Lately, there has been a mass of Castle Defense games rush to the App Store, from StickWars to the luxurious Knights Onrush and Bailout Wars. Well, the good thing is that EGO City Invasion is not like them… Sort of… and sort of is… In short, EGO City Invasion is a cross between Castle Defense, Heavy Mach and a little Worms thrown in for good measure. How is this possible? Well, read on to find how the Castle Defense concept can be twisted in new and ingenious ways.
The goal of the game is to protect your base (castle) from the invading zombie forces. To accomplish this, you are given a tank which you control by tilting your iDevice. Sounds simple? Well it is. But there is so much more.
Let’s start with the weapons. You start with just a plain old mortar canon. But as you obtain merits, you can use the in-game shop to get stuff, ranging from a couple more upgrades to the base canon to dynamite and airstrikes. And lots and lots of costumes, which don’t affect gameplay but allow you to really personalize your character sneak their way into EGO City gaming. Every weapon varies in power and cooldown time, so with some quick fingerwork, you can make really good use of the variety of the available weaponry by quickly switching it in-game.
Next, the bonuses. This, along with the wacky cartoony graphics, is what reminded me of the famous Worms series of games. You have 3 slots for these bonuses, which fall out of the sky at the start of each stage. They range from the simple stuff like upgraded firing rate or power; to a freezer, and even the powerful ram which can clear the field in a few seconds. Timely use of these bonuses is crucial to the gameplay.
Last, but not least, the scenery. While not modifiable, it provides numerous ways to add that little edge to your fight with invading armies. One thing you can do is shoot down the stalactites from the roof of the cave to impale the oncoming zombies. The other thing you could do is shoot the trees that pop up from time to time to make them light up like torches. All enemies passing the tree will also catch the flames and pass them on to their comrades which can often clear the level in a jiffy.
The enemies provide a reasonable challenge, especially in later stages. They start with weak zombie-like hordes which are destroyed by one blast from any weapon, but then again, they move quite fast and can you take by storm if you’re not careful. They can come both from the cave mouth and descend on parachutes. Next are the big and ugly zombie hulks. They are slow, but can soak up a LOT of damage. It’s usually best to take them out using the stalagtites once they arrive. Last, the aerial fatties, carried by some kind of vultures. They are both a dangerous enemy since they pack a punch and a useful weapon, since if you shoot down the bird, they fall and crush the poor sods beneath them. Often, this is a great way to take care of the oncoming hordes. The “Merits”, used to buy the extras, are only dropped by the latter two.
The interface is great. You control the tank by tilting your phone. You shoot the enemies by tapping the desired spot on the screen and can also use the jump jets to get that needed angle or the bonus supplies if they get stuck on the ledge. The graphics are a treat and have a very Worms-like feel to them. I would also note that the difficulty level is very well thought out, with the casual player feeling ok at the medium one even with the basic mortar, while requiring quite some skill at the high difficulty even with the full arsenal.
You know, when I was offered the opportunity to review EGO City Invasion, the first thing I did is check out their website. And I was quite confused to find that EGO City is actually something like a flash version of Second Life, a virtual world to communicate, flirt, play some brain twisters or something like a light fighting game. All of this was in no way connected with the iPhone. And thankfully, the only thing they have in common are “Merits”, obtained in the game and usable as currency in both the internal shop and at the EGO City online shop. But it’s worth registering anyway since you get a free bonus hero unlocked. And the online highscores and Facebook connect are also always a plus.
In short, Punch Entertainment, Inc. have made of the most delicious and addictive twists on Castle Defence genre I have ever seen. I haven’t had so much pure fun with a game for quite some time and at just $0.99 it’s a steal. I would love to see more enemies and maybe something like a campaign mode, but even in its current state, I would recommend this game to any Worms fan searching for a more casual experience for that quickie while he’s waiting in the queue.
|Title:||EGO City Invasion||Developer:||Punch Entertainment, Inc.|
|Price:||$0.99||App Size:||9.1 MB|