As a long-time fan of DC Comics, it’s always exciting to see a game come along in a genre that you already enjoy that is further reinforced by a cast and setting that you love. Such is the case with DC Legends, from WB Games San Francisco and in very close association with DC Comics, and the end result is simply fantastic. Read on for my thoughts and experience with this mobile game.
One of the first things that impressed me is that there’s actually a pretty cohesive story present in this game, double impressive considering that this is a mobile game which could’ve easily phoned in it’s comics connection for an easy cash grab.
You take control of DC heroes and villains in an effort to thwart the efforts of Nekron, the Black Lanterns, and the Manhunters. You face off against these forces in addition to “Wraiths”, which are twisted shadow versions of heroes and villains from the DC Universe. You do this by assembling a team of up to four characters, where they will face off against enemies in turn based RPG style combat.
Combat and Character System
The fighting in this game is pretty great, and I’m a fan of turn based combat as it feels more strategic and gives you the chance to plan and consider courses of action. There is a “rock, paper, scissors” element to this game as well, where each character belongs to one of three basic archetypes: Physical, Mystical or Energy. Developing your team evenly to have representatives from each archetype depending on the fight is one of the core mechanics of this game, and I’m sure everyone can find a favorite from each type.
During combat each character can fill a specific role, with some focused on tanking and taunting, and others more concerned with team support, healing and buffing. Synergy of abilities is essential for success.
Characters achieve levels based on your overall account level, and it works as follows: by completing various objectives (daily or timed events, campaign story missions, etc), you level up and are then able to use leveling items on your preferred characters. This raises their level, makes them more effective in combat by providing a stat boost, and keeps them right alongside your progress. This is actually a pretty brilliant system and makes sure that you can’t get too far ahead of yourself. While there are microtransactions (discussed later), this system ensures that players must put in the time in order to get characters to that level.
Each character also has a set of skills and equipment, which are leveled up using various items collected from missions. Additionally, each character has a rank (out of 5 stars) that judges how effective they are. By collecting “fragments” of that character, you can increase their rank. Get them to five stars and you can make them “legendary”, making them substantially more powerful and also visually different.
For the Fairest
The visuals in this game are very well done, with battle animations really exhibiting what makes each character so great. Character designs are really nailed as well, with the costumes and design choices for every character feeling accurate and fun.
The battle locations are also well rendered, and take you to some of the most iconic locations in the DC Universe, such as Thanagar or Oa. The design elements in this game are absolutely designed for fans of the various franchises.
Multiplayer and Leagues
There is a solid and engaging multiplayer mode included with this app, where you can square off against the assembled teams of other players from across the world. Competition is split up among leagues of varying skill and power, and by regularly defeating opponents you move up the ladder, where you can collect better rewards and even new characters.
The battlelog also informs you about who challenged you and how it went, and you’re able to fight them for “revenge” if you choose to do so.
Just like any mobile game in the world today, this game supports a wide variety of microtransactions; things such as currency used to purchase packs of hero fragments or upgrade material for gear and leveling up. I didn’t feel as though these gave you any particular advantage aside from being able to level up a bit quicker, especially considering that dedicated players can reach that plateau almost as quickly.
The leveling system keeps things here in check and ensures that paying players have an advantage while also requiring them to invest the same amount of time as other players.
I would definitely recommend this game to anyone that’s a fan of DC Comics, brawling games in general, or those who are curious about DC but haven’t really put in much time.