Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes vs. Star Trek Timelines - Mobile Showdown
It seems right to pit Star Wars and Star Trek against each other whenever possible, and since they both have freemium games available for mobile devices that focus on collecting characters from their fabled universes I couldn't keep them apart. I recently downloaded Star Trek: Timelines and did a write up on it and after giving it a whirl for a few weeks I wanted to see how the action was a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes is a fairly similar game but with enough differences to make it possible to enjoy both if you have that much time to fool around on your phone. Or if as a busy adult you can't get on your system of choice as often as you would like.
First, they both have you collecting heroes and villains from their respective series. Star Wars features a lot of generic characters like Storm Troopers, Ewoks, Droids, etc; while Star Trek only deals with characters with names and likenesses from their universe. Star Trek floods you with characters which will force you to send some into a blender since they cap your crew size. Star Wars is the exact opposite. You get very few characters to start and will struggle getting more characters without shelling out money. Both series allow you to pay sickening amounts of money to unlock people with options up in the $100 range, but some people are clearly paying them so how can you blame them? And there are some low budget options too, like Star Trek will let you pay 4 dollars for a month supply of their in game currency which will allow you to buy many mystery packs, and Star Wars has a similar feature and some limited time options like I was offered a guaranteed 3 star villain like Darth Maul for 5 bucks to get me started if I felt so inclined. Star Trek does offer the ability like in some Angry Birds games to watch an ad to get free stuff, while Star Wars only wants your green.
The games both have the now industry standard timed energy releases so you can only play for so long before you have to shell out money or wait for your energy to recover. However, Star Wars shines brighter here as there are different game modes to play which burn different energies and you can play for quite some time before having to put the game down if you have a bunch of time on your hands. The gameplay of Star Wars is more skill and strategy based as well so it is more enjoyable. Star Trek is more like collecting cards, they aren't quite as much fun to play with beyond acquiring them.
Both games have clans and timed events, but Star Wars has a more interactive system with daily events and challenges while Star Trek tends to do an event or two with days worth of gaps in between. You are encouraged to make "friends" and send each other bonuses or lend players while Star Trek only occasionally allows you to do anything directly for your buddies.
Where Star Wars fails in comparison would be the item collection system. Both games have you acquiring items to strengthen your characters, but Star Wars has generic items with little to no meaning. Star Trek has you getting items from the lore and are often tied to the particular character's heritage and personality. Like Spock would collect Vulcan items and science tools, and Worf would be after Klingon relics and weapons. The little touches and references are nice for serious fans, and Star Wars didn't seem to try. However, many people might not care at all about this minutia and in light of the superior gameplay Star Wars probably made the right call on where to spend their programming and design time.
Ultimately, neither game is particularly deep but if you need an enjoyable little time waster I think Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes is the better game, but Star Trek Timelines built a better universe with its own story-lines outside of just fighting. I recommend within both trying to be clever with your name and the Star Wars fans seem to be taking that more seriously. I decided to go with the Star Wars sounding Paq Mewel...cause I got all the stuff!