Dragon Skies in Review: Flying High For Free

I am not a fan of free to play games (more on that next time), so when I was coaxed into trying out Dragon Skies, yet another social, free to play game, I was wary. My biggest beef with these kinds of games is the not so subtle push for you to spend real money to buy special items or speed up certain processes. I thought Dragon Skies was no different, but more than a month into the game, I have to concede that I was wrong about this game. Read on to find out why —>

Dragon Skies ventures into familiar territory – you have a village to expand by raising dragons, breeding them, and having them participate in races. In the game, you can earn two kinds of currency: gold and crystals. The gold is used to upgrade your dragon stables and purchase basic dragons. Crystal, the rarer currency, is used to buy exotic dragons, speed up processes and upgrade basic buildings. You can buy more gold and crystals with real money, but in this game, I can safely say you're not obliged to.

Two things make Dragon Skies fun to play: the races and the breeding process. Racing is quite simple: you tap on the screen to guide your dragon to catch as many stars and XP (experience points) as it can. Breeding, on the other hand, allows you to pair adult dragons to form a variety of breeds.

The game ought to look better on the iPad compared to the iPhone but upon comparison, the iPad version does not seem to be optimized for a retina display. However, the dragons are odd, but cute and friendly looking – they in fact wear diapers when hatched and do so until they reach level 4, or adulthood. Breeding is a fun and mysterious affair, and the best part is you can breed rare and exotic dragons normally bought with crystals if you hit on the right combination. (See above) Here's a tip: the longer the breeding time, the rarer and more exotic the dragon!

 

Thanks to the flying and breeding, Dragon Skies will keep you hooked. Unlike many free to play games, Dragon Skies doesn't practically force you to buy in-game currency because you can earn quite a lot of gold and have enough to upgrade your stables and buildings. More resourceful players can do online research to find out which combinations of dragons produce rare and exotic breeds – it takes away some of the fun, however, if you already know. The game offers crystals to speed things up – so if you're the impatient type, you might be inclined to spend a few crystals here and there to speed up breeding, activate the legendary stone (to increase your chances of breeding legendary types of dragons), hatch an egg immediately, among others. You can earn crystals when you level up or sometimes, by accomplishing side quests.

The user interface could still be tweaked to make moving items around easier. It's still quite cumbersome the way the controls are designed when it comes to moving around dragon stables and the hatching area – you need to make a series of taps just to relocate. This is particularly cumbersome when you are moving multiple objects.

Take note, however, that you cannot transfer your game's progress between devices – meaning, you can only play a unique game on one device. I think the developers should be more clear about this in the app description.

Fun, free and easy to play, I hope that other free to play games will follow suit and make the game fun and playable without necessarily forking over cash.

appSIZED rating: 5 out 5

App: Dragon Skies

Download: Dragon Skies

Device: Universal (for iPhone and iPad)

Copy: Purchased

Price: FREE (with in-app purchases)

Developer/Publisher: Breaktime Studios

 

3 comments on “Dragon Skies in Review: Flying High For Free

  1. I’m always on the lookout for colorful games that are free because my nephew likes to try out all apps on my phone or iPad. So I’ll check this out. Thanks for the review.

  2. That’s great and all, and it certainly rubs me the wrong way when a game pushes you too hard to spend money, but if you enjoy this game then shouldn’t you be concerned that Breaktime Studios’ developers get to eat food this month?

    How do you think they generate enough revenue to make these games that you love? The industry is pushing them (hard!) to adopt a free-to-play model, and if developers execute it in the best interest of their players, they deserve to be rewarded. You could ‘fork over’ the cost of a coffee to thank them for spending 3-6 months designing & building for your entertainment.

    • don’t get me wrong, i hate the idea of free to play games, too, and the premise gets old quickly once you don’t have the means or interest in forking over real cash. what i am not too happy about is the idea that some free to play games are designed to really make you fork over cash. i would rather be told how much the game is worth and pay it straight out. now apparently this model works very well for sim games like this one.

      also, it’s not the idea that shelling out this much money is just equivalent to coffee. it’s the idea that for certain games (not at least in the case of sim games), even working hard on your own will never get you to be on board with the other players. this part bothers me when we speak of trying to beat through sheer hard work. games that are designed to continuously milk you for money so much that it doesn’t matter so much how you play the game are the ones that i really don’t like.🙂

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