With all the generation six fanfare happening on Pokémon news sites, it’s only natural that this week’s feature is a monster game. Megabits is a game that allows you to gather, locate, collect, and evolve fighting monsters that stay with you in your pocket wherever you go. Unlike Pokémon, the game also allows you to care for them like Tamagotchi and see your opponents as they walk around a map—and not having to carry around a clunky DS or 3DS is a huge plus. Already at one-fifth of their total goal, Megabits looks like it will be an incredibly addictive mobile game in the future.
Although battle mechanics such as typings, immunities, resistances, and levels are shared with Pokémon, the game diverges in many places to make it unique from its main inspiration. It appears that anything that walks on the ground is a ground-type, and there are four different starters to choose from. The battle layout has sprites facing directly forward, and the sprites are much more detailed than one would expect of a monster game. The designs are very child-like, but this might be because we only see a few base forms. The watercolor gives them a very distinct look, and it would be easy to tell the difference between one of these and, say, a Digimon.
Being able to walk around and battle other players is a huge plus. Normally, streetpass functions are very difficult to pull off because they require you to carry around the right platform and have the game on at the same time. By using mobile platforms, they get rid of this problem (everyone’s going to carry their phone on them if they have it) and have the program passively check for nearby opponents and monsters. The only problem I see with this is that it might lead to some privacy issues, but allowing users to tweak their settings or easily turn it on/off should avert those problems before they even happen.
Each monster is only available in specific regions, meaning everyone will have a different experience and trading will be encouraged. Legendaries appear during specific events, and there’s a limited number of them—making them true legends worthy of bragging rights, and not some token that shows you completed the plot of a game. If their goal of globalization comes true (unlikely with that huge stretch goal, but you never know), it’s possible that there will also be country-specific monsters to collect, trade, and evolve.
While it’s true that the game emulates other monster games, it incorporates enough new elements to distinguish it from the pack. Collecting, battling, and trading has never been easier, and region-exclusive monsters make far more sense with their setup. Megabits looks like it will be an amazing game for fans of monster-catching games and casual gamers alike, and with the ease of access could excel to become a new franchise. While its stretch goals are a tad lofty, its main goal is not—and the game is already one-fifth of the way towards completion. If you are interested in Megabits, be sure to donate to their campaign.