Starfield | Securing The Scientist
Firestone is an idle free to play clicker game with some elements of an RPG. Players build up their team that has different roles from melee frontline tanking damage to caster backline attackers. The team is fighting an endless wave of monsters that get harder as you progress.
Part of the RPG element is you get to unlock a team and gear them up with different items. The higher the level you reach the more members of the team you get access to. It then comes down to having enough gold each time to unlock their slot and level up there upgrades.
The early stages of the game were quite generous. In only a couple of days I had my first four characters unlocked. They were Talia a warrior, Burt a ranger, Solaine a mage, Boris another warrior. Beyond that it was nearly two weeks of playing before I got Benedictus a high priest. While there are others to unlock as well they have increasing vast distances of progression to unlock and will take a great amount of time.
Each one of these characters has their own set of skills. In the early stages of the game you do need to manually press the right hotkey to activate skills and consume the resource that builds up from attacking. You can also only manually use your leader's skills which you pick which hero will be the leader. I mostly only used the skills to get over walls (hard challenging waves) and defeat bosses. Some of them were areas of effect skills while others were to help with tanking or single target damage.
Later in the game, as you progress and earn Talent points as your own character levels up you can invest in his talent tree. While he does have things like increase attributes for team members, reduce boss and creature health. There is also the ability to unlock auto casting skills for the whole party. I think it’s great you don’t need an auto clicker to have to manage that part. It was also nice it could be toggled on or off if you wanted them to save their attack mana.
From chests, you are able to get the items that provide different bonuses that fall in line to the slot the use. A weapon gives attack damage, chests grant health and so on. If you end up getting a duplicate out of the chests they get converted into void crystals that you can use to enchant each piece.
The really cool part is you can unlock higher tier slots that great the bonus for that item to all your heroes or even your guardian. I felt that was a cool touch and way to make those higher tier slots stand out and worth investing the resource into unlocking them instead of other things in-game.
Besides earning permanent gear you can also spend the gold you earn while you are defeating waves of monsters and bosses to buy upgrades that you lose when you choose to prestige and choose to reset. This is the main factor that helps you advance forward. You can upgrade global stats like gold rates, damage increase for all heroes, health and so on. You can also upgrade each individual hero to boost all of their stats.
It was fascinating how deep for an idle clicker game the heroes where. Without spending some time to learn and think how things entwine with each other I could see someone having a hard time. It was also not hard to work out you just needed to play and try out everything you found.
Guardians And Auto Clickers/Marcos
With this being an ideal clicker game one way to get ahead and save some time is using an auto clicker for some elements of the game. This is usually only useful after you have done a prestige reset collecting firestones and starting over. After a while the guardian lacks the damage to keep up so auto-clicking becomes less useful for that round.
In the players Magic Quarters they have guardians that you can level up from a resource you collect called Magic Dust. These guys do not attack unless you click somewhere on the screen or use the spacebar. While they don’t have gear slots they can be evolved over time and you can increase their levels for better base stats.
As you upgrade their levels they also grant bonuses such an increase to all stats or gold. This is great as you can build up different ones just for the bonus but don’t need them active to get the auras they cast.
I myself rather like this way to quickly regain lost levels and get back up to where I left off. Without using a guardian it could take nearly 30 minutes to get to around level 50. If you have one running I can get there in around 8 minutes.
They are able to clear waves of monsters quicker than my heroes are able to attack. The only thing holding back my clearing speed is waiting for the game's death animation and respawning of the next wave. The downside to this bottleneck is the higher levels can take hours to get back to. Making you question how often you want to reset to increase the bonus amount of gold you get.
As far as using auto clickers the game developer does not directly state no or yes. They simply point to their policy which does not cover auto clickers and instead defines it as modifying/changing game or server files. I myself and many others have not had any issues using them. I ended up using the one my keyboard came with. It just is nice if they were more forward regarding this matter. It is, after all, an idle clicker game so this can be expected by the players to use.
After some point of upgrading the guardians by spending the gold as ascend to higher levels and leveling them up themselves, they start to lag behind in being able to do enough damage to have a meaningful impact. This makes them great for leveling up quickly but still ensures the heroes have the main focus.
Outside of being able to buy the Dust needed to upgrade them which you can earn in-game. The guardians in-game are free and as long as you progress far enough you can unlock them. It’s great to see something like this not locked in a microtransaction shop. Everyone gets them spending real money only helps level them up faster.
In Firestone Idle RPG there is a massive town that has a bunch of buildings and other things that help the game stay organized. This is also the menu where you will access a lot of the different places to spend resources for upgrades. They are still working on this part of the game and have even added stuff to it while I’ve been playing.
Many of these buildings in this town require your character to be high enough level to unlock. Unlike your heroes, your character takes a lot longer to level and not lose his levels on reset. I myself have not unlocked everything yet in town. As some of the building only the highest players even have access to.
You have buildings like the liberty where you can carry out different kinds of research that can increase gold, attack, decrease costs, make enemies easier and so on. It is broken down into meteorite and firestone research. The meteorites themselves are stones that drop every minute that you auto collect and then can spend without any kind of wait timer. Firestone research, on the other hand, you have you converting your firestones you have earned from how much gold you are getting into tokens which then require hours to pass to unlock what you have training.
They just added in the Tavern not too long ago. Every so often beers falls that your heroes collect for you. They can be exchanged to play a game where you click on a card and can earn resources, items, or stat increase. It’s nice to see the game is still being devolved and just random stuff like this gets added in. For me it’s just another thing to go out and do daily and hope I get something amazing.
Then you have buildings that I have already touched on their functions in other parts. Like Hall of Heroes for gearing up your heroes and checking out their stats. The Magic Quarters where your guardians are and can be upgraded from. Finally things like Temple of Eternals where you can reset for a higher gold rate.
There is even some stuff that is higher level like Alchemist that requires your character to be level 120. With my character only being level 51 I don’t see myself unlock that building any time soon. I expect it will take months if not longer if I choose to stay free to play.
I really like this town element in the game. They can keep building out or maybe even make another town when this one gets too full. There are a lot of things they could do with this part of the game. It makes it different than a lot of other idle clicker games out there on the market.
World Of Alandria Mission Map
While your main heroes are out fighting waves of creatures you can also dispatch squads(s) on missions that collect needed resources in the world of Alandria. As they level up you unlock more squads, longer missions to run, and greater loot. This is all time based and you do manually need to send out the teams you unlock.
You have shorter missions that take around thirty minutes like searching different parts of the map that bring back Strange Dust needed for upgrading your guardian. Longer ones that can take hours involving war where they bring back a random rarity chest.
This part of the game I was not expecting to see at all in something like an idle clicker. I felt it added a unique element that I’m not used to seeing. Which gives you more things to interact with. It is also a great place to earn what would have otherwise been microtransaction items.
Cash Shop / Microtransaction
It should be expected with a game like Firestone Idle RPG being an idle clicker to have a pay to win cash shop. In there you can buy in-game gems, resources, item chests and more. All this you can earn just by playing the game.
They start the player off with a limited quantity of high-value bundles you can buy. They also offer random bundles and discounted deals from time to time. While I stayed as free to play they looked to be decent value for those who like to spend in these types of games.
You are able to earn gems which can be exchanged in the shop as well for certain items. I earn around 1k in two weeks from just playing. This was good enough to buy five rare chests. With how far I was into the game those chests help me get over the level 200 wall as my character got some needed slots filled. I would have otherwise been able to get those items without those free gems it would just take longer.
My biggest gripe with pay to win microtransaction in an idle clicker is you are more or less paying to get over one wall (challenging wave) to only be stuck at hours or days later at another. Creating this endless cycle for players who refuse to wait or learn how a game works to just pay more money to be stuck in the same exact issue further along in the game. I myself in the weeks I’ve been playing or just logging in to see how I’m progressing have not found the walls to be extreme. Usually a couple of days later I’m past whatever I’m stuck on.
This game is also still in beta. While I have not gotten to the “end game” wall in this game I have in other idle clickers. If you spend a lot you just get there months before the free to play players do. Where you are stuck unable to get over the next wall as there needs to be a game update for that to really happen.
The game also does have a leaderboard and there are hints that there will be more online components in the future. What that holds I don’t have an idea.
The microtransaction shop was not overbearing and I never felt a need to spend. They did not force it into my face a bunch of times and they seem to be going about it in a respectful manner. Outside of the mentality, a leaderboard creates someone spending money in-game that has no effect on me. So I don’t take any issues with this part of the game since you can earn all the items in these bundles including gems for free.
It has been a while since I was in the mood for an idle clicker game this one has certainly met my needs. While you can spend a decent amount of time actively playing it after each reset you also have long periods of time where you can just let it run offline with the game closed if you wish.
There was enough depth to keep me interested. My fun in these kinds of games is working out how to play them in an efficient manner and passing people up as free to play on the leader board. I expect this game to only get more complex and interesting as they continue to update the game.
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This game was in early access at the time of writing this.