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Master of Craft

For: iPhone   Also on: Android, iPad

A crafty simulation game

Product: Master of Craft | Publisher: IdeaBoxGames | Developer: IdeaBoxGames | Format: iPhone | Genre: RPG, Simulation | Players: 1 | Version: US | App version: 1.0.1
Master of Craft iPhone, thumbnail 1
Master of Craft plays a song of appreciation for the cowards - er, merchants - that forge and sell weapons rather than get directly tangled up in wars themselves.

The game's combination of town-building, monster-fighting, and selling is not unheard of - fans of RPGs were given the chance to open a shop and sell wares at least as far back as Dragon Quest IV for the NES.

But games that revolve around peddling swords and bows don't pop up all that frequently. Theoretically, it could be Master of Craft's rarity that makes it enjoyable, but it helps that the game is well put-together, especially for a free-to-play title.

If you build it, they will buy

Master of Craft takes place during troubled times. Monster hordes are getting thicker, and the demand for weapons is stronger than ever, especially in under-protected frontier towns.

You take up the hammer of a young apprentice aiming to forge a cache of holy weapons that will be celebrated for centuries to come. First, however, you need to learn how to make swords out of sticks.

The town you build up in Master of Craft manufactures a web of resources that you come to rely on for weapon-crafting.

The sawmill makes the twigs and planks that form the foundations of swords and bows. The steel mill makes copper and other metals, which become blades and shields. Yarn shops produce the necessary basics for tunics and other armours.

Adventurers wanted

Stronger weapons require rarer ingredients, which is where the Guild comes into play. You can forge weapons for heroes, who then set out to battle monsters on your behalf and harvest forging materials.

These battle scenes are partially interactive. The heroes fight automatically, but players can utilise skills once the necessary cooldown time has passed.

It'd be nice to have more input, but the warriors seem to do fine on their own, so long as you take on challenges appropriate for their weapon levels.

Thankfully, there are few limits on how often you can send out Guild members. Each expedition takes up energy, but your meter refills as you forge new weapons and armour.

IAPs Explained
Master of Craft's hard currency is jewels. Jewels can be used to speed up building processes. They can also be used to buy the rare ingredients necessary to make powerful weapons, but going on adventures in-game will also supply you with the materials you need (albeit more slowly).

Gems are available for purchase in different denominations, including 30 jewels for $1.99 / £1.49, 75 jewels for £2.99 / $4.99, and 802 jewels for £34.99 / $49.99.
It's a nice alternative to paying hard currency for the privilege of exploring, a trick many adventure-themed town-building games are fond of playing.

War and weapons

Though there's very little change-up in Master of Craft's adventure scenes, the overall game presents few opportunities to really get bored.

There's a lot to keep on top of, especially once you have several stores you need to collect items from. And while there are waiting times that can be negated with the use of hard currency (jewels, in this case), most of them are tolerable.

There are few instances where you feel like the game is reaching for your wallet.

More importantly, Master of Craft is a unique town-builder that never slows down. Maybe it'll give you an appreciation for everything that goes into making weapons that stab and shoot.
Master of Craft
Reviewer photo
Nadia Oxford | 28 July 2014
Master of Craft is an addictive mix of simulation and action / RPG. Even dedicated fighters will enjoy being a merchant for a while
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