Tower-building defense games are a dime a dozen, so what do you do with a 3D version that costs $1.99 on iTunes? In TowerMadness, you can zoom into the playing field to see lines of aliens marching toward your sheep, with the intent to abduct them in their beady black eyes. The new perspective may be enticing, but it’s just the slightest surface change to an increasingly familiar and tedious style of gameplay.
Dare we call TowerMadness… pedestrian?
In case you missed out on Besiegement, Fieldrunners, or any of the many other tower defense games for the iPhone/iPod Touch that we’ve reviewed, this type of game requires you to build rows of attacking watchtowers. Enemies march across the screen in a predetermined pattern, and if you place your towers wisely, you can wipe them out before they make it to the other side.
In TowerMadness, the enemies are aliens of the waddling, gray variety, but sometimes they’ll fly over your towers on jetpacks or scuttle by as cockroaches. You’re tasked with defending a small herd of sheep from abduction, and your tools range from high-tech rail guns to World War II-style flak artillery. Typical of the genre, some towers can only attack air or ground units. As you upgrade each tower, they’ll grow more complicated-looking, but they all resemble machine guns on a stand.
The 3D graphics are the big draw here. They run smoothly and it’s possible to get right down into the thick of the assault. However, the visuals are not very detailed and it’s difficult to plan your layouts when you’re zoomed-in. More importantly, the graphics just barely cover the fact that this is the exact same game we’ve played before.
When you first download the game, there are only four maps available, each of increasing difficulty. More maps may be upcoming, and there is a sandbox map you can play with if you download it as an add-on. While there is the potential for more interesting levels, for now all you can do now is replay the same few maps and upload your high scores to a global leaderboard.
The graphics and online abilities are fairly good in this game, but TowerMadness doesn’t contain enough new content to recommend buying for seasoned tower builders. TowerMadness is unoriginal at a time when most iPhone games are showing off their creativity. At $1.99 and with just a handful of maps currently available, most gamers should just walk on past this one.