Game Insight has been rather prolific on both iOS and Android of late, with good-quality titles like The Tribez for iPad and Rule The Kingdom for Android showing that the publisher and its developers have some creative ideas. The company’s newest release is Enchanted Realm HD for iPad, a free-to-play citybuilder which has been available for some time on Android devices.
Enchanted Realm casts players in the role of a faceless, omnipresent monarch tasked with ruling over the titular kingdom. At its core, the game is a fairly conventional citybuilding game involving farming, supplying buildings with goods produced from farming and collecting income, but there is a loose narrative thread to follow, with progression determined by completing specific quests.
Upon starting the game, the player is introduced to the game’s basic concepts through a brief tutorial hosted by “Princess Anna,” the obligatory attractive female “assistant” character. Players are shown how to farm, build and collect income from buildings, and also introduced to the “storybook,” which highlights specific objectives players need to accomplish in order to progress the game’s story.
The game is controlled through simple taps either on the buildings themselves or on the notification icons that appear over the top of them when an action is ready to perform. The visuals are clear, high-quality and packed with detail, setting the game apart from its more cartoonish rivals and allowing the player to easily identify which building does what. The game is simple to pick up and play, but the main reason for this is the fact that it’s not doing anything particularly original. This is a bit of a disappointment after Game Insight’s recent releases The Tribez, Rule The Kingdom and Airport City all put interesting twists on conventional formulas, making them worthy of note. By comparison, Enchanted Realm feels much less imaginative, despite its appealing “fairy-tale” aesthetic and story.
Unlike Game Insight’s other titles, which allow players to keep playing for long periods if they carefully manage the collection of resources, Enchanted Realm uses a conventional energy system, meaning that at some point players will come grinding to a halt and have to either wait or pay. To the game’s credit, energy does restore quite quickly, and this system is a popular, proven and effective means of monetization, but it can be a little frustrating for players to run out of actions and not be able to do anything about it without opening their wallets.
Enchanted Realm is a decent-quality citybuilder that looks good, sounds good and plays reasonably well, but it’s hard not to see it as a little disappointing when compared to some of the publisher’s more recent, more creative titles. There’s nothing fundamentally wrong with it as a game — it’s simply not as interesting as the other games mentioned earlier.
Enchanted Realm is available now for Android devices and iPad. Google reports the Android version has been downloaded over 500,000 times to date, while the iPad version is currently ranked at No. 32 in the top free iPad games chart. Follow its progress through the App Store charts with AppData, our tracking service for iOS and social games and developers.