Idle Champions is more fun than I expected
I tend to bounce off idle clicker games fairly quickly. Though not a game designer I’ve worked in the industry long enough to see the gameplay and monetization strategies behind idle play games and while there are people who find them quiet satisfying they’re just not for me. Even going back to something like Cookie Clicker, the first of the genre that I encountered, I played for awhile and then drifted away leaving my virtual cookie factory to fallow.
The experience was similar for me when Idle Champions first arrived on Steam. I added it to my library because it was free and had the Dungeons & Dragons license and yet despite that it just didn’t quite click with me. Pardon the pun. After a couple of days I stopped launching it and while it still lives in my every growing Steam library it’s unlikely to ever be launched again. It did, however, find a better home one where it’s caught my attention and is becoming something of an obsession - my iPad.
Both the change in context from where I’m playing the game, sitting on the couch or killing time when eating breakfast for example, to the updates that developers Codename Entertainment have added, make the game much more engaging for me. Progression feels a lot better, I remember the difficulty of the game ramping up rather quickly in the Steam version. Difficulty is, of course, a bit of a abstract concept in a game like this where really it’s more of a slope to try to get players to spend real world money, rather than gain a skill to use in the game. I’m not going to get a whole lot better at clicking the screen but I could spend some discretionary cash to make my characters stronger or faster.
Which is not to look down on the game. I’ve worked on mobile games like the cancelled Puzzle Fighter and pay-to-progress-faster tactics are industry standard at this point for free-to-play at this point. You want a cool new character or a bit of a boost to reach the next level? Well if you’re playing the game for free then you might have to pay for it if you’re not going to wait and grind it out.
Though I have spent a bit over $6 in the game I don’t feel like I’m always being pestered to open my wallet. I can see that there are opportunities to spend a lot more but it’s not a game that’s always holding it’s hand out and asking for your money. I’ve also never been stopped from playing and had to wait until some artificial energy bar refills.
Overall I’m enjoying relaxing with Idle Champions. The developers are doing a great job with updates and the fact that they’re tying into the larger Dungeons & Dragons community adding characters based off popular fan podcasts and streaming shows from the pen and dice game is a great way to build content both for their own game and unite with other areas of the much larger community. Though I don’t know anyone at Codename Entertainment it’s great to see a British Columbia (they’re in VIctoria) based studio creating what seems to be such a successful game.
Idle Champions is on pretty much every platform. Probably even newer refrigerators can run it. Regardless download it today and give it a try, it’s free so you’re not losing anything.