Various Mobage Mini-Reviews

I got a new phone from my brother for Christmas so I’ve finally been able to play some newer mobile games. Having access to those is not some big great thing, they’re all gacha shit and made to absorb your money, but it’s been interesting and I had some I wanted to give a try that my old phone simply couldn’t handle or outright could not install (an old Samsung Galaxy S5). I’ve spent some time with a handful of things and figured I’d talk about them (also I haven’t spent any money on any of them). I was banned for a week from twitter so I wrote most of this then.

Games I played before that I probably will again or won’t because I don’t have the account code to continue my game and would have to start all over:

That official Tales crossover game. It’s actually good and kinda fun to play, but without my old account I lose all the waifus I collected for my party. It’s pretty good as it has some fun story and special event stories to read through if you like the Tales of franchise as it crosses over basically fucking all of them. The gameplay is pretty simple but enjoyable for a mobile game.

That SAO game. I hate SAO but it’s another one that’s surprisingly not bad and has some okay gameplay, but even more important than in Tales I need the few girls I can tolerate immediately or I don’t want to interact with anything SAO.

That FF I think Record Keeper, another okay one if I remember right, but not worth starting over again. I remember nothing.

Those “Mom Hid The Game” Games

I think the official title is some really shitty Engrish, if I recall it’s “Hidden My Game By Mom” and there are 3 of them. These have been around a long time and like everyone has done a video playing them at some point so you’ve probably seen or heard of them. Just simple little escape-the-room style mini rooms. Fun for shitting mostly because it’s so quick and always a funny little gimmick in every room to figure out to solve it as well as your mom’s hilarious antics to catch you.

Danmachi Memoria Freese

I really wanted to try this but the game has a huge install time…and then once you get it going you’re stuck sitting through unskippable story which is just recapping the early episodes of season 1 of the anime…and THEN it tells you, oh, by the way, you need to install about 5GB of data! I said fuck it and had it do it anyway. Well, the download failed even on wifi. So I tried again. it failed again. I tried 3 total times and every time the download would not complete so the game just isn’t playable for me. Also, that spelling is on them.

Attack on Titan Tactics

This game is just kind of a total mess. The UI is horrible, the gacha opening is a pain because you are required to tap the screen a couple times and then you can clip skip way off in a corner or sit watching this long thing, 99% of the gacha you get are random nobodies that even the real games which delve into side cast have never mentioned at all (the girl there is one of my more liked supporting cast in the show so I go tlucky but she is also the only character I got out of any gacha that was remotely recognizable), and it’s just boring as a game. Really don’t recommend it and I’ll probably uninstall it entirely. The gameplay isn’t horrible but you just kind of drag things mostly at random onto the screen and it does what it does with these complete no-name non-characters that you never stop getting. I feel like the game could be fine if it didn’t make me feel so deflated by just getting nobodies – not even remotely recognizable as mostly-background characters, just fucking nobodies entirely – to play with and the just godawful look of the whole game and UI being so oppressive about how ugly and messy and brown it all is. Maybe I’ll try it again some time but I don’t think so.

BanG Dream!

I’m no good at this, my screen is too big so the middle buttons are impossibly difficult to reach in time and it’s just hard to keep track of where to push in faster songs because of the opposite – the screen is too small for a rhythm game when on its side like is required and it isn’t as intuitive as you’d think. I wouldn’t say it’s shit, but I just can’t manage to play it whether it’s me just being bad or it not working great on this style of phone or whatever else. Rather just get IM@S or something but really rhythm games have no place on phones in the first place.

Azur Lane

I really liked this at first, and it’s still my second favorite of what I’ve got installed right now, but Azur Lane kind of lacks on the gameplay front. Well, the gameplay itself is alright being a very-very-very light shmup style thing but the issue comes in both the progression and the difficulty spikes being insanely huge and thrown at you every few levels. No matter what you do you never feel like you’re making any progress – plus if you get a new ship girl you like you fuck up your only chances of making even the slightest progress cuz if she’s not up to snuff then you’ll just get fucked up anyway…so your progress kind of goes back to 0 again any time you want to put a new girl in. It’s a grinding game where even after you grind you still don’t actually get anywhere with it, and once I realized that it kind of killed my motivation to actually play much at all. It isn’t bad, it’s alright, but it lacks the gameplay stuff that something like Girls’ Frontline (which I’ll get to in a bit) has in place to make you always feel like you’re moving forward and motivating you to engage with all the elements of the game and making doing that rewarding.

The girls are all fantastic though, this has some top tier titties and gratefully there are loads of doujin out there for basically every single one of these bountiful ship ladies.

Dream Girlfriend

Just really boring, unintuitive, and has issues loading your girlfriend half the time and instead just has a black screen and the UI defeating the purpose of the game because I can’t see my girl. You’d think it’d be easy to make a game where you just create and spend time with your ideal waifu but this really doesn’t succeed at anything. Like all you do is look at this still image of some cobbled together waifu and then tell her to study or work (no gameplay) so you can buy her things with her money and then she goes to sleep for 8 hours.

Fate / Grand Order

I was looking forward to this one just a little bit because I wanted to collect the cute slut I may or may not have in lewd dakimakura form who at least is the main character apparently, but I also wanted Astolfo because of reasons and figured the other girls and not-so-girls would be fun to collect. However, this game apparently has really low drop rates for ANY female characters based on my game, my brother’s who has played it for awhile, and what I’ve seen online – unless you pay real money you basically don’t get women or Astolfo. Fate/Gay Orgy. On top of that, this has maybe the longest tutorial ever made for a non-console/PC video game and it forces you to go through all of it and takes about 30 fucking minutes. I hated it and uninstalled it after doing my first gacha and getting 10 fucking random muscle dudes. So a game made for waifu collecting that really will only give you men (not evne bishy type men, just straight up guys – and not even ones from any of the VNs or anything) but also the gameplay is really bland while also being overly complicated in other ways, making it a chore to deal with for multiple reasons and end up with nothing rewarding about it anyway. Also the art in gameplay looks like something someone made in Flash, it’s stupid.

Final Fantasy 15 PE

I meant to start it but I still haven’t so who the fuck knows?

Crossing Void

This is pretty literally, and I do mean literally – even down to the same assets and animations being reused – just Dengeki Bunko Fighting Climax but made turn based. Same characters (I assume more were added but so far it doesn’t seem like it, not a single new face), same sprites, same animations, same backgrounds, same everything as DBFC aside the fact you push a button instead of try to do combos. Luckily the moment you start it the very first thing you see is Mikoto and she’s also the very first character you get by default, so it kept me interested a little. However, it really does feel like DBFC even in terms of how surprisingly boring it is.

I do appreciate how far they went with some things though, like the gacha here is Mikoto kicking the vending machine which is a real fun little thing for that – and also all the dialogue is voiced by the original seiyuu fully which is pretty cool too. Worth playing though? Ehhh…

Girls’ Frontline

Easily my favorite of the mobile games I’ve tried (aside one many years ago that was sort of an Atelier ripoff that I can’t find anymore) because it has great visuals both in the chibi gameplay versions of the girls and of the still/live2d art, an easy to understand interface even though there is a lot going on, and the gameplay is actually pretty fun. Like I actually like playing it and checking in on it, which even for most mobage I’ve liked I can’t really say was true, and it is also the main reason I wrote this post up at all because I enjoy it that much.

It reminds me some of Advance Wars just on a defined layout instead of a more open grid, real time combat to move your girls around in firefights which becomes super important to survival the further on you get, and with a lot more other systems to play around with when not fighting. A lot of them help level up characters and get useful stuff too, in a lot of ways the game tries to keep you from ever feeling the need to spend money or play it an amount that you won’t have fun per-day with it without punishing you for that like many other mobile games.

The only real negative I have, as jokey as it sounds, is that Girls Frontline has a lack of…”adult material” even though it’s got some fantastically designed women in it. This is kind of the only area I’d give Azur Lane a step up for because you can kinda find any of those giant tittied ships getting fucked without much effort but finding anything but a select few of these girls is impossible because it just was never made. I mean it as a genuine problem I have with it because it’s the type of game made to entice you into looking for that kind of stuff because it has that aspect of waifu collection to it as all the anime games do, but then you find out there’s nothing out there. Oh, also it doesn’t do a good job telling you that leveling up mostly just raises your cap limits for stats rather than raising them much at all which hampered my progression a little early on. Overall an actually pretty fun game though.

That was the last one but then this new game from the same people behind Azur Lane and Girls’ Frontline came out and it might actually be my favorite one, though as of actually finishing up this post I haven’t started it up in like a week or two.

Arknights

While this pretty much tosses all the themeing stuff from other games (as far as I can tell, at least – I mean I literally have CD Projekt Red, the company, as an anime wolf girl fighting alongside Doberman, Cardigan, Hibiscus, Meteor, and uh…Jessica so if this has a theme I sure as fuck don’t know what it is), this doesn’t lack in the cute girls department and actually has some cool dudes and like alien people to collect for your team.

However, what makes this “actually my favorite one” is that its a tower defense game and that means its not only fun from a genre I enjoy (yet rarely gets games made in it these days) with added cute anime girls being your ‘towers’ – but it also is a phone game with actual gameplay that is actually fun. I enjoy Girls Frontline but the gameplay is minimal aside strategy and rarely moving mid-fight, but here you are fully involved instead of only partially. It’s also got a lot of goals for yourself like missions to complete, lots of upgrading to do, and very frequent events.

It also has, and I haven’t seen anyone mention it really somehow on twitter at least, a base system very similar to the XCom series where you dig underground and build your base out after cleaning out spaces for the elevators down and expanding and building power stations and shit like that in your underground base.

It looks really clean and crisp even in the menus, it has a really well made tower defense system with its own uniqueness to it, and overall I’m actually enjoying it in the same way I would some indie low-cost (though free in this case) tower defense game on Steam or something. It LITERALLY just came out so I also haven’t played that much, maybe it has issues; I’m sure it probably has the same difficulty spikes like the other two games from these people I’ve played in order to make you feel forced to spend money but being doable with plenty of grinding, but aside that the other two have had no real problems (even giving you near infinite amounts of the stuff needed to keep playing) so I feel like that won’t be a concern here either. My biggest issue that I’ve found is leveling up your characters is a pain in the ass because it doesn’t have any indication of who is in your squads in the menu to do that that I can find. This actually is a pretty big problem so I’m hoping I’m missing something, but it makes everything really annoying, even just setting up other squads. Though on the note of squad and characters, I really like the alternative concept of having a fairly limited number of characters and also only allowing you to have 1 of each character instead of 800 of the same card and ‘eating’ them etc like 99% of mobile games, it makes it much easier to focus and also maintain a solid group you like unlike Azur Lane or Girls Frontline where you are constantly creating new cards/more doubles just nonstop as a waifu collection game.

It seems pretty intensive in terms of resource use on the phone, even the menus are full of loads of particles and such, plus there are a lot of options that outright tell you they’ll make your phone overheat and shit like that, so I’d keep an eye on that but otherwise I’m really happy with this one even though in terms of gameplay visuals and girl art it isn’t as good as GF.

To be honest, I don’t care about mobage much at all – so I kind of already abandoned all of them one by one as something else took my attention (i.e. azur lane to girls frontline to etc) and this is the only one I really play now because it’s the new hotness and even then maybe just log in for my daily shit then not bother. Another thing is that I just don’t care once I feel too forced to grind so I’ve been playing it less because I’m hitting a wall – but still slowly making progress.

Edit: Oh, right, if you have Arknights on Android feel free to add me. Not that there’s much stuff going on with friends but why not.

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