The Collectables Review
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The Collectables Review

Our Review by Jennifer Allen on March 24th, 2014
Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar :: MERCENARY INDEED
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There's a fun if shallow shoot em up here, but it's clouded by far too many freemium mechanics.

Developer: Mobage
Price: FREE
Version Reviewed: 1.3.16
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5

Graphics / Sound Rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar
Gameplay Rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar
Playtime Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar
Replay Value Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar

Overall Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar

A simple to learn strategy game, The Collectables starts out pretty fun. That is until one scratches under the surface and soon learns that it encapsulates much of what's most infuriating about freemium games.

The set up is decent. Players control a bunch of renegade soldiers as they complete a series of missions of similar proportions. These typically involve wandering through stages and shooting the foes in one's way before collecting or destroying various targets. It's simple stuff but it works well on the mobile format, given much can be achieved in a short space of time.

Elsewhere, there's a collectible cards system tied into things with new soldiers and boosts gained through the acquisition of these cards at the end of each stage. Soldiers can be upgraded also, which is convenient given that players can only use so many cards at once. Special boosts add to their healing ability or offer explosives to fling at the enemies, further adding to such capabilities.

Issues arise, though. Namely some grinding needs to be done in order to progress. Replaying levels is rewarded appropriately, but is downright near essential to get anywhere as the difficulty curve ramps up fast. An energy bar system restricts how often a player can do anything during a single session also, meaning such progress is slowed down somewhat. Completing the triumvirate of issues is the stingy currency system meaning that it'll take a long while to honestly earn the things that one wants, even after plenty of grinding.

It's a collection of things that no one likes about freemium gaming then, and it certainly affects the level of enjoyment that can be had from The Collectables. A brief sojourn into mercenary fighting is all well and good if simply done, but not if one finds themselves constantly thwarted at every turn by a harsh pricing structure.

iPhone Screenshots

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iPad Screenshots

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