Genre: Role-playing game Platform/s:iOS / Android Reviewed on: Android Developer: Capital Games Publisher: Electronic Arts Website:www.starwars.ea.com
Ahem, sorry about that. I just showed my little sister A New Hope for the first time, and I’m feeling inspired. Anyway, EA is continuing its steamrolling of the mobile games industry by releasing another entry in their ongoing Star Wars revival.
Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes is kind of like a collectable card game with RPG elements, but without the cards. Confused? Well, gameplay revolves around collecting various Star Wars heroes and villains in randomised booster packs, then assembling them into teams, and pitting them against enemy teams. Between battles, your characters can be upgraded and levelled up, unlocking more attacks, passive abilities and improved stats.
It’s a simple gameplay loop, but the constant drive to see what character you’ll unlock next and to see how strong you can make them is very compelling. Also, a list of quests and daily activities is constantly updated, giving players something to do. Furthermore, some prominent characters need to be earned by collecting a resource that can only be found on the hard difficulty setting, giving players a goal to work towards and encouraging players to challenge themselves if they want to earn Darth Vader or Luke Skywalker. Like many mobile games, going on missions costs you energy, but this is the only mobile title I know that lets players accumulate and stock surplus energy. This is a great feature, because any other game would have you expend energy quickly, forcing you to spend money.
Unfortunately, the battles themselves are very shallow, to the point where one can easily tap the “Auto” button and let the fights complete themselves. Combat is a matter of selecting a technique and a target, usually with very little forward-thinking or strategy. Inputs sometimes don’t register, which makes the controls feel sluggish when trying to select a target. The early game also feels like a slog, and players will feel underwhelmed at their first team of characters. Especially when they’re comprised of fan-favourites like Jedi Councillor™, Clone Trooper™ and Jawa™.
My most pervasive feeling about Galaxy of Heroes is that it it should have been a card game for real. Replace the 3D character models with great 2D art, change up the rules slightly and you’d have a nifty team-based card game. Working with such a tiny deck / team could create gameplay unique to other card games, and might’ve set this game apart more.
Plenty of characters
Unlocks give a tangible goal
60Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes is not a bad game. It’s clear that a lot of work went into creating this and the amount of Star Wars fan service is admirable, but the dull combat lets it down somewhat. If anything, it’ll keep you busy until December 16th.