Home   >   Features

Diary of a Promiscuous Gamer: Epic Empire's reborn, Fightback fights back, and love those Naughty Kitties

This guy will play anything as long as it's free
Diary of a Promiscuous Gamer: Epic Empire's reborn, Fightback fights back, and love those Naughty Kitties
Stay Informed
Get Industry News In Your Inbox…
Sign Up Today

As game executive Bing Gordon famously put it (about) in 2010, "This is the most promiscuous app audience in the history of mankind".

This is the weekly diary of a promiscuous gamer.

1. Clash of Clans (Supercell)
I really don't know why I'm still playing this? Must be force of habit.

2. Epic Empire (Pocket Gems)
I was actually going to uninstall Epic Empire this week, but Pocket Gems has made another update, which has significantly reduced the difficulty level for the main campaign mode, as well as reworking and simplifying the item levelling system - something I've complained about in previous diaries.

The result is a much more balanced and active mid-range section of the game. The update has also greatly improved the PVP missions, so plenty more to be cracking on with, even if there remains a strong element of grind to the grind.

3. Dark District (Kabam)
The good thing about Dark District is you log in, set up some processes and log out. The bad things about Dark District is you log in, set up some process and log out. I think I'm getting most frustrated by the fact that the number of units you can deploy in any base attack is limited. The more you play, the more ridiculous a restriction it seems.

4. Angry Birds Go! (Rovio)
Not played it a lot this week. Didn't really grab me.

5. Adventure Town (Supersolid)
Almost spent some cash this week, but instead I decided to spend some of my Gems to get the equipment I need to unlock my fifth hero Raymond Young - or as I've renamed him Ray of Light. Next up Lauren Beer.

6. Dr. Newton (Brainbow)
Didn't play this week.

7. Eternity Warriors III (Glu Mobile)
As with many Glu games, playing Eternity Warriors III is more about checking out the depth of the monetisation than actually playing the game. This week I was looking at how the skill upgrade system is locked to character level, or you can spend the Gem hard currency to unlock immediately. In other news, my Monk is now level 11.

8. Galaxy on Fire: Alliances (Fishlabs)
I think I've finally worked out how to attack other planets, but am still finding Galaxy on Fire: Alliances less than intuitive

9. RoboCop (Glu Mobile)
Just playing the daily missions.

10. Heroes of Honor (Nonstop Games)
Unlocked new units - Swift Sword and Ranger. All I need now is a new Hero unit to build another mighty army around.

More generally though I am enjoying Heroes of Honor, which seems to combine the best of PVE and PVP action without being too in-your-face about it, while the base-building is much more focused than other games in the genre about unlocking units rather than building a base for the sake of it.

11. Sky Adventures (Game Insight)
Didn't think I would continue to play this, but Game Insight's weird alternative cat-people world-transportation game is surprisingly deep if repetitive. It also does a very good job in terms of firing quick missions at you, so there's always something to aim for.

12. Dungeon Keeper (EA)
Dungeon Keeper continues its slow dance. I can see why people are annoyed with it, but as you play it and unlock more rooms and units, you start to understand what the designers are aiming at. I think it will be a slow burn.

13. Glyph Quest (Alexander Trowers)
Didn't play this week.

14. Modern Command (Chillingo)
As with Glu's games so with Modern Command. The gameplay is generic but there's interest in how the weapons to use to defend your base are researched, unlocked and upgraded, as well as their ammunition.

However, I am surprised that you're charged to change - in my case add to - your base's weapons load-out in-between missions. The amount of hard currency required is very small, but it's a irritant to my continuation of the game.

15. Defenders & Dragons (Glu Mobile)
A simple castle defence/attack game with simple monetisation. Not proving very interesting.

Reinstalled #1 Fightback (Chillingo)
This is a first. I was about to uninstall Fightback as detailed in last week's diary, but actually decided to keep it, not because I enjoy the game - I don't - but because the monetisation deserves more investigation. There's a lot to it.

Installed #1 Deadman Cross (Square Enix)
Mixing a first-person shooting element (collection) with a zombies-taken-over-the-world narrative and RPG card-battling gameplay, Deadman Cross manages to bring some skill into the card collection genre. That should make it more appealing to western audiences.

Installed #2 Naughty Kitties (Coconut Island)
"Fire-breathing cats riding a spaceship destroying its robotic aggressors." Yes, Naughty Kitties is a funny endless 2D side-scrolling actioneer, in which you assign randomly generating cat characters onto a spaceship.

Matching their attributes - offensive and defensive - to the situation is crucial, while the meta-games has you unlocking new cats and spaceships, as well as upgrading and feeding your feline friends. It's humorously presented; one of the reasons I spent $2.99 on IAP. The other reason is to stop the deluge of in-app adverts, which you’re bombarded with.

Installed #3 HonorBound (JuiceBox Games)
A squad-based action RPG plays on the rising trend for hero-based games. It's not the best-looking, but promises deep gameplay as you get into the options of 300 characters to unlock, the abilities to capture enemies, elemental battles plus the usual array of PVP. We will see.

Installed #4 Excalibur (R2 Games)
Not yet played this game, which is the international version of a successful Chinese game. Not yet played. 

Uninstalled: None

Weekly recap
Installed: 4
Reinstalled: 1
Uninstalled: 0

In Play: 18
To Be Played: 2

Spending: $2.99 (Naughty Kitties)
To-date 2014 'Life Time' Value: $6.98