Guardian Stone is an online fantasy turn-based RPG on mobile devices with colorful 3D graphics, strategic turn-based combat, over 69 Guardians to collect, hundreds of stages to fight through, many equipment to collect and upgrade, Guardian evolutions, asynchronous league-based PVP, and many additional PVE modes.
|Publisher: NHN Entertainment
Type: Mobile RPG
Release Date: January 20, 2016
Pros: +High quality graphics. +Many Guardians to collect. +Strategic, turn-based combat. +Easy to pick up and play.
Cons: -Repetitive gameplay. –Lots of farming and grinding.
Guardian Stone Overview
Guardian Stone is a 3D side-scrolling hero-collecting RPG developed by TOAST and published by NHN Entertainment, the team behind Guardian Hunter and Crusaders Quest. Enter a magical, fantasy world filled with orcs, titans, and dragons. Choose one of three classes (Warrior, Ranger, & Sorceress) and collect over 69 unique Guardians to aid you in battle. Defeat monstrous orcs, undead, and more in strategic turn-based combat featuring an elemental advantage system and lots of skills to learn. Power up your hero with collectable equipment as well as your Guardians with elemental Runes. Evolve your Guardians with elemental Essences to strengthen them even further. Take part in league-based PVP battles or participate in special dungeons and Boss Raids for various rewards. Triumph to victory in Guardian Stone today!
Guardian Stone Features:
- Many Stages to Complete – Play through hundreds of levels, and fight monsters and bosses in various maps and environments.
- 3D Fantasy Graphics – Experience the game with colorful and detailed Guardians, monsters, environments, and effects in a medieval fantasy setting.
- Turn-based Combat – Defeat foes with a simple but strategic turn-based combat system featuring Guardian skills, an elemental advantage system, and turn-related skill bonuses.
- Many Guardians to Collect – Collect over 69 Guardians with different appearances and abilities, equip them with Runes, level them up, and evolve them.
- Asynchronous PVP – Battle against other players around the world in asynchronous PVP and rise in the rankings and leagues.
- Additional PVE Modes – Earn cool rewards such as Guardian Runes, Essences, Rubies, and more in the various PVE dungeons and modes.
Guardian Stone Screenshots
Guardian Stone Featured Video
Guardian Stone Review
By, Herman Y.
Guardian Stone is a free-to-play, online turn-based RPG developed by TOAST, the creators of Guardian Hunter and Crusaders Quest, and published by NHN Entertainment, TOAST’s game publisher under the NAVER Corporation. Guardian Stone was developed in a time when hero-collecting RPGs such as Summoners War were immensely popular and shares many similarities with these types of games. However, it does feature some key differences that set it apart such as its side-scrolling level design, strategic turn-based combat system, and Guardian and equipment upgrade systems. While the overall gameplay and level designs feel quite simple and generic, players will discover a hidden layer of strategy and in-depth tactics as they advance further into the game making it a challenging yet casual game to engross in or to just pass the time.
A Hero is Born
Upon starting the game, players can choose one of three classes as well as a starter Guardian. These classes include: Warrior, Ranger, and Sorceress. Warriors are brawny barbarians with high barrier (similar to armor) and health as well as offensive skills, Rangers are swift archers with high critical chance and powerful single-target abilities, and Sorceresses are intelligent magicians with destructive AOE attacks and elemental spells. Each class has a large arsenal of different skills that are unlocked gradually by leveling up but players can only equip two spells at a time in battle. Characters can be further strengthened with various collectable equipment which can be enhanced by sacrificing other equipment, and refined with Gems. Each class plays somewhat differently due to their differences in skills, and their playstyles also affect what Guardians they bring into battle with them. Other than that, the three classes have no appearance customization and no effect on the game’s story. Players can also choose one of three starter Guardians to aid them in battle.
Helping Villagers in a Stage-based World
The world of Guardian Stone is divided up into many stages among a multitude of maps similar to many other mobile RPGs. Players start off in a town where they can acquire quests to help villagers and guards, as well as access their out-of-battle menus such as inventory, Guardians, forging, etc. The game’s battles take place in instanced dungeons that are very similar to games such as Summoners War. Each stage consists of defeating 2 waves of enemies and gets progressively more difficult as time goes on. There is a boss battle every 5 stages that gives a guaranteed piece of equipment, as well as provides a short cutscene featuring dialogue between the player and the boss. The main objective of each stage is not only to defeat all the enemies, but to complete it in as little turns as possible. The number of stars (1-3) players receive for completing each stage depends on the number of turns used, and by obtaining 3 stars in each stage for one map (10 stages), players can receive a Guardian shard that can be used to summon a new Guardian with enough pieces. The number of stars gives the same rewards in gold, experience, and loot, but as mentioned before, consistently getting 3 stars in each stage rewards players with Guardian shards.
Striking Down Villainous Creatures
Guardian Stone features a strategic turn-based combat system that is simple to use yet fairly in-depth. Players can bring three Guardians with them into battle and can control all three of them as well as their main character. However, Guardians differ from the player’s character in that they do not have a regular attack, and they cannot be attacked. Each Guardian (as well as the player) has two active skills, and during each turn, players can choose to use one of these skills, each of which have a lengthy cooldown. Unlike other games, the Guardians don’t have to take turns so they can attack twice in a row or in any order, but as mentioned earlier, each Guardian only has two skills and each skill has a cooldown for a certain number of turns so they have to be used strategically. The various skills include single-target damage, AOE damage, buffing/healing, and more. Many skills also have special bonuses such as bonus damage for attacking on an odd or even numbered turn or attacking an enemy without a barrier. This adds some more strategy to the battles in that players need to know when to use certain skills in order to maximize their potential damage.
Guardian Stone also has a unique barrier system and elemental advantage system for additional strategy. In Guardian Stone, although Guardians accompany the player into battle, they do not have health and cannot be attacked. Therefore, every enemy will only target and attack the player’s character. Because of this vulnerability, players have a barrier (many enemies also have barriers) that acts as a temporary shield or armor that has to be destroyed before the player (or enemy) can get hurt. This gives players (and certain enemies) extra defense since Guardians cannot be targeted. In addition, there is an element system like in most mobile RPGs that provides a rock/paper/scissors-type advantage system to the battles. There are three elements (Stellar > Solar > Lunar > Stellar) and attacking enemies of a weaker element deals bonus damage while attacking enemies of a stronger element reduces damage. Finally, there is also an “Auto” combat option (unlocked at level 10) that automates the battles but is extremely inefficient in terms of skill use that results in using up a lot of turns or getting the player killed, so manual control is always required for harder stages. Overall, the combat in Guardian Stone is simple to use yet quite in-depth and strategic, although it can get repetitive after a while due to the similarities of each battle.
Guardians that Fight by Your Side
Guardian Stone has over 69 unique Guardians to collect, each with different appearances, stats, and skills. While some Guardians have supportive abilities such as boosting party damage or healing, most Guardians have offensive skills that either targets one enemy or every enemy. Each Guardian also has a passive Leader skill that provides combat bonuses if they are the Leader of the party such as x% more barrier or x% more attack power. Guardians range from 1 to 6 stars (known as tiers) and are of one of the three elements mentioned before. They can either be summoned by collecting enough Shards for a specific Guardian or via Special Summons (Gacha). Guardians at max level can be evolved with elemental Essences (More required for higher tier Guardians) that can be obtained from completing dungeons, and by sacrificing a Guardian of the same tier. Evolving Guardians to Tier 6 will require a lot of time farming dungeons in order to obtain enough elemental Essences and Guardians of equal tiers to sacrifice. Guardians can also equip Runes that gives combat bonuses, and having 3 Runes of the same shape gives additional bonuses.
Good Old-Fashioned Tavern Brawls
Guardian Stone features asynchronous PVP against other players around the world that fittingly takes place in taverns. Although the PVP is asynchronous (meaning opponents are controlled by AI), they are not automated. Players have full control over the combat, but unlike attacking a group of enemies in the Story Mode, they pitted against players with only one health and barrier bar (since Guardians cannot be targeted), which reduces the effectiveness of AOE skills. In order to win, players have to take down the opponent’s barrier and then reduce their health points to 0. The ranking system is divided up into Leagues (Bronze, Silver, Gold, Masters, Champions), with three parts in each League (i.e. Bronze III -> Bronze II -> Bronze I -> Silver III). Players are placed into Leagues (starting with Bronze III) with 10 random players, and the top 3 players in that League at the end of the time limit have a chance of advancing to the next League. The system is similar to MOBA games, and despite being asynchronous, and the PVP is still fun to play with full control over the battles, a level of competitiveness, and a variety in opponent Guardians.
Farming in Special Dungeons
In addition to the PVP, there are a variety of special PVE modes and dungeons for players to participate in. First, there are Rune Dungeons (one for each element) that players can participate in using the same energy as in the Story mode where they can obtain Runes for their Guardians. There are 4 difficulties in each Rune Dungeon, and more difficult dungeons yield better Runes but use more Energy. These dungeons play exactly like Story stages except with special environments and monsters. There are also Essence Dungeons where players can obtain elemental Essences for evolving their Guardians, and a Treasure Hunt mode that features 10-stage maps containing special rewards in each stage such as gold, Essences, and Rubies. Finally, there is a mode called Challenge Mode, which is similar to a Boss Raid mode. In Challenge Mode, players take on large God-like bosses known as Champion Guardians in 1 vs 1 battles and get rewards based on how far they can get. Champion Guardians start at level 1 and after defeating them, they respawn as level 2, and so on until the player dies. Occasionally, there are special event modes such as Goblin Hunt that requires players to complete a map of stages within a certain time limit. Overall, there is a large variety of additional PVE modes to mix things up that offer useful rewards.
Cash Shop/In-App Purchases (IAP)
The in-app purchases are fairly standard to those in other hero-collecting RPGs. With Rubies (premium currency), players can summon random Guardians and Runes between 3-6 stars, refill energy, and purchase in-game gold, 2x gold boosters, 2x experience boosters. There is also a VIP status for purchasing Rubies and the higher the VIP level, the more bonuses players receive such as more energy refills per day and more special dungeon attempts per day. Spending money can be useful in obtaining higher tier Guardians and Runes which saves time on farming and grinding, but isn’t completely necessary to progress in the game. Having said that, while a full 6-star party with the best Runes can be obtained without spending money, there is a lot of grinding and farming involved due to the constant increase in game difficulty. The PVP is slightly pay-to-win due to this, but only until the free players eventually catch up. Overall, the in-app purchases in Guardian Stone offer many advantages in terms of convenience but are largely optional, and the game does give out a lot of Rubies for free via events, achievements, and login rewards.
Final Verdict – Good
Guardian Stone is an intriguing mobile RPG with strategic turn-based combat and many unique features that help it stand out from the crowd. Although the game does get repetitive due to the need to grind and farm stages, Guardian Stone offers a friendly community, lots of Guardians to collect, and a competitive league-based PVP mode that makes it a good casual RPG to pass the time with.
Guardian Stone Videos
Guardian Stone Links
Guardian Stone Requirements
Android 2.3 and up / iOS 5.1.1 or later
Guardian Stone Music & Soundtrack
Guardian Stone Additional Information
Publisher: NHN Entertainment
Platforms: Android, iOS
Release Date: January 20, 2016
Guardian Stone was developed by TOAST and published by NHN Entertainment, the team behind Guardian Hunter and Crusaders Quest. Guardian Stone had a 1-week closed beta test on February 2015 and then entered soft launch testing on July 29, 2016 in 9 countries before it finally launched worldwide on January 20, 2016 known as Guardian Stone: Second War. After shutting down PC games such as ASTA, Devilian, and Echo of Soul, NHN Entertainment has been focusing its attention on mobile with many more games set to launch in 2016, one of which was Guardian Stone. NHN Entertainment is also the publisher of the popular mobile games, Battle for the Throne, Kill Me Again: Infectors, and Drift Girls.