Looking for a baseball-themed game that’s stripped-down compared to those MLB-licensed products we’ve covered in the past, but still intensive enough to provide an in-depth gaming experience? We strongly recommend Haegin’s mobile game, Homerun Clash, which is available for iOS and Android as the developer’s apparent debut title for both platforms.
The game promises real-time home run derby-style battles against human opponents from around the world, as you can strive to become the “world’s greatest slugger” through skill, impeccable timing, and the right strategy. Not only is this a sports-based title – this is also one that comes with elements of card-collecting games and RPGs, as you can collect various types of equipment, as well as cards that could offer buffs, de-buffs, and passive skills. We bet you never expected something like that out of a baseball game for mobile devices!
Despite Haegin’s ostensibly casual approach to things, this is not a title that you should take lightly. There are various game modes and a wide range of features in this game that prevent it from being classified as a “true” casual title with bare-bones mechanics and such.
And with that in mind, we’re going to narrow our focus down to one specific game mode – 1 vs 1 – which will be the first mode you’ll be introduced to, as well as the mode you’ll be playing most of the time, even when you unlock the Battle Royale and level up substantially in the game. So read on and check out our Homerun Clash beginner’s guide for tips, cheats and strategies, if you need help winning those 1 vs 1 battles!
1. The Basics Of Homerun Clash
As we mentioned above, Homerun Clash is a pseudo-casual alternative to MLB Home Run Derby 19 without the real-life players, but with the so-called “real players” selling point where you can compete against human players from all over the world. When it comes to in-game characters, you won’t get as many as about a hundred present-day MLB stars and old-time legends, as this title chooses to keep things simple, as you start out with the most common player available (Diane) and collect more players as you go along and level up from stadium to stadium. Aside from new players and stadiums, you will also unlock new equipment, as well as new game modes, such as the Battle Royale, where you will be competing against three other players instead of just one.
The mode you will be playing most often, however, is 1 vs 1 mode, where you will be matched with a player of similar skill and given 95 seconds – a minute and 35 seconds – to outscore the other. These battles draw a lot of inspiration from fighting games, as each hit would take its toll on your opponent, diminishing their score until it reaches zero, or until time runs out and one player has more points than the other. Winning will earn you trophies, which determine league placement and the type of Trophy Rewards you can earn after accumulating so many of them, while losing will get your trophy total docked a few points – for the first stadium, you get three Trophies for a win and get penalized two Trophies for a loss.
Naturally, you want to go for Perfect or Critical home runs, and in order to hit such a homer, you’ll need to line up the locator with the ball icon inside the square, then let go of your finger at just the right time, right before the ball passes by. A “Great” home run isn’t bad either, but probably not enough if you’re up against a particularly tough opponent. Sometimes, you’ll get a “Good” or “Ok” hit, which is worth some points but not as much as the points/effect against opponent you could get after hitting a Perfect homer.
Although you definitely want to avoid missing the ball completely, we’ve noticed that it’s more important to avoid hitting a foul ball – you’ll know if the ball is heading to the foul zone if you see a “Bad” notification after letting go of your finger a moment too soon or too late. Foul balls seem to take more of a toll on your score than outright misses, and they could be real momentum-killers – we’ve had games where one foul ball is bad enough to lose the entire game despite having a comfortable lead with just about 20 to 30 seconds remaining! And we understand why – missing on your swing doesn’t waste as much time as connecting on your swing but ending up with a foul ball.
2. Know Your Players
While MLB Home Run Derby 19 comes with far more players, the game’s makers also kept things simple by including only two stats per player. The opposite applies in Homerun Clash, as the fact that the game comes with fewer unlockable characters is offset by the additional stats you need to take into account. And while many of you may think that your default character, Diane, is the weakest one in the game, that’s not necessarily the case – in many cases, Dave Lawson is the next player unlocked, but his stats at level 2 are weaker than Diane’s at the same level.
With that in mind, it’s always a good idea to tap on the card icon (third from left) on the bottom left corner of your screen to view the different players you already have unlocked, as well as those you have yet to unlock – this can be found in the Batter sub-menu under Card. There are only 14 players to view, with each of them coming with their own biographies, but you want to focus more on the stats, which include Power, Impact (determines critical hit chance/decreases power loss if the ball travels to left field or right field), Announced Home Run (increases Announced Home Run charge points), Contact (affects the ball’s angle and, in theory, increases your chances of connecting), Liner (ability to hit a straight line drive), and Curveball Killer (increases ball speed against curveball pitches).
When talking about each stat’s importance, Power is obviously the most essential, as this game is all about hitting home runs out of the park. However, you also should prioritize Contact, as this would make it easier for you to connect on your swing, as well as Impact, which could come in really handy against tougher opponents – Critical Hits could do a lot of “damage” against opponents, even nullifying whatever Perfect home runs they’re able to connect on!
Of course, you’ll generally want to unlock more Major and All-Star rarity players as opposed to Normal ones, but rarity isn’t always a good indicator of a player’s ability. That’s why we cannot underscore the importance of reviewing those player stats so you know what you’ll be getting into once you switch to that batter and prepare to play your next game.
3. Don’t Play Too Many Games In A Row
Although we can get that Homerun Clash is quite the addictive game, we strongly advise against playing too many games in one sitting, especially if you’re on quite the winning streak. That’s because each win will earn you a prize chest, which could contain gold, gems (the game’s premium currency), and various types of cards – these cards can then be used to unlock new pieces of equipment, skills, or batters, or upgrade existing ones.
And since the game only allows you to store four prize chests and unlock one at a time (unless you’re willing to pay some gems to expedite the process, which is very seldom recommended), any chests you win once all slots are full will be forfeited – again, unless you have no problem spending some gems to get these chests opened immediately without waiting. The waiting time for opening a chest would depend on the rarity, with Silver chests taking two hours to open and Gold chests taking four hours.
Taking all that waiting time and the limited slots you have for prize chests into account, we would recommend taking a break from the game once you’ve got all four slots filled up. Just make sure to turn those notifications on, since you wouldn’t want to waste any time once a chest is ready to unlock!
4. Keep On Collecting Those Freebies
Aside from the prize chests you can win after defeating an opponent in 1 vs 1 battles or in other modes, there are other freebies you can pick up while playing Homerun Clash, starting with your daily rewards. We’d say this is one of the best way to add to your gem totals in a hurry, as this month’s rewards for daily logins include 30 gems for your third consecutive day and 10 gems for your tenth. Apart from that, you can win new cards, new balls, and prize chests, so make sure you’re logged on to the game, even for a minute a day, in order for you to get those dailies and improve your players sooner rather than later!
The daily login rewards are just the tip of the iceberg as far as “free” rewards are concerned. We’d also include those you can earn by naturally playing the game, such as the Trophy Rewards – you can get 100 coins once you reach five Trophies, 300 coins once you reach ten, 14 Normal rarity (or better) cards if you reach 15, and so on. Once you reach 60 Trophies, you will be able to move on from Time City Park (the default stadium) to the next, so keep on playing and keep on collecting those Trophy Rewards!
Additionally, the game also gives away free chests every four hours, though you’ll need to go to the shop (second button on the lower left) and watch a quick ad video in order to redeem them. You’ve also got the chests located above the prize chest slots – by completing the game’s daily quests, you could earn points that could allow you to open Silver chests or better, and by collecting enough stars in 1 vs 1 matches, you could open Match Star Chests, with a maximum of two unlocked per eight hours. All in all, this game doesn’t skimp on rewards, so keep on playing and keep on claiming those freebies!
5. Upgrade Your Batters, But Don’t Forget The Other Cards
We’ve mentioned cards several times in the aforementioned tips, and by now, you should be aware that collecting enough of a certain card would allow you to upgrade your batters once you spend some coins and hit the applicable Upgrade button. Doing this would improve your batters’ stats, and once you’ve gotten to unlock some of the rarer players in the game, you should shift your focus to the better ones on your roster – the cost of upgrades will increase progressively based on rarity and player level, which means you’ll need to choose wisely when it comes to focusing on specific batters!
It’s not just batter cards, however, that you need to be paying attention to. Under the Equip tab in the Card menu, you’ll see several bats that you can either select or upgrade; you will also see several slots next to your selected batter, corresponding to their cap, eyewear, headgear, and other items that come with their own statistical buffs. You should upgrade these as well whenever applicable and regularly change equipment if you happen to unlock an item that’s stronger than the one you already have.
Aside from equipment and batter cards, the game also comes with Skill, Ball, and Style cards that are individually upgradable as well. We’ll be discussing Skill and Ball in the coming tips, so read on if you’re having a hard time deciding which to use in either or both categories!
6. Which Skills Should You Be Using Or Upgrading?
When it comes to skills in Homerun Clash, these are divided into three categories – Batter Effect, Batter Defense, and Ball Defense. The first category, as the term implies, refer to those that could make your batter more effective by, say, increasing the aim area, decreasing the pitcher stats (for your default skill, Friendly Pitcher), or protecting against “scoring attacks” from your opponent.
The second category refers to the batter-related “defenses” you can employ as the opposing pitcher tries to throw you off – in other words, these are mainly negative effects that you may have to deal with while swinging, such as anxiety, confusion, or a slower bat, among others.
Lastly, Ball Defense refers to ball-related defenses – will the opposing pitcher be throwing a slower tennis ball or a disappearing “ninja ball,” for instance? You want to defend against these sneaky tactics, and that’s what this skill category is for.
When choosing skills to activate in the game, we suggest trying them all out for yourself to see how they work for you, or if a certain defense is practical at a given point in the game. For example, Friendly Pitcher works fine if you’re hoping to have an easier time as a beginner, while you’ll definitely want to have that Batter Anxiety defense equipped if you don’t want your character clamming up while on the plate. On the other hand, the Ninja Ball defense might not be too feasible if you haven’t noticed any balls disappearing on you in recent 1 vs 1 matchups.
7. Rarer Balls Are Better Than The Standard One, But There’s A Catch
Unlike batters, who aren’t always better if they’re higher up on the rarity scale, the same does not apply to the various balls you can collect in Homerun Clash. Each ball has their own respective set of stats (or should we say, passive skills) that could affect the distance of your home runs – for example, the Tornado comes with Acceleration I and Liner I passive skills, as opposed to your standard ball, which does not have any passive skills at all. However, there’s a very important catch that you need to be aware of before using your gems to buy balls.
That catch, of course, is that you can only buy so many balls with your gems – for the aforementioned Tornado, you can buy a 2-pack for 10 gems, meaning a total of 24 balls, with 12 per pack, or a 10-pack with 120 balls for 45 gems. Standard balls, on the other hand, are unlimited and do not run out, thus offsetting their lack of passive skills. We would suggest buying the smaller ball bundles if and when you have a limited amount of gems, so you can test them out and see if they’re worth investing in going forward. But even if you do this, we still suggest focusing mainly on your Standard ball and using it more often than not – you won’t run out of stock of these balls anyway!
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading our Homerun Clash beginner’s guide. If you happen to know additional tips or strategies for the game, feel free to let us know in the comment area!