Collecting pets around a world and battling them to become “the very best like no one ever was” is not a new idea. A few “Poke-clones” popped up on Facebook about a year ago, and there haven’t been any new takes on the idea on Facebook as of this writing (as far as I’m aware). When it comes to great Pokemon-clones on Facebook, Miscrits and Monster Galaxy are two of the very best.
Since Nintendo has no interest in Facebook gaming, many Poke-crazed gamers have flocked to these two games. What one is the better choice?
Jump past the cut to read my thoughts on what one stands out on top.
Miscrits: World of Adventure
Miscrits: World of Adventure is made by the team at Broken Bulb Studios, who you may remember from games like Braaains, My Town, and Ninja Warz. The game was released in late 2010, and currently has 1.4 million monthly users, and 230,000 daily users.
Like what you’d expect from a Pokemon-clone, you are an avatar in a game world searching for Miscrits to collect and battle. There are multiple “zones” in the game, one of which you must pay to access (95 Facebook Credits) in order to capture exclusive Miscrits. The cost of this is relatively in-expensive for what you’re getting (3 exclusive Miscrits and 2 rare ones), but I can understand some player’s frustration with it.
Just like Pokemon, there are multiple Elements assigned to each Miscrit: so water is more effective against fire, etc. There are also some interesting additions to this well-known formula, and I’m excited to see what else they come up with.
A fault I find with the game as it stands currently its’ leveling systems. You are given a “Player Level” and your miscrits also have their own levels and stats. The downfall of this system is that even though your starter has been with you since the very first battle, you’ll need to spend Training Points earned each Player Level to level up your ‘crits, and you’re not given very many of them (this is one of the biggest player complaints as seen here and here).
You can choose from two ways to level your Miscrits, “Basic Training” and “Expert Training”. Expert Training costs more Training Points, but will increase random stats as well as the stats increased from Basic Training – giving you an edge in PvP.
Since the game’s central focus is PvP (and trust me, they’ve nerfed a Miscrit I had spent tons of training points leveling up because they thought it was OP in PvP), it’s a silly system to have and I feel it may have been a way to get users to spend more money on the game.
However… a new Miscrits expansion (Volcano Island) is set to release this Winter that reportedly changes the way you level your Miscrits. They will be shifting from the current broken leveling system to an “Exp Based” leveling system. I’m glad they’re changing it, and I’m looking forward to checking out the new system.
The Miscrits look amazing, and the art style of the game is very pleasing and well done. The avatar art could use some work and variation, but it’s a minor point that the developers have mentioned they are working on.
In addition to exploring the world, there are also Elemental Bosses for you to battle and defeat that involve a rather lacking storyline – but in a game about battling pets, I can imagine coming up with a solid storyline can be a challenge (“Miscrits are….. PEEEEOOOOPPLLEEEE!” *shivers*). However, there is an achievement system built into the game that’s rather fun to complete. These achievements start out rather easy (use X amount of items), and get progressively more difficult as you continue onward.
Where the game shines, however, is Player vs Player combat. The game matches you against a random opponent around the world that has the same average Miscrit level as yours (so it’s a good idea to evenly level your entire team). The system is also rewarding, in that after winning so many battles in a given week you are given a rare Miscrit. While these Miscrits show up again weeks or months later as the weekly award, it’s still a nice reward and definitely a motivation to PvP if you’re a hardcore collector.
There is also a cool leaderboard system that shows where you stand against your friends.
The game also features a unique Energy system called “Virtue“. You are given 10 Virtue every hour, and Virtue is used to heal your Miscrits. A full heal of your team costs all 10 Virtue, so if you’re looking for a gaming experience that you can play for hours at a time, I’d recommend building multiple teams (which you’ll want to do anyways – there are so many awesome looking Miscrits that you’ll want them all on your team).
You are given 4 capture chances an hour, with the option to purchase more with Facebook credits. You replenish your capture chances when you stop by the church to heal your Miscrits, which is a nice touch.
While most Miscrits are available either in the wild or through non-monetary means, there are some Miscrits that are available only for Facebook Credits – and they can be quite expensive. It is not a good idea to purchase a Facebook Credits only Miscrit with the plans to PvP with it.
Overall, the game is charming and quite addictive.
Monster Galaxy is created by a team over at Gaia Online. Their website is still very popular to this day, and Monster Galaxy was one of the first games they developed under new leadership, bringing the game onto the Facebook platform before they eventually released it on their own website. The game currently has 1.8 million monthly users, and 170,000 daily users.
The first difference you’ll see between the monsters in Monster Galaxy (called Moga’s) is the art style is strikingly close to Pokemon. This isn’t a bad thing, as the game is beautiful, and all of the Mogas have great art style (some a bit weird, like Pokemon Black & White).
Instead of the traditional elements, the game weighs heavily on the Zodiac, and their corresponding signs. Weakness/Effectiveness still comes into play, but it’s harder to remember what’s what. Luckily, the game is great at reminding you about effectiveness – even in the middle of battle.
Capturing these guys is quite a chore, as you need Starseeds (the games Pokeball). They’re hard to come by, and are expensive if you decide to buy them. Not to mention – the catch chances are insanely annoying. I’ve thrown up to 30 seeds at a Moga without any luck (and you get 1 free Starseed every so many hours).
Healing and leveling your Moga is also a chore, as your Moga must sleep if you’re out of potions to heal it. The higher level your Moga – the longer you’re gonna wait.
The evolutions in the game are quite cool, and it’s a recent addition to the game. The downside is that you have to catch a few of the same Moga, and have an Evolution Potion (or 2, or 3, or 4…) in accomplish it. With the capture system set up as explained before – you can understand how frustrating this is.
The battle system is much more intense than found in Miscrits. The animation of your Moga’s abilities are rather satisfying to watch, and never annoying (though I can guarantee the sight of another starseed breaking with send you into a rage).
Leveling your Moga only makes them stronger – they’ll keep the same abilities all the time. Stats are not included. While this may be good news for some, I’m not a fan of it – as I enjoy Min/Maxing where I can – and I don’t like knowing that my Moga is exactly as strong as my friend’s Moga when they’re the same level. It kind of ruins the whole “Check out my Moga’s” idea.
The overall story of this game is exceptionally done. It’s engaging, and quite enjoyable. There have been consistent updates from the developers with new maps/zones and Moga’s since the game’s launch late last year. The ultimate reason to play this game is the storyline.
There aren’t achievements, but this is a Quest system that expands upon the main storyline of the game. I do wish the game remembered what Moga you’ve caught when you go back and do the “Collect all these Moga” quests – but for Evolution sake, I can understand why it was done.
PvP is non-existent. Now – before all you Monster Galaxy fanatics jump down my throat, I should make this a bit more clear. While you can “Duel” your friends, this gameplay is not real-time, and you’re fighting a NPC controlled version of your friend’s Mogas. Honestly, I think it’s lazy and there is no reason why they haven’t updated this yet.
Every month there are exclusive Moga’s found in the game’s Cash Shop, and just like Miscrits – they can be quite expensive.
I really wish this game would implement a hardcore PvP system – as I believe out of the two games, Monster Galaxy could be a real winner.
Now that we’ve looked at both games, what game should you decide to invest time (and likely money) into? It ultimately depends on one question: Player vs. Player or Storyline?
Player Vs. Player: If you are looking for a great PvP pet battling experience on Facebook, Miscrits: World of Adventure is where it’s at. You’ll enjoy the PvP system put into the game, and appreciate the technology behind it. It’s the clear choice for the PvP fan. “You’re suddenly on this weird world and everyone is telling you that you’re the chosen one and you have to defeat a few elementals” isn’t enough story to satisfy anyone looking for a fun Single Player experience.
Exceptional Single Player Experience: Monster Galaxy is an amazing single player game. The Moga’s are drawn very well, and the entire art style of the game is well done. While the storyline is what you’d expect, the game has a great sense of humor and is enjoyable to partake in. A lack of a real PvP system makes me sad, and the wait times for healing your Moga’s kind of stink.
If you’re new to social gaming and consider yourself a Hardcore gamer, I feel Miscrits: World of Adventure is the way to go – especially with Volcano Island launching this winter.
So what you do think? I’m curious to read your thoughts on these two games, and look forward to discussing them with you below! I’m a big fan of both games, and you can expect to see a lot of articles from me involving them.