Billed as a blend of League of Legends and Clash Royale, Saladbowl Creative’s Guardians Arena (out now, free) is a real-time PvP battler that takes place in a dark fantasy-styled world and revolves around wildly over-the-top, no-holds-barred fights between rival ‘Guardians’ and their armies of buxom sorceresses, musclebound warriors and hulking monsters.

Each of Guardians Arena’s PvP battles starts with your Guardian standing at one end of a two-laned battlefield, flanked by a pair of protective towers, and your opponent on the other. To win the fight, you’ve got to topple your opponent’s towers and kill their Guardian before they manage to do the same to you. This entails strategically casting spells and summoning a three-strong squadron of heroes to advance up the lanes and face off against their enemy counterparts. The combat is incredibly fast, fluid and exciting, so whether you win or lose a battle, you’ll instantly want to play another.

Logging into Guardians Arena every day and taking part in battles earns you reward chests, which are filled with goodies like coins, gems, spells, and cards that unlock new Guardians and heroes. Upgrading your characters’ abilities and experimenting with new strategies by bringing different combinations into battle is very compelling and fun, and you’ll likely spend many a pleasurable hour tinkering around with this aspect of the game. If you find yourself losing battles too often, you can always join a guild and request and swap cards with your guildmates.

I came away from Guardians Arena mightily impressed with its action-packed gameplay, great looking graphics and depth of features and content. The only real issue I can see people having with the game is that it contains quite a few freemium elements, including timers, multiple currency systems, optional IAPs, and video ads. I didn’t find any of this stuff overly intrusive or irritating, but your mileage may vary on that.

Verdict

Guardians Arena is a gloriously over-the-top and entertaining real-time PvP battler with great production values, addictive gameplay and tons of features and content.

Positives
Incredibly fun and compellingly addictive PvP battles
Lots of unlockables and upgrades
Impressive production values and polished visuals
Negatives
The freemium elements might annoy some people
4.5
Excellent
Download on the App Store