Clash of Clans - first pass

It’s been quite some time since our last review here. We’ve also changed the domain to to better reflect our new direction since we will also focus on the iOS ecosystem. So, without further to do let’s head over to our topic of the day: Clash of Clans. This is quite a complicated game, with many aspects of gameplay, tactics and tips so we will probably have many more articles to come. For now, we will settle for a basic intro of the game and some tips for beginners.

Clash of Clans intro

If you haven’t heard of Clash of Clans then here is what it’s all about, in a nutshell. You manage a village with various buildings, each serving a particular role. There are defensive buildings which fire at enemies, resource buildings which gather or store your resources, traps (hidden surprises for your unsuspecting invaders) barracks and army camps for your own troops, walls and decorations which serve little purpose. Generally you would want to place your resource related buildings under guard by your defenses. Your opponents are after them.

The game is multiplayer, but does not have a realtime component per se. You can attack enemy villages with your troops in order to steal resources or receive trophies for victories. The attack strategy revolves around picking the right troops and placing them on the map. Once spawned, they will begin attacking the enemy buildings one by one (some troops prefer attacking defences while others go after anything within sight). While being attacked you do not have any control on the outcome of the battle. All you can do is learn from the attack and better design your village for the next time.

There is a lengthy single player campaign where you are responsible for attacking fixed goblin bases. There are 50 bases, with a linear increasing difficulty.

The really nice part is that the game is quite enjoyable even without spending a dime on any resource boosts. Although many games keep nagging you about buying stuff, Clash of Clans holds the option available in the shop menu and that’s it. No offers, no one-time discounts for today, nada.

Tips for beginners

Note that you do need a couple of hours of gameplay to make sense of the following. So first try playing for a bit before asking for tips.

  1. Focus on upgrading resource gathering buildings first. You need the resources to upgrade buildings so why not speed up the process?
  2. A common practice called farming is when you place your town hall (the central building of your village) on the edge of the map to make it an easy target for attacks. This might seem odd, but many players are after trophies so will settle for simply destroying your town hall and give you a 12 hour shield in return too.
  3. Watch all the replays from attacks to see what went well and what went bad. We could go on and explain in detail exactly how each unit and each defensive building reacts, but it would be better to find out for yourself first.
  4. Certain buildings do not need protection and can very well stay outside the walls: barracks, army camps, spell factory, laboratory, dark barracks, builder huts. In the event of an attack you won’t lose resources if these get destroyed.


    A wealth of information (especially strategies related to different combinations of units) can be found on YouTube. The single player missions also have common strategies. Be sure to look at the video’s date since Supercell is constantly tweaking the game to better balance the game. In other words, yesterday’s tactic may not be so efficient today. Here’s a nice way to approach the last goblin (single player) level:

Other stuff:

Published on: 6 September 2015
Tags: games