Hey gang! Welcome to Clash Royale, all of us from beta are excited to meet you in the Arena!
I am The Rum Ham, I run a Clash Royale stream on Twitch and one of the most common questions fielded is “How should I spend my gems?”. I put together this quick guide for new players wondering what would be the most efficient way for them to convert Gems into more cards and wins!
Chest Types There are 5 types of Chests you can find or buy in Clash Royale:
- Silver Chest (3 hours, 18 Gem Timer): Most common, fewest cards. All Commons, with a chance at a single Rare, or low chance at Epic or Legendary. Your Free Chest every 4 hours is a Silver chest
- Golden Chest (8 hours, 48 Gem Timer): Regular drop from games, about once every 5 wins. Mostly Commons with a few Rares. Small chance of an Epic or Legendary. Your Crown Chests are Golden Chests
- Giant Chest (12 hours, 72 Gem Timer): Large chest, like an overstuffed Golden Chest. Tons of Commons and Rares, small chance at Epic or Legendary
- Magical Chest (12 hours, 72 Gem Timer): Very rare drop, roughly 1-in-75 wins. Mix of Commons, several Rares, and a few Epics. Good chance at a Legendary
- Super Magical Chest (24 hours, 144 Gem Timer): Extremely rare drop, no idea the frequency as it’s just added to the game. Tons of Commons, Rares, and many Epics. Best chance at a Legendary
So what should you do?
I Want To Be Free-to-Play, No Purchases Ever
The game has a Tournament Cap, the level at which Friendly and (eventually) Tournament Matches will cap your Card level. It is Level 3 Epics, Level 6 Rares, and Level 8 Commons. This should be your goal (along with getting to Arena 7 / 2000 Trophies to unlock all the cards), as going any higher on the ladder is only for the deeper pockets. You’ll be able to compete in Tournaments with that level, which is very attainable for F2P players.
- Save gems religiously, you are never going to have enough gems to make regular purchases. You are saving for one or two game-changing buys
- Purchase 10,000 Gold for 500 Gems (Saves 100 Gems over the 1,000 gold bundles)
- Use the Gold to upgrade your Troops (you’ll find Gold to be a pinch very soon in your progression)
- Watch the Shop daily and spend your Gold to purchase 1-2 rares each day (especially if you can donate them for a profit) or that Epic you’ve really been wanting.
- Try to focus on one Epic you really want, 6 buys of 2000 (with each natural open saving you 2000 each) gets your Epic to level 3, which is what Tournament Mode caps you at. This should be your goal 1-2 Epics at a time. Try not to spread yourself too thin or you’ll find yourself unable to afford the crucial level-up.
While tempting to purchase a single big Chest, this is a really inefficient purchase for a few reasons. You aren’t guaranteed to get what you want, and with Gold as a pinch you may not be able to even upgrade the cards you opened.
I Want To Make One Medium Sized Purchase Ever
- Clash Royale is probably the best mobile game I’ve seen for making a purchase last for a while. A single purchase of $20-$100 gem bundles can last weeks or even months before you are out of gems.
- After the purchase, immediately buy a bundle of Gold (either 10,000 or 100,000) and save the rest of the gems
- As you play, open chests when your chest row is full.
The most common complaint of F2P players is they feel blocked when they chest row is full. Following this path is like pre-paying at an arcade; every time you want to play when you have a full chest row you are putting in a quarter to keep playing. 1 Gem is roughly a penny (depending on the gem bundle you buy) so you are quite literally paying a quarter or two to open Silver and Golden chests.
It’s better value than opening chests directly. When your chest row is full, it’s like you are getting a 50% or greater discount on chests. Golden Chests used to sell for 80-120 Gems directly in the store, but only cost 48 Gems to speed up the timer. Magical Chests cost several hundred gems to buy but only 72 Gems to speed up, which is over a 90% discount at Arena 8!
If you wanted to optimize further, save a long duration (Gold or better) chest for overnights but open Silvers during the day. The better the chest, the more of a discount you get by speeding it up. Silver Chests have the worst discount so you are better off letting those open with a timer.
When Should I Buy Chests in the Shop?
Buying Chests in the shop is a very inefficient way to spend your Gems, but it’s by far the FASTEST way to level up. If you have goals of “I want to be Player Level X” or “I want to collect all the cards”, buying chests in the shop is going to be the shortest path from A to B
The amount you need to spend to raise your Player Level is roughly double the lifetime spend up to that point. It quickly moves into marginal returns, so determine what the sweet spot is for your spending.
You can reach Player Level 5 in roughly a week of play. These are estimates of cost if you wanted to do it in one sitting, remember you earn a bit of ‘money’ each day from your free chests and timers:
- Level 5 to 6: $25 ($25 total, F2P 2 Weeks)
- Level 6 to 7: $50 ($75 total, F2P 1 Month)
- Level 7 to 8: $150 ($225 total, F2P 2 Months)
- Level 8 to 9: $250 ($475 total, F2P 4 Months)
- Level 9 to 10: $500 ($975 total, F2P 8 Months)
- Level 10 to 11: $1000 ($2000 total, F2P 16 Months)
- Level 11 to 12: $2000 ($4000+ total, F2P 32 Months)
Should I Buy Cards Directly in the Shop?
Yes! This is very dependent on your Gold balance, but in general the first 3 Commons, the first 2 Rares, and the first Epic are indisputably great values if you want those cards.
If you have purchased 100,000 Gold, I believe purchasing the 2nd Epic for 3600 is also worth it (instead of waiting for the Epic to come back in the shop, which may be 3 weeks or longer). I tend to buy Rares up to the 150 gold cost if it’s a good card, or Commons up to the 20 gold cost if I reallllllly want to upgrade that Common.
What About Clan Donations?
Yes! Every time you can. Clash Royale gives you more cards than Gold. In order to have enough Gold to upgrade your cards, you will have to donate regularly. Commons grant 5 Gold, Rares grant 50 Gold. You can donate up to 300 Gold worth of cards per day, and you’ll earn XP for doing so!
If you really want to focus on a single card, it is possible to hoard it and get it higher level than your other cards. However, the nature of card scaling means its usually only going to be worth it until a card is level 7 or 8, after that point the time spent on upgrading a single card one level is probably better invested to catch your 2nd favorite card up to level 7 or 8.
I hope this was helpful for new and veteran players alike! Follow me on Twitch if you’d like to see more strategy talk and exciting matches!