Dragalia Lost Review

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It’s time to take a look at Nintendo’s latest mobile adventure. Just like Pokemon Go Nintendo seems to be here to provide the promotion while they handled every other aspect of the game to a third party. It’s a good strategy since I’m sure it takes up less manpower this way and the third party has more experience with mobile titles. The game is well made and quite polished although it’s one that I won’t be sticking around for. It has its weaknesses, but as long as you have the time it makes for quite the investment.

The plot is a little generic though as you are a prince who didn’t want to be King. Unfortunately all 7 of your brothers have turned evil and the same goes for your father The King. It’s hinted that they are being mind controlled but either way it is time for the main character to rise to the occasion. In this world all proper fighters need to have a dragon companion so his first order of business is to tame one. Now he has to go save the world, but can he do it?

As this is a mobile game the answer to that question is likely a flat no. These games just never seem to end which is one of the main things that ends up deterring you from playing after a while. It’s all a matter of preference though. I typically play console games but those always have a start and an end. If I wasn’t a big console fan then I’d probably stick around for this one. As it is the only games I’m actively keeping up with are Dragon Ball Legends and Pokemon Go. That’s enough to keep me busy, but it’s always fun to at least check these other games out for a bit.

The gameplay is an overhead real time combat system. You swing your sword by tapping the screen and you can use super attacks once you have charged up enough energy meter. There is also a separate energy meter for turning into a dragon. Turning into a dragon gives you a huge boost in health and attack power so I highly advise doing so. Each level is typically a short run where you beat up a bunch of enemies and then the boss room at the end of it. The fact that the levels are so short is definitely a good thing since it makes it very easy to play the game in batches. Of course it also highlights the fact that the story moves so slowly so that’s the only drawback.

The graphics are very good. They wouldn’t look out of place in a home console title. The character designs are smooth and the colors are very vibrant. Likewise, the soundtrack is pretty solid as well. It’s very fast paced and makes the game feel energetic as well. These aspects of the game are just as well polished as the gameplay and keeps up the appearance that this could be a AAA title for the Switch.

As for the replay value it’s basically infinite with everything going on here. New content is added all the time through online levels and new characters. As it is the actual story is quite long as well and with all of the bonus raids you can’t run out of things to do. You do have a stamina meter so you can’t play for too long in a row without breaks. While it is a lot more lenient than the Dragon Ball Legends one, it’s not quite as long as Fire Emblem Heroes. Still, it’s certainly enough energy for you to play for fairly long sessions.

Honestly at this point I wish we could get a full Super Smash Bros gatcha game for mobile. See, the only reason I’m not sticking around with this one as long as I stuck around with Fire Emblem and Dragon Ball is because all of the characters are OCs and naturally I’m less invested in them. If the story was about Nintendo mascots I wouldn’t care that 90% of it is stalling for time and not going anywhere. It would still be priceless just to see the Super Smash characters interacting and everything. Hopefully one day we get that.

Ironically I’d say that the mobile games that are less complex and complete tend to work better. I’m looking forward to the Mario Kart app and I’m sure I’ll stick with that one for a while. RWBY is also coming up although I don’t think that one will last. I can’t think of any other mobile games that are coming up soon, but I’m sure some will pop up. Those games seem very simple to the point of almost just being point and click. Even Dragon Ball Legends which has a lot going on seems simpler than Dragalia Lost. Dragalia is just a little too complex. If you want to actually get all of the mechanics in the game you’re going to need to dive into Reddit. Otherwise you’re gonna get hopelessly lost with the dozens of mechanics and such going on here. It’s all a little overwhelming. If you do decide to play this game, I highly recommend not spending any of your orbs and materials for the first few weeks of the game. Wait and see who you want to actually power up since these materials are often going to get scarce as the game goes on.

Overall, Dragalia Lost is a fun game. It’ll probably take a long while to get invested in the plot, but at the same time the game did launch with a ton of story levels to sift through so that’ll help. An impressive aspect is also that every single character has an individual story mode as well which consist of a few cutscenes. Since there are going to be hundreds of characters by the end of this that is a lot of content. I can’t stress enough that this is basically a full RPG on the phone. It’s probably the most convincing one I’ve seen since Sword Art Online Integral Factor. That one had the better plot, but this one has the better level designs and less filler.

Overall 7/10

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Domino’s Piece of the Pie Pursuit Review

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After a lot of procrastinating I finally got around to playing the new Domino’s game. After all if it’s something that will help you earn Pizza points how could I refuse? It’s definitely got a little effort put into it but I wouldn’t say that the game is all that amusing. I don’t see myself ever replaying it after all. Still, if you’re looking for a motion game where you have to move carefully through the obstacles then this will be right up your alley.

There are 6 levels here and each one is a little different. For example one of them plays out like a Monkey Ball level as you try to avoid the holes in the ground and roll to the goal. It’s probably the most well thought out level. I’ve always liked that game series as it can get quite difficult but never unfair. Some points in this level are incredibly difficult but fortunately there are constant checkpoints so you never have to go too far back. That’s something that I definitely appreciated from the game. Without the checkpoint I’m sure that the game wouldn’t have been nearly as enjoyable.

Another level has you controlling a balloon as you glide from place to place. It’s a pretty interesting concept as you use the fans to keep it on course. It seems difficult to win this level without dying though as the balloon has a tendency to get into bad angles but fortunately the checkpoint fixes that.

Next to we have a level where you manipulate really small balls to try and go down the tunnel. You have to get 10 balls into the correct hole in multiple phases. It’s a pretty fun level although it’s also rather easy as you appear to have an infinite amount of balls. The level is less interesting than the last 2.

The most bland level in the game is probably one where you have to roll sideways from platform to platform. You’ll certainly get there eventually, you just gotta keep going. There’s also a 3D roller where you move from side to side. It’s pretty similar to the Monkey Ball level but with less control so it’s not quite as good. Still not a bad level though.

As far as the graphics go the game looks okay. It’s like what you would expect from a tech demo or something. The colors are clear and everything looks as it should but the actual objects are super basic. Nothing wrong with that but of course it does make it fairly easy for the graphics to look good so don’t go thinking that it’s because this is a AAA game or anything.

There isn’t really a soundtrack here. There is one static theme that keeps showing up a lot but that’s about it. It’s fairly calm and peaceful though so it fit the levels well. Let’s talk about the real trouble here though. There is basically no replay value to be found here. That’s because the 6 levels is all the content in the game. You can’t earn any extra rewards either so the only possible reason to play the games again is to increase your star rank. I don’t know about you but I don’t think that is a good enough incentive to keep me playing. The game is free so it’s not like you lose any money but make no mistake, you’ll only be playing around for about 10 minutes and then after that the game will be over.

Overall, It’s cool that Domino’s made their own game. All things considered I think that they put a decent amount of effort into it. As most people will be playing it for the coupon I’m glad that it doesn’t take too much effort to get it. It’s not a game that I expect I will ever play again but I’d recommend downloading it. Pizza doesn’t get much better than Domino’s so this coupon is definitely pretty handy.

Overall 5/10

Lollipop Review

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Time to look at the first connect 4 app title I’ve ever played. It’s pretty impressive how much the genre has exploded. There are hundreds of apps on the market just like these. Candy Crush is really what started this segment of the market and it has since grown into something pretty impressive. It is definitely a really fun genre but just playing one or two of them is enough for you to have your fill. Taking on more would just be overwhelming. For me Lollipop was the first and also the best.

You probably already remember the gameplay from my Fruits Mania review so I shall be brief. The goal of the game is typically to match a lot of candy. You can do this in pairs of 3 or greater. The longer the match, the better the reward. A match of 5 will get you the rainbow orb which can destroy all candy of a single color which is extremely handy. Other levels have you trying to match near cookies or getting a cake from the top to the bottom. There are certainly quite a few variations for the levels. I’d say that the best kind is when you have to break a large number of crackers. Those are just the most satisfying to play. You still need strategy but you can just jump in and start marching.

The worst levels are the ones that pop up really late in the game where there will be prisons outside the level and the only way to hit them is to detonate a row bomb in just the right row. It just feels like you need a lot of luck to clear a level like this and the game is basically just telling you to buy the item that you want. This is the kind of game that is definitely pay to win as buying an item like this will really come in handy.

The main game mode is the only mode in the game as you would expect. The replay value is in the sheer number of levels that are included as getting through all 1000+ will be considerably tough. Not to mention that the game is still going as well. You’ll burn out if you try to go through them too quickly so it’s important to just go through a few at a time. Naturally if you are a huge fan and don’t think this will happen to you then you should go ahead and play to your heart’s content.

There isn’t much to say about the graphics or the soundtrack since it is all the most generic themes you can think of. They certainly feel like they are all free domain themes and there isn’t any real variety. It would be nice to have something more than that, but it isn’t entirely unexpected considering that this is a pretty low budget game anyway. The company must have a huge profit margin here because they have 10 games of more that are exactly the same as the others, only they are slightly altered visually. A unique mechanic here or there, but it’s likely not hard to maintain compared to other games. I do think the game looks a lot better than Fruits Mania though because of the color scheme. Blue just pops out and the island esque theme just looks more impressive. It’s definitely quite subjective though.

The app market has really taken off and after laying some of these games I can see why. They certainly are no replacement for console games and if given the option I would choose the latter every time. However, it’s the times where a console game isn’t available that these really shine. Since the levels are quick it is ready to be played at any time. The levels are quite fun as well so it will always remain a tempting option. I could easily see a more dedicated app player beating all of the levels and moving on to one of the other versions just to get more levels.

Naturally as this is a very mainstream app game there are a bunch of pay to win mechanics. You can buy whatever items you want with real world currency. They are fairly cheap but once you’ve bought enough the total will definitely start to spike. Any level can become a cake walk if you buy enough items. It’s one thing Pokémon Go has always done well. You can’t buy candy, stardust, exp, or Pokémon. Without the option to do those things, it effectively prevents the P2W strategy. You will still have an edge if you spend money but it’s not quite as immediate or obvious as in other games. Sonic Forces is unfortunately like this one in that regard as you can just keep buying more loot boxes until you are maxed out with your level.

Overall, your enjoyment of Lollipop will likely depend on how many of the other clones you’ve already played. If this is your first one, then that’s perfect. It will feel really fresh and you’ll be absolutely engaged with the game. If you’ve played others, then this will just seem like more of the same. There aren’t any bells and whistles here. It’s just the gameplay, take it or leave it. At the very least, I know it’s an app that I can easily use to pass the time by, but more often than not, I have other options for that.

Overall 7/10