Kitty minions, go forth and fight! In Battle Cats from PONOS, you control legions of tall cats, chubby cats, flying cats, cows (which aren't cats), and plenty of other cute warriors whose sole purpose is to defend their base from legions of tiny stickmen, hippos, snakes and other bad guys. It's a familiar combat-oriented defense set-up we've seen before, but there's so much lovable style poured into this game, you can't help but to play until the wee hours of the morning, pitting cartoon cat against cartoon cat.
Battle Cats places you in a two dimensional world with your base on one side and the enemy's on the other. Troops slowly march/fly/slither out of the bad guy's tent, gradually making their way to your home sweet home. You're not going to let them just waltz right in, though, so by spending coins and summoning various warriors using the icons at the bottom of the screen, you can put up a decent fight. You earn money both by defeating enemies and by letting time pass, but you can also upgrade "worker cat" to speed up cash production. It costs a pretty penny, of course, so you must carefully consider it in light of defense costs (which sounds boring, but it isn't!).
Upgrades are half the fun, and after winning a battle you get to head back to the store to beef up your abilities. Troops can be upgraded to provide sturdier defenses and stronger attacks, but you can also put some cash in unit recharge speed, increase the size of your wallet, beef up your last-ditch laser attack, or strengthen a few other global attributes. Really, there's no shortage of options to suck up your newfound cash reserves, and that doesn't even take into account the special cat units you can summon using the game's secondary currency, cat food.
Analysis: Battle Cats is the sort of game that will catch you by surprise. On paper it sounds a bit ordinary: a strategy defense game where you summon troops. Seen it, played it, mastered it, right? To a certain extent this is true, but Battle Cats has an impressive amount of variety, especially for a mobile game. There are 50 troops in all, most of which can be unlocked or purchased through the in-game store. Not mentioned in this review (uh, until now): the stamp card that earns you bonuses for logging in on a daily basis, the fact that there are 100 stages to fight through, single-use items, secret treasures, cat evolution, and the almighty god-cat.
Battle Cats can be a little overwhelming with its complexity. Fortunately, you don't need to deal with most of these elements until later in the game, which sets a nice pace. You can also dip into some in-app purchases if you're so inclined, spending money on cat food that can be used in the shop to buy all sorts of rare and delightful goodies.
There's a lot to experience in Battle Cats, so much so that this quick pick up and play combat game grows on you over time. Soon it'll become your diversion of choice when you've got a spare minute or two, and after the weeks and months go by, you'll eventually see some of the more spectacular sights the game has to offer!
Cheers to Aquilegia for sending this one in!
NOTE: This game was played and reviewed on the Nexus 4. Game was available in the North American market at the time of publication, but may not be available in other territories. Please see individual app market pages for purchasing info.
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Battle Cats strategy guide
General tips on beating levels
Step 1: Increase working cat two or three times.
Step 2: When enemies draw near, send out tank cat/wall cat to keep the castle safe.
Step 3: Continue upgrading working cat and sending out defensive cats.
Step 4: When the laser is charged, unleash it. This usually clears a path. If it doesn't, send out a few quick attackers (samurai, bovine, box of kittens) along with a gross cat to follow the pack of wall cats.
Step 5: Keep long range attackers and wall cats coming at a steady pace, allowing them to attack from relative safety. This takes out pretty much any enemy but works best with some close range attackers keeping enemy numbers thin.
Apart from one or two trip-ups, this has worked for me in every stage. Wall cat and gross cat are maxed out at level ten, with a few others upgraded to five or six. The laser's range is increased and working cat was upgraded in the shop to level five or so.
Cat units summary
Cat - Basic unit with a low summoning cost. Good for early in the game but quickly loses usefulness as you progress.
Tank cat - A great low-cost defensive unit with a minimum attack ability (5-10 damage on highest level). Use in groups as a shield for more powerful units who can attack from a longer range.
Axe cat - Quick on their feet with a good attack power and reasonable summoning cost, axe cats are great all-purpose attackers that only get better as they level up. Strong against red enemies.
Long legs cat - Tall and awkward in appearance, these cats are quite strong and can attack from a longer distance. Excellent when paired with tank cat for protection.
Cow cat - An extremely fast unit that is great for last-ditch efforts. Fast attack speed works well against fortresses.
Bird cat - A flying cat with a very weak defense but strong attack power.
Fish cat - Similar to the long legs cat, fish cat can attack from a greater distance than most cats.
Lizard cat - Essentially an upgrade of fish cat
Giant warrior cat - A massive unit with a high summoning cost. Makes up for it with immense power and defense. Has a long range attack.
God cat - Summon during battle to damage all enemies.
Ninja cat - Similar to axe cat in most respects but more powerful when it reaches level ten.
Sumo cat - An upgrade to tank cat that can attack multiple enemies at once. Better defense score and slightly higher attack. Not really worth the high cat food cost until very late in the game.
Samurai cat - A better version of the basic cat.
Box cat - A group of kittens in a box that are like a better version of cow cat. Very fast on their feet with an average attack speed but higher than average attack power.
Moneko - Unlocked by inviting ten people to the game. Moneko is cheap to summon and has extremely high attack and defense. Slow to move on the battlefield and very slow to recharge for next summon.
Tips for XP usage, upgrades, and items
Don't spread your XP usage out too much. It's better to have one or two high level cats than many medium level ones.
Focus building one defense cat, one fast attack cat, one fast moving cat, one cat with longer attack range, and one heavy hitting cat. Good choices for each are tank cat, ninja cat, box of cats (or cow cat), long leg cat, and giant cat.
Conserve cat food as best you can. Do not spend it on increasing your energy, just wait an hour or two for it to refill.
For the non-cat upgrades in the shop, focus on increasing your wallet size and working cat's speed first. Things like increasing your castle defense or laser range should be a low priority, especially if you use the strategy listed above.
Most of the special cats purchased with cat food are quite good, but the high cat food cost makes them difficult to obtain. Focus on building your army of regular cats before considering these extra teammates.
Tips for getting treasure
Getting treasure in a stage seems to be a function of how quickly you complete it. The faster you win, the higher your chance of getting treasure, though it's never a 100% chance.
Treasure qualities are inferior, normal, and best. Which quality of treasure you receive is random.
Focus on small groups of levels at a time. Treasure bonuses only really matter when they fill out full sections on the treasure list.
Use the Game Speed Up tokens before you enter a stage to dramatically increase your chances of earning treasure.
How invitations work
Once you reach level 7 you can use and share invite codes to unlock bonuses from the title screen. Tap the icon on the lower right to access the invites menu.
You can only use one invite code. Doing so nets you 10,000XP.
Each time someone uses your code, you get a prize. Return to the invites menu to claim your gift.
After ten invites you get Moneko, a rare and powerful cat warrior. You don't receive additional gifts after ten people use your code.
Moneko is a singer standing on an upturned box of "cat beer". You unlock her after ten people use your invite code.
Very slow movement speed.
Short attack range with fairly slow attack frequency.
Long recharge time. You'll be lucky if you can summon her twice in one stage.
Low summoning cost of 99.
Very strong defense and is rarely knocked back.
High attack damage. A level 7 Moneko deals around 800 damage, which is nearly ten times that of many level 10 cats.
Posted by: JohnB | January 14, 2013 2:27 PM