Anyone who carries a Mobile Device and loves gaming is always on the lookout for something that can can give you a quick fix or keep you engaged for hours. I recently got an opportunity to visit Undead Labs and check out Moonrise, a real-time combat RPG that really made the obsessive compulsive gamer collector in me get excited. You could equate it to a Pokémon MMO with a few twists.
You are a Warden whose job it is to travel the world and cleanse the savage Lunari that have been transformed from peaceful creatures known as the Solari. The cause of this transformation is an event known as the Moonrise which occurs periodically causing issues with its corrupting shadow. Any Solari affected by the Moonrise go on destructive rampages that can last for months if not cleansed. You will have to traverse the world, protecting the people from the savage creatures, defeating them in battle at which time you can cleanse them, and if you're lucky recruit them to your team of Solari for future battles.
As with any good RPG, the first thing you will do is create your Warden. The character customization is rather impressive for a mobile game and you could spend quite a bit of time here. After deciding on the perfect look for your Warden, you are taken through a short tutorial that will teach you how to compete in the Real-Time Tactical Combat were you and your Solari fight side by side. Combat is as simple as tapping on your Solari or Warden, tapping an available ability and then tapping the target. Remember it is real-time, so having a strategy on hand and not pausing is the key. While you can only have two Solari in the battle at a time, you have a four Solari in your reserve for a total of six on your team at any one time. Swap them in out during the battle to adjust your tactics on the fly by just swiping. Battles are faced paced but rather short in duration. They are meant to be engaging not stressful.
There are two ways to win a match, defeat all the Solari on the other team or defeat the Warden. Once you get the basics of combat and complete your first battle, you will be introduced to the vast and gorgeous 3D world and given your first quest. There is an ongoing main story that is linear to guide you along but there is also a deep and engaging world that you are free to go around and do any and all side quests you may come across. The interesting aspect of the side quests is you can leave an area and return and the NPC’s will offer you new quests appropriate for your new level.
With over a 100 Solari currently available to collect, help grow and evolve into even more exciting forms, Moonrise will keep you engaged as you change up your team tactics with various combinations of those six. Solari gain experience just by being on the team, so feel free to put a low level Solari in and let it soak up some levels while you play with the more experienced fighters. Be mindful, there will be times when you will need all six to complete an area, so your team will still need to be balanced.
Another mode available to you is PVP. You can duel your friends, participate in unranked and ranked challenges or compete in a Solari Draft which is an Arena mode where you are given a random set of Solari and you compete against others. You receive rewards based on how far you go with the random build.
Undead Labs has partnered with Kabam, a prominent Mobile App distributor. Moonrise will be shipping on iOS, Android and Kindle Fire, making this Free to Play game very accessible. There is a cash shop as you would expect from a F2P, however all items that a player can purchase are cosmetic or provide time-saving benefits only. The entire story and every item is available to be found or earned in game without paying anything but the time you invested. While Moonrise is still a ways out, with an early 2015 launch, it is looking really nice and I look forward to it consuming much of my mobile play time.