Developer: Kixeye
Price: FREE
Version Reviewed: 2.1.2
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★½☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★½☆
Playtime Rating: ★★★½☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

Immediately familiar to Facebook gamers, although a self-contained title in its own right, Backyard Monsters: Unleashed is a quite enjoyable combat strategy/village building game, albeit one that will eventually require a fair amount of grinding and patience.

backyard3Offering similar gameplay to other titles in the genre, players are expected to run a village; gradually accruing more resources while building and expanding existing structures in a bid to become the strongest village out there. It’s a fairly typical concept with plenty of different resources to keep an eye on. Sticks and stones, along with putty, help build new buildings or develop existing ones, while goo is used to spawn new monsters and enter battles. This is where things get more interesting.

There are numerous different monsters to train and develop, each with their own strengths and weaknesses to be aware of. As one plays more of Backyard Monsters: Unleashed things open up more so, adding more of a tactical edge to proceedings. It’s fortunate then that there are plenty of ways to fight it out. There’s a campaign mode with 27 missions to tackle, as well as an invasion mode which enables players to compete with other players. That’s where Backyard Monsters: Unleashed comes more alive and is more satisfying to play.

backyard5There’s a fair amount to sink one’s teeth into here, with more than just the typical city building way of doing things. An extensive array of achievements give structure to the routes that one pursues and the only slow down comes from the grinding that’s expected of the player. Much of this can be circumvented, predictably, by in-app purchases, but at least the game is fairly generous early on so players have plenty of time to figure out if this is the game for them. It further boosts the fun factor that Backyard Monsters: Unleashed achieves well.

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