It seems in the last few years the genre of Tower Defense has been milked for almost all it’s worth. From the traditional ports of well known Flash titles on the App Store to some quite interesting and original ones developed specifically for the platform, you can find almost anything out there. The latest addition to jump into the fray is Vampire Rush – an original blend of Hero and TD gameplays.
As I noted in my preamble, Vampire Rush is a well-balanced blend of Tower and Hero defense genres. As usual, the story doesn’t offer any revelations, putting you in the shoes of the famous Van-Helsing, seeking demise of his arch-nemesis, Dracula.
The developers managed to strike almost a perfect balance between action and TD gameplay. The basic idea is the same – hordes of enemies come in waves trying to get through the gates, which you have to defend. To stop them you have two options: either get up close and personal and dispatch them by using Van-Helsing’s melee weaponry, or deploy towers, which do an adequate job of returning the undead back to where they came from as well. But to survive the enemy onslaught you’ll have to use both methods cleverly.
The up close and personal approach is where you’ll spend most of your time, chasing after the undead to show them who’s boss. And while running around the level, make sure to pay attention to the scenery as bonus chests randomly appear that can make your life a hell of a lot easier. The money earned for dutifully exterminating the baddies can be spent either on upgrades of skills and attributes of your protagonist or placing fixed defenses. Speaking of which – make sure to make good use of them, as you certainly won’t be able to be in all places at once. The towers don’t blow your mind with variety, but offer a decent selection of the traditional classes – the quick and weak attacker, the mass effect, the slowing and the multiple-strike tower, each with 3 levels of upgrades.
Graphically Vampire Rush looks great, with full support for the Retina display, rich backgrounds, reasonable detailed models and nice visual effects. What I was a bit disappointed with were the selection of enemies, of which only a handful of types exist and as you get farther in the game, the units simply change colors as they become tougher. The controls work quite well, with a virtual stick and buttons for moving your protagonist and easy to use slide-out panels for skills and towers, along with a handy map illustrating the movements of the undead.
Regardless of your stance on Tower Defense games or the vampire exploitation, Vampire Rush is definitely worth your attention. It brings fresh gameplay to the genre that has been stale for the last year or so and backs it up with excellent graphics and intuitive interface. The minor flaws of the limited variety of enemies and a relatively short campaign are completely offset by the addictive and extremely well balanced gameplay.
Note: This review of Vampire Rush is based on the iPhone version. The iPad version can be found here on the App Store (currently $0.99)
With this I declare Vampire Rush officially touched!
|Title:||Vampire Rush||Developer:||Chillingo Ltd|
|Reviewed Ver:||1.0||Min OS Req:||4.0|