Editor’s note: What’s this? Mobile Monday… on a Tuesday? O_O But isn’t that Against The Rules? We’ve never been huge fans of rules. This one time, we ate ice-cream for breakfast, and it was delicious. And so, in the spirit of reckless, ice-cream-loving abandon, here’s Mobile Monday on a day that isn’t Monday.
There’s an incredible number of mobile games on the Android and iOS app stores, enough to make a gentleman’s monocle pop out in surprise. In the interest of keeping you informed by tackling as many titles as possible, here’s Mobile Monday’s second double feature. This week we’re tackling Triple Triad and Survive – Wilderness survival.
Triple Triadis a collectible card game first seen in Final Fantasy VIII, and again in Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. In those games it’s an incredibly fun and addictive side-quest, and a great way to take a break from the spiky-haired JRPG melodrama.
Each match in the game is a one-on-one duel, where opponents battle with decks of only five cards. The cards feature creatures, characters and artwork from Final Fantasy‘s storied history. Each card is played in a square on a 3×3 board, and the objective is to capture as many cards on the board as possible, earning more points than your opponent. If you’ve never played FFVIII or XIV before, it can be a little daunting, but it’s quite straightforward once you’ve learned the mechanics.
Unfortunately, Triple Triad is not exactly a deep CCG. Building a deck requires little forethought, and battles can end in under two minutes. Furthermore, each match costs players a point of stamina (which you need to start a match), and the short matches mean you can be left with nothing to do in a very short time. Interestingly, microtransactions only exist to refill stamina, and new cards can’t be bought, only won from matches. This mobile version is a perfect port of the console versions. It handles well, the controls are snappy, and the sound effects and music are perfect. If you approach the game as a fun distraction, and not an investment (like Hearthstone), then Triple Triad is good fun.
Check it out via the Final Fantasy Portal app for iOS or Android.
Survive – Wilderness survival
Confession time: I used to be a Boy Scout. I’ve enjoyed hiking, camping and bushcraft for most of my life. It’s probably why I also enjoy contemplating survival situations, and thinking about what I would do if stranded in the wilds. Survive – Wilderness survival lets like-minded gamers test out their inner-Bear Grylls from the comfort of their smartphones.
Developed as an entry in a Ludum Dare jam, Survive casts players as a person lost many miles in the wilderness who must make their way back to safety. Players have to carefully manage their food intake and health, while also gathering resources, building shelters, and trying to trudge as far as possible each day. While this may sound like just another one of the bajillion other survival games out there, Survive stands out for being largely text-based. There is artwork, but no animations, and for the most part players will have to imagine what’s going on.
Although still in alpha, Survive is a great proof of concept, and shows off how minimalist design can create a moody and atmospheric title. There’s room for improvement, but the game is frequently patched and rapidly evolving. The largest criticism deals with the daily traveling mentioned above. Players are given few choices of destination, and will often feel like they’re being funneled into disaster. Regardless, Survive is a fun take on a popular genre, and is enjoyable in short bursts. It’s got a great, moody atmosphere, and it’ll be good to see where its developer takes it.