The Wonderful World of Gaming

  Just as an update. I feel that the best explanation of Aristotle’s Poetic’s is already on the interwebz. It is located here. Because of that I won’t be continuing that little ditty but I may still write on the Oresteia and the Oedipus Trilogy.

  Anywho! Today is time for something a little lighter. I want to talk about one of the many games that has actually impressed me with its design.

The first gem of this series goes by the name…

Defense Grid: The Awakening

The invasion began without warning. After a thousand years of peace, the aliens have returned. The planet’s survival depends on activating the ancient Defense Grid…
If it still functions at all.

  The concept is very simple. There is an alien race that is invading the planet, and the only way to stop them is to keep your super grid up by protecting its power nodes. The aliens come in a dozen or so types, each having its own unique talents, be they as simple as running like an asshole passed your defenses, or flying above your head, or spraying a shield across all those around them. Likewise you have something like 10 different towers you can use each with 3 levels, basic, advanced, and elite (my own nickname for them). You’ll notice a considerable difference between the green (basic) level and the red (elite) level. Likewise they look cooler as you upgrade them.

  The first level gives you a nice explanation of the basic concept of the game, you can construct towers to help defend the only access to power nodes. The multitude of towers working best in combination with one another (sometimes remarkably well), likewise the game gives you a wonderful gamble. The longer you are willing to wait between purchases and the more money you have the more that you’ll gain per second (or tick). Sometimes this gamble can cost you bad when you get overwhelmed.

  The levels are each wonderfully varied with some giving set tracks for the enemies and others giving large platforms where you can create paths with your towers. Your towers have shields around them that will deflect the aliens unless you create an impregnable wall in which the aliens will be forced to walk on through (no cheating muha).

  The combat really never lets off from the very first non-tutorial level (IE level 2). In fact whenever you feel your adrenaline feeling a bit low you can jam on your F key and cause the game to speed like lightning through wave after wave, I find myself dying sometimes because I am addicted to the key. About the only complaint I can think of during this review is that I cannot take screenshots, this may not be the game’s fault (as I’m using Windows 7) but it is definitely a downer. However actions speak louder than words or screenshots so.

You can nab the demo here.

  What I believe is most remarkable is that while this game is simple in presentation it is fantastically complicated when one is attempting to maximize their score. Likewise for an indie game the graphics are utterly beautiful, this unlike most massive budget games was not done in replacement of quality content either its a frosting upon a beautiful cake. The sound is also wonderful, the music never gets old and the sound affects are all top quality and wonderfully made.

    – Incredibly addictive game play that will likely keep you busy for hours on end.
    – Every level can be replayed multiple times with no sense of monotony.
    – High quality game for a very modest asking price.
    – Basically everything involved with the game.
    – Screenshots seem to not be supported.
    – Isn’t self aware, every time I compliment it it doesn’t respond.

  Final Grade: A – This is one of the best indie games I’ve ever played and likewise I feel it deserves a great deal more coverage than it does get. If you like the game style and enjoy the Demo the game will be nothing but good things for you. Likewise if you get it on greenhousegames (which is entirely up to you I get nothing if you do so get it wherever its more convenient for you) you’ll have all sorts of achievements to get. If you get it anywhere else feel free to post your high scores for levels on this post. Keep in mind anything unbelievable will require a screenshot that may itself require fraps or something similar ;).

  Note: This is my first game review. I’ll work on a better framework later obviously, likewise don’t expect any reviews to be this friendly after this. I feel Defense Grid is a special exception in an otherwise large vat of feces that is modern gaming. However there are at least two other Indie games that I’d like to review sometime this week.

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