I continue to play the Vikings War of Clans android game.

The fun part for me is the paranoid chase to get the next building built; the next knowledge researched; before some guy with more money than sense can come by and smash my town.    Each building at the higher levels costs far more than can be safely stored even though your town is attacked, so the only method of turtling is to use the peace shields.   I have found these to be prohibitively expensive and so don’t use them much.   Many players use them extensively.   Then again, I think most of the players of the game are real whales for the Devs.

Fifty Bucks

Fifty Bucks

Ten Bucks

Ten Bucks

There are even $100 purchase packs available.    The social engineering on these is impressive, even if ….. disgusting.   The first level is that there are no fixed costs for anything.    You would think I could simply tell you how much gold costs, but no, there is no way to buy the game’s gold for a fixed price in the game.   It costs whatever the current offer says it costs.   But it gets worse (better?).

You start out seeing a selection of $10, $5 packages that you can buy.   They slowly move towards a list of $2 and $5, with one $20 package always available.   I am looking for only $2 packages which is about what I pay for a cold Coke at the convenience store; if it will help me, why not spend at that level.   So when I see one that I like, I buy it.

The game instantly recalculates all of its offer formulas the second you buy one.    Did you see a second offer you wanted to buy ?   Too bad, it’s gone.   Now, a bunch of more expensive offers are on the table, such as the $50 packages shown above.    Now, I find myself waiting again until the $2 offers appear and something I want to buy is shown.

But……. it gets even worse !   The truly disgusting thing is, the offers are MORE EXPENSIVE for each package, the more money you spend.   You get the best value for the gold portion of your purchase, the less you spend.    It seems like you don’t get that much more of the “other stuff” like troops and bonuses, but it’s less easy to see.   Still, I think it’s clear.   I’ve been playing this thing for months, I should know.

Concerns about games being pay-to-win are thrown to the hills in this game; you simply do pay-to-win.    Want to be a tough player on your server ?   Better get smart about your purchases and whip out your credit card.

Now, the mechanics of the game include strange rules about attacking.    It all makes sense in context of a fun game, but it’s a bit weird from a step back.   You can attack special tiles which have resources; your troops sit there and collect them, and are vulnerable to destructive attack if they get caught by another player.    Any attack means that your defending troops that lose, are gone forever.

Attack – your lost troops are gone.    Unless you want to spend gold, of course.   Defend a tile – your lost troops are gone.   Defend your town, and….. your lost troops can be “healed”, just for ingame resources.   This makes “tile hits” something devastating for your enemies, while if your town is hit your troops are kind of safe.     And, guess what happens when you suffer a tile hit ?   Why, of course, an offer to spend money and “Take your revenge !”

Take your revenge !   Just costs a little bit of money....

Take your revenge ! Just costs a little bit of money….

Me, I try to play the cheapskates way.   I still have a $4 credit from a Google Play card I received for my birthday or something, so I dumpster dive for $2 packages.    Maybe I’ll cut loose with $5.   I don’t know.   But the way I enjoy the game mechanics had better wait for another post.