When I started playing Clash of Clans (CoC) I was really impressed with the game. Game mechanics are well balanced, graphics are simple but attractive, fast loading, no disconnection… Everything seemed almost perfect.
After playing few months and investing some of my gaming time to its rivals as well, I now think Supercell should add some more to the game in order to keep Clash of Clan’s leading position.
Motivating and Achievable Progress to keep players active
Since I reached Town Hall level 8, it became really hard to progress further. In order to start a single upgrade (which costs around 2.5 million golds), I need at least 10 successful attacks. I need to wait 30-45 minutes for my army to be ready for the next attack. Even I dedicate my whole evening for these 10 attacks (which I don’t), there is a big chance that someone will attack to me during my offline waiting time and steal 100-200k gold. The only way to collect enough gold is to stay online (which you’ll time out and log out automatically in few minutes if you stay idle) for 5-6 hours or to pray that nobody attacks you during this 5-6 hours.
I think Supercell should find a way to keep casual players motivated otherwise every casual player will quit playing after reaching a certain progress level.
The guild war rewards introduced by Total Conquest is a good option. I had the same issue of collecting enough resources for the upgrades in Total Conquest. When guild wars started, I had the opportunity to get bulk amounts every few days letting me upgrade 1-2 buildings.
Daily quests can be another option to encourage players to log in every day and earn additional resources for upgrades and progress. I’m surprised that none of these additional features exists at Clash of Clans as of now.
Longer Game Sessions needed for Clash of Clans
At the moment, you need 4-5 minutes of game session every 30-40 minutes. You log in, collect gold/resources from the buildings (10secs), find an opponent with good loot to attack (1min), attack (max 3mins), enter orders to rebuild your army (20-30secs). There is nothing but chatting until your army gets ready for the next attack, which will take 30mins to 2hrs depending on troop types you want to build.
While your army gets ready, you may play Candy Crush for 10 mins, another tower-defense game for 5 mins, check Facebook & Twitter for 10 mins, do temple run for 5 mins… and your army is ready! But, what if you like the game and play it for longer sessions? Isn’t it also what Supercell wants?
Among similar games, I found the Castle Clash with the longest sessions offered. Although Castle Clash is a tower-defense game like Clash of Clans (even the names are so similar), and army building times are almost same, Castle Clash has additional features to enable longer game sessions:
- Heroes: In Clash of Clans there are 2 heroes available. You can upgrade them by gold. In Castle Clash, there are many heroes available and heroes play an important part in the game. Heroes level up by gaining experience, which means you need to spend more time using them in wars.
- Arena: With your heroes you may attack other players to gain Honor Badges. You accumulate an attack attempt every 20 mins (max of 5). This enables approx. 6-8 mins additional game session every hour.
- Dungeon: Similar to Arena but this time, you enter a game dungeon instead of attacking another player. Dungeons help your heroes to earn experience. Another 6-8 mins additional game session every hour. Clash of Clans also has dungeon feature but it does not provide any real benefit to the player.
- Challenge: Depending on the challenge level you choose, game AI sends a raid to your town. Probably the best way to earn experience for heroes and to check your town’s defense. Every challenge includes 5 waves unless you fail, lasts about 3-4 mins. Challenges accumulated every 2-3 hours. Another 1-2 mins additional game session every hour.
- Guild event: If you are part of a guild, by spending shards you may challenge a boss to get Honor Badge rewards. Although this adds to game time as well I won’t count it since I prefer to keep shards to buy heroes instead of using them up for a boss challenge. Anyway, it’s a unique additional feature.
Compared to 8-10 mins every hour you can spend in Clash of Clans, Castle Clash offers you 20-30 mins of game play time with nice additional features.
Social Interaction Between Players can be encouraged
Clash of Clans offers a guild chat in addition to global chat. You can add friends. Your Facebook friends are added automatically if you connect the game to your Facebook account. Then you can visit friends’ towns.
There is a global leaderboard, weekly competition and so but these functions bring limited interaction ability (e.g. usually you cannot send any message). The point is; you keep staying as a stranger to other players.
I find the level of social interaction in Clash of Clans a bit poor. I believe mobile games should invest more on interactions between players. It’s maybe the strongest loyalty tool for any online application. In this regard, what else could be at Clash of Clans?
- Duels: It’s nice to see my friends town but we cannot attack each other. It could be nice if we could attack each other, without losing any gold/resources, just for fun!
- Friends Leaderboard: There is a global leaderboard and your friends are also sorted according to the trophy amount. But this is all. It could be nice if there was a detailed “friends leaderboard” letting us compete in different metrics like “most successful attacks”, “highest gold loot amount”.
- Guild wars: Proper cooperation design will encourage guild mates to interact more.
- Donations: You may donate troops to your guild mates but you cannot donate to your friends unless you are in the same guild. Allowing donation between friends will increase their interaction.
User Experience is good but there is room to improve
While Clash of Clans provides a very good user experience, I’ve identified few points to improve:
- Fast forward wars: Total Conquest has this option. You can speed up the battles. It’s useful especially when you have already deployed all of your troops. Otherwise, you need to wait an extra 1-2 minutes for the battle to end.
- Double click to open interface: Again a good option provided by Total Conquest. You can double click on buildings to open building’s interface. There is no use of double-click in Clash of Clans.
- Pooled troop building: Kingdom Clash provides a single interface to build a whole army. It’s nice not to enter each barrack separately or choose next button to set troops to be built by each barrack. In Kingdom Clash, you can enter whole troop queue in a single screen and troops are allocated to appropriate barracks automatically.
Rivals of Clash of Clans are raising fast. I’m expecting new features from Supercell to keep players happy and enjoying the game to the end.