It says a lot about gamers that ‘clicker’ experiences are even a thing. Pretty much bereft of any gameplay moments except for the mindless bash of a single button, it’s strange that players flock. Perhaps it’s the simplicity behind them, or the fact that as humans we’ll do anything to take our minds away from real-life troubles. Whatever the reason though, there’s a place for the humble clicker – that is proven by the likes of the stupidly addictive Clicker Heroes. Whilst Lord of the Click II is by no means a genre leader, for those who fall into the camp of looking for distraction, it does the job. You shouldn’t expect much more than that though.
Lord of the Click II sees you taking charge of an army looking to overcome undead hordes. As a set-up it’s something we’ve been treated to many times over the years, but that premise very quickly falls away into the background, hardly ever bothering to show its face again after a quick opening placement.
It’s not really needed though as from there it’s all about building your army up over eleven stages, as you and your foes involve yourselves in a tug of war, dominating the screen by working enough troops into the opposing sides’ base. Do so enough times and you’ll be crowned the winner, left to start all over again with the next level.
It’s a simple game and a simple set-up. Honestly, playing it is simple too. Along the bottom of your screen you will find your units, all set in their own little square, ready to be ‘clicked’ and created. Do so and that action will play out on the battlefield, seeing units slowly march onwards towards any opponents, battling it out with them should they begin to go toe-to-toe.
The main thrust of your army will come in the form of Knights and Archers; units that are easily created and left to cause low bits of damage. From there, Omniknights build on health levels, whilst the Falcon flies into action, the Druid works a deeper ranged attack and the Ghost Warrior and Demoman scare the living daylights out of the opposition. The most powerful unit you’ll be able to throw into battle is that of the Juggernaut – complete with high health stats.
Each of these units requires a certain amount of food to be created, whilst the latter ones also require upgraded Castles. The thing is, the whole of Lord of the Click II works in a vicious circle – to create more food you’ll need to upgrade your farm of Sheep, which in turn requires cash; cash which is either collected via fallen foes or via the creation of a Mine, something which in itself requires more cash.
This constant loop is pretty much the entirety of Lord of the Click II – create, fight, gather cash, upgrade, all before rinsing and repeating. The more times you work through this loop, the greater your actions and the faster everything can be taken on. And it’s weird that it occasionally feels like a nice little loop to be in, complemented well with other options which drop in to play as progression is made – Lightning Bolts and Storms can be summoned should you have enough Mana, which again required that all-important upgrading of other structures first.
The thing is, whilst this is absolutely fine in the early stages, each of the eleven levels plays out like that previous – starting with nothing and building up until you have an army fit for utter destruction. There is no skill needed at any point in Lord of the Click II; all that is required is patience as resources grow and armies are created. And unless you put the controller down for five minutes and do nothing, there’s very little chance of you ever failing in your task of overcoming the enemy.
The latter levels are more time consuming, mostly as the enemy types that come your way are much more powerful than initial waves. This at least gives you time to hold off any oncoming forces, as you get the chance to upgrade your structures to the max, which then allows the opening up of further gameplay options – towers that house archers ready to fire down arrows, barricades which slow opposing forces, and groups of fighters coming out in hordes. There’s even the chance to make the most of huge Golems, but these rarely get called upon until the final stage or two. When they do hit the battlefield though, you sure know about it. As do your enemies.
Honestly, that is all there is to Lord of the Click II – wait until you have the required resources, press a button, wait some more and then involve yourself in that dirty loop over and over again. Because of this, Lord of the Click II never feels ‘fun’, and at no point could I say I’ve sat through this with a smile on the face. But strangely there’s a draw, a hook that just keeps you coming back for more. Perhaps that’s found in the Xbox achievements system as this is a game which throws plenty of Gamerscore your way upon level completion. If it’s not that, then god knows what it is because there’s not much gameplay to involve yourself with. Hell, for a clicker, there’s not really that much clicking either.
That said, Lord of the Click II does try to build on that solo campaign, offering up some proper clicking action in a local two-player mode. Honestly, unless you fancy ruining a couple of controllers in the process, it’s something that should be ignored as this pits two players against each other in nothing more than a full-on mash of the A button. Hit that for minutes at a time – hopefully faster than your opponent – and you’ll be found creating an all-conquering army. It’s there where the job is done, with a winner being declared. Yes it is here where Lord of the Click II becomes a proper clicker, but that fun rarely lasts for more than a few seconds at best.
As an absolutely mindless time killer, Lord of the Click II cannot be criticised. Yet for near everything else, it can. There’s no requirement of skill, no need to worry about tactics or strategy and certainly nothing that will cause concern to anyone who is familiar with a controller. It really is a waste of time. But then, perhaps that’s the point…
You can pick up Lord of the Click II by visiting the Xbox Store