Oct 14, 2016
How many of you, when you were sat there watching the critically acclaimed Netflix series Narcos, thought to yourself ‘this show would totally work as a Clash of Clans clone?’ I would have guessed the precisely 0 people thought this. I would have guessed wrong.
This is because Narcos: Cartel Wars is exactly that. Someone thought this would be a good idea, someone got a development team together and someone made this game. In fairness, it’s a pretty solid Clash of Clans clone but also in fairness, do we actually need another Clash of Clans clone?
You start off with a base and it’s up to you to build up your compound say that it eventually contains more buildings that make you more money. It’s not all about the money though. This is a game called Narcos after all, so you need to make sure you’re making plenty of ‘product’ too. Once you’ve made enough ‘product’ you can then ship it off and a real-world timer ticks down whilst your plane sets off to distribute your ‘product’.
The Clash of Clans comparisons continue in every aspect of base building, with ‘builders huts’ being premium items and three currencies all being involved in the expansion of your base. Just like Clans you need to place mines, watchtowers and other defences so that you and your base stay safe whilst your not playing.
Straying away from the clans formula is the way that you fight. To start with, you have one transport boat. Each transport boat has a ‘Sicario’ who is assigned to it and each ‘Sicario’ has their own unique troops and you should be able to guess at how the troops operate. Quick but weak gunners, slow but strong grenadiers, etc.
This is now the part of the review where, ideally, I’d talk about more of the unique features of Narcos: Cartel Wars. This is where, Ideally, I’d reveal a special mechanic that allows you, the reader, to forgive the game for its blatant emulating of an already established mobile game. This, sadly, is not an ideal situation.
Narcos: Cartel Wars does absolutely the bare minimum to make it unique. This game essentially is Clash of Clans but with a new lick of paint. Why that lick of paint is a critically acclaimed drama, I have absolutely no idea. This is about as fitting a tribute to Narcos as Candy Crush is to Downton Abbey.
I’m not saying Narcos: Cartel Wars is bad but what I am saying is that its design is lazy. This game, this EXACT game has been made dozens of times before and this whole title seems like a cynical cash-in on a popular TV show by simply remaking a popular mobile game.
It’s fine but it’s been done before. It’s been done many, many times before.