Pokemon Rumble World is one of Nintendo’s first forays into the world of freemium, though a premium version is available too. Built for the 3ds, Pokemon Rumble World is a dungeon crawler, as opposed to a turn-based RPG like the main Pokemon series.
In Pokemon Rumble World you enter into a very brightly-coloured medieval-style kingdom, where you must help the king defend his country from a power-hungry magician. Instead of actual Pokemon, the game has ‘toy’ Pokemon, which are inanimate without a wind-up key. Your mission is to fight the wizard, defend the kingdom, and along the way capture every last one of the 719 creatures available.
The gameplay is not turn-based, so the game isn’t like the main series. Instead, it ends up much more like a hack and slash, and mechanically it’s incredibly simple. At the higher levels, your creatures can sometimes have two attacks, but most of the time each creature will just have one attack. Like in other Pokemon games you can switch your playable creatures around quite easily. An added touch to the game is the Mii incorporation, where you play as your Mii and can interact with other people’s.
Pokemon Rumble World is a dungeon crawler, and each dungeon level is pretty small. However, there are numerous levels which can be travelled to via balloon. It should be noted that the balloons are on timers, which means you can only visit so many dungeons in so much time. These dungeons are often elementally themed. Overall, the entire kingdom is still fairly small, but as you play, more creatures and Miis will appear to make it seem bigger and busier.
As you defeat creatures, your adventurer rank will increase. This will unlock more creatures in the wild, and more balloons which allow you to access more areas and more quests. Although the game has a main quest daily, there are multiple side objectives too.
As far as the freemium part goes, you can pay for more balloons, shop around for upgrades or extra lives. However, all areas of the game are ultimately accessible for free if you are patient enough. Additionally, the premium currency, diamonds, can be obtained from simply playing the game, meaning you can earn a certain amount of them for free.
Graphically it’s not exactly high definition, and regarding gameplay, it’s hardly grand strategy. In the end, it’s essentially a simple, and mostly free, hack and slash. So, while it’s not going to hook you for the next month it’s not bad for a quick pick up and play on a break.