Sega re-enters the PVP arena with release of card-battling, strategy RPG Kingdom Conquest II
by Jon Jordan 18/1/2013
Product: Kingdom Conquest II
Developer: Sega Networks
Publisher: Sega Mobile
Format: Android, iPhone, iPad
Genre: Card battler, Strategy
Networking: wireless (network)
2013 is going to be the year of PVP mobile games.
Of course, the success of Clash of Clans and Kingdoms of Camelot means games using the Player Versus Player mechanic were also the big talking point of last year.
But, as the song states, "You ain't seen nothing yet".
All the big publishers and plenty of the little developers are ramping up new PVP titles to try to capture their own slice of this lucrative market.
At least, Sega can point to reasonable success already as the first game in its Kingdom Conquest series has done over three millions downloads since its release way back in 2010.
The sequel - now out on Android and iOS - doesn't look much better in terms of the graphics, which although they are technically 3D, look more like PC games from the era of Voodoo graphics cards.
Maybe we're being a little mean as Kingdom Conquest II offers two distinct experiences.
A city - build it
The first is the city-building and resource management gameplay we're forced to grind through in all these PVP titles - levelling up buildings to gain more resources to create more units to build up armies (in this game they're card-based) and attack other land and other people's cities.
It looks old fashioned, the UI is fiddly even on a tablet, and the world itself is overtly tile-based so this part of the game isn't anything to write home about.
Coloured tiles on the world map
Indeed, you have to pick a server on which to create your city so it's not one big world, even if Sega points out that the auto-translation mode means players from around the world can chat to each other.
A new perspective
What is interesting, however, is the game's third-person action mode.
In this, you choose between various character classes, controlling your character with a touchpad on the left of the screen and various attack buttons on the right. You have to clear the different dungeon levels to collect loot and experience points. And you can even do this in four-player co-op mode for the larger - boss-heavy - dungeons.
Group fight against a dragon
Of course, as a free-to-play game, you'll quickly come up again the decision whether to buy in-game currency to speed up the building elements, or purchase better monster packs to toughen up your army. But we're hoping the action dungeons elements will at least give us something useful to do while we're waiting for our sawmill to level up.
Unlikely to break your Clash of Clans obsession, Kingdom Conquest II is nevertheless a more complex if less pretty-looking game and out now for iOS [iTunes link] and Android devices [Google Play link].
Or check out the CGI trailer (note, no gameplay footage).