When I play tower defence games I look for a variety of towers, places to put them an a detailed upgrade tree. U.F.O. K.O. Tower Defense only takes into account one of these factors and focuses heavily on tower placement. As a result of its restrictive way of playing, I struggled to get enjoyment out of it. If you enjoy having to balance only 3 or 4 towers per level and having their placement be key though, you’ll get more enjoyment out of it than I did.
The game has 20 levels set up like giant mazes of S, U and C bends for UFO craft to travel down. Late in the game you’ll have to deal with multiple entry points but they all fly towards a red portal. You have 10 health points and each hit to that red portal will cost you one. To stop the enemies you have six towers and two special moves. These are all your standard fair although the laser and turret ones are the best towers for the job and I often ignored the other four.
This is because money is at a huge premium. Towers are expensive and the UFO’s don’t drop enough cash to give you options. This means each level initially begins like a trial and error exercise to see where you should place one or two towers to cover enough of your land. This is key as they don’t have a large influence and annoyingly, they’ll prioritise the enemy closest to them. Over time you’ll be able to place more towers down but usually it’ll be mid or late game before you get more than 4 towers per level. This feels odd as the levels are vast but the enemies are like mini tanks. This means the towers don’t feel too efficient and often you are looking for coverage rather than effectiveness to survive.
Towers can be upgraded. Once. This gives them stronger but it doesn’t give you much more coverage but it generally pays to upgrade towers just as much as buying new ones. It all depends on where you’ve put them. More often than not you’ll be tempted to place towers next to each other but they end up doing tiny damage to everyone as they pass by rather than being able to focus on one specific thing. Of course, that means no money for killing them and then its game over. The whole thing feels frustrating and unbalanced.
It also isn’t too pretty. Some UFO’s look stretched out in a weird way and the menu screen looks like a splash screen from a game maker in 1995. The controls are awkward too – mouse plus WASD. The levels feel too big for the amount of towers you are allowed to place down and the difficulty seems to be ‘choose the right area’ rather than beat the enemies. All too often you are left waiting for the enemies to reach the one section you’ve been able to place towers and then that’s it all over.
As you can tell, I found U.F.O. K.O. Tower Defense frustrating and dull. My eyes have been opened playing MACE Tower Defence on PS4. For £1.79, I have a just as ugly looking but much more detailed strategy game that you can get stuck into. Here, I just felt like I was restricted at every turn and not in a good challenging way. Sorry to say it, but I’m not a fan at all.
Review copy provided by the developer.
U.F.O. K.O. Tower Defense
Undercooked, restrictive and uninspiring to play. When the best bit about the game is the warning screen saying this game might offend aliens, you know you're in trouble.
Lots of places to put your towers which means you'll likely need to replay levels to work out a decent strategy.
Stingy with currency making the game feel too restrictive.
Levels are too big for what you are able to actually do - too much down time.
Not enough towers, abilities, enemies or levels.
Often the levels end just when its getting into a rhythm and you start making money.
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