Triniti Interactive Limited has released Mini Warriors, a new addition to their series of "Mini"-games (such as Call of Mini: Zombies and many other titles featuring chibi-like characters action games). But in Mini Warriors, Triniti Interactive moved the munchkin fights over to an expansive battlefield that incorporates real-time strategy in order to attain victory as you control numerous fighters at once. Factoring in hero characters, skills and equipment to manage, is Mini Warriors like an excellent blend of Castle Crashers and Warcraft? Or should it have gone the way of Starcraft: Ghost?
Before I start formally breaking down the aspects of Mini Warriors, I must clearly state that you cannot dictate or control the combat in Mini Warriors in any way at all. Instead, all you can do is organize ranks (archers never at the frontline!), recruit/equip/enhance characters, level-up skills and that's about it. Much of this is done from a world map overlay with buildings, such as the barracks and blacksmith, where you can perform these acts of fine-tuning for your army. So, if all you can do is organize and outfit your army, and not even control them on the battlefield, is Mini Warriors worth a minimal amount of your time?
For a free game, Mini Warriors is rather addictive. Even though I had no actual control on the battlefield, I loved seeing the resulting effects that my gear allocation and organizational skills had on the troops. Having archers in the back, cavalry in the middle and infantry on the frontline led to an awesome effect where I would see my cavalry run past my charging frontmen and intercept the enemy ranks. Just about every fight looked the same, but it was still the independent actions of each platoon's A.I. that dictated where they went and whom they would attack next.
The graphics of Mini Warriors is charming, with much of its influence taken from Triniti's previous mini-based titles (which were obviously influenced by Behemoth's Castle Crashers). Each character has his own platoon of soldiers, which cause damage to each unit on the battlefield, and the same goes for the enemy forces. Combine this with dozens of archers letting their arrows fly, cavalry-men charging throughout the battlefield, and the special attacks of each hero character, the graphical effects of Mini Warriors is magnificent when viewed at both the small and large scales of combat. Even though I previous stated that each battle generally looked the same, no single battle was a copy of the next due to the varied actions of the soldiers on the screen.
The sound effects are what you would expect from a free title of this nature: the cling-clanging of armored combat, the swoosh noises of arrows, and the guttural screams of death all on a massive war-like scale. Combined with its Final Fantasy Tactics-esque soundtrack, Mini Warriors is quite entertaining from an audio standpoint.
Ultimately, I thoroughly recommend Mini Warriors for those hoping for an enjoyable, free-to-play, real-time strategy experience. After a few battles, I unfortunately realized that each battle seemed the same and that all I did was set up the parameters of war, but I was still quite entertained.
A major complaint goes in the form of Mini Warriors' world map: there is no need to seperate the equipment, stat allocation, rank organization, equipment and skill training screens; all of the menu aspects of the world map could have been consolidated into one spot, and I believe this was done mainly to try and make the player feel like they're doing more work.
A major downside to Mini Warriors being a F2P title is that you are limited in the number of fights you can have per day, and Warriors' main currency (t-crystals), were a rarity, encouraging you to spend real-life money in order to get more t-crystals (which you use to unlock more daily fights). These crystals are also used in unlocking the better, five-star heroes of the battlefield. But even for those unwilling to spend cash on a free title, this is an RTS game that I wholeheartedly recommend