I reviewed Guardian Cross – a card collecting game from Square Enix – back in April, and it’s easily one of my most-played iPad games of the year. Thankfully, there’s no internal clock (I dread to think how much time I’ve wasted), though I appear to have logged in on 42 separate days.
That’d be all well and good if Guardian Cross was the best thing ever, but I’m still slightly torn; is it actually any good? There’s a niggling voice that says I should save myself and banish the game to the virtual trashcan in the sky.
I figured I’d think out loud (er, in black and white) and rate Guardian Cross in five categories, assigning a ‘delete’ or ‘not delete’ designation in each. I genuinely have no idea how this is going to turn out. ‘Citing!
The story in Guardian Cross is almost non-existent, and what little there is simply serves to send you a) up a tower, b) down a dungeon, or c) across a ludicrously long bridge.
In any case, you’ll find yourself battling a whole host of guardians, with the location making this much difference: none.
The player has little to no control over battles in Guardian Cross, instead simply entering each card-based duel with a preset hand against – yep – a second preset hand. Water is strong against fire and so on, but it’s just your luck if opposing elements come face to face.
Furthermore, the outcome is pretty much predetermined. Playing through the story, each NPC hand is rated from A to Z, and as such you’ll know immediately if you’re about to win or not.
There’s also a ridiculous freemium element whereby you can only participate in a certain number of battles every few hours (as dictated by battle points), unless you use – or buy – potions. Sigh.
For every impressive super-rare must-have five-star card there seems to be a dozen or so half-baked two-star efforts, with suitably terrible artwork – one of my favourites being the, er, Haggis. What the…?
Still, the lure of those five-star cards is just about enough to drive me on, and the two-star guys – while laughable – are invariably absorbed by my beastly four-star chaps.
Verdict: don’t delete!
Incredibly, I failed to mention Guardian Cross’ fantastic soundtrack in my lengthy review. Hang me now. To be fair, I did have a ludicrous amount of stuff to cover.
Yeah, so, the music in Guardian Cross is – as you’d expect from a Square Enix game – awesome.
Verdict: don’t delete!
Playing and reviewing three games/apps a week leaves me with very little time to do, well, anything else. Just as well I don’t have a life.
One way to save time would be to stop playing games I’ve already reviewed. Games like Guardian Cross.
All too often I’ve dipped into Guardian Cross thinking: ‘I’ll just play a quick round of battles and do a few hunts,’ only to find myself losing upwards of an hour. Fun, yes, but a slightly terrifying way to lose oodles of valuable time.
Not to mention the fact that I’m still relatively low down in the grand scale of Guardian Cross players, and still don’t have any five-star cards.
Ah well, that’s the decision made; the jury votes 3-2 in favour of deleting Guardian Cross. Farewell, insane-o card collecting game. That’s a good 40 hours or so I’ll never get back. Nyoh.