Game 1: Dragon Raja
The aesthetics of Dragon Raja really striked my eyes when I booted up the game on my phone.
The overall vibe was a futuristic, high-fantasy setting that looked really great on mobile.
Packed with voice-acted cut scenes, Dragon Raja allowed me to explore a vast open world, and in style, with my swanky mounts. (Swanky = Choose from Ferraris, to a steampunk Hot Air Balloon)
Character class, customisation & development
You get to choose from 4 choices – Blade Master, Gunslinger, Assassin, Soul Dancer. Character customisation is also fully fledged with a wide range of customisation options – from eye brown colors, to shoulder thickness.
Or you could go with a pre-set option if you want to save the time on this.
Mid game, you will also unlock a costume customisation interface that lets you apply cosmetic dress-up options onto your character. From special hair-do, to body tatoos, the plethora of choice is massive.
Solid storyline that sets the game apart from other MMORPGs
You start off as an orphan, and you’re part of the group of orphans on an island.
A doctor has unknowingly been experimenting with you and your orphan friends by injecting dragon blood into your bodies.
This dragon blood gives you superhuman powers, with the eventual aim being allowing the military people using you all to make an army, to take over the world.
As you play, you get to uncover more of Dragon Raja’s intriguing storyline and how it’s your job to go about stopping the bad guys from trying to awake some sleeping dragons.
And the choices you make, will alter your character’s personality.
The storyline can get odd and funny at times too – one minute you’re nearly dead when fighting, and the second, you are a host in a Japanese idol bar.
The uncanny resemblance to real life
Imagine colliding into NPCs, who then retaliate. Imagine standing in front of oncoming traffic, which then stops and honks at you. Imagine adding frames, filters and emojis in your screenshots, just like when you’re posting a photo on Instagram.
The game’s take on environment interaction is of a whole new level for a mobile game.
You can even do sports like playing basketball, and play a claw machine, complete with actual controls that let you play these activities like in a game emulator.
Challenge dungeon (Team-play)
Take on the dungeons, up to 3 times a week, as a team of 5 to clear the difficult stages easily. Fight through hordes of enemies and lesser bosses till you reach the end goal – the main boss.
You can only die up to 5 times, after which, you become a Ghost. You can remain in Ghost mode, and if your team manages to complete the dungeon, you will still get the dungeon challenge rewards.
Engage your quick reflexes to get out of the way while getting your shots in. The fights are very engaging and filled with nothing but high speed action.
You get a basic attack, along with 5 other unlockable attacks that you can execute. There isn’t an auto-play option, which I appreciate, as you get to actually play the game.
You can also jump-dodge and back step to avoid your enemies’ attacks.
So, keep your thumbs at the ready to annihilate your enemies!
Then, as you fight, you accumulate rage. Once enough, activate Blood Rage to unlock a special set of ultimate abilities (aka super saint mode) that you can unleash on your enemies.
Like any other MMORPGs, strength is the name of the game. Level up to power up your skills to become the strongest character in the game.
Housing & Pets
You also own your own house, and you have the ability to take care of your own pet. You get to incubate your own little baby dragon pet that you can eventually raise.
The environment in your home is fully interactive, you have the freedom to do things like strum the guitar in your house, or just simply lie on your bed and space out.
And while chilling in your house, you can do interesting actions like turn on the TV and actually play TV shows on it. There’s even an in-game news channel on TV!
The attention to detail in this game is seriously down to the last pixel.
Verdict: How much of a Pay-to-Win game is this?
There is enough free-to-play content to keep you entertained for hours, and you won’t need to spend money in-game to ride the hype of Dragon Raja.
Without spending a dime, you won’t be the strongest player out there.
But I guarantee you will still enjoy the game! The game provides great rewards and free to play elements – there is no pay to win elements in game.
By simply completing the main story, you get rewarded with relevant gear for your level. This lets you be covered with equipment for the leveling portion of the game.
A better-than-mobile gaming experience
To me, this game is very close to a console gaming experience. Part of me wishes the game was launched for PC or console.
How does Dragon Raja compare to Genshin Impact?
Stand-Out: PvP, the most fun feature in Dragon Raja. The PvP system in Dragon Raja enables you to duel with your friends any time, and also host fights between dozens of players simultaneously.
There is no class advantage in PvP, and a way to win is how you master your character’s strengths and skills, though, paying for better equipment does give you and your team an advantage.
However, the timed events in Dragon Raja are a chore. Missing these timed events lets you fall back as compared to everyone else.
Meaning, you are forced to play the game at certain times because of these fixed scheduled events.
This takes away a lot of time from your life as you would have to plan your day around the Dragon Raja’s fixed events.
Also, the game is more pay-to-win than Genshin Impact. For Genshin Impact, You can still progress the game relatively well, even with just 4-star characters, without the need for any 5-star characters.
For Dragon Raja, you can clearly see how the heavy P2W players are progressing ahead much faster, and stronger than F2P players.
Download the game here.
Game 2: Crashlands
Crashlands isn’t your typical Survival game.
It’s an action adventure Role-Playing game that combines crafting with exploration, fighting, questing and boss-fight your way through the open world.
The game comes accompanied with its top-notch art style and beautiful game music.
I am particularly fond of Survival games, but dread the slow-pace nature of it. And this is how Crashland is different – its fast paced action is different from what other Survival games offer.
There are over 20 main quests, with many related quests – this will keep you entertained for a very long time.
Questing and killing monsters enabled me to obtain my crafting materials and blueprints.
Crashlands has a sophisticated crafting system.
You get to craft everything, over 500+ of them. The categories are: Machinery, Furniture, Weaponry, Armor, Tools, Bombs, Devices and Crafting Stations.
Everything you create makes your stranded life on the planet Woanope slightly easier.
However, to craft new items, you need to find and unlock new recipe boxes – you get them by destroying objects on the island, or by meeting new characters on your exploration (who gift the boxes to you).
There is a certain degree of randomness in every item you obtain from crafting. Each item you obtain is infused with randomly generated qualities.
For example, a weapon that you freshly crafted could come stacked with a 5.1% Move Speed and a 70% Crit.
These item qualities rank from Normal to Legendary. Read more about the item quality in Crashlands here.
And if you do not get your desired qualities, you can simply recycle the item.
Recycling of items allows you to get most of your materials back.
Then, with the recovered materials, you can craft the item again, and this randomly generates the qualities hopefully with the ones that you desire.
A crafting system with no inventory management headache.
Crashlands has simplified, or rather, eliminated the entire inventory management routine that typically comes hand-in-hand with crafting/survival games.
In Crashlands, you can pick up anything, and everything without any limits.
The game automatically sorts these items for you. They are then instantly made available to you at your crafting station.
I found this feature particularly amazing as I won’t have to worry about running out of space early on.
I can also better focus on the bigger tasks at hand – crafting those higher tier items and also killing the monsters.
This feature also made the mobile gameplay so much better and manageable.
Fight with your skills, not with spam in Crashlands.
Fighting in Crashlands isn’t your typical brainless button-smashing routine. Skills are needed while you attack to kite, dodge and finish off the creatures.
Each creature also has their own unique attack style and combo, and learning it gives you an edge over them during combat.
Breed and turn your favorite creatures into pets.
While you go about exploring the vast planet, you will meet many interesting creatures along the way.
In Crashlands, if you manage to find any of their eggs, you have the option to incubate it and hatch one as your pet.
These creatures will grow up to become very handy combat sidekicks, aiding you along the way as you kill more monsters.
You can also craft special items for them – this lets them power up and become stronger.
While there is a lot of dialogue along the way, they are well written with tongue-in-cheek humor that will keep you amused.
I got to admit, the amount of dialogue in Crashlands is a bit too much for my liking. But reading through these conversations actually wasn’t too bad.
If you do bother reading them, you’d appreciate the humour injected by the developers. It helps make those conversations funny and really memorable.
There are 10 boss fights in total and they typically appear towards the end of the quests. They drop rare items and crafting recipes when defeated.
Versatile across multiple gaming platforms
Also available for PC, and both are syncable via the cloud. Whatever you do on your PC is synced with your Mobile.
How does Crashlands compare to Genshin Impact?
While the genre of both Crashlands and Genshin Impact are different, Crashlands offers a refreshing take on an adventure game with RPG elements.
It comes complete with an open world concept and a skills-based combat system.
The overall gameplay is great, and the characters come with lots of heart.
It’s a game that truly stands out from its other survival game options, especially so on a mobile device.
There is no pay-to-win feature in Crashlands as it is a premium game after all. This turns down the knob on the need to get ahead through spending bucket-loads of cash in game.
And if you enjoyed the mobile experience of Genshin Impact, I’m sure Crashlands will wow you as well.
Download here – iOS / Android
Game 3: Sky: Children of the Light
A beautiful gaming experience that’s like offering you a glimpse of heaven. Complete with its magical music and sound.
Loading up the game on my phone, I was immediately drawn to its heaven-like art style and its enchanting sceneries all around.
I got to control an individual dressed in robes, who looks like a small child. I was able to navigate him through a series of small environments, connected by the constellations of stars above.
The controls were really easy and it feels like a game would be great at making me relax, as compared to games that would work me up.
To fly, all I had to do was to press and hold a button. My character would then soar into the sky, and I could control its flight path.
Flying around felt really carefree, and I was also able to do maneuvers, like a glider professional, while exploring the world around me.
My character also showcased eloquent movements while in-flight, which made the whole experience even more delightful.
Flying consumed the light from my robes.
The limit on flight duration is determined by the amount of light I collected from the light sources around me. I could carry light around through the form of candles.
With candles, I could light lanterns and shrines, giving color back to the world. Otherwise, they remain in their default black and white state.
While exploring, I came across glowing children that are always present in every new area I go to. They bestow my character with wings, allowing me to increase the amount of light I can store.
Light is the only (and important) energy resource in the game.
Without light, your character won’t be able to get around. It’s an important resource that should be collected whenever you’re exploring a new area.
As you explore, the goal is to set free the lost spirits by experiencing their past.
All around, there are lost spirits in each area. As you experience the spirit’s past, they are eventually set free.
The spirit’s past can range from something humorous, to tragic events. These are their moments, that are frozen in time. As you explore the different storylines from these lost spirits, you create your own story in the game.
The light that you share with these lost spirits are what sets them free.
While I was able to play the game alone, a big part of the game is also about sharing my experience with others.
Co-op is encouraged throughout the game, through simple tasks that me and a friend can complete.
I was able to see other players while playing, and although they might not be on the same adventure as me, it’s always great to meet someone new.
Interactions with other players come in different forms.
To let others know that you want to befriend them, you start by offering a candle to them.
And if they reciprocate by sharing this candle with you, congratulations, you both are now linked via the friend’s list.
What is unique about this befriending system is you won’t get to see the other party’s name. Instead, you get to name them in your own way.
To reach out to others, you can either create audible pings through taps, or simply take a seat on a bench and wait for another player to sit next to you.
You can also interact with others through emojis. You get to unlock different types of emojis as you set more spirits free.
These emojis can allow you to visually represent your expressions – there are emojis like waves, pointing, and even hugs, to showcase that affectionate side of you.
Increasing your friendship with others also allows you to unlock new abilities and actions.
By spending candles, you unlock new actions like High-Five, Fist-bumping, and even the all-elusive Chat option. Where you can send text messages to one another.
You can refer to the friendship action chart here.
Levelling-up system, cosmetic customisation, more collectibles and more stuff to explore.
The real meaning of the game is how you make it up to be – alongside the storyline of the game.
There are no enemies and no dialogue, and it’s just you and your journey through the environment.
Every now and then, you’ll meet another player while on your journey. And while there is no chat function, you can use emotes to interact with them instead.
Co-op puzzles that makes it feel like an MMORPG
Puzzles need solving in Sky: Children of the Light. And sometimes, you need a party of up to 8 people to solve them.
From simple tasks like lighting up 2 urns at the same time, to demanding ones like gathering 8 people around an Octagon and lighting runes in a certain order.
How does Sky: Children of the Light compare to Genshin Impact?
If a vast open world is what you’re after, Sky: Children of the Light definitely fits the bill. With in-game graphics that are set to exceed expectations, you’ll be in for a treat when you take your character out for a flight.
Besides, with the micro-transactions related to cosmetics only, there is absolutely no need to spend any money to progress in the game as there is no win condition. You won’t need to spend a dime to fully enjoy what the immersive game has to offer.
Download now – for iOS / Android