When a franchise comes to the third installment, it’s only natural to assume that it possesses certain quality. That’s more than true for Shadow Fight 3, the latest game in the fighting series that has been a true mobile gem for genre lovers. While the new release does a lot of things right and is a considerable improvement, it still has some issues that annoyed the fans in predecessors.
Are You Ready to Join the World of Shadows?
Something weird is going on in the world of shadows. It’s preparing for a big fight, and no one can stay out of it. You couldn’t choose a better time to start training for a warrior. Not only you need to defend yourself during rough times, but you will get the opportunity to choose the outcome and select the destiny of the realm.
NetherRealm revolutionized the fighting genre when they implemented a cinematic storyline in Mortal Kombat. The same concept was applied in Injustice, and we now see other fighting games replicating it. Nekki, the studio behind Shadow Fight 3, also included several videos in their game, but the story is also told via text bubbles, which is understandable, considering that we are talking about a mobile release.
How Do You See Your Future?
That’s what the authors are asking on the official game page, but they are not wondering whether you want to change your career path or whether you will apply for college. They are thinking about the in-game future because there will be decision making in this story-driven release. We only managed to play a small portion of the game during the last couple of days (it just appeared on the market), but it is evident that the world of shadows is preparing for war.
Not only warfare is around the corner, but you are caught in the midst of all events. You shouldn’t complain because we assume that is what you wanted as you are training for a warrior. Either way, Shadow Fight 3 has an intricating and immersive plot that is way more complex than we are used to in mobile gaming. You will get to choose one of three sides contesting to rule the realm, and it’s your call which one of them to join and make them victorious.
Meet Gizmo, Your Faithful Friend
Upon opening the game, it will ask you to create your fighter. You can choose the desired face type, hair color, and hairstyle. There are eight selections in each of the categories, and it’s interesting to note that changing a face type also influences skin color. Appearance doesn’t affect your performance, but the name of your fighter might.
You can give yourself any name you see appropriate and choosing a powerful one (like The Destroyer or The Hulk) might give you that boost of confidence you will need in tricky situations.The game then takes you to a tutorial, where Sarge and Gizmo welcome you to the shadow squad. Gizmo will be your sparring partner while you learn controls and moves, as well as the first real opponent that will test your strength.
Excellent Controls, Exciting Battles
The high-paced challenging battles are what made the Nekki’s series popular in the first place. The latest installment continues that trend and offers enticing combat that you will enjoy every step of the way. You will realize while completing the tutorial that controls are extremely intuitive. The joystick for moving around is located in the bottom left part of the display. You can move towards your opponent or backward, as well as a jump in any direction or crouch.
Action buttons are on the bottom right side of the screen. There is an icon for attacking with your arms and another one to punch with your legs. You can use combinations of these buttons for combos and other assault moves, such as throwing. The latter one is an excellent way to avoid blocking as your fighter will catch the rival from behind and throw him over his back.
You might hear these shouts on basketball courts, but the defensive end may also help you in Shadow Fight 3. While it shouldn’t be your primary concern, blocking your opponent may lead to launching a counterattack that will take you to victory. There is no button for blocking; you just need to stand still for your fighter to perform it.
For each victory, the game will reward you with XP points that level up your character and cards with gear and upgrades. You also earn in-game currency based on your performance. If you manage to hit your rival with a couple of head or critical blows, you will get extra coins. The first reward is a couple of swords and a uniform for your next battle.
Upgrade Here, Equipment There, Grinding Everywhere
There are a lot of items, weapons, and equipment to collect in the game and we do mean a lot. Based on the gear you find and equip, you can also modify your fighting style. Do you prefer to be a bit slower, but inflict strong damage with every blow? Or you believe that quickness is a way to win every fight? There is a wide range of combinations to ensure that you never get bored.
Unfortunately, here we reach the biggest problem of this installment, as well as the entire series. The rewards just can’t cover all the weapons and equipment you need to upgrade and collect. The pay to win model is everpresent in Shadow Fight, and the latest game is no different, so expect to grind a lot. On the plus side, Nekki did remove the energy bar that limits the duration of each session, but that’s far from enough. There are reports that the developers are working on making things fairer, so let’s hope that we see some improvements shortly.
Multiplayer Mode with Room for Improvement
There is also a player versus player mode, which also comes in the form of one on one battles just like the single-player campaign. It’s fun to test your skills against other gamers, and the stability of the servers adds to the experience. However, everything would be even more exciting if the matchmaking system wouldn’t ruing things from time to time. Despite the game matching users of similar levels, there can still be a huge difference in their quality, and one of them might not stand a chance.
Nekki is bragging that they implemented state of the art graphics in the game and we will let them have that one because they are completely right. The visual presentation is breathtaking, including the slow motion for the final blow and the colorful effects with every other hit. It’s a shame that you can’t play the game offline as it requires an active internet connection.
Where Can You Get Shadow Fight 3?
The game is available for both Android and iOS, and you can get it for free. However, keep in mind that it is a large download, so make sure that you have enough space on your device. If you do and you love mobile fighting games, you should give Shadow Fight 3 a shot. It has realistic physics, hundreds of weapons and equipment pieces to collect, as well as an exciting and diverse gameplay that will make every battle different. It doesn’t come without its pay to win flaws, but at this point, we should be used to the developers being greedy and caring only for earning the most money from their releases.