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South Park: Phone Destroyer – Mobile Game Review

South Park: Phone Destroyer is a is a free to play role-playing card game developed by RedLynx, and published by Ubisoft.

Announced as part of the Ubisoft conference at this years E3, this first assault on the mobile game market has seemingly been timed to tie in with the release of South Park: The Fractured But Whole, which sets out to tackle the Superhero movie genre through their askew world view, much like their breakout Stick of Truth which parodied The Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones. Now with Phone Destroyer, they switch their focus to mobile games with a card game format and a style of gameplay similar to Clash Royale as you drag cards onto the battlefield to summon different characters to fight for you or to unleash a selection of spells on your opponent or their own troops.

The story itself once again sees you playing as the new kid, whose phone skills instantly see you being recruited by Cartman to join his battle against Stan in a game of Cowboys and Indians, which soon devolves into Cowboys vs. Aliens, Religious and Fantasy characters as the rules continue to get all the more blurred as you battle your way across South Park.

South Park: Phone Destroyer
South Park: Phone Destroyer, 2017 © Ubisoft

Starting off with a surprisingly decent set of options to create your South Park persona with female characters also being available – a much needed change from Stick of Truth which only allowed for the creation of male characters, and while the character creation might not affect the gameplay like in Fractured But Whole, it was great to see a wide variety of options available without added price tags to enable you create your own unique character. Additional outfits can be purchased in the game if you feel obliged to do so, but seeing how outfits don’t change anything other than your characters appearance it’s down to the player to decide how badly they want those Ninja robes.

Given a basic deck of cards the games tutorial section takes you through your first few battles, helping you to understand the cards which fall into one of the basic groups such as Tank, Assassin, Archer whose skills you have to bring together on the battlefield to beat back your opponent’s troops and take out the level boss. From here, the gameplay generally follows a wash, rinse, repeat cycle for each level with the only real changes coming from the themes of the worlds you’re battling though and the boss you’re facing at the end of each level.

South Park: Phone Destroyer
South Park: Phone Destroyer, 2017 © Ubisoft

Here in lies the real charm of the game, especially for fans of the show as the game takes the multiple genres as a way to include nods to the show with the character costumes which include Cartman’s Awesom-O robot costume and Stan’s Tron suit while the game also introduces numerous new creations such as Gizmo Ike (who has the ability to multiply), Kyle’s Master Ninjew and perhaps more disturbingly Pocahontas Randy. These character cards and numerous others can be added to your deck through card packs or through round bonus’ while cards can also be updated to improve their stats and make them all the more imposing on the battlefield.

As well as the main story, there is the option to play against other players, which take a dig at the pay wall of other mobile games with its Great Paywall of China as you find your path blocked unless you beat a set number of players. This joke of course shoots itself in the foot after the first couple of times when it turns into a burden, especially if you find yourself on a losing streak. Thankfully the player vs. player part of the game currently seems balanced with you mainly being matched against players of a similar rank to you. Of course, the game is still new at this point so it remains to be seen if this match balancing remains or if it turns into a squash match.

The game, whose appeal rests largely on you being a fan of the series, relies heavily on the now trademark warped, foul mouthed humour of the show, playing up the mobile game concept by having characters Facetime you while a running thread of text messages between the kids helps to pad out the story between cut scenes. Gimmicks aside, the gameplay is solid and engrossing with the story certainly entertaining enough to make it feel like more than just a bunch of random themed levels and as such only more of a joy to work though.

South Park: Phone Destroyer – Mobile Game Review

Game description: South Park: Phone Destroyer is a is a free to play role-playing card game developed by RedLynx, and published by Ubisoft. 

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