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Dota Underlords Review – Auto-Chess is Here to Stay

Auto-Chess is a new genre of game that offers a lot more than what meets the eye. It may sound like a strategy game, but there are RPG and Battle Royale elements thrown into the mix.

What is Auto-Chess?

Auto-Chess differs from regular chess in several ways, the most notable, is that you are playing against eight players, not just one. Each round you enter the shop and get a choice of heroes to hire. Hiring heroes with similar skills allows for certain bonuses to kick in, including more HP or magic resistance.

As you would expect, you can’t play Chess against eight different players at the same time, that would be chaos. Instead, each turn you go up against a different opponent, if you lose this fight you will take damage. Each player has 100 health to start, and there can only be one winner.

Is it fun?

Auto-Chess is one of those games where you can’t drop in and expect to win. There are certain characters and combinations that take a while to learn and perfect. But once you have got the basics down, it is an enjoyable game to play.

You can’t buy units because they are pretty, they have to serve a greater purpose. There are nine classes of monsters to recruit, getting a certain number of each class will cause a bonus.

Matching three of the same creatures will allow you to merge them together to create a two-star version. This character will now have around double the health and damage it did at one-star, so aim to get characters to level two or higher.

What are the Negatives?

As with any Battle Royale game, there is the issue of time. How long does one game take to finish? The answer is a little flexible, but it depends on how well everyone in the lobby does.

If you are one of the first to be eliminated, then a game is anywhere from ten to twenty minutes. But, if you are trying to win, then a game can last over half an hour.

I don’t know if you guys have half an hour to sit in front of your phone in one go, without doing anything else, but I don’t.

I believe mobile games should be quick and simple, which is the exact opposite of Dota Underlords. Underlords is confusing for new players, there are so many elements that can change how the game plays.

I will admit it doesn’t take long to sort of understand what is going on and what you should try to do. But a lot of the game is down to blind luck. What units appear and what upgrades you get is down to luck.

Yes, you can choose which unit or upgrade best suits you, but you can go entire games without getting what you want. I kept seeing enemy units spawn behind my lines, it took me two games before I got one of these upgrades for myself.

Should I try it?

If you like strategy games that take a lot of your time, then this is the game for you. However, if you are like me and don’t have an hour to spare for two games of auto-chess, then I wouldn’t bother.

You can get better at choosing units, upgrades and positioning your units. Although, if the enemy has better units and skills then how can you win? Combat is simulated, so better units and skills equal victory.

A good idea on paper, but games last too long

Spending a couple of hours on your phone a day is perfectly normal. But, spending over 30 minutes on one game of Auto-Chess is too much for me.


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