Ever since Boom Beach in 2013, SuperCell has been trying to break into the base building RTS market with mixed results. While it’s difficult to argue against the game’s graphical appeal, it’s always been a strange mix of simulation-like aspects with strong RTS gameplay. The game has survived on its roots, but in general been shunned by critics and simulation fans as having little depth and too much flash. For Boom Beach, SuperCell is hoping to address the depth issues while maintaining the real RTS feel.
The control is both intuitive and complex. Simple moves like raiding and defending are handled with ease, while basic movement is as simple as button press. For more complex moves, a combination of button presses and directional moves is required, which becomes easier after the “memorization curve” is overcome.
Rounding off the arcade aspects of Boom Beach, there is a unique quest and mission that takes place after reaching a certain level. The World Tournament pits the player against Ai controlled islands in the archipelago; when they’re defeated, they’re unlocked and available for control and resource production. In addition, diamonds can be earned during raids and after enough are accumulated, they can be used to “purchase” resources like gold, iron, wood and base upgrades. It’s all very console-like in this aspect.
In an attempt to appeal to the more simulation-oriented base building fans, SuperCell is including the ability to trade items among members of Task Forces. The AI will also offer trades throughout the game with other computer-controlled opponents as well as the player. To help determine each player’s strengths, there are in-game overlays that serves as guide.
Whether or not SuperCell will win over the RTS and simulation fans is yet to be determined, but even without that, Boom Beach is in fact fun to play. It’s still in a relatively early stage, but the graphics and most of the animations seem to be in place and working correctly. The graphics are still a little dark and the shadowing could also use some help. The gameplay, though, seems to be intact, and that is where the importance lies. We’ll know in a matter of months if SuperCell can pull off the perfect blend of sim and arcade play, but either way, it looks as though arcade baseball fans will have another four-bagger this Spring.