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Monsterology
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Monsterology

Release Date:  July 19, 2012
Publisher:  Nukotoys
Developer:  Nukotoys
Genre:  Strategy
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Monsterology is a 3D fantasy turn-based strategy game for iPad. Based on the New York Times Bestselling “Ology” Series, Monsterology allows players to tap their way to battle monsters, setup traps, and cast magic over the monsters.

In the world of Monsterology, or Oloverse, players join the Royal and Ancient Society of Ologists to learn ways of the Master Monsterologists and fight against the foreces of darkness by building an army of monsters, traps and magical items to save Monsterology before it is too late. As the dark wizard Vidius Muldervane and its accomplices controlled the portals leading to the fantasy world of Oloverse.

Your goal is to help reclaim the territory by capturing the portals and restoration tower. Along the way, you will have hordes of monsters in you way. You can change the camera angle in any direction you like by touching and dragging with one or two fingers. Movement, attacks, and playing cards from your deck all cost Action points, which will regenerate at the beginning of each turn based on how many flags they control.

Review:

Pro: Novel gameplay. Simple map, but difficult progression.

Con: Pictures are not clear enough for most of the time. The controls are not as fluid as they should be. New levels available are relocked after a replay of a previous level.

Monsterology is a clever game on the right platform. But the controls ruin everything.

In the game, you will choose cards, which include the monsters and equipment you need for defeating the evil monsters and capture the towers and portals. The monsters have to be placed in the spawn zone while the equipment must be located near a monster. Each monster has distinctive action ranges and attack ranges and therefore they can be instructed to walk or attack enemies only if the destinations or the enemies are within the ranges. That’s pretty much everything about it.

iPad gives a full play to the 3D pictures when the game changes angles to provide a detailed view of battles. But everything is blurry otherwise. That is understandable – you’ve got to have more things observable on the interface. But still, it’s not the ideal 3D exhibitions on iPad. Also the environment, though varying from grassland to snow-covered ground, cannot please players too much with every tree looking exactly the same on the small map.

The controls are catastrophically disappointing. It is often the case that I could not move some characters to anywhere when I still have Action Points left and when the interface implies the monster is movable. And there was once when I moved my monster to the edge of the island to avoid attacks from the enemy nearby but it slips into the water and couldn’t move anywhere anymore though the action and attack range still cover the area around it, indicating it could move.

That’s hilarious but it sucks – given that only a few cards are available, every card matters, especially when only three of my monsters are still alive, with the very one in the water being the strongest and with quite a few invincible evil monsters awaiting. In that case, I have nothing to do but to replay the game.

Yes, cards are never enough. You will have to purchase more in the store. Since you always have to move the monsters close enough to enemies and towers or other stuff to unleash attacks or capture targets, you will still be unable to do anything after running out of Action Points, even if you have sufficient card supply.

Nonetheless, the controls, the limited cards and Action Points make this otherwise much too easy game incredibly difficult. Actually, I avoided the enemies as much as possible and capture the towers and portals after bypassing and ignoring confronted enemies to avoid deaths. Believe it or not, I had to. Most of the enemies possess much more HPs than my buddies and they outnumber my team all the time. That makes it necessary to be a coward sometimes. Fortunately, you don’t need to kill all of them to complete a level quest and unlock the next one. The game suggests that players can replay previous levels if they want to. But when I challenged level 2 successfully again after being defeated in level 4, I found level 4 was not available anymore and I had to get through level 3 again to open it up. That stinks.

I would say it is bold to offer such a title on iPad. With barely satisfying 3D pictures and especially the occasionally malfunctioning controls, the game absolutely needs improvements.

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