Version Reviewed: 1.1.2
App Reviewed on: iPhone 5
Graphics / Sound Rating:
Re-use / Replay Value Rating:
Are your dragons not cooperating? Do you need help turning the little fire-breathers into a well-oiled machine of destruction? Check out our Mark of the Dragon player's guide!
Mark of the Dragon by Gamevil is a battle/strategy game that plays similarly to Clash of Clans. Nothing new there, right? Well, Mark of the Dragon also features dragons.
"Big deal," scoffs the skeptic. "Clash of Clans has dragons, too."
Yes, but in Mark of the Dragon, players can ride their dragon soldiers. Now we're talking.
Despite the presence of these airborne scaly behemoths, Mark of the Dragon still hews very closely to the Clash of Clans formula. That might be enough to turn off anyone that's sick of battle/strategy games, but anyone who's interested in observing how developers manage to apply their own little touches to the genre will want to hatch a dragon or two.
Players go through the usual motions: build up an army, mine for resources, build storehouses for said resources, build defenses for the home base, then engage in battle against other live players, or through a single-player campaign with an admittedly bare-bones story. Mark of the Dragon offers two unique structures for players to build, however: a breeding lair (where dragons get busy), and a hatching nursery where eggs are incubated for several hours before they can hatch into warriors.
When players enter battle, they dispatch units as usual. However they can also dispatch a dragon, then ride on it to obtain a 3D view of the enemy's camp. From the skies, players can attack structures using a breath weapon and use a rechargeable secondary power that differs from dragon to dragon, but tends to be defensive in nature.
There are, of course, catapults and other weapons capable of making dragon stew out of the behemoths, so it's important for players to maneuver carefully. Doing so can be problematic, as the dragons are a bit cumbersome. Still, it's not overly-difficult for a single drake to take down a base all by its lonesome.
Piloting dragons is definitely fun and satisfying, though it doesn't change the fact Mark of the Dragon is light on story, and therefore pretty light on motivation. More troubling are occasional connection issues that rip players from battles that are going in their favor. The game counts a disconnect as a retreat, and thus "wounded" dragons must wait before they can be deployed again.
In some ways, Mark of the Dragon is as rough as the ridge on a dragon's back. But the dragon designs are creative, and hatching them is certainly fun, so there are definitely worse Clash of Clans clones out there. Rock the dragon.