Like Pokemon, Magimon Adventures begins with players choosing one of three creatures for their team. Each monster has one of five elemental affiliations: fire, water, nature, light or dark energy. Similar to a game of “rock, paper, scissors,” these elements are particularly strong against one element, while also especially weak against another. Nature, for instance, is strongest against water, but weakest against fire.
The game’s level-based battles resemble those in other puzzle battle mobile games, as users make matches with gems in order to cause their team of three monsters to attack enemies at the top of the screen (a fourth, temporary and semi-random monster is available to recruit before each battle). However, where other games offer match-three puzzle gameplay, Magimon Adventures utilizes a system that resembles a bubble shooter.
Players tap and slide a “bullet” gem across the bottom of the screen, letting go to shoot it vertically at the gem formation up above. If the gem creates a group of three matching gems, they disappear from the board and any monsters of the matching element(s) attack their enemies. If players make a match of seven or more gems, their monsters go into a frenzy, and will attack all enemies, rather than focusing on just one.
When making some matches, a combo gem appears on the board, which is automatically used as a “wildcard” gem to create further attacks in a chain. These combos end when multiple combo gems are formed at once, or when the chain runs out of available groups of three matching gems. The longer the chain, the more damage each monster ultimately deals to the enemy.
Rather than offering turn-based battles, there’s an emphasis on speed here, as the enemy will attack after their own attack timer ticks down to zero. This makes it possible for both player and enemy to be in the middle of attacks at the same time, so players are encouraged to attack as quickly as possible to prevent the enemy from scoring numerous attacks of their own. Gamers can swap between two active bullet gems to keep progress going more smoothly. It should be noted that making matches with pink gems restores some of the player’s health.
Players may receive coins or free monsters after completing battles, and can swap out their teammates back at the main menu. Users can also spend lesser monsters on upgrading those they’d like to keep, or sell monsters outright for free coins. While free-to-play, a premium currency is available, and can be spent to recruit random monsters or to refill the player’s energy bar so they can complete more battles in a single session. Coins can be spent in another random monster recruitment menu, or to purchase those upgrades for their existing team members.
Each monster has a maximum level, and players can collect separate evolution materials to evolve them into even stronger forms. These evolution materials are found at random in the treasure chests players receive during some battles.
“Magimon Adventures is one of our most fun and whimsical games yet,” said Robby Yung, CEO of Animoca Brands, in a statement. “The Magimon monsters can be cute, fierce, charming, unruly, lovable and destructive all at the same time, and the world they inhabit is full of fantasy and adventure.”
Magimon Adventures is available to download for free on the iTunes App Store. An Android version is coming soon.