Review: Triple Defense
Triple Defense markets itself as a Tower Defense game with lighting, particles, and geometry. I'm not quite sure what they mean by the last part of that descriptive triplet, but with a global high score tables, a variety of enemies and tower types, all the elements of the game are here. And then Triple Defense shows you why it is different.
Version Reviewed: 220.127.116.11
I think Triple Defense is actually a bit of a gotcha. While it does have all the hallmarks of a classic Tower Defense game, it doesn't play as one. It's more of a spatial puzzle game, with the marching hordes acting as a counter that you need to keep beating to progress in the game.
Rather than earn money by destroying them, and using that money to buy new towers or upgrade the existing on-screen armoury, Triple Defense will present you with the next tower to place after a short delay. Where you place that randomly chosen tower is the most important part of the game.
Because when you chain a line of three towers of the same colour together, the last tower placed will absorb the other two towers and 'level up' to become an even more powerful tower.
By providing you your towers at short time intervals, but with no control over the colour you will receive, then asking you to think ahead so you can sacrifice some towers to increase the potency of others, makes for a puzzle game which is going to need a lot of concentration to work out the shifting spacial challenges presented to you.
On top of that you still need to follow the Tower Defense rules and keep at least one clear path between the starting 'S' square and the final 'E' end square, concentrate firepower to create kill zones, and be prepared to let through one or two enemies to put yourself in a better tactical position for the rest of the oncoming horde.
I have to say, this is a lovely twist on the basic concept. More importantly it's a concept that actually works as a game. Yes it's packaged as a Tower Defense game, and strategies that you have in your head from titles like GeoDefence on Xbox Live can be used here, but the mechanism for upgrading the towers changes everything - mostly because it keeps changing the game grid, opening up gaps in the grid that the enemies can pour through, avoiding your carefully constructed 'Zone of Death'. The concentration of firepower is constantly in flux, and the amount of planning you need to do is far more than in a regular Tower Defense game.
I do have some issues with the interface (the classic one being told to press "yes" to continue your last game, and being offered "ok" and "cancel") and if the development team were to spend some time polishing the user interface on tiny issues like this and give it a bit of care and attention then this would be an amazing title.
Thankfully it has fast-app switching and remembers your progress. Returning to the game (either from the app screen or the task manager) brings up a 'paused game' screen so you can catch a breath and carry on playing where you left off.
As it stands it is pretty strong, and best described as a quirky little gem. It can become very repetitive with only three level designs on offer, and there are times it feels more like a demo of a principle rather than a full blown and balanced strategic game, but I like it, and while I doubt it will have general appeal, it's a strong genre title that stands out in a relatively crowded space.
Reviewed by Ewan Spence at