An expensive treat from the creators of RAID: Shadow Legends. Review of mobile multiplayer shooter Mech Arena: Robot Showdown

Introduction:

In terms of gameplay, Plarium didn’t reinvent the wheel. The developers drew ideas from many online shooters, but obvious borrowings are visible from the mobile War Robots from the Russian studio  F95Zone, which in turn was inspired by the MechWarrior series and the heroic shooter Overwatch from Blizzard.

Externally, Mech Arena:

Robot Showdown is closer to Overwatch. Nothing reminds of the famous, dark fantasy universe Battletech and its mobile sister from War Robots. On combat robots, camouflage was changed to bright colors, gloomy pilots and mech pilots gave way to smiling teenagers, and the battles are more like sports. War is sad and showdown is fun.

Perhaps there is some kind of ENT in the game, but Plarium decided not to go into the details of the events taking place in Mech Arena. So one can only guess about the background of the events taking place, because the story cannot be found either on the official website or in the game itself. However, given the current tendency of scriptwriters to push the well-known “agenda” even into network shooters like Overwatch and Apex Legends, this is even a plus.

From War Robots, the authors borrowed robots, partially weapons, deep pumping, the possibility of customization in the workshop. Actually, all the customization of the fur comes down to the choice of a weapon suitable for the style of play. There is no fine tuning as in the Mechwarrior series or assembling your own mech from “spare parts” as in the mobile Astracraft, but part of the customization is drawn from the swamp by a variety of weapons.

The choice of weapons is large:

 rapid-fire cannons and beam guns with a large supply of charges, but low damage, powerful RPGs with a small number of shots and requiring a long reloading, homing missiles, artillery, plasma guns, etc., etc. Balancing range, power and rate of fire choose a weapon for yourself. Each mech has two slots for weapons, its power is limited by the type of mech and its level. There are also restrictions on the number of certain types of weapons per squad.

In terms of gameplay, the developers focused more on Overwatch. Borrowings are visible both visually (some arenas are similar) and conceptually. Plarium has abandoned the low dynamics of huge, clumsy humanoid robots. The size of the bellows was reduced to human size, the speakers were added. We “run” through small arenas, sometimes hiding behind shields, shoot opponents, taking on the role of an attacking mech, a “tank” that takes a hit on itself, or support.

At the moment, players have three main modes available – capturing key points, fighting to the death in 5 × 5 and 2 × 2 modes. In addition, there is the organization of team matches and participation in tournaments.

In battle, a squad of five mechs is available to the player. True, in order to take the fifth mech with you into battle, you will have to buy a place in the hangar for premium currency. After losing the fur in battle, we change to the next one in the detachment, and so on until the victorious end of the battle.

Since Dispel magic 5e has taken the best from other games, the gameplay is very well received. In battle, everything is important: to select a weapon for the required combat distance for a particular mech, depending on its speed and durability, to use the installed weapon correctly, to exit the firefight in time to reload, or to use the abilities of your mech. Battles with a strong opponent are captivating and the victory deserved in such a battle greatly improves mood and self-esteem.

What kind of fair balance can we talk about when the “whales” or “dolphins” are fed from time to time with “sprat” and “plankton” – players who pay little or do not pay at all. Having found themselves in such a battle, the “plankton” often simply cannot get close to a human enemy on its cheap and weak fur, and when it gets close, it can do something with it. Having lost the battle with a bang, it remains only to look enviously at the player who took first place on a steep mech, littered with a huge number of awards.

And only after returning to the usual primary plankton broth, you begin to enjoy the gameplay again, from time to time cursing because of a failed shot button or a failed swipe. Either a bug, or the phone is stupid. The control scheme itself is typical for mobile games.

All in all, Mech Arena is a technically polished product. No crashes, brakes, visual artifacts were noticed. If you are not confused by the visual style, then graphically the game looks very decent. The same cannot be said about sound and music. They just are.

Diagnosis

Surprisingly, Plarium made a game after releasing products like RAID: Shadow Legend and Vikings: War of Clans. Secondary, unprincipled, but with normal gameplay, which is able to give pleasure.

It is a pity that the publisher’s pathological greed spoils everything. You will not find such aggressive monetization in such popular mobile action films as Brawl Stars, PUBG, Guiding bolt 5e or CoD Mobile. Every time you make your way to the gameplay through a bunch of banners with unique selling offers, you realize what kind of player Plarium needs. And “plankton” to feed with advertising will catch up.

If you do not feel a pathological desire to spend money on microtransactions, you do not have the need to indulge your sense of self-importance in the table of ranks, but you have a desire to run a multiplayer shooter on your smartphone from time to time, then you can try Mech Arena. Just keep your payment card away from your phone.

Pro

  • High dynamics of battles
  • Mech customization and a wide range of weapons
  • Addictive gameplay with equal teams
  • Good technical condition of the game and support for the Russian language
  • Cute and modern mobile graphics

Contra

  • Dominance of bots
  • Balance shifted towards premium players
  • Leveling up for premium game currency
  • Manipulative monetization methods, loot boxes
  • Pay-to-win
  • “No” sound and music

Henry888

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