Beast Bound Review
Version Reviewed: 1.1.1
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5
Graphics / Sound Rating:
Replay Value Rating:
Beast Bound is a free-to-play RPG that isn't too mechanically different than a lot of classic JRPGs. In it, players wander through dungeons and face off in turn-based combat to earn experience and gain loot while exploring a unique game world. Although Beast Bound manages to accomplish everything it sets out to do - including an interesting F2P model - it doesn't have enough depth to remain interesting for a very long time.
The world of Beast Bound is introduced to players via a flying cat-like creature that accompanies the protagonist everywhere. Although the story is pretty rote, the colorful environments and cheeky writing of the characters makes theuniverse more interesting than it would be otherwise.Once players get their bearings they'll be tapping their way through dungeons, gathering coins, earning new loot, and buying upgrades for their workshop.
Dungeon crawling is the main way for players to make progress, as defeating enemies and unlocking chests can net gold, experience, and loot. Controlling Beast Bound in dungeons is pretty easy thanks to a useful grid-like map and simple "touch to move there" scheme. Players can also zoom in and out by pinching, which is particularly helpful considering thedefault distance for the isometric camera is a bit too tight to see much of anything. Combat is similarly pretty straightforward, with players tapping out their attacks on the enemies they'd like to take care of. To keep things from feeling too simpleBeast Bound's combat system offers light strategic elements, though none of the combat feels particularly deep.
Lack of depth is actually my main problem with Beast Bound. There's a lot to do, and lots of different locations, enemies, loot, etc, but all of these things feel skin deep. Each dungeon is always the same kind of labyrinth with a boss at the end; and once a dungeon is cleared a new one opens up, then players rinse and repeat the process. Oh, and because Beast Bound has an online store and serves ads, it requires a data connection at all times, which feels cumbersome since it's mostly a solo experience.
Beast Boundis ad-supported and allows players to spend real money for a premium currency, but the way itadministers ads is pretty interesting. Occasionally, when players make it to a new section of a dungeon, a ghost salesman appears and forces players to watch an ad. The first couple times this happens it's kind of funny, considering the floating cat character is vocally annoyed by the ads, but this routine does grow stale. That being said, the rate at which this happens isn't too bad and it's a commendable attempt to embed Beast Bound's business model in the game world, even though it's not entirely successful.
This is an okay game that has a hard time feeling satisfying. Although it's colorful and a bit silly, the sense of charm isn't for everyone and it doesn't have a ton of other things going for it. Beast Bound is a mechanically sound game that doesn't really end up feeling special.