Category Archives: Free

Ellen DeGeneres decided to enter the world of mobile games back in 2013 with Heads Up!, and the game has been in the top grossing Apps pretty much ever since. So, it's fair to say that her popularity - and a well-designed game - is a pretty good recipe for success. That is why I expect her new game, Dice with Ellen [Free], to also be successful, although I'm not sure it's going to reach the success of Heads Up! [$0.99]. This dice game is pretty much a take on Yahtzee and is all about trying to get the best score and beat your friends and enemies...

The popularity of hero-centric multiplayer has taken gaming by storm over the last few years. Seeded by MOBAs like League of Legends and DotA 2 and spreading to the likes of Overwatch and Battleborn (R.I.P.). These games didn’t invent the concept of course, but it’s certainly become much more trendy. So, what would you say to a simple but deep hero centric turn based strategy game in a unique fantasy setting with day and night cycles during play that can completely change the face of a battlefield? All on mobile? I say heck yes. This is Little Lords of Twilight [Free]...




Even in comparison to its momentous launch last year, the past few weeks have been extremely significant for Pokemon GO [Free]. Having seen the introduction of Johto Pokemon, many trainers have braved the turbulent February weather to capture a whole new cast of collectible creatures, and a number of minor UI improvements have gone a long way to making Pokemon GO the idyllic mobile game that many envisioned and desired back in 2016. However, Niantic aren't getting complacent off the back of their impressive start to 2017 - at this year's Game Developer's Conference, the Pokemon GO creators outlined future prospects and events for the augmented reality app, as well as gave the audience a glimpse of some early ideas that didn't make the final iteration...

This week we have a brand new Hearthstone [Free] Tavern Brawl called Gadgetzan Throw-Down, and as you can guess, it's all about those Gadgetzan crime families. When you start the brawl, you randomly get one of the three bosses and a deck full of cards from that family. Aya's hero power costs 4 mana and summons a Jade Golem, Kazakus' is a 2-mana add a random potion to your hand, and Don's costs 2 mana and gives +2/+2 to a minion in your hand. The decks, which appear to change every time, play pretty close to their design purpose, with Don being all about hand-buffing and strong taunts, Aya having the Jade Golems, and Kazakus potions and spells...

We had a hunch that the big Hearthstone [Free] patch that will change the game quite a bit would hit today, and we were right. Even though it will take a bit for it to hit mobile, it's definitely on the way. What does the patch bring? Well, a ton of huge changes that should rejuvenate the game. The first is the addition of floors in Ranked; you won't be able to drop below certain ranks - 20, 15, 10, 5, and Legend - once you hit them. That should help the Ladder feel more fun and the level of challenge more appropriate for the rank, especially after the first week or so of the season. The other big change is the Arena shift from Wild to Standard and the change in card frequency; expect to see more rare, epics, and legendaries as well as more spells and fewer neutral basic/classic cards...

Ankama, of Krosmaster and Dofus fame, has given us another interesting mobile game called Krosmaga [Free], and it looks pretty fun. This CCG will remind you a lot of Mojang's ill-fated Scrolls in that you use cards to place units on a battlefield and take out the other player's towers while protecting yours. In Kromaga, you play as a god and can unleash godly - and probably ungodly - powers upon your poor opponent. As with every CCG, you collect cards, build decks - or go with the premade ones the game offers - and go for either the PvP or the single player mode...

'Journey to Un'Goro', Arena Changes, and More 'Hearthstone' Weekly News in 'Touchstone' #86

Hello everyone and apologies for coming one day late; we didn't want to ignore the big Monday news. So, what a week this past one has been, especially given what happened yesterday, Monday. Blizzard finally announced Journey to Un'Goro, the next Hearthstone [Free] expansion that we all knew was on the way. The announcement got generally positive responses, as is usually the case, but what matters is the impact the expansion will have on the meta and whether it will make the game more fun. In addition to the expansion news, we also heard about the upcoming changes to the Arena, which should make the mode feel fresher and - hopefully - more fun. I think it's fair to say that we've never had so many changes announced as we've had in the last couple of weeks, which I hope is part of the developers' attempts to solve the game's problems and improve the experience for everyone involved. So far, so good, I think. Let us begin...

Now that we know that Hearthstone's [Free] next expansion is Journey Un'Goro, let's check out some more of the new cards. Most of them were talked about on the official announcement video. First of all, check out the new Quest cards, a really fun new mechanic that I can't wait to get my hands on. When you play the 1-mana Awaken the Makers Priest Quest spell (the first Legendary spell ever by the way) and then manage to summon 7 Deathrattle minions, you get Amara, Warden of Hope, a 5-mana 8/8 Legendary minion that sets your hero's Health to 40. The fun part is that your opponent will be able to follow the progress of your Quest and act accordingly...

It's finally official; Journey to Un'Goro is the next Hearthstone [Free] expansion! We knew it would probably be that thanks to an early leak, but today we got the official announcement, which you can watch in the video below. In Journey to Un'Goro, we get to visit a land of primordial wonder filled with ancient elementals, scary flora, and - of course - some of the biggest, baddest predators of Azeroth. You can, of course, expect to see dinosaurs; many, many dinosaurs. The expansion will add 135 new cards with many Beast cards but also a new tribe called Elemental. There will be also all kinds of other mechanics going on, like quest cards that give you monstrous power once you complete their requirements. And dinosaurs are very territorial and can Adapt (the name of another new mechanic) to any threat that comes their way thanks to a newly-discovered from of evolution. Sounds intriguing...

Another week, another Clash Royale [Free] card, and this time it's Goblin Gang. The new card, which costs 3 elixir, spawns 6 single-target troops, 3 Spear Goblins and 3 Goblins. The troops are always spawned with the 3 Spear Goblins in the back, which makes perfect sense since you want them protected. The unit is unlocked in Arena 9, the Jungle Arena. If you wanted to spawn Goblins and Spear Goblins independently, you'd have to pay one extra elixir than this card. And, of course, you only need one card rather than two, so it's a win-win...

Star Wars: Force Arena [Free] managed to do pretty well for itself, and its Clash Royale-inspired MOBA-style gameplay was a hit with players. The game has received its first big update of the year, with version 1.4 bringing some very welcome changes that should make playing the game more fun. The first big change is upgraded rewards missions. The Play Pack rewards should be better, and Season Rewards will also include Legendary Cards. Season lengths are also reduced now, so players will be getting season rewards every week. Finally, there are Daily Missions available with plenty of rewards...

FIFA Mobile [Free] continues to offer event after event, and even though personally I couldn't really get into the game, I know many out there have been enjoying EA's offering. The latest event, in celebration of the Carnival, is called the Carniball. The event is running from today until March 6th, and it offers special Packs and Live Events that will offer the opportunity to unlock up to 7 Carniball Master Player Items. Opening Country-specific Party Packs will give you Mask and Confetti Tokens (appropriately) and more rarely Carniball-themed Payers. You'll open the Party Starter Pack you'll find in your collection to receive your first Carniball Broken Mask Players, and then completing their Plan will unlock a Masked version...

I love gaming-related podcasts because of all the inside looks and fun information the format can offer and the fact I can listen to it while doing other stuff. Supercell has decided to join the podcast party by creating an official podcast series for Clash Royale [Free] called Radio Royale. Radio Royale will be presented by game team members Cip - who's an artist - and Bangs - a programmer - and will be an ongoing chat about the game's development process. While we don't have information on future episodes, the creators plan to make Radio Royale's topics wide ranging and entertaining...

So a funny thing occurred a few weeks ago. Games came out both for one of my favorite anime of all time and what is unconditionally my least favorite, both from the same publisher. One Piece is a consistently wonder- and adventure-filled story full of excellent world building, irreverent silliness and absurdity, interesting fights, and genuine heart. The other anime is empty wish fulfillment for 14 year old boys and is basically the anime for young teen male equivalent of Twilight. Relevance to this review? None whatsoever. Such is my hatred. Anywhosers! This is One Piece: Thousand Storm [Free], and its freemium elements are mighty, but it’s a pretty good time for fans...

If you like your racing games fast, arcadey, and fun, check out the newly-released Rally Run [Free]. This free-to-play game initially looks like a runner all about line-changing, but because of the rally-appropriate drifting mechanic and the fact that you're racing to beat times rather than distance, there's more to do in Rally Run. There is also - of course - a nitro boost mechanic that rewards you for chaining boosts together. Each car has its own skills that make it run better on specific surfaces, which means you should be matching car to track. Of course, this kind of mechanic, along with car rarities, opens up all kinds of monetization pandoras' boxes...

February 27th is a big day for Pokemon fans everywhere since it marks the day the very first Pokemon games launched in Japan. The year was 1996, and it became the starting point for the craze that is Pokemon games. In celebration of Pokemon Day, our favorite Pokemon mobile game, Pokemon GO [Free], will join in with one fun event. From February 26th at 1:00 PM PST to March 6th at 1:00 PM PST, any Pikachu you encounter while out hunting Pokemon will be wearing a festive party hat. If you manage to catch one of those hat-wearing Pikachu, he will keep his party hat forever, which is good for those who like collecting and bragging...

One of the thing I love about Hearthstone's [Free] Tavern Brawls is the ability to play with cards not in my collection, and this week's Cloneball - a repeat from June - let's me play with a ton of Legendaries, so what's not to like? Okay, there are some things that aren't great about this Brawl, but I'll come to that in a bit. Cloneball gives you a deck of random legendaries, each cloned four times. You also get multiple copies of Offensive Play, a spell that makes the next legendary card you play - and each of its other copies - cheaper by 3 mana. Deciding when to play that spell often makes the difference between winning and losing...

Recently, we talked about how Hearthstone's [Free] developers were considering making big changes to the Arena in order to make it more fun to play. Now, we officially know what's going to happen and that those changes will go live in the next patch, which will hit before the end of February. The biggest change is the shift from Wild to Standard; from now on, when you play Arena you'll only get to see cards from the current Standard rotation. The reason behind this is to make Arena more about current card synergies and also to make Arena feel fresh when new cards hit the game. The other big change is changes to card rarity distribution. As it stands now, common cards are about 78% of all Arena cards, which the developers felt was too high given that common cards aren't that interesting. So, expect to see more Rare, Epic, and Legendary cards. Additionally, Flamestrike and Abyssal Enforcer will show up 50% less often than they currently do...

A few days ago, we wrote that World of Tanks: Blitz [Free] was getting ready to expand its tank collection, and today's 3.6 update has done just that. The new update brings to the game a new French tech tree line that adds plenty of entertaining tanks, including ones with autoloaders. We are finally getting the AMX 50 120 and AMX 50B tanks, which are very fun to play with. The update also adds a new feature called Vehicle Enrichment, which will increase tech tree vehicles' Credit earning for a faster grind, hopefully. 3.6 also adds a Gift Store, which will allow you to buy and send Gold or Premium vehicles to friends or Clanmates...

Plants vs Zombies Heroes [Free], the CCG take on the famous franchise, ended up being much more fun than I thought it would be, so I'm glad to see the game continue to add content and new ideas. The latest addition, which came in a patch today, introduces Strategy Decks, pre-built deck blueprints for each of the game's heroes. Every hero now has three different Strategy Decks available, each with its own theme, that will be great help for those just learning how to play a CCG or experienced players who don't know yet what each hero's strengths and weaknesses are...

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