All Tower Defense titles are not created equal; or so I came to realize only two levels in while playing the curiously unique and highly complex new Tower Defense game, Human Defense, by Heliceum. For the most part, I love all flavors of TD’s and have also come to realize that they usually all bear a similar formula; decide which tower to place where, start the onslaught, sit back, and for the most part (save tower upgrades of course) let the game do the rest. Not with Human Defense.
The newest cub to the genre has you defending the body’s organs, (heart, muscle, lungs, kidneys) against, well, what else, viruses! The domain for the frolic is done via astounding graphics of preset veins and unalterable tower locations, as well as an even deeper backdrop of the entertainments’ hosts lining up to get ready for the next wave. The overall atmosphere and music is somewhat cartoonish which only adds to the novelty of the game, allowing the user to focus on the objective at hand concretely. The presentation was done really well on every aspect.
This Universal game is played in portrait mode with the latter levels providing a scroll bar for ease of navigation, without zoom capabilities. The adventure includes the customary three-star rating system; something I struggled with on nearly every level.
Unlike other TD’s, to build and upgrade towers, your resources (carbohydrates and proteins of course!) travel down the same paths as the enemy and are supplied in parallel with the attackers.
Yes, this makes the game very fast-paced. Want more? Try throwing in path switches and alternate routes, as you must not only build and upgrade your towers, but also administer the same asset’s to the body and constantly monitor it’s health via on screen watchdogs. Even on the final waves of most every TD game I have played, I have never felt the same sense of urgency as I have with Human Defense from the very first wave; imagine how I felt with the final wave! When upgrading your towers, you have to manage your resources precisely as immediately upon upgrade selection, the tower is rendered useless until all supplies have entered the tower.
Considering the pre-determined, and somewhat limited tower placements, there is quite a high puzzle factor with HD, something I have never experienced to such an extent with other Tower Defense titles. It really requires the enthusiast to examine and strategize even before hitting ‘Play’. Upon level completion, you will receive coins which are used to purchase one-time use artillery items (tower power, organs energy needs.)
There are IAP options as well, but I did not feel the need to purchase any (although, I also contended with each level tooth and nail to just finish them, let alone get three stars!) The entertainment doesn’t stop there as included within the diversion is a ‘Lab’ section with quick write-ups on the organs and their functions; kind of a mini encyclopedia with a Human Defense spin; pretty cool. There is also a secondary game mode, Emergency mode, which is similar to Endless.
Human Defense is definitely the most engaging Tower Defense title I have come across with each level requiring you to highly strategize and during every minute of gameplay, not let your guard down, not even for a split second. It is not for the casual, relaxing, watch the towers do their stuff consumer. Although, if you want one of the more complex and engaging Tower Defense titles on the AppStore, you may just find what you’re looking for here.