Greed Corp

greed-corp-ipad-harvesting
Players:
Multiplayer:Online and local
AI:Yes, 3 levels
Universal App:No
Purchase for iPhone:None available. Buy an iPad now!
Purchase for iPad:

Price: Free
User rating:
GD Star Rating
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Greed Corp, 7.1 out of 10 based on 18 ratings

Originally an Xbox Live and Playstation Network game, Greed Corp has made the leap to iPad. It’s a boardgame alright, but there is no physical version. The core mechanics of the game are resource management, strategy and hex-based war – but it’s certainly unique.

GamePlay

Various configurations of hex-tiles form the play area, and each hex has a specified “height” to it. Tiles can be captured by moving your pieces on to, and if there’s a defending force you need at least as many attackers as there are defenders. The math is easy to do – whatever attacking force there is negates defending force until one or the other side is left – there is no chance involved here.

Each unit can only make one move per turn, but on captured lands you can move significantly faster. On uncaptured lands, you are limited to the spaces immediately around the unit.

Building anything takes coins. In order to get coins beyond the basic allowance, you need to harvest/mine the land. By placing a harvester building, at the start of each turn the hex it has been placed on and all the surrounding hexes will be mined at a rate of 2 coins per hex, but beware – each turn a harvested hex is reduced in height by one (that includes the surrounding hexes too). When it reaches a critical point, the hex turns into a cracked hex and can be affected by neighbouring cracks if some sort of explosion occurs. When reduced again, that hex dissappears, as does anything that was placed upon it – unit or building, or harvester. As you can guess, as the game progresses the play area rapidly disintegrates.

Normal units can’t jump over dead disintegrated lands, so to perform an attack unit your units, you need to save up for an aerial assault. For 50 coins (not an insignificant amount), you can airlift a single set of troops anywhere, just once. The aerial attack isn’t a permanent unit you can purchase – it’s a one-of thing you really need to save. You can purchase it multiple times, but smaller maps simply don’t have the resources to justify that. Consequently, some games will end at a stalemate.

There is one other building you can purchase, and thats a cannon. Cannons can shoot long range, but the precise range I believe depends upon the height of the square you place them on. Building the cannon takes one turn – and after that you also need to purchase each cannot shot for 20 each. They’re not cheap, so use them wisely. The cannon can be used to initiate a critical explosion on weak (cracked) hexes, and also reduces any hex they’re fired onto by one. If you attack a cracked hex, any adjoining cracked hexes will also be destroyed – so one shot can lead to a huge loss of land in the right conditions.

If you want to, you can also manually self-destruct harvesters. This leads to an instant destruction of that and the surrounding lands, just as mining it would but without the rewards. Harvesters will affect all the hexes around them regardless of whether you own it or not, but you’ll only gain funds from the lands you own.

Implementation

Sadly, the interface isn’t as intuitive as I remember it on the Playstation. When moving units around, the developers has used an iOS style horizontal slider, but it overly complicates things and a simple +/- pair of buttons would have much more appreciated. Since this is what you’ll be doing 90% of the time, it gets a bit fiddly.

The other interface controls are no better. You’d think that after a selecting an armory, you could then produce troops. Not so. Instead, you need to select the button for making troops from the sidebar, then select the armory you want to make them from, then fiddle with a slider again to select how many. It’s not so bad that the game is unplayable – it’s just really non-intuitive at times, and I’d expect better from a professionally produced game like this.

I experienced a few bugs and crashes while playing, and still haven’t been able to find a partner for an online game. The single player campaign is certainly good fun, but you might want to wait and see how popular the game becomes before purchasing this for multiplayer.

Conclusion

It’s a great game, but the fiddly controls and bugs make it a little frustrating. I can’t comment on the multiplayer yet either, so it’s difficult to fully recommend this in the state it is now. A few updates and some more players though – this could be turn out to be a classic.

Criticisms of the core game would be that the different factions are merely artificial – there are no difference in units (unlike a similar hex/wargame Neuroshima). Furthermore, there’s only one mobile unit and one long range attack in the whole game, so if you’re looking for something with a variety of units you’re sadly out of luck. I wonder if these could be introduced in a future update – but there’s no such thing for console versions either so I doubt it.



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