Crush the Castle by Armorgames has been one of the most popular Flash games this year. Like all great games, the premise is simple: knock down a castle by throwing rocks with a trabuquete.
Well, in fact, the title, Crush The Castle, is a bit of a misnomer. Progression through the 24 levels is not achieved by destroying the castles, but by hitting each of its occupants. Each level has one or more people (kings, queens and guards) and to complete the level you must hit each one, either directly with your ammunition, or indirectly by making a piece fall from the castle. To be good at the game, forget about the castle and look for ways to hit people in the castle.
The controls couldn’t be simpler. First select the ammo you want to use, then click the mouse button once to set the trabuckle in motion and again to release it. Timing is everything. Release early and the trajectory will be high, allowing your ammo to hit your target from above. The late release causes a flatter trajectory, allowing you to hit the castle wall from the side, or even bounce ammo across the ground. Careful use of different trajectories is vital to success.
Another decision that will affect how quickly you can progress through the game is the choice of ammo. You start off with just the ability to use individual small stones. As you progress through the levels, you unlock various stones, larger stones, and bombs. Choosing the right ammo for a particular tier makes all the difference. While the most recently unlocked ammo is usually the best, some levels are best attempted with simpler ammo. For example, level 13 unlocks the big stone, but the level is much easier if you choose to shoot 3 small stones, as they are small enough to fit in the space above the queen, beating the level in one go!
At the beginning of each level, you need to take a good look at the castle to look for weaknesses. Remember that your goal is to hit the people, not destroy the castle, so find ways to achieve that goal. For example, level 14 is built as a seesaw with the king at one end. Shooting 3 large stones to fall into the ravine to the left of the castle will cause it to collapse and the king will fall on the spikes … much easier than trying to hit him with a direct shot on the castle walls!
There are 2 other techniques that will help you at certain levels. The first is what I call the fast catch. This means firing 2 or more shots in a row, without waiting for them to hit. This means that the second and subsequent shots will hit the target while still staggering from the previous shot. This is a very useful technique at later levels.
The final technique is to bounce your ammo. By aiming low, you can bounce ammo off the floor or castle walls towards further targets. Note that only stones can bounce off walls, as bombs will explode on impact, but both stones and bombs can bounce off the ground.
Practice these techniques and you should have no problem completing all 24 levels and unlocking the castle editor mode. With practice, you will be able to complete most, if not all, levels with one shot!