Crime Coast is an Android game that puts you in control of your own private Mafia, as well as your own criminally crooked city to build from the ground up. Think of Sim City meets Game of War and you'll get the idea. The premise is pretty simple, you steadily build up a crooked Empire, jump into nearby towns in either Single or Multiplayer and then destroy these towns and collect your loot. Crime Coast is gloriously tongue-in-cheek, and all the crime cliches you can think of are present here, and it's all good fun. As for the art style, there's definitely a Sim City vibe here, but everything is done in an exaggerated cartoon style with fun animations and sound effects, it all suits the theme very nicely, too. Let's see what mischief we can get up to, shall we?
As with other games on Android, you'll need to download Crime Coast from the Play Store. I'm trying this out on my Nexus 9, but the game will run on pretty much any Android device running Android 2.3 or above. Right from the moment you install it, you're thrown into the tutorial of the game.
You get a lot of these sort of prompts, and as long as the tutorial is, it does a very good job of introducing you to how the game works. Putting soldiers into the battle is nice and easy, too.
One of the core elements of Crime Coast is basically destroying things, which seems basic, yet it is quite satisfying and funny to see such building levelled by simple thugs. Here, we can see some of my finest heavies taking down a Bank.
Once you finish this Tutorial level, you'll be introduced into the idea of building up new buildings and such in your own Crime City of sorts, it's good fun building up stores and crooked law offices, I'll admit.
Once you have a small town setup, you can start freeing some criminals from the – naturally crooked – prison in town. I put the law office right next door to keep things moving nice and quickly.
As I mentioned earlier, the general mechanic for Crime Coast is going from place-to-place basically destroying everything in your path, you can choose from a number of places in Singleplayer, and more of them get unlocked over time.
Here's a shot from a quick raid on Little Hitaly, and yes, these classic names continue throughout.
In Crime Coast, you get a lot of rewards for things, sort of like a quest board with rewards. And while you can't keep much money on you at any one time (gotta keep that crooked dough rolling) you do get a lot of it back in rewards.
There's one thing that I didn't like about how Crime Coast dealt with money and in-app purchases, and it's how the game quickly gets you so used to using gold to speed things up, and basically trains you into thinking you need it for everything, which in turn leads to more in-app purchases.
Having said that, Crime Coast doesn't offer ads in your face, and the developers do need to make money somehow.
Overall, I had good fun with Crime Coast, despite the fact that there wasn't much that it offers that similar games don't already. These are same sort of cooldown, city building and city destroying mechanics we have seen in other games. However, Crime Coast is a game that breaks one trend that really annoys me; it doesn't take itself too seriously. This doesn't mean the game is sloppy at all, everything works, and works well but there's an unavoidable glee to the game. The idea of building a town from the ground up fuelled by criminal activities is pretty ridiculous, but then pile on the idea that razing buildings to the ground and running away with the money is even more ridiculous. That doesn't matter though, as Crime Coast has decent animations, good graphics and a nice art style to match some fun, if not unoriginal, gameplay. Plus, it's pretty hilarious as well.
- Speed (4/5) – The game ran fine on my Nexus 9 and the pacing is good for the most part, too.
- Features (4/5) – A lot of the gameplay mechanics here are nothing new, but they're still good fun and the overall attitude of the game is part of what keeps me coming back.
- Theme (4/5) – I do wish that there were ways to get a better look at your city, but the viewpoint is mostly a zoom in and out affair. Other than that, everything is rendered well, and the cartoon style looks the part as well.
- Overall (4/5) – Crime Coast is a fun game, mostly because it doesn't take itself too seriously and is a joy to pick up and play.
- Nice, bite sized gameplay as you can choose to raid a town quickly and then come back another time.
- Cash system works well and keeps the player engaged, there's very little that you just can't afford until later on in the game.
- Different types of gangsters give ranged, brute force and explosive combat options to players.
- Looks really quite good on tablets thanks to the cartoon art style.
- Tutorial could be a little long for some players.
- Gameplay mechanics, while fun, are a little similar to other offerings.
While Crime Coast isn't what you'd call an original, groundbreaking title, it doesn't need to be. What it is instead is a game that's a whole lot of fun that doesn't take itself seriously, it's built for people to have fun playing, without being bogged down in complicated mechanics, while at the same time not being overly simple. That balance is something that Crime Coast does well, and it makes for an entertaining game.