Imagine a game that takes place in a world full of cute and interesting monsters. These are monsters you can collect and train for good and evil, or combine into super monsters. With these super powerful monsters, you can challenge other monster collectors and gain gold for your victories. Monster Warlord resembles such a game, except that all of the epic battles are replaced with text and menu systems. Sounds epic, right?
Your first few minutes of Monster Warlord aren’t spent foraging through tall grass to find monsters. Instead, they’re spent reading screen upon screen of text, trying to absorb as much as possible before being left alone in a maze of menu systems. You’re given your first monster as a consolation prize for completing the initial tutorial, and it is as satisfying as it sounds.
The basics of the game are hardly basic. While the game appears to revolve around collecting monsters and battling opponents, none of it is exciting. There are quests for you to complete, which help raise your level of experience. Completing quests can also result in finding new monsters, but the success of capturing these monsters is fairly random. You can also buy new monsters, which you will need to do to complete the higher level quests. Monster Warlord also includes a Farmville-like system of purchasing buildings and earning income. Income is needed to buy items and new monsters.
The thing about a turtle… he’s got lifeless eyes.
The entire game is based on a time system. You’re only able to play the game for a few minutes at a time before you run out of energy. Energy regenerates after a few minutes, as does your income. If you want to keep playing after you’ve used your energy, you can always buy some with actual money. Monster Warlord will often prompt you to pay for better monsters or items.
The only excitement in Monster Warlord is the opening sequence art, featuring hordes of awesome monsters. Everything after that is a snooze. Battles take place in short sequences where two monsters jump at each other, and then a screen announces a victory or a loss. It is as if this wonderful world of monster battles has been replaced with a text adventure. There is little depth when it comes to the monsters, the quests, and the world in general.
While the idea of combining monsters into super monsters is fascinating, it’s a highly expensive action that requires hours of playing before you can complete. Even this won’t make up for the bore of completing lackluster quests and lack of story. Monster Warlord seems to have a lot of options for how you play, but the game is designed for those who enjoy reading a long manual before even starting.