Defense Zone 2 HD for Android Review

Type of app: Tower Defense Strategy Game
Platform/where to buy: Android (phone & tablet); available in the Google Play Store

Developer: Artem Kotov

The creators of Defense Zone, a popular Tower Defense game with beautiful graphics and finely balanced levels, today announced the release of Defense Zone 2 HD. The new version offers even more detailed and impressive visuals, three more weapons and 13 levels of absorbing gameplay.

Defense Zone was originally developed as a better alternative to traditional Tower Defense games with unbalanced difficulty settings and confused interface. Highly appreciated by Tower Defense fans, Defense Zone required strategic thinking, as there was no superweapon, and only smart combinations of turrets could help the player win. The game featured a fine balance of resources, weapon power, number of enemy units and their vitality. Many types of beautiful landscapes and realistic visual effects greatly contributed to the game´s popularity.

The new version of Defense Zone has not suffered any radical changes: it is mostly the same Defense Zone, but deeper and richer. The new features enhance the player´s experience, making the gameplay even more absorbing. For example, the backdrops are more detailed and picturesque, enemy units and the player´s towers are redesigned and cast shadows, and the game soundtrack consists of 12 epic compositions. As for the weaponry, Defense Zone 2 HD offers two more turrets and an airstrike, which can be effectively used in strategic defense combinations. As in the previous version, all weapons have different firepower, rate of fire, firing range, blast radius and price.

Defense Zone 2 HD is available in two versions: Full and Light. The Full version features 13 engaging levels with more action and strategic challenges. The Light version is free of charge and offers 3 levels. Four languages are supported: English, Russian, French and German. Defense Zone 2 HD is compatible with Android 2.3 and higher.

Major features: The basic gameplay mechanic of Tower Defense is to build towers of different types along the path of travel for your enemies in order to keep them from reaching your base. You have a health rating associated with how many enemies pass rather than their relative strength – so you lose one health whether a minion or a boss gets through.

Each enemy type has strengths and weaknesses which you exploit by mixing up your tower arrangements. You want to be sure that you are constantly damaging enemies, and that you have adequate ‘kill zones’ to guard against multiples of the same enemy. It might seem adequate to just throw towers all over the place, but that is the recipe for failure. You will find yourself weakly defended and without the space or money to build new towers.

Building and upgrading towers costs money, which you earn by defeating enemies. As you would expect, lower-level enemies earn you less cash than higher-level enemies, though a wave of low-level foes can do some real damage if you focus only on the strongest opponent. That is actually something you control – you can have towers set to target the nearest enemy (default), or the strongest or weakest enemy. As I said, that is all part of developing an approach to defeating levels. You get 13 areas, 3 difficulty settings, and a bunch of tower and enemy types.

Ease of use/Overall performance: I love tower defense games and have for a very long time, and so was THRILLED when they returned to fashion several years back. In fact, a full four years ago “I noted as I started Defense Grid: The Awakening that I had recently played Lock’s Quest on the DS as well as TapDefense for the iPhone.” Then we got into Plants vs. Zombies and Fieldrunners and the genre exploded in popularity. However, for more ‘war game’ related fans of the genre, those games lack some of the depth and balance (and challenge) of more traditional entries. For all of us, Defense Zone 2 HD delivers.

I bought and played this on the Samsung Galaxy SIII without any issues at all, and also confirmed that it worked great on the Google Nexus 7 tablet. Performance is excellent even with the HD graphics.

Would use again/recommend?: Absolutely! For me, the ultimate recommendation is when I get to try out a ‘Lite’ version and before I know it I have bought the full version! I had intended to just do a press release post … but then I played, bought, and played and played and finished. At that point I knew this was a must-have for genre fans.

Suggested changes/wish list for updates: A bit more of a tutorial for the first mission would be a nice addition for those new to the game/genre.

Price: $2.99 (Lite version here)

Here is the trailer:

Special thanks to US Cellular for the Samsung Galaxy S III used in this review!

Categories: Gaming, Reviews

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