Navy Base is a completely free – with no ads – Android game that channels the classic game of Battleship and other board games to deliver a fun, yet approachable strategy game. The game features 27 different levels as well as an endless mode to challenge yourself further, and it asks players to move their ships against the opposing ships, similar to a game of Chess. Players have different ships with strengths from 1 to 10, including big cruisers, small minesweeper ships and more. The aim of the game is to either destroy all of the enemy team's ships, destroy their base or block their passage. Let's take a closer look, shall we?
Much like other games, players can get started with Navy Base by just downloading it from the Play Store. Once installed, you can just choose to get playing or log in to your Google Play Games account for leaderboards and such.
There are three 'Episodes' that total a 27 levels, and each set of levels is different from the last.
It doesn't appear as though there's an interactive tutorial, at least I didn't see one when I started playing, but moving ships and such is nice and simple. Just touch one and you will be told where you can move it to with little overlays pointing the way.
There are numbers on each of your units, as well as the opposing units, these range from 1 to 10 and correspond to how strong each unit is. A ship with a number between 2 – 4 isn't all that strong, but something with a rating of 8 – 10 can probably take on anything else with ease. For your ship to be successful against another, it needs to be rated higher than that ship when they meet on the battlefield.
At the end of each level, you're given a score – should you have been victorious – to show how well you've done. To win, you can either destroy all of the opposing ships or you can just destroy their base. These scores are displayed on the level select menu, and players can repeat these levels in order to do better later on.
Level design gets a little more tricky over time, with different ships being using to get you used to their different abilities. A weaker ship cannot go head-to-head with another in battle for instance, but they can move more tiles at a time:
Often, these levels will be introduced with a fun title to hint at a certain strategy that's often used in battles, like this level dubbed 'the Pyramid'.
In some of the later levels, things can get quite difficult. On top of not knowing how powerful the enemy ships are until you're right on top of them, you might only have a few of your own ships to work with.
All of the levels I played were varied and challenging, with some of them taking me quite a bit longer to complete, such as this one:
For those that want a longer, more challenging play-session, they can take on the endless mode, which floods the battlefield with lots of different boats and strong enemies, and it's randomized each time you play this mode.
While playing Navy Base I was pleasantly surprised by the fun and good-looking visuals, while also impressed with how approachable the game is. It might look like just another Battleships style game, but there's a bit more to it than that, and the introduction of simple, yet effective strategy makes this a game players can get hooked on. While it's not perfect, there's a lot on offer here, and it's a game I can see players of all ages getting into Navy Base, the strategy is simple and the look and feel is both attractive as well as easy to understand. Fun, simple to play yet with a good deal of depth for all ages, Navy Base is a great game to try out.
- Speed (4/5) – Everything in Navy Base runs nice and smoothly here, and players can take in the game at their own pace.
- Theme (4/5) – The colorful and soft palette used in Navy Base are calming and attractive and it should appeal to players of all ages.
- Features (4/5) – The gameplay here is simple to get to grips with, but also fairly complex depending on how you play and how difficult the levels become over time.
- Overall (4/5) – A solid game for players of all ages, it's nice to see someone take on the classic Battleship game and mix it with Minesweeper, Chess and all sorts of other games. Simple to play, yet tricky and addictive, Navy Base is good fun.
- Approachable to players of all ages thanks to the simple and easily-understood controls.
- Colorful and appealing graphics throughout give the game a fun look and feel.
- No complicated rules or anything like that, a simple grasp of numbers allows people to play no matter what.
- Endless mode with a full grid of ships available for those looking for a tougher challenge whenever and wherever they want it.
- A little story would go a long way in a game like this, especially for the younger players.
- Interactive tutorial would help people get started a little quicker.
All-in-all, there's a lot on offer with Navy Base, and it's a fun game that has a little strategy, a little board game and a good look and feel to it. Regardless of age or skill, Navy Base is easily understood, and it's something that a lot of players will really like over time, but a story mode or some sort of backstory would be nice to see as well.