“Deploys a line of recruits armed with spears, shields and wooden buckets. They dream of ponies and one day wearing metal buckets.”
The Royal Recruits card is unlocked from the Royal Arena (Arena 7). It spawns six single-target, melee-ranged troops with medium hitpoints and damage and shields in addition to their normal health. The Royal Recruits are deployed in a long horizontal line spanning the Arena. The Royal Recruits card costs 7 Elixir to deploy.
The Royal Recruits are a powerful defensive card because of how they are deployed, allowing good defense from troops coming from both lanes.
This can stop a large number of split lane pushes since each Recruit has a decent amount of health and damage.
They can also distract some air troops, buying time to counter them.
Just like the Dark Prince and Guards, excess damage from destroying the Royal Recruit's shield will not affect their actual hitpoints. For instance, the Royal Recruits have 199 shield hitpoints, and a Fireball does 572 damage to him, the extra 373 damage will be completely negated.
Despite their horizontal formation, they can be split in slightly different ways by shifting the central tile of their deploy pattern to the left or right. This can cause four Royal recruits to go in one lane and two in the other lane as opposed to the usual even formation.
When dealing with them, use splash damage cards, such as a Wizard or Valkyrie to counter one or both recruit pushes due to their number, especially if there is a four recruit push. Pulling both lanes of Royal Recruit into the middle of your board with a cheap distraction unit will make defending against them much easier.
They have a combined health (including their shield hitpoints) of 3834. This is more than a P.E.K.K.A., meaning they are very hard to deal with effectively without splash units, especially when they have the shield mechanic which can potentially absorb more damage. This makes them a powerful pick in draft, where splash units or spells are not as likely to be in the opponent's deck.
They should never be left alone when there is more than two of them. Four Royal Recruits will take a Tower, and three will severely damage a Tower. Even using The Log against them or kiting them with cheap units such as Skeletons can prevent a lot of damage on your Tower because of their slow move speed.
On 27/7/18 prior to the card's general release, a maintenance break increased its Elixir cost to 8 (from 6).
The Royal Recruits card was added to the game on 7/8/18.
On 3/9/18 a Balance Update increased the Royal Recruits damage by 12%, and allowed the Royal Recruits to be split to 2-4 or 4-2.
On 3/12/18, a Balance Update decreased the Royal Recruits elixir cost to 7 (from 8), but also decreased their hit speed to 1.3 seconds (from 1.2 sec).
On 2/6/20, a Balance Update gave the Royal Recruits a new 0.1 second deploy stagger from each other.
The card's flavor text indicates that Royal Recruits can be promoted to be Dark Princes at some point.
The Royal Recruits are one of the three cards to have a shield, along with the Dark Prince and Guards.