Castle Clash is a critically acclaimed mobile game developed by I Got Games and available as a free download for both Android and iOS. The strategic fantasy base-building game has over 10 million downloads on the Google Play Store alone, with a rating of 4.6 aggregated from over 3 million reviews. Clearly Castle Clash is extremely popular and well-liked by a huge population of mobile gamers, but does it deserve the ratings and popularity? The following review details the good and the bad about the game while offering you tips and tricks to make your village’s rise to glory as quick and fun as possible!
Castle Clash, when opened, greets players with a colorful logo which, like the rest of the art in the game, is colorful and whimsical. There’s a “chat” button offering live support. This button is present in many different screens throughout the game, offering help with any issues the player might have.
Castle Clash offers so much content you’ll be hard pressed to run out of things to do. However, a lot of your time will be spent placing and upgrading buildings, collecting resources, and training and maintaining your armies. The game at its core focuses on base building, so let’s take a look at the various aspects involved in running your village.
The Basics of Base Building
The game starts you off with a Newbie Guide offering a few basic tips on how to get started in the game. The guide takes just a minute or two to complete, and players are left to their own devices. In-game there’s a lot of contextual support in the form of an exclamation point you can click for deeper explanations.
At the beginning of the game, your meager village has only a few buildings. In order to do pretty much anything, you’ll need to expend resources. There are quite a few different resources in the game, but most of the time for your buildings you’ll be using Gold and Mana. Gold is farmed using Gold mines, and Mana using Mana mills. You start the game with one mine and one mill, but can later add more and upgrade their levels to increase production.
To build a building, you open the shop menu located at the bottom right of the screen. The shop is broken into six different categories: Treasure, Shields, Decorations, Resources, Attack, and Defenses.
The Treasure category is used to purchase Gems, Castle Clash’s premium currency. Gems can be purchased using real money, but there are several ways you can obtain Gems without paying any money just by playing the game. Look at the Tips, Tricks, and Cheats section for more information on earning Gems without spending a cent.
Shields are an optional perk purchasable only using Gems. While you’re logged in and playing the game, your base is safe from attack. However, once you’re logged off other players can attack your base to try to gain resources. The three shields, Wooden, Iron, and Gold offer increasingly longer amounts of time that your base will be free from attack. Keep in mind, however, that the shield timer counts down while you’re playing.
Decorations contains purely cosmetic items. Some are purchasable with Gems, and others with Gold. As these are purely there to look cool, you can play the entire game ignoring this category. However, if you enjoy the aesthetics of town building it might be worth your while to check it out.
The three remaining categories are where all the practical buildings are located.
Resources contains buildings related to harvesting and storing Gold and Mana, and are purchasable using one of those two currencies. It also contains the Warehouse, which is used as storage for anything else in the game.
Attack contains all your offensive buildings and there are quite a few of them. The majority of the most important buildings come from this category, and several of them are necessary to participate in certain modes the game has to offer. The Attack category is also where you’ll set up camps for your troops and Heroes. Troops are basic expendable units used to defend your village and attack others, while Heroes are powerful warriors that are highly customizable and upgradable.
Defense contains Watchtowers, Walls, Bomb Traps, and Hero Traps. These buildings are largely self-explanatory and serve as the defenses for your village.
Buildings are placed using a drag-and-drop method. Some buildings have prerequisites, such as upgrading another building to a certain level. To upgrade a building you tap on it and hit “Level Up”. The info button lists the benefits of upgrading a building, and can serve to give the player direction on which buildings to upgrade first.
Castle Clash Resources
Now that we’ve covered the basics of building, let’s take a look at the various Resources used in Castle Clash. Though I discussed Gold, Mana, and Gems, there are several other resources the purpose of which is important to understand as we go further into what the game has to offer.
Gold and Mana are basic resources used to build buildings and upgrade them, hire troops, and start a guild. You are charged a small amount of gold based on your Might level every time you decide to raid another player’s village.
Honor badges are used to hire and upgrade heroes.
Fire is earned from dungeons and is used to raise the maximum level your heroes can achieve.
Shards are obtained from dungeons and are used to purchase heroes or converted into Guild Credits to spawn the Guild Boss or do research.
Gems are the premium currency that can be used to speed up upgrades, and buy pretty much anything in the game.
Might is a measure of your overall ability as a player, and is used during matchmaking.
Merits are a recently added currency earned from Hero Expeditions that can be exchanged for any currency other than Gems at your warehouse.
An understanding of these resources and how to obtain them is essential for anything beyond the most basic of play.
While keeping your base upgraded and defended is very important to success in Castle Clash, a lot of the game consists of various content you can tackle with your team of Heroes.
Heroes are sorted into Legendary, Elite, Ordinary, and Sacrifice ranks.
Elite and Ordinary heroes are weaker than Legendary, and Sacrifice Heroes are only able to be used to level up your other heroes.
Heroes are recruited at the Heroes Altar, and can be obtained several ways:
Using Gems, you can “gamble” for a chance at high quality heroes. Some of the best legendary heroes can only be obtained via Gems.
You can also recruit heroes using Honor badges. This method is similar to the gem method as you have to “gamble” to get a hero. Honor badges are awarded hourly based on your Arena rank, and can be earned in the Arena, Raids, Dungeons, or by fighting Bosses. Honor badges can also be bought in the gem store.
Lastly, you can use a resource called Shards. Shards are obtained through Dungeons and Here Be Monsters and are used to purchase specific heroes (Only a few heroes are purchasable via Shards, and none of them are the most powerful).
Heroes level up by doing Dungeons, Raids, and Here Be Monsters:
Raids cost gold to enter and are Player vs Player battles the objective of which is to destroy your enemy’s base or steal their resources. The two players in a raid are matched according to their Might (A number that represents overall ability at the game). Combat is pretty hands off once you set up all your heroes and troops, but the player can participate in the fight by using spells learned from the relic hall.
Dungeons are the most basic level of Player versus Environment Content. They are similar to raids in that you’re attacking an enemy base, but these bases are static and generated by artificial intelligence rather than constructed by another player.
Here Be Monsters is a randomized tower defense game where you place your heroes and troops in strategic spots to stave off five waves of enemy monsters.
Guilds, Team Dungeons, and Beyond – Castle Clash Endgame
Raids and Dungeons are the most basic and easily accessible content, but Castle Clash has difficult content that can keep even the most hardcore player occupied.
This section just provides a basic overview of the plethora of content available to players of Castle Clash.
Arena is a mode with a map reminiscent of League of Legends where the objective is to protect your shrine by defending 3 lanes against the attacking player. This is a two person PvP mode and you can either attack or defend.
Once your Town Hall is level six, you can purchase a Guild Hall for 3000 Mana. A guild hall allows you to join a guild or create one yourself. Guilds can “Challenge a Boss” each day, where the players have 30 minutes to defeat a challenging boss in exchange for Honor Badges.
Guilds can also participate in Torch Battles which is a form of Guild PvP where the objective is to protect your own Fires while stealing that of another guild.
Heroes Trial is a game mode similar to Here Be Monsters, but you face a single wave consisting of enemy Heroes. This mode is more challenging than Here Be Monsters and requires a higher might level to join.
Team Dungeon is a very challenging event where players team up to take on Centaur Bosses inside a dungeon. With the time I had available to review the game, I was not able to get even close to powerful enough to participate in one of these dungeons. The general consensus is that you need some of the most powerful legendary heroes to be able to complete the challenge.
Wretched gorge is essentially a team version of Here be Monsters, and has 4 different levels you can participate in, access to which is based on Might levels.
Hero Expeditions were recently added and are similar to raids but involve using only Heroes rather than troops and magic, and allowing you to bring up to 15 of them.
Tips & Cheats for Castle Clash
Though it’s very difficult to do something “wrong” per se, Castle Clash is definitely easier if you have a good start and make good decisions.
Some of the most powerful legendary heroes are available only via gambling with gems. You can spend a bunch on the store for the chance of getting yourself a great hero, but there are other ways to obtain gems without spending any money.
Every time that you log into the game after your first time opening it, a window opens called Event Carnival. This page lists multiple events that are currently ongoing and details how to obtain rewards, which can range from unique heroes to rare cosmetics and more. Always make sure you take a look at the offers when you start the game.
In addition to the Event Carnival there’s a little present in the top left corner that contains two tabs, “Earn Gems” and “Daily Reward”. The Earn Gems section allows you to earn free gems by doing simple stuff like linking your Facebook and google+. You also have the option of watching advertisements and earning a few gems with each ad. The Daily Reward simply gives you stuff just for opening the game, so make sure you open Castle Clash at least once a day if only to claim that reward.
At the bottom left of the window there’s a scroll you can tap on that opens the achievement tab. This has a huge list of tasks that you can receive gems for completing such as “Gold Vault reaches Lvl 4” or “Reach 1000 might”. If you find yourself short on gems, just take a look and see if there’s any achievements you can finish easily.
Castle Clash Review
Castle Clash is a game with a lot to offer for those that have some time and patience. However, unless you’re willing to spend a lot of money, the game isn’t super accessible to casual players. A lot of the newer and more relevant game modes are not accessible until you’ve sunk a lot of hours into the game already.
For players that are able to play frequently, Castle Clash offers a wealth of content rivaling even some MMOs. Each game mode increases in difficulty as you unlock new ranks, ensuring that players can find a challenge no matter how long they’ve been playing.
Gems, the premium currency, are pushed on the player at every opportunity, but that’s forgivable in my eyes as they don’t display ads and there are ways to earn Gems without spending money, provided you’re willing to do things a little slower.
Heroes are diverse and customizable, but there are a few heroes that render a lot of the other ones useless.
Overall, I think this game is excellent and offers a ton of great content and replay value without breaking the bank.
Castle Clash has great art assets but they’re not super original. The style is cute and pleasing to the eye. Rating: 7/10
Music / Sound Effects
This is where I feel the game fails. It recycles a few different tunes over and over again and with less than ten hours played I’ve already muted it and turned on Spotify. 2/10
Story / Originality
There’s really not much of a story but that’s not the focus of this game. As far as originality, the game innovates in the way they handle a few of the game modes, but at its heart a lot of this game is tower defense which is a very overplayed genre. 6/10
Castle Clash is a game of intimidating proportions, so much so that I couldn’t possibly touch on everything in this review.
The hardest content is reserved only for those who have spent a lot of time grinding and perfecting their base and heroes. As a relatively serious gamer who doesn’t mind grinding, this doesn’t bother me too much, but it can also be seen as a negative. 8/10
This game hits the same spot that a lot of MMORPGs hit for me. I can see myself sinking hours into the game trying to max out and improve my village and Heroes. 9/10
This game caters to a gamer in a way a lot of other mobile games don’t. With nearly limitless progression, social interaction via guilds and a friends list, and a lot of ways to compete with others, Castle Clash is definitely worth downloading. 7/10