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Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon (iOS) Review

Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon (iOS) Review
Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon (iOS) Review
Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon (iOS) Review

At a Glance...

Formats: iOS (iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad)
Genre: ,
Final Score
7.5/ 10

User Rating
no ratings yet


We liked?

    • Free-to-play
      Dragons are cool!
      Lots to do and manage
  • Not so much?

    • Parents of small children should lock down in-app purchases, or you might find a $99.99 charge for premium content on your credit card

  • Final Fiendish Findings?

    Raise a dragon, expand your empire, and destroy your enemies in the free-to-play Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon on iOS.

    Posted September 5, 2013 by

    Full Fiendish Findings...

    Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon is a standalone iOS version of the popular free-to-play web games Dragons of Atlantis, which apparently has over a 15 million players. This I didn’t know. As my teenage son would say as he rolls his eyes, “Gosh, daaaad!”  If you’ve grown tired of freemium farming apps, or micro-managing whatever it is that the kids are into today (queue an eye roll from the same son), perhaps building an empire and raising a dragon is a nice change of pace.

    Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon (iOS) Review

    While the draw to Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon is about raising a dragon, and watching it grow from a cute little hatching to a full-sized, fire-breathing enemy-smiter, there is a lot more to it actually.  The gameplay feels like a mix between traditional freemium titles and empire-building strategy games. A bit of a StarCraft meets Civilization where you micromanage various upgrades to units and structures, as well as advances in science/technology research.

    Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon is a free-to-play game, that you should be able to play without spending a since cent of real hard-earned money.  I played the game with this in mind, and was able to enjoy it without feeling that I hit a “paywall” where it was mandatory for me to spend money to continue on.

    Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon (iOS) Review

    The game begins with quests to point you in the right direction and only take seconds to a couple of minutes to complete.  As you progress you’ll find that the waiting time increases.  Depending on your level of patience and the availability of expendable income, you’re mileage may vary.  I stuck it out and never found the wait to be unbearable – I have kids so I’m constantly being distracted to try and settle some crisis between them.  Besides, I was addicted to Tiny Tower for quite awhile when it came out, and played it without spending a cent – I can be very persistent when it come to not spending money — just ask my wife!

    While there is a lot to do in the game — more than just raising a dragon or expanding your empire — I never felt lost.  Like I said, the game was extremely helpful in directing you through your quests and objectives, as well as providing detailed information about practically anything.

    The game is separated into three views: city, resource, the world map.  I don’t feel I need to explain the inner workings of the circle of life in strategy games, but in order to destroy your enemies, you’ll need to increase the land and power of your city, of which expand by earning and using resources.   You can try and earn resources over time, but you can also expedite the process, both in terms of times it takes to build/upgrade structures or units, as well as acquiring more resources, by spending money thorough in-app purchases.  Purchases range in price from $4.99 up to as high as $99.99.

    Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon (iOS) Review

    If you’re a parent like I am, with little ones who love playing my games, especially when the game’s icon is a cool-looking dragon (see above), you may want to disable in-app purchases through your device’s settings menu, to avoid accidental charges, especially with that $99.99 item.

    Of course, there is incentive to paying  a larger lump sum rather than purchasing lower-cost items individually over and over again.   For example, spending $99.99 will get you 1,100 Rubies, while the second-highest charge of $49.99 (half the cost) gets you only 425 Rubies.  You can do the math to see that there’s an advantage to paying the larger amount, if you’re into that sort of thing.

    I played Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon on my 4th Generation iPod Touch, and unfortunately it wasn’t the smoothest experience due to the device starting to show its age.  It was sluggish to get started, and chugged at certain times.  I don’t blame the app for this, instead I blame the device itself and the unfortunate reality that we live in a “disposable devices” generation.  Having been used to getting a half-decade of good gaming, maybe more, out of a device like a GameBoy Advance, Nintendo DS, or even the PlayStation Portable, the fierce competition in the mobile device industry, specifically those powered by iOS and Android, requires at the very least one significant update each year to the devices operating system and hardware.

    Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon is a universal application, which means that it’s compatible with both iPad devices and iPod Touches/iPhones.  It doesn’t really look like the type of game that would require a lot of oomph to run it smoothly, but it actually does.   Supposedly, it runs on devices as early as the 3rd generation iPod Touch and the iPhone 3GS, but I definitely recommend playing this on the latest model of an iOS device.

    While I was able to enjoy Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon, without spending a single cent of my own real money, when it comes to freemium titles, you mileage may vary.  For what it’s worth, I enjoyed my time with the game and because it’s free, it’s easy to recommend trying it out. If you’re like me, who enjoys earning things the hard way, you’ll be challenged. If you don’t have the time or patience, you can get a dramatic head start by purchasing in-app Rubes. It’s different from what I’ve played in the past, and I liked it. Check it out!

    Troy Benedict



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