creatures at their disposal for example. You have to command the Army to slay each Kaiju and save the world. It will be difficult so as a last resort the army has also given you a time travelling device. If you are about to die, quickly run to the past and save yourself.

This game has a lot of attention to detail. Pretty much any Kaiju you have ever seen in a Godzilla film will make their way here. How the game works is you have around 5-6 worlds. Each world has 120 levels with a unique Kaiju showing up after every 10. There will be 3 points where Godzilla himself will show up and these levels are G levels so they aren’t numbered. The worlds can keep going endlessly after the 120 but only old monsters will cycle in. The final world is the Moon where you can make your final stand against the enemies. It should take you around 20 hours to make it there, I don’t see how you can do so sooner without paying.

The gameplay is a Tower Defense style where you have to tap the screen in order to proceed. The faster you tap the screen the more damage you do, at least for the initial weapon. As you defeat enemies you will earn money which you can use to power up your default weapon or to buy new weapons. Each world has around 6 weapons and usually they are a magnitude more pricey to buy. The first weapon might cost around $1000, the next weapon $100,000, then $1,000,000, and from there the numbers get insane. After the trillions they just start showing initials like BB, DD, EE, and so on. I made it to around the JJ amounts before stopping.

Earning the money is really where the game gets to be more of a grinding mobile game. You will inevitably get stuck on a boss many times because you are out of money. At that point you can choose to keep fighting them since you earn money for each battle until you have enough to get to the next level or you can watch a 30 second ad to get a ton of money. Additionally you can watch ads to slowly boost your units as well. The game is very ad intensive so be prepared to “watch” a lot of ads throughout the game to get the money you need.

There are also a wide range of achievements in the game. Completing them will earn you a lot of jewels. Don’t worry, the achievements come naturally like tapping the screen 1 million times or beating 10,000 Kaiju. You should have most of them by the time you’re done with this. However, no matter how many ads you watch and battles you fight, it seems impossible to make it to The Moon on your first playthrough. That’s when time travelling comes into play. The cost for time travel is that you lose all of your money, upgrades, and even all of your levels.

I know that sounds awful but the benefit is that you get time crystals. These let you buy artifacts with permanent upgrades. For example, dealing an extra 50% damage while you’re in Tokyo. I time travelled quite a few times and by the end I had a permanent +1050% damage increase. It’s really worth it to time travel but even then you have to decide when to do so. The longer you go without time travelling as you rack up Kaiju victories, the more shards you get. Ideally you want a ton of shards so that you can get as many upgrades as possible.

This is really just the tip of the iceberg for the various gameplay mechanics here. I recommend reading the Toho Kingdom articles on the game since they break down all of the mechanics. The game doesn’t actually tell you a whole lot beyond the basics so it’s worth knowing. For example, it’s heavily advised that you save your blue crystals. You can then double your time shards when time travelling which is incredibly handy. It’s a game changer and better to use them at that point than for a quick 1 time money boost.

The graphics are pretty solid. All of the Kaiju look goo. There isn’t a big variety in the level designs and effects but the fact that they got character models for every Kaiju is impressive. I’ll also give the game credit for having a real plot even if there isn’t much to it. It’s enough to connect the stages together but that’s about it. It won’t compare visually to the newer mobile games of course. The soundtrack is solid. I like that they incorporate various themes from the films such as original tunes and even Final Wars themes. My only gripe is that the music often plays for around 5 seconds before it’s quickly cut off by an explosion sound effect or something going on.

What Defense Force really did well is show you a solid rate of progression. You always felt like you were getting closer to the next level. It’s an important thing for any game that is centered around grinding because if you don’t feel like you’re making any progress then of course you will quickly lose interest. That doesn’t happen in this game so that’s impressive. Each battle only being 30 seconds long for the bosses also helps since you don’t have to stick around for a while to move forward if you don’t want to. Even while the game is off you will be earning money (At a slower rate of course) so that’s a nice feature too.

Overall, Godzilla Defense Force is a great game. Definitely one of the best mobile games I’ve played in a while. I didn’t even touch on some aspects of the game like the card collecting system or the Moon Stones but it just goes to show that the game really has a lot to offer. This title is also completely over so it’s a mobile game that actually has an end to an extent. I wouldn’t call it much of an ending story-wise but at least there are no more levels so you can feel like you’ve finished it all. If you’re a big Godzilla fan or like the tower defense style then I would really recommend this game. There are a lot of options to spend money to progress faster in the game but I can safely say that you can make it to the end even without spending a single dime. The free content here and rate of progression is quite solid.

Overall 8/10