Moonrise is a creature-collection RPG, where you defeat creatures – called lunari – to cleanse them of the taint placed upon them by the catastrophic world event the game is named after. Undead Labs is developing this accessible free-to-play game and bringing it to mobile devices.

The easiest comparison to make is to Pokemon. You are a recently graduated Warden (trainer) and you get some early creatures – you pick from fire, plant and water – and you start off. To me, that’s where many of the similarities end. Moonrise is more fast-paced and you need to think quickly on your feet. Battles are not turn-based and not only do you have 2 creatures to use on the battlefield at once, you, as a Warden, also have skills and spells you can deploy.

In some ways, the battles are rhythmic in nature. You tap your creature, you tap the skill you want to use, you tap your target, the creature casts the spell, then there’s a cooldown – rinse, repeat. So, with 2 monsters at your disposal and you, the Warden, it starts getting into tap, tap, tap, next creature, tap, tap, tap, Warden, tap, tap, tap, repeat. At the beginning, it feels easy-breezy. As your creatures level up, they gain new skills and have multiple skills to employ. This is where the strategy really starts to increase in difficulty. I imagine when you get to that point, a passing familiarity with your stable will not be enough to defeat your enemies. You will need to understand and be one with your crew.

The game is looking beautiful and the art and detail in the lunari is stunning. The game was very responsive and smooth in my hands and the microtransactions built into the game are not necessities to advance or be successful at the game. At this time, they do not seem obtrusive or abusive.

Moonrise looks to have their worldwide release in 2015, though those of you in Sweden, Denmark and Canada can get your hands on it right now. Definitely excited for this to release so I can start collecting lunari and stop the taint from spreading. I may not have to catch them all, but I’m certainly interested in trying.