Yea life got in the way of me posting this yesterday.. Anyhow....
Warbands: Bushido is a miniatures game on the iPad and steam. A miniatures based game on an iPad has some real appeal. You do not have to carry around all the minis to play, can play at your convince and whenever you have time to pull out an iPad. There are some downsides to this as well. Some people really like painting and holding their minis, as well as creating interesting terrain pieces for them to fight in around and on. There are also the issues with dice. It is hard to trust an automatic dice generator for many people. I am not one of them, but I know a few people who would rather give up dice over using a machine to roll them.
Beyond the "Digital Miniature vs Physical Miniature", Warbands: Bushido plays like a miniatures game with a few differences. You can not use real money to buy figures that I have been able to find. You have to use in-game cash and can not get it any way other than in-game means. So no pay to win, cool. Mini's are also random booster packs, so kinda lame there, where a lucky draw can make your army much better, or an unlucky draw means basically wasted in game monies.
To start off, if you are looking for a deep single player game, you will be disappointed with Warbands: Bushido. The game has a definite "Hearthstone but samurai miniatures game" feel to it. It is mostly playing other players, getting loot to buy more minis to play other players better to get more loot, and on and on. As for the game itself, it plays well. The touch is what you would expect and is well suited for this style of game. Combat is a combination of strategy, lucky dice, and playing the right ability card at the right time.Overall it is a sold fantasy miniatures wargame that would be just as suited outside the digital world if need be.
At the core of, Warbands: Bushido is a turn-based miniatures game of battle on a small scale. You build a warbandtake turns based on unit speed ratings moving, attacking, shooting and playing cards. Card play is limited by a resource called morale, with more powerful cards taking more power to play. Once all units have gone, you get more cards and some morale back. You take turns until one team is dead, then get your loot and winnings.
To acquire new units and cards in Warbands: Bushido, you play games and gain coins. These coins let you buy booster packs and unit packs. You can sell back the units and cards you do not want, and use the money to craft specific units much like Hearthstone and dust. The nice thing here is that there is one currency instead of 2 as in Hearthstone(three if you also count real-world money). Matches take under 10 minutes in most cases as it focuses more on skirmish rather than large-scale action and that is good for the mobile gaming on the go, though it would be nice to have the option for a larger scale game, and I have not seen that there is one yet.
As for the art and sound design in Warbands: Bushido, it does the job. The graphics are decent, and the little animations when the figures fight helps keep the action going. The interface outside of the game could use a bit more tutorial as it has a lot of info and items that are not totally explained in my opinion, but overall it works. I did have a problem finding the tutorial missions at first when I had to leave in the middle of them and that was rather frustrating. The in-flight interface is much more intuitive and flows well. The sound is minimal for the most part, A bit of background, some swooshes, and swings in combat, rolling dice, nothing to epic.
In the end, I like Warbands: Bushido. It plays well and helps get that mini wargaming fix as real life gets more in the way of playing a big game of Warhammer. There is no cash shop which for some is a bonus, but I can take it or leave it. The cost is fairly low for iOS or steam, and the system works and overall, it is a pretty fun game.