Finally! Ever since tower defense appeared in its thousandth installment, we’ve been wondering when someone would switch the roles of the players, putting us in the shoes of the beings trying to make it past those towers and their unlimited ammo. This game, named simply Tower Attack, gives us this clever twist on the tower defense genre.
Your people are actually aliens, all of them trying to come in peace to Earth in medieval times, but the crude and ignorant humans stand cruelly in their way, armed with typical medieval riot gear. Sadly, though this premise is easily surmised, there is no story, despite the potential for a hilarious one.
The aliens come in many shapes and sizes, all with different abilities. From the Lil’ Helper healer to the Cold Mr. Plural, who paralyzes towers, your aliens must make it to a portal on the opposite end of the screen. The path is guarded by a variety of those crude humans who care very little for the colorful, happily fearless aliens.
To the portal!
In order to guide your aliens to the portal without suffering a grisly yet beautifully animated death, you must draw a line with your finger to dictate the path they should take. This will be quite familiar to anyone with an iDevice these days, and the implementation is pretty well done. Even that mechanic gets some variety when the Princess-type human charms the aliens, forcing you to draw the line in the opposite direction you want the alien to go.
Our major complaint with the game is the difficulty curve. In each level, the game tosses out a lot of aliens at a time for you to guide, and then gives goals for saving different numbers of different types. There is also one alien on each level who cannot die, or you will lose. Unfortunately, the death of the aliens is all too quickly and easily brought about by the brutes, and there are no difficulty settings to change this fact. Its difficulty curve is so steep, in fact, that achieving victory in even the first few levels is a bear.
Tower Attack is a refreshing take on a genre that has become somewhat bloated over its lifetime, and it is a game that has a lot of personality. The art style is very well done, and the character choices are great, but the game’s difficulty curve stands in your way like one of those ugly barbarians barring the aliens’ path. It is the medieval times though, so hopefully some plague will take care of it.