“We’re famous for killing all of our games” — The team behind App Store hit Clash of Clans has canceled ten games before launch, now it’s finally ready to release its next major title

Squad Busters
(Image credit: Supercell)

“Our game team holds ourselves accountable”. This was one of the very first things Supercell told a small room of journalists before showing off gameplay of its next title. Ilkka Pannanen, the CEO behind the Clash of Clans developer, made it clear that he knew “we’re famous for killing all of our games” and that this is part of what makes him proud of his games company. Ten years of experimenting and more than ten canceled games later, it is releasing its next game and I’m quite excited to try it out.

Squad Busters, Supercell’s latest game, is the culmination of years of effort. It is a battler that combines Supercells’ previous IPs into one squad-building, competitive fighter with a focus on fun above all else. Despite the fact that one of ten people in each game has to come first, it is “deliberately designed not to be a battle royale”. You can compete with players online but you still get rewards, regardless of how well you play.

Starting off with just one soldier, you farm resources in each game, which can then be spent on chests to add more soldiers to your squad. Add a few of the same soldiers and they will level up, encouraging players to have a “build” with certain squad members. The goal is to be the player with the most gems by the end of the game. This is made harder by a section in the middle of the map that opens up to shoot out tons of games near the end.

Squad Busters first look

Supercell put out a video titled “What is Squad Busters?” that goes over how battles work, and to give a rough idea of what squad level-ups look like. As well as seeing this, I got to watch a member of the development team play the game to a high level and it all looks very hectic. A member of the team compared the game to Mario Kart — suggesting that it's a more casual battler where the fun comes from how frantic everything is.

This is not the only way that Squad Busters is similar to Mario Kart, with it even having an approximation of the dreaded blue shell. Players with fewer gems have a higher chance of getting a `’mega unit” squad member from chests, letting them get back into the game. Given Squad Busters is launching on iPhone and even playable with ten-year-old iPads, it is built for those who just want something fun to occupy their time. Hopefully, it will become one of the best free iPhone games.

Though fans of previous Supercell games won’t get any bonuses in Squad Busters for playing them, Supercell will be giving out preregistration rewards for those who predownload and it will even provide digital goodies in older games to celebrate. Squad Busters is currently available to download on iOS and Android right now in Canada, Denmark, Finland, Mexico, Singapore, Spain Norway, and Sweden, though it won’t be rolling out to the rest of the world until May 29. This date is important to the developer, due to how long it had been since it last game, and the team made us very aware of that. This day not only celebrities the studio but makes the team aware of the games that never launched “On one hand, would I have liked to have released a game sooner? Yes, of course. On the other hand, I’m incredibly proud of our teams that hold ourselves to that super super high bar.”

We were told, “We have been waiting for this moment for a very, very long time”. I believe that and can’t wait to try it out for myself.

For more Apple gaming news and opinions, check out my weekly column, Pips and Pixels

More from iMore

James Bentley

James is a staff writer and general Jack of all trades at iMore. With news, features, reviews, and guides under his belt, he has always liked Apple for its unique branding and distinctive style. Originally buying a Macbook for music and video production, he has since gone on to join the Apple ecosystem with as many devices as he can fit on his person. 

With a degree in Law and Media and being a little too young to move onto the next step of his law career, James started writing from his bedroom about games, movies, tech, and anything else he could think of. Within months, this turned into a fully-fledged career as a freelance journalist. Before joining iMore, he was a staff writer at Gfinity and saw himself published at sites like TechRadar, NME, and Eurogamer. 

As his extensive portfolio implies, James was predominantly a games journalist before joining iMore and brings with him a unique perspective on Apple itself. When not working, he is trying to catch up with the movies and albums of the year, as well as finally finishing the Yakuza series. If you like Midwest emo music or pretentious indie games that will make you cry, he’ll talk your ear off.