In the world of Web3/blockchain gaming, there’s no shortage of projects in the works. And, just like in the long-established video game industry, the projects in development range from high-fidelity, wildly ambitious games like The Bornless, to much smaller, simpler games like Aurory. What just about every game that is considered a “blockchain game” has in common, is that they are all works in progress, yet still allow you to play them and interact with NFT marketplaces or play-to-earn mechanics.
For most games, this is fine. There is usually solid core gameplay and a compelling concept, I’ve reviewed enough of these games to know that. However, every once in a while, a game comes along that is so low-quality that it’s difficult to justify its existence. I hadn’t seen a game like that in a while… until I played Monstropoly. Let’s dig into it.
What is Monstropoly?
Monstropoly is a MOBA brawler game from developer/publisher/tech company Satoshis Games. That studio is also behind Light Nite, a blockchain battle royale that apes Fortnite, and the Elixir Desktop Game Launcher. Only one of these things is good, and it’s not one of the games unfortunately.
As far as Monstropoly goes, It is a pretty basic MOBA experience that is centered around a monster theme. Every playable monster is an NFT that can be evolved or bred, or presumably will be at some point in the future. The version of Monstropoly that is available is incredibly barebones.
Not Quite Hideous
At the time of writing, Monstropoly’s presentation is nothing to write home about. The game’s UI is simple, yet familiar, with your selected monster in the center of the screen, your rank on the top left, settings on the top right, a monster selection option in the bottom middle, and the “Battle” button on the bottom right.
It’s effective for what the game currently is, but Monstropoly is aiming at the Esports crows. Much simpler games like Mini Royale Nations manages to have all of its season and esports information laid out on its start screen, and that game runs in your browser. Monstropoly requires you to download the Elixir Desktop Launcher, and then download the Monstropoly client from there.
Unfortunately, the simplicity and mediocrity of the game’s UI carry over to the most important part of the game: the monsters. There is a small handful of monsters that are free to use, and each one is… not very impressive looking. The game seems to be going for a Pokemon-style “gotta catch ’em all” vibe, but I didn’t see any monster I would want to actually buy as an NFT. Not like Aurory, which has plenty of inspired monster designs.
The monsters of Monstropoly aren’t terrible, they’re just… childish. Like they were rendered from a child’s drawings. Which would have been fine if that was the backstory for the game, but the only sort of lore I was able to find was in the game’s white page, which didn’t hint at that at all.
I might have given Monstropoly a pass for this if the gameplay was superb. Unfortunately, this is also not the case.
A Mechanical Bore
Before you jump into a match, it’s worth taking a look at the four currently available monsters you can use as a free player. They have names like Dazzling, Gunner, Bulldozer, and… Bob. Bob did make me chuckle a bit.
As is standard for MOBA games, each monster has a set of stats and attacks/special abilities that are unique to them. Dazzling doesn’t have much health, but has a ranged fireball attack, while Bulldozer is built like a tank, and only has a close-range axe attack. In theory, finding synergies and strategizing with your friends would be the fun part of Monstropoly, as it is with other MOBAs, but unfortunately the game is dreadfully boring in action.
There doesn’t appear to be any kind of strategy involved, though there are standard patches of high grass that you can hide in for a few moments while your health regenerates. Unfortunately, the damage done by most attacks is so great that you rarely get a chance to do this. Unless you use Bob’s health regeneration ability. Good old Bob.
Monstropoly just lacks the pizzazz and intensity of games like League of Legends and similar MOBAs. It’s being developed right now, so maybe it’s not fair to give it a final verdict, but what is there just isn’t all that compelling. Especially when you are able to spend money on the game right now in its current state.
What’s in the Box?!?!
Monstropoly is built on the BNB blockchain, but doesn’t have many blockchain features at the moment. Right now, all that is possible is to purchase either a “Monster Box” or a “Combo Box”, which will contain one monster or several monsters, respectively. As of right now, it is not possible to buy an individual monster that you yourself have selected, which reduces your options for investing in the game to loot boxes, which is not exactly a celebrated term in any version of the gaming industry.
The game’s whitepaper promises a native token ($MPOLY), along with staking and farming of that coin, but I wasn’t able to interact with any of that in Monstropoly’s current form. This along with the aforementioned NFT evolving and breeding will be introduced later on down the road.
Monstropoly’s whitepaper seems pretty boilerplate, and there isn’t any reason the game shouldn’t be successful, other than that the game itself doesn’t really warrant any kind of engagement or investment. Sure, it runs, but the current incarnation of it isn’t much better than any free-to-play mobile MOBA you could get from a smartphone app store.
Which Monstropoly also seeks to become, it seems, since it advertises being available on PC, Mac, Android, and iOS at some point. It’s definitely possible to turn a project around, especially one that is apparently this early in development, but with what you can get your hands on now, Monstropoly doesn’t look very promising.