The gods of the Greek pantheon are big fat jerks. With few exceptions, they’re generally not interested in the well-being of their mortal worshippers. They prefer guzzling nectar over keeping an eye on humanity’s crops, they toy with men’s fates, and they seduce moral women and disappear in a puff of fairy dust when their demigod offspring is born. It’s no surprise the mortals are revolting in Fury of the Gods, but since you play through this tower defense game as The Big Cheeses, there’s no room for sympathy. Smite those heathens.
Ancient Greece has fallen into ruin, and the mortals wail for the gods to save them. The gods respond, “What, are we all your personal nannies or something?” and they turn their backs on the populace. The mortals get angry and mount assaults on the temples of Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades. It’s not cool for gods to be pushed around by gnats, so you retaliate.
The Greek backdrop gives Fury of the Gods a unique flavor, but the gameplay should still be familiar for tower defense fans. Mortals clamber up to your temple in waves, and you need to cut them down before they lay waste to your temple. Instead of setting up the usual cannons and gun towers, you summon gryphons and Cyclops. Instead of participating in the battle as a sword-waving hero, you assist from up on high by conjuring storms, tornadoes, and meteors. When all else fails, you can squish the mortal vermin with your godly finger.
As you clear levels in Fury of the Gods, you unlock the ability to play the levels owned by Zeus’s brothers, Hades and Poseidon. No matter who you play as, you’re going to encounter similar problems. For starters, the rotating 3D map looks good, but its limited scaling makes it hard to see who’s attacking from where. The odd viewpoint also makes it difficult to place your mythological guardians exactly where you want them. It’s nice to see a tower defense game with such well-done visuals, but those fancy pixels don’t mean a whole lot if they prevent you from operating swiftly and cleanly. As with most tower defense games, every second counts in Fury of the Gods.
There’s also the issue of unbalanced difficulty. You can upgrade your mythical beasts as well as your temple’s health, and the power of your own finger—but said upgrades cost a lot of coins. You win coins after a battle, but (surprise) you can buy them as well. You won’t get far without the upgrades, by the way: Taking down a single Spartan soldier at low levels requires you to mash him furiously with your divine digit. No wonder these guys have the Pantheon across a barrel. Your options for victory are a lot of grinding, or just whipping out your credit card.
Fury of the Gods has some admirable ideas as well as great visuals. Unfortunately, the curious angle of its battlefield and its steep difficulty curve make it an awkward play. If you’re a hardcore tower defense fan, go for it. Otherwise, put this temple to the torch.