Epic Island, from Backflip Studios

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While browsing the Apple App Store, I stumbled across a game for my smartphone called Epic Island. Epic Island is labeled as a rpg simulation experience, set in a fantasy world where you send adventurers on quests in dungeons. It’s a time management game, of sorts, ala Farmville and Hay Day, except, of course, fantasy rpg world setting. I’m probably not doing this great game from Backflip Studios justice, so let me try to explain.

Epic Island is a casual fantasy adventure simulation. You select a hero and start out on a single section of land surrounded by a fog. This is your “main hub” I suppose you could call it. Here you have your hero’s buildings such as a Castle (for storing treasure chests you can’t open just yet, and for receiving notifications & communicating with friends), a Blacksmith (for buying new armor, which rotates every so many hours, or forging your own out of more common gear to reach higher stats and levels), an Arena (where you can select a hero to battle against other players heroes for honor and special gear) and finally a Boasting Hall, where you can look at your achievements and collect rewards for reaching certain goals.)

Each hub, including this first starting zone, has 2 dungeons. Dungeons start at Level 1, but the more you fight the creatures within them, the higher their level will rise – just like your own – and more powerful monsters will appear. Reaching a dungeon level of 5 is considered completing a dungeon, but I’ve already gotten some up to as much as Level 7. The greater the dungeon level, the greater the reward possibilities inside the chests you get for completing each level. The only issue here is that most chests require you to use the special gems currency to open them. The special gems are the rewards you earn for completing achievements, or you can also buy them through the in-game app purchase. These gems are also how you build your army of heroes, of which there are 5.

As you level up your character and earn that gold, you’ll be able to unlock gateways to other lands. Once you move out of the starting zone, the land masses you find will have Titans. Titans are giant and powerful monsters that level up just like the dungeons, only they take longer. Titans may have millions of hit points that you must dwindle down – but unlike dungeons, Titans can be teamed up against. I know for a fact that up to at least 3 heroes can attack a Titan at one time. The only downside of Titans are that they take up a lot of time, and Epic Island is, underneath it all, a game about managing your time.

Each quest you go on or Titan you fight requires your hero be busy for a specified amount of time. For allowing your hero to perform each request, they’re rewarded with gold coins, common to epic gear, fame (xp) and faction points, once they’re high enough level to join a faction. Aside from Arenas, Factions are another multi-player aspect of the game. Every so many days, 2 new factions will go to war against one another. You must choose a side and as you complete missions, you’ll earn faction points that will contribute to the overall total of your factions power. A Pavilion is eventually unlocked where you can view the percentage of who is winning/losing and view your own personal faction points earned.

As a bonus, you can also use your earned faction points to buy special faction specific gear sets. Set pieces are sold individually but include a helm, chest piece, weapon and an off hand item, such as  shield or a magical tome. See! This game truly is epic in all that I’ve told you so far. Now, to reiterate, you don’t actually go out and do the fighting yourself, you simply decide what your hero will be doing for you, select it and send him or her out for “X” amount of time to do it for you.

So, we’ve got Arenas, which can earn you special rewards and are ranked. Faction battles, which can earn you special rewards, armor sets and potions as well. Dungeons that level themselves based on your use time so that you always have a challenge. Titans to distract you while you wait for something else to do. You can even upgrade your armor to a level of 30 using common and unused pieces of gear. It’s all very well thought out and designed that I’m just in awe that such a cool game exists.

I wasn’t aware of Backflip Studios before these last few days, but I’m willing to call them my new favorite developer for mobile gaming. They’ve also got a large library of games for you to choose from, from Backgammon to Video Poker, etc. It’s nice to see a little innovation every now and then, and Backflip Studios is bringing it to the front.

While I love this game, I do understand that everyone has their own different paces they’d  To help you get a better idea of what I’ve been talking about, I’ve included a video from the publishers own website. Good stuff!

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