Now that Com2us has copyrighted the name Tower Defense, we can’t help but wonder what to call the steady stream of games that fall under the umbrella of a genre whose popularity rivals that of angry flung birds. Regardless, the company’s latest– Tower Defense: Lost Earth– is yet another solid entry into the genre that they apparently love so much they bought the name for. There’s no reinvention of the proverbial wheel here, but for fans of setting up stationary defense structures, this is a very solid buy.
There’s some story about the Earth being decimated and mankind finding a new world to, presumably, also decimate. Sadly, the native population of large toothy things doesn’t approve of their new pink, fleshy neighbors and sends in wave-after-wave of non-welcoming parties. These pesky natives are all intent on one thing– doggedly following the road that leads to your command base.
A frickin’ laser!
To combat these road-abiding foes, you’ll use strategy and decisive tapping to set up various types of defense and support towers. The map is set up on a grid, and you can place a tower on any clear grid space along the side of the road. To mix things up, there are also rocks and other natural structures that occupy some of the map’s real estate. Destroying such impediments allows for more free space, but more importantly provides extra resources for building new towers.
Towers come in a variety of flavors, including a standard gun turret, a cool laser that can cross the whole screen, a sniper turret, a grenade launcher, and even special buildings that help gather further resources. Each weapon can be upgraded three times, and downed enemies reward you with more resources. Since building and upgrading towers requires these resources, there’s a distinct real-time strategy bent to the gameplay.
Visitors are advised to avoid this path if possible.
A boss wave, in particular, will frequently require you to sell off older towers once the boss is out of range, in order to build a new tower ahead of the boss. This lets you lay down a constant and ever-increasing layer of suppressive fire to destroy the creature before it hits your base. There are 40 levels in Tower Defense: Lost Earth. In addition to the main storyline, the game includes some standalone levels that offer a bit of variety to the standard gameplay.
Lost Earth features a charming cartoonish look, with a distinctly old-school feel. So, if you prefer 3D-rendered, high-tech graphics for your structural defense titles, this isn’t the game for you. Beyond that, this is a solidly entertaining example of the genre. There’s plenty to do, even if some of the levels are mind-numbingly hard.