Publisher: Freedom Games
Developer: Boundless Games
ESRB: Not Rated
Playing Monster Tribe makes me realize there are a lot of mediocre or bad things I’m willing to tolerate in a game, but being broken isn’t one of them.
For example, I can kind look past the fact that Monster Train’s blend of monster collecting/training/battling and resource gathering/farming leaves plenty to be desired. The Pokemon-y part is shallow, with interchangeable monsters who don’t have very interesting attacks. Further, you’re wildly overpowered, to the point that it’s not hard to take on a few enemies all by yourself, without even suffering a tiny bit of damage. And, to top it all off, the screen during battles is cluttered with all kinds of useless information, which means that it’s hard to read most of what’s being shown ? not that you really need it, given how easy the battles are.
Mind you, cluttered, illegible, and incomprehensible visuals are pretty par for the course with Monster Tribe. Right from the opening screens, the game dumps a bunch of exposition on you in the form of paragraphs in hideous font, and it continues on with that every time you need to talk to anyone. Visuals aren’t this game’s strong suit either.
As for the resource gathering aspect – again, it’s awfully shallow, and needlessly time-consuming. If you find a bush with berries, you have to tap a button again and again until you’ve found them all. Want to chop down a tree, or break a rock? Same deal: tap, tap, tap away until it’s done. For the most part, it all feels like game-lengthening busy work, as opposed to a meaningful mechanic to be mastered.
But as dull and as ugly as the game is every step of the way, none of those are reasons why I actively dislike Monster Tribe. Rather, I dislike it because it’s fundamentally broken. It’s impossible to save and quit the game: every time I tried, the game crashed on me, and when I restarted it I’d discover that I’d lost substantial chunks of progress.
Such a game-breaking bug would be annoying even if we were talking about a GOTY contender. But in the case of Monster Tribe ? where the gameplay is atrocious and the visuals are equally bad ? the idea of having to go back and consistently replay parts you’ve already paid is torturous. Better to not play it at all, and save yourself the frustration.
Freedom Games provided us with a Monster Tribe PC code for review purposes.