Outside of obtaining the branding, there’s little else Silicon Studio could’ve done to make 3D Dot Game Heroes more of a Zeldagame. This is a classic 2D Zelda game through and through, although I’m hesitant to call it a clone as that implies a derisive reaction and I truly dig this game. The developer’s love for Japanese RPGs from the 1980s/1990s exudes in the innumerable references and qualities this game shares with the genre. The polish applied is evident on all fronts, from the gameplay and side quests to the visuals and audio. It’s easy to tell this was a passion project for the studio and they delivered a quality video game in turn. Continue reading 3D Dot Game Heroes [PlayStation 3] – Review→
Completing Kingdom Rush earlier this month represented the first time I’ve beaten a tower defense game, let alone played one for more than a few minutes. It’s a popular genre to dig on, and I was cold on it initially. My many nighttime sessions with it turned me around on the genre though as it slowly ramped up the complexity. As the complexity increased, so too did the enjoyment I garnered from squashing the always pressing enemy waves.
To me, an admitted genre layman, the game seemed very typical. Enemy waves traveled snaking pathways attempting to bust through my side of the screen. If too many got through, it’d be game over. At my disposal were four tower types and many upgrades that I could build, money permitting, at predetermined spots along the pathways. I could also summon foot soldiers and command a very powerful hero. Most of the strategy stemmed from which towers and upgrades I chose and my placement of them.
Playing through and scoring 3 stars out of 3 on stages wasn’t challenging. For the most part, it was a pushover, requiring me to restart only in the later stages. Upon completion of each stage though, two much tougher variations are unlocked. I’ve since tested my strategies out on a few of these, and my strategies need work. Much like the Mario games, most of the challenge is on the backend. Kingdom Rush kept me entertained with an always expanding fleet of defenses and it was a great fit for my Nexus 7.
Developed by Signal Studios and published by Microsoft Studios, Toy Soldiers: Cold War is a charming real-time strategy game for Xbox Live Arcade.
As the title suggests, I oversaw an army of toy soldiers fighting it out against the Soviets. I was tasked with protecting my army’s toy box from the enemy army. To do so I set a variety of weapon emplacements in predefined locations. As the oncoming army would march towards my toy box, my emplacements would take them out. If you’ve played a tower defense game before, you know what’s in store. I had to plan and often times think on my feet when picking out a weapon. Did I want a machine gun effective against infantry, or an anti-tank emplacement, etc?
I could also jump into one of these emplacements and control them directly, gaining bonuses as I got kills. At one point I was able to control a Rambo-inspired soldier who wielded a machine gun and a rocket launcher simultaneously as he spouted off one-liners. I was enamored with the management aspects of the battle however and didn’t take direct control often.
I had a blast picking out emplacements and watching the enemy army advance on my position, only to fall to my army; this was rewarding. Being able to fight as individual units, such as the helicopter, was fun as well, but it didn’t compare to watching a plan come together as I hovered above the battlefield. Besides the gameplay, I just liked the concept of the game. Fighting on top of a table and seeing the room around me created a realistic sense of scale.
I really liked Toy Soldiers: Cold War. That said, some might find the game to be too simple, but I think it’s a great entry for someone who hasn’t played many strategy games. It was also easy, but the demo was set to the easiest difficulty. Besides those gripes, I really liked Toy Soldiers: Cold War and highly recommend it.