In a way, I was looking forward to be reviewing this. Having never played a solid Strategy title before, I feel like this experience might open me up some more towards this specific genre of games. At the main menu, I was already overwhelmed with the choices of game modes I could play and needless to say as a rookie, I started with the campaign on Normal difficulty.Single Player
The main campaign kicks off by seeing an old king. As a reference, maybe think King Arthur from medieval times. He was having problems defending the walls of his fortress and a few moments later, the character you would be guiding through his adventures pops up and aids help to the old man. You start off with some simple tutorials: Use the
to aim the projectile you wish to fire, press
to fire, press
to deploy troops, … And that's actually most of the controls wrapped up in one line. You have different types of things you can fire: arrows, triple arrows, shrapnel grenades, ... and you also have different sort of troops through which you can scroll using
. Surprisingly, that's also exactly the only thing this games needs in term of controls since it makes it very easy to navigate through and also makes it somewhat easier to remember.
Although the gameplay remains the same throughout the whole first part of the single player campaign (since that is pretty much the only thing I played off it), the settings and customisation makes up for it. You are able to spend your hard earned coins on upgrades for your troops and you also unlock bonus rooms which you can use in your customisable castle. These will provide some kind of advantage when fighting off waves off enemies, but are needed at the same time if you wish to progress.
While you mostly defend your position from a crossbow kind of thing, you also have the ability to smite enemies yourself by teleporting to the battlefield. Not only will you help your allies, it also saves you some time by aiming arrows waiting for it too strike since most enemies are gone with a few hits. While this is an option on the battlefield, you also have the option to call in magic attacks which also serve as a long ranged attack.
All elements fit nicely quite well, and that's exactly how the devs would have planned it. I lost my interest somewhere around the third hour of playing this game but I can also see why Strategy enthusiasts would fall in love with this game. The gameplay is smooth, bugs or game breaking glitches seem non-existent and the characters have a healthy portion of humour (which is always an added bonus).Extra Content
As I mentioned previously, I was astonished by the choices I had right at the start. I've tried them all, but none really surprised me after spending about 2 hours in the story since they are all pretty much the same. Skirmish seems somewhat hard when trying after only buying 10-15 upgrades (and whether or not they were good ones is debatable
), but I'm sure it might be more fun after completing the main quests.
Survival and Hero Survival on the other hand is different since you just keep on playing until your castle crumbles or until your character dies. Although I've quite enjoyed the Hero Survival game mode, I stopped playing around wave 10 since I didn't feel like I was getting rewarded. But again, these might maybe work as replay value for people.
The multiplayer embraces these extra game modes as their own, but instead of playing against AI controller armies, you'll be facing someone on the other side of the world or sitting to you should you choose to play local. None of them bring something new to this game, and I didn't find the pleasure to find a random opponent online so I can't really add anything in.Graphics and Sound
The graphics were one of the main things why I enjoyed my time in this game. I love cartoons, and this game tries to represent that. Just like in cartoons, there's always that one character that shares his cheesy thoughts and that's exactly what I found in this game. Although the characters in the game don't really "speak", I enjoyed watching the cutscenes although having to press the
button to access the next part was somewhat annoying since you can't fully enjoy them if there isn't a rhythm in viewing these. There were no framerate issues as far as I could tell, so that's a plus as well.Achievements
Being on TrueAchievements, this section needs to be included. From what I played, I'd say that the achievements are quite easily to obtain with the exception of earning 5 stars
and beating Skirmish on the hardest difficulty setting
. The ratio might be sitting over 2.3, I feel like this is because of the multiplayer and some miscellaneous achievements that do require some luck.General opinion
CastleStorm is an enjoyable game for a short while, and has been beautifully designed. The controls are easy to learn, master and apply and could therefore be one of those few games where you can just disable everything and enjoy everything happening on the screen. The Extra Content might be lacking some creativity, I'm sure this would be fun to play online/locally with friends or family.