Rune Raiders is a tile-based puzzle game where you use your warrior tiles to defeat the opponent’s monster tiles on the other side of the board. The goal is to clear the board and to gather as much gold as possible, while keeping your tiles intact.
Gameplay consists of purchasing battle tiles and then deploying them onto the board. You can take up to six warrior tiles into each game. From there you can put them into any formation, and this is where your skill comes into play. You must place your tiles in a way that allows them to deal the maximum amount of damage while taking the least amount of damage.
When your tiles are placed on the board, you use the green arrow at the bottom of the screen to advance them all at once, or move them one at a time by dragging them into place (you can move several tiles at once). You can skip turns by using the orange arrows. Tiles can attack towards the front and diagonally, but the tiles must be next to each together in order to attack.
There are a variety of warrior titles to choose from, each with a different ability, and you will unlock more as the game progresses. For example, you start out with a dual-wielding weapon user, a hammer using viking, and an archer, but there are also mages, healers, and more.
Levels each have quests for you to complete, such as retrieving a magical bottle, and there are power ups that you can gather to increase your chances of survival. Getting the most out of each level requires you to use as few moves as possible, which will result in the highest bonus.
Oftentimes, there will be barriers on the field to overcome, such as stones that force you to move your tiles into a different formation, making the game quite a challenge as you move through the levels. There are also times when you have to stand to the side of certain enemies, who are able to kill you in one hit.
If one of your tile characters dies, you can resurrect them using your earned money. The cost to resurrect is the cost of whatever the character initially cost. If all of your tiles are destroyed, it is game over and you must restart the mission. At the end of a set of levels, there is a boss fight.
All in all, there are 12 different heroes to unlock and 15 enemies to defeat. There are also two modes, story and survival, plus Game Center support with achievements to earn.
What I liked: This game is super easy to learn, but mastering it takes a bit more skill. I was impressed with how quick it was to pick up, and with its different difficulty levels, it is suited to players of all ages. It’s a great game for the whole family. I also loved the bright, cartoony graphics and silly characters, which were a lot of fun.
What I didn’t like: I experienced a couple of crashes in survival mode, and the game is short, with only 15 levels. I’m hoping to see new levels added soon.
To buy or not to buy: This is a great casual puzzle adventure game, which is priced right at $0.99. I’d recommend that all puzzle lovers pick this up.