Nothing says futuresport gladiator apocalypse quite like a pantheon of robots destroying each other for entertainment. In indie developer Facepunch‘s new turn-based arena game, Clatter, that is exactly what you get – a quirky, well designed, tactical outing that hits all the notes of its entertaining genre.
Clatter is relentlessly zany, strategic, and fun, even if you wonder at times what exactly it is you’re blasting into your eye holes.
Your Guide to the Robot Apocalypse
Clatter presents a world that is, overall, a little difficult to explain to your friends. In a few words, you are the sports manager of a professional team in a game that pits two robot teams against each other in a fight to the death. You will manage your players, find sponsors, and trade athletes as the season unfolds.
Each week, you face off against another team, positioning eight robots on a map to crush your opponents. There are multiple types of robo-warriors, each with their own play-style, providing a strategic play opportunity as you take turns going into battle. As you win, you earn money and loot to upgrade your team.
Sounds odd? It kind of is. The game is equal parts Sega Football Manager, Final Fantasy, and XCOM. There’s a hard learning curve for Clatter, but once you master it, you’ll realize what a gem this game is.
Fun, Fun Futuresport
There is limitless customization, a multiplayer mode, and different game types if you need to shake up the routine. The graphics are vibrant, quirky, and beautiful. The sound effects work, enhancing the sense of robotic chaos. It’s all set to the backing of a fun, high stakes orchestra tune that never gets old.
I spent countless hours bringing my team, the Brewers (an assortment of healing focused bots decked out in Cleveland colors of brown, orange, and white), up to a winning division record. I agonized over my first trade.
Clatter‘s most impressive feat is how much it understands strategy. Team composition truly influences the playing styles of the teams you face. Each game can be surprising, forcing you to really invest in understanding the game mechanics.
Mastering the Strategy
I absolutely crushed a team with an aggressive play style. After that, the Brewers were handed their very first loss the following week thanks to a lone bot that flanked my players, hitting them with potshots from long range. As you continue to play, your opponents get tougher, requiring better counter-play and strategy.
Some of that difficulty may have to do with game mechanics. Certain robots like the Hopper and the Charger are clearly OP. I suffered most losses when opposing teams built their strategy around these two characters. Sometimes, winning was the difference between who used what attack first. The game still needs some help with team balance.
Regardless, Clatter is still a blast. If you can find the appeal of its half-sports-half-madcap-battle-royale persona, then you’ll be rewarded with a challenging strategy game that has no shortage of fun. You can find Clatter here, the price-tag reads $9,99 US or your regional equivalent!