Minion Masters Preview (PC)
Minion Masters (forced to duel) is a card duelling game that takes inspiration from Clash Royale’s gameplay and throws in better graphics to appease the players. It’s a fun game which is easy to get to grips with and a basic single player mode to hone your skill. However, does it bring enough to shrug off the constant comparisons to its more well-known predecessor?
In short no, but that isn’t entirely the fault of Minion Masters. The fault lies with Clash Royale’s accessibility and the fact it was out there first. Minion Masters is currently in early access, which would spell doom for most reviews but in this case it is polished enough to be playable and enjoyable. The joy was instant from the first timed summon and carried right through to the buzzer.
The game comprises of 2 Minion Master’s – 1 for each team – each are really there to supply the last line of defence, 2 Lanes with bridges (controlling the bridges allow for increased generation of your ability meter), the cards you wield, and your platform (base) – which is the target of your enemies attacks.
There are different card types; melee, ranged, aerial, building, and healer. Choosing your deck to account for all possible varieties of fights is impossible. However, the cards of each type are so similar that the minuscule changes between them (damage, speed, range, health) don’t account for too much in my experience.
Timing is key in any Real Time card duelling game, and Minion Masters is no different. Games can swing quickly due to miss timed actions and lack of attention. I have won and lost on just a few well-timed summons, sacrificing a bit of your towers health so that you can sweep the mob is better than letting your low health – high damage minions suffer a full assault unaccompanied.
Online play is where most of your time will be spent. Gaining ranks, levelling your character and getting some sweet, sweet cards. To get cards initially all you need to do is level up, you’ll eventually hit a point where spinning the random card wheel of misery will make it worth cashing in some of your hard-earned shards and coins to get an edge. Again, it is random so you are not sure what you’ll get but you know that when you get the rarer cards you should be in for a treat. Unless, as you will find to your dismay, you get a doubler. In these cases you’ll be rewarded with shards.
The match finding system is just straight up broke, in terms of finding a same/similarly ranked opponent. When I took on my first ranked match I was against a Wood 1 – you start off as Wood 5. This means I was facing someone who had already had at least 8 online encounters, and likely far better cards to my own. This is a major drawback for the game.
Minion Masters is a fun online competitive card duelling game. It isn’t yet at a stage that it stands out from the crowd, but it is definitely in the upper echelons compared to its peers. With a few fixes to the matchmaking and somehow fixing the card buying system it would be a front-runner.