Clash Royale review
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Clash Royale review

Our Review by Campbell Bird on March 8th, 2016
Rating: starstarstarstarstar :: ROYALLY FUN
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This competitive, card-based tower defense game crams a lot of depth and satisfying gameplay into small, bite-sized bursts of fun

Developer: Supercell

Price: FREE
Version: 1.2.2
App Reviewed on: iPad Air 2

Graphics / Sound Rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar
User Interface Rating: starstarstarstarstar
Gameplay Rating: starstarstarstarstar
Replay Value Rating: starstarstarstarstar

Overall Rating: starstarstarstarstar

Clash Royale is a multiplayer, card-based, tower defence, MOBA-lite game from Supercell, the giant developer and publisher behind Clash of Clans.

Because of its free to play structure and branding, it might be tempting to write Clash Royale off as a cash-in or a pay to win game, when in reality it is one of the most innovative and well-designed mobile multiplayer experiences on the App Store today.

Tower of cards

Clash Royale is a hybrid of tower defence and collectible card games in which two players face off on a tower-laden battlefield with a custom decks of eight cards. They use these to try and destroy their opponent's towers while protecting their own within a three minute time period.

When towers get destroyed, players earn crowns, and the player with the most crowns at the end of a match is declared the winner.

While players can purchase cards, they can't just spam the most powerful cards to steamroll opponents.

The game's elixr meter (not too unlike Hearthstone's mana system) limits the amount of cards that can be used at one time, making positioning and timing key ingredients to success in Clash Royale.

Meta game

Outside of matches, players earn chests which reward them with new cards and currency. If players gather enough cards of the same type, they can pay some gold to level up their units, while earning new cards gives them options to vary up their deck.

Clash Royale also features a card store, clan system, and a place to watch replays, which provides plenty of content between matches.

For a game that's fun enough on its own, these added features make it a more satisfying and lasting experience.

The Supercell touch

However, the elements that really makeClash Royale stand out are its fine-tuned sense of balance and speedy-yet-satisfying game design.

At the time of writing, the wait time for a match is about a second and almost every match is good challenge with no apparent lag.

Also, even if you're playing with decks of basic cards, there are viable strategies to help you take down decks full of epic and rare cards, and all of this is achieveable in a short, sweet, and very satisfying three minute burst.

The bottom line

Clash Royale is a heck of a package. Top to bottom, it's an extremely fun experience that is so well put together it's hard to put down.

Want more Clash Royale-related stuff? Then check out thepodcastand the following guides:

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