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The first impression I got from the Play store app listing of Idle Kingdom Play is the screenshots closely resembled the hexagonal tiles from Settlers of Catan. That was enough to get me curious, so I downloaded the free android game to give it a try. From the title, I already knew it was a idle game, similar to Egg Inc, Idle Miner Tycoon and Bit City. Turns out like those other games, this one was quite the addictive game, as I slowly discover new features as the game advances.
In Idle Kingdom, the kingdom collects Food, Material, and Science. For the most part, Food is used to pay for kingdom expansions to new lands. Materials can then be used to build new structures on the land. Finally, science can be researched to make buildings more effective. Any research (with Science) is maintained through the "resets" of the game. Depending on your level, the research process can take a LONG time. But expect each upgrade to take 10 hours to days. Luckily, when you "reset" the game, not only are fully researched upgrades kept, but your progress on unfinished upgrades are also kept.
There's much less clicking than many of other idle games that I've played, that makes Idle Kingdom more of a idle game rather than a clicker game. In total, I count three major improvements that Idle Kingdom has changed from the idle clicking genre game.
- The first improvement is how much less repetitive clicking is required. Most of the clicking happens during the tutorials, but soon after a few game "resets", only a few minutes of clicking are required to jump start the economy. So with much less clicking, the Android game still achieves the goal of an idle clicker.
- A second improvement is the removal of max gathering during the "idle" time. I believe it was put in place to encourage more logins. In practice, it seemed odd to login only to claim credit, then close the game again. If I forgot to play Idle Kingdom for a month, then I would accrued a full months worth of Food, Material, and Science credits. Instead of setting a max idle gathering, Idle Kingdom makes incremental upgrades exponentially more expensive.
- The last improvement is a supply chain building of the map. As you advance through Idle Kingdom, there are multiple buildings that can produce Food. The more advanced food buildings may require the output of the earlier food buildings, which then converts 1 unit of food to 10 units of food, in the same delivery unit. But the concept of building out a supply chain of buildings makes the game more dynamic at every level. With every "reset", the position of buildings may differ as you find ways to optimize the supply chain.
With so many changes to the original clicker genre, the developers of Idle Kingdom much have spent time and effort to properly balance out game play. If the game is too easy, one would progress through the game without a challenge. But they got it just right. And since there aren't max idle times, this becomes a game that's easy to check throughout the day on my own timetable. If I have the economy setup just perfectly, I can login to the game less often. And depending on how much time I have to actively playing the game, I can activate different edicts (boosts) that increase the production and/or gathering speed for a certain amount of time. The shorter the burst, the larger the boost.
This is my first game with any resemblance to setting up a supply chain. And I like it's implementation quite a bit. The buildings are easy to identify (one per hexagon piece of land). When you hover over any building, it automatically shows where that building is receiving materials and where the building is sending materials. Below, there is a small stats section which show the actual numbers. There's no ability to specify the movement of materials, but instead the game automatically optimizes the process. One suggestion is for Idle Kingdom developers to introduce the supply chain aspect earlier. It does take a few days of game play before completing the research for a building that relies on the output of an earlier building.
- Buildings have a certain range in which it can receive materials
- Buildings have a certain range in which it can send materials
- Some buildings only generate material from nothing (starting point)
- Some buildings only collection materials within a certain range (end point)
And thankfully, there are NO ads that randomly pop up throughout game play. You can watch video ads to temporarily give you a four hour boost to production and/or gathering speed, but that's up to you. Additionally, like almost every mobile game, you have the option to buy virtual items that can also help speed you through the game.
And the game doesn't require internet, unless you want to watching video ads to booster your gameplay. But if you're away from the internet, you can still play which includes "resetting" the game to give you lots of replay value.
I've played this for a few days straight, and I can tell this game will stick around for awhile, as it has very good re-play value. Each "reset" is similar, but also different enough that the game doesn't feel like repetitive clicking. If you've previously enjoyed playing idle clicking games, you might want to give Idle Kingdom a try. Also read more at Idle King Discord.