I play a lot of games, normally the free to play variety on my phone. I have always been the type of person who discredits mobile games due to their nature of being shitty. Honestly, how many match 3 games can the universe produce? Well lucky for us, some people have original ideas, and others people enjoy stealing those ideas! Lionheart: Dark Moon is somewhere in between.
The game has a unique polygonal graphic style that is pleasant to watch. The combat system is typical turn based where you have some strategy of matching one elemental type against another to gain an advantage, a la Pokemon. The game starts off strong, with a decent enough story line to follow through. In fact, one of the strong points of the game is the story line. Other mobile free to play games tend to use the story as a way to get you through the tutorial, Lionheart uses it to drive the game forward.
So, I have to give the game props on the use of story which is lacking in most mobile games. That is about where the props end and the complaints begin. The game is divided into chapters with scenarios in each chapter. Each chapter can be played through on easy, hard, and midnight. You also have some other modes, such as a dungeon mode where you replace mobs as they die to go as far as possible and an arena where you fight other players preset lineups controlled by the game. But I am going to focus on the main part of the game, the Chapter mode. Chapter 1 is the shortest consisting of 3 scenarios, chapter 2 consists of 5, and them the rest of the chapters have 7 scenarios. That means each mode consists of 71 scenarios to play through.
As I stated, I have played a lot of mobile free to play games. As a father of two, with a wife who is going back to school and working overnights, I don’t have a lot of time for traditional gaming. That being said, that doesn’t mean I want to pay out the ass to play a game. Unfortunately, Lionheart makes it obvious that you will need to pay out the ass to play or grind until your eyes bleed to simply get past a single level in a story. This is the market place:
If you noticed anything it should be the cost of the currency and the price of keys. To get epic or legendary monsters you will need to spend around $36 USD for a single mob. A single mob and if it is epic, you might use it to get past another scenario or two. It will require more cash to make it past chapters.
Perhaps I am simply not willing to spend that much time grinding or that much money on a mobile game that isn’t being played by that many people and doesn’t even have a chat feature outside of your own guild. Not that it makes much of a difference since no one is talking anyway.
So, how far can you get before hitting the pay/grind/surrender wall? Well, that is the biggest fucking problem with this game vs. other games. Most games will try to give the player some hope of progress before they want to throw their phone into the deepest darkest abyss and forget that mobile games exist at all. You can make it to Chapter 5 and depending on how strong your mobs are scenario 4 or 5 and you can do hard modes through chapter 1 and 2. So, of the 213 possible scenarios you can get through 34 to 35 of them.
I am not sure why they did this because it simply isn’t enough to get invested in the game and you can get this far in a few hours play time. That makes it great because you can literally say “fuck this bullshit” and uninstall the game promptly. This game is the perfect example of a cash grab where it simply exists to only steal money. It makes me feel bad for the team that developed it because they clearly intended to have the game played. They put a lot of effort into the games design and story only to have some asshole in management tell them to insert a crappy paywall before anyone can enjoy the game.
Lionheart: Dark Moon is why everything sucks.