Guilty Pleasure – Clash of Clans

I’ve been a gamer for a very long time, playing on systems back to the first Playstation and I remember my Gameboy days well. Through the years a lot has changed in the gaming world, better graphics have been created, better stories have been told, players can engage with others online in ways unimaginable just a decade ago, and most importantly games are going mobile, beyond the constraints of hand held gaming devices to be integrated with our everyday smartphones. This leads me today to discuss a guilty pleasure of mine, that Clash of Clans is not only a game I play on my phone but that for the price of free it’s a pretty good one at that.

If you don’t know what Clash of Clans is then you’ve been away from the app store for a while. It’s a small scale city builder that allows you to grow your own empire while attacking other individual players for resources. If you join a clan, you gain access to another tier of gameplay when your clan leader starts a “war” with another clan. The two sides battle for several days, and the winner emerges victorious with prized resources and bragging rights. Some clans take this aspect VERY seriously and require players who are considered good enough to join to be available at all times.

In the single player campaign, you can take down goblin villages to earn a little extra cash or elixir. In multiplayer, you rank up in different leagues that provide tougher competition and better incentives. These leagues reset about every two weeks and rarely, in my experience, will you be relegated to a league lower than your current one. This may be completely different at higher ranks and leagues, as I have only reached Gold 1.

Finally, this game is hugely pay to win. I’ve spent $5 on some gems before to help secure another builder, but I’m willing to be some have thrown a lot more at it. Gems are a currency you build up very, very slowly by removing clutter, completing achievements, being graced with special gem boxes or with cold hard cash (figuratively of course, since you’ll need to use a credit card). The gems are used to speed up building with instant completion or give boosts to buildings like those that harvest resources or create troops. That means the more gems spent the faster you can create your empire and rank up. I’m getting to the point now where some buildings take a week or longer to create without the use of gems, and as I’ve pointed out, I’m reluctant to spend any because they take so long to amass.

Hopefully I’ll still be able to compete with those at higher ranks without the use of gems. Either way, to get to that point in the league ranking system will take months, though if you have ten minutes throughout the day to check up on your empire and micromanage your next move, you may be pleasantly surprised by this title. If you really want to get fancy, you can also get an emulator to play on your computer. Thanks for reading, please follow if you enjoyed, and as always stay tuned for more!

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