Online war games like War Commander, Soldiers, Inc., Mobile Strike and Thunder Run: Firestrike offer “team-based” combat.
Joining Clans, Guilds, and Alliances (all the same thing, really) opens new play experiences and strategies. Well, it’s actually more than that, those games are “supposed to” be played in teams–if you’re not in a team, you’re at a massive disadvantage.
The game designers build it this way because when you play in teams it’s more engaging and people retain longer in a game before they go off and decide to play something else.
Example of joining an alliance (“team”) in War Commander
How do you use the mechanics to your advantage? Here’s three ways to start:
- Team up to fight larger enemies. Deploy your forces strategically with new friends to take on larger enemies and to control territory and assets that generate resources for your team, making you even stronger.
- Deter enemies from attacking your base. When it’s time to retaliate, strike back fiercely, in a show of strength! Some teams will be in world chat trying to intimidate other teams. It’s a little bit of a risky strategy, because “Hey, we’re really powerful, don’t mess with us” is kind of an invitation to mess with you.
- Earn exclusive rewards. When you join a team from an invite you typically get exclusive bonuses in Gold (or whatever the in-game currency is) and free daily gifts. Most games have these, and it’s part of the progression calculations made by game designers, so–again–if you’re not in a team, you’re at a disadvantage.
To join a team (Guild, Alliance, Clan, etc.), start a conversation using the in-game chat, and learn more about the teams that are actively recruiting. Remember:
- Consider joining a team with leadership or friends that play when you play. Being online regularly at the same time makes it easier to stay in touch and influence strategy via in-game chat.
- Find a team that matches your play style. Do you play aggressive, or defensive? Do you like frequent close battles, or do you prefer to wait and attack with overwhelming force? It’s a big world, you have plenty to choose from.
- Join the conversation. Get involved in team-wide discussions on planning and strategy. Help shape the priorities of team combat, which can end up influencing the entire game world!
Those are just some opening thoughts from what I’ve seen playing and analyzing these titles, with a focus on what to share for players new to this genre.
What do you think? Please share your thoughts in the comments. I’d love to get feedback for future articles.
Learn more about these titles:
Creator: SpinPunch, Inc. (now “Battlehouse”)
Created Date: 2016
From game site:
Welcome to Gundar, an island nation of disputed rule off the coast of North Africa.
Three months ago, a titanic earthquake swallowed the capital city, collapsing the national government. A civil war erupted among the private armies of the island’s most powerful families, each claiming to be the country’s new rightful ruler.
The families battle ferociously over territory and access to the country’s vast deposits of oil and precious metals. Soon, arms dealers and mercenaries flock to the island to profit richly as conflict escalates. They bring to Gundar the world’s best weapons, training, vehicles and aircraft, all for a price.
Caught by surprise, and caught in the middle, the cities, towns and villages across the land brace for war. Combining all the money and influence they can muster, each recruits a militia to defend them against the feuding warlords.
You arrive on Gundar to defend a small town by commanding its garrison. But the outpost is in shambles — and the fee and the forces promised to you are already spent.
As foreign aid and soldiers pour out of the doomed nation, you know that your town — among the poorest and most defenseless — shall likely be looted and burned to the ground by the civil war. Worse yet, it may choose to pledge allegiance to the dark and vile forces now quickly spreading into the region: pirates, thugs, Triads, and slavers.
You chose to stay, while others ran.
You’ve chosen to command the town’s garrison, and build an army to defend it. Thousands of men, women and children count on you for survival. You are their last and only hope, you are their protector, you are their leader.
They call you Commander.
Check out the trailer:
Created Date: 2010
War Commander is an online multiplayer gamedeveloped by Kixeye. The game has 30,000 active users everyday. Made in 2010, the game is still one of Kixeye’s biggest hits but has lost ~80% of original players since 2013-2015 due to the changes in gameplay.
The game is a post-apocalyptic landscape 30 years after civilization collapsed. The player fights other factions for oil, metal and thorium. There is tanks, aircraft, and infantry that the player can fight with. Every month there is an event where the player must defend against waves of overpowered enemies to gain points from winning the attack wave. Players can spend the points in the event shop for new overpowered units and else.
Sectors are sections of the world where the player base and others are at. There are 200 sectors where the player can relocate to. There are about 50 active people in a sector.
An alliance is a group created by a player. It costs 5,000,000 (5 million) thorium to create one. There are four types of positions in the Alliance: Leader, Officer, Member, and Recruit. Players may relocate without losing the alliance tag. The total of members that can fit in one alliance is 200.
Infamy is a measure of a player’s skill in combat against other players. Infamy is shown on top of a players base in the map. It is shown on a leaderboard where players can be compared. To get infamy, a player must attack another player’s base and for each star, they earn while destroying that base and they get the most infamy if they get 3 stars. Earning a lot of infamy places you in different Tops in the leader board, with an infamy, the Gear store may reward you a certain amount. When you get an infamy even a single one, you can get medals for free (Rewarded). There are milestones in which a player must reach infamy wise in order to get a superior payout. 5 PVP victories are required to receive weekly medal payout.
- players with over 3600 infamy will earn 150,000 medals (Gold 1)
- 2800 infamy earns 110,000 medals (Gold 2)
- 2100 infamy earns 80,000 medals (Gold 3)
- 1500 infamy earns 60,000 medals (Silver 1)
- 1000 infamy earns 50,000 medals (Silver 2)
- 600 infamy earns 40,000 medals (Silver 3)
- 350 infamy earns 30,000 medals (Bronze 1)
- 100 infamy earns 20,000 medals (Bronze 2)
- >100 infamy earns 10,000 medals (Bronze 3)
Gear is a medal where if a player attacks another player’s base and wins, they score one hit on the list. Players must score five hits on the list to get a gear payout every week. For each extra base, they eat the player will get extra gear at the end of the week. The player spends the gear on new tanks, aircraft, soldiers, thorium, tech and spec ops. The cap for medals is 1,000,000
Players with over 3600 infamy will earn 150,000 medals (Gold 1) 2800 infamy earns 110,000 medals (Gold 2) 2100 infamy earns 80,000 medals (Gold 3) 1500 infamy earns 60,000 medals (Silver 1) 1000 infamy earns 50,000 medals (Silver 2) 600 infamy earns 40,000 medals (Silver 3) 350 infamy earns 30,000 medals (Bronze 1) 100 infamy earns 20,000 medals (Bronze 2) >100 infamy earns 10,000 medals (Bronze 3)
Shadow Ops is a mini event where the player must attack rogue bases on the world map and get points. For 100 points, a player gets a tier 1 crate; for 1000 points, they get a tier 2 crate; for 8000 points, they get an tier 3 crate. There are ten phases, one every week. For each phase a player completes by getting 8000 points, they get a part, if they get 8 out of 10 parts they get a special unique unit at the end of the ten weeks then it starts over again.
Since 2015, players must pay more than $50.00 for in-game currency known as gold to be able to submit a support ticket to Kixeye about in game problems without paying $50.00 you are only able to report hackers or harassment.
Forum support is still available for the players who have not spent $50 over the lifetime of gameplay on Kixeye. This includes contact with Moderators (volunteers players who have can contact any of the Kixeye game teams at any time) and Community Managers (CMs) for each game. Many of the game-related issues can be answered by players who have already experienced the issue.
Bugs and glitch and error messages
The game is notoriously well known for its bugs and glitches, such as Air or platoons not repairing or ghost bases (copy of a player’s base in another sector that the player has no control over) and error messages (lost connection, failure to attack player, failure to load attack log, or failure to load base), or platoons not returning to base.
The monthly event consists of attack, defense and now specific faction bases where only certain units from one of the three current factions (See Above) can be used. the completion of these waves grant event exp that can be used to purchase units tech and the bragging right based trophy. Certain waves also grant new release units. The event can be ran through 5 times and the player can restart at any time, but additional restarts can be earned by completing the main event track.
The monthly Onslaught event consists of 40 defensive waves which increase in difficulty as the player progresses; this has became less favorable to players due to a decrease in prize value and an increase in difficulty. The onslaught cannot be replayed but in the last couple months has occurred twice. Defending units will instant heal after each wave but only to the health they had at the start of the wave.
The monthly Invasion event consists of 10 difficult defensive waves where higher tier players battle to get the fastest time for superior prizes and bragging rights.
Check out the trailer:
Creator: Machine Zone
Created Date: 2015
Mobile Strike is a freemium mobile massively multiplayer online strategy video game developed and published in 2015 by Machine Zone (now known as MZ). The game had a high-profile advertising campaign and became one of the top-grossing apps in 2015 and 2016.
Mobile Strike is well known for its advertising campaign featuring actor and former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger as a commander. One of its commercials was featured on Super Bowl 50. Another commercial, which aired during Super Bowl LI, depicted Schwarzenegger saying memorable lines from his movie career, such as “I’m back,” “Get to the chopper,” and “Hasta la vista, baby.”
In April 2017, one controversial advertisement featured women in bikinis, playing the game on sun loungers. The advertisement was later banned in the United Kingdom by the Advertising Standards Authority.
As of November 2016, the app was the second highest grossing game on Apple’s App Store.However, the game itself was not well received by reviewers. Andrew Hayward of Macworldcriticized the game for the overabundance of microtransactions. Hayward also criticized the game’s advertising for emphasizing mechanics that are “greatly misrepresented for promotional purposes”. Hayward concluded that the game is “surely not worth the hassle or payment needed to get to that point” and that, like its predecessor Game of War: Fire Age, “is a busywork simulator above all.” Jennifer Allen of Gamezebo also criticized the game for being “busywork” and found the game’s unlockables to be “soulless.”
Check out the trailer:
During the early years of the 21st century, the face of modern warfare began to change… Foreign companies, sponsored by multinational corporations, rush to solidify mineral rights in the East African Republic of Zandia. Meanwhile China and leading Asian mining companies assemble the largest joint private paramilitary force ever seen – the Zheng Shi Security Combine in order to secure their claim to the riches available to preserve their monopoly within the country.
Under the command of Mr. John Black, you will develop your Base, sign Contracts, and recruit troops in order to build up your own personal army and claim your right to the Zandian territories! Plan your strategy, conduct diplomacy, develop logistics, and master your warfare strategy and techniques as you ally with other Commanders and conduct joint-operations with your Combine members. Defeat your rivals and become the best Commander ever known in Zandia…
Created Date: 2013
Soldiers Inc. is a Massively multiplayer online real-time strategy game (MMORTS) developed and published by Plarium. The game was released in 2013 and is designed for use on web browsers. The game is military themed and set in the fictional country of Zandia, where players compete for control of the land’s rich mineral fields. The game was named by Facebook as one of the top social games on its platform in 2013.
In 2015 20th Century Fox and Plarium collaborated to lend the themes and experiences of the Alien vs. Predator (AVP) franchise into Soldiers Inc., with Mike Doyle of 20th Century Fox saying “Soldiers Inc. has the perfect mixture of thrilling and engaging gameplay that is perfectly in step with the Alien vs. Predator franchise.”
Checkout the trailer: