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Kingdom Rush (Beat-The-Average) Review:
Kingdom Rush is a tower defense game set in a fantastical kingdom, threatened by goblins, orcs, ogres, and even more dangerous creatures. Just as the maps get harder and harder, your own abilities improve with heroes to command and general upgrades to unlock. Can you manage the map well enough to succeed?
Using a top-down perspective, the maps of Kingdom Rush are easy to see and design for, and building on them only takes a click or press, or two. On Android the game wants to make sure you have not accidentally bumped the screen, so it will provide a check box to confirm your build tower or upgrade command.
When you first start a game in Kingdom Rush it may seem to be somewhat simple, as you can only build one of four towers at specific plots. The melee tower will put melee units on the field to block the advance of enemies. The ranger and magic towers are similar in that they attack single enemies at distance, but their differing damage types make them more or less effective against different enemies. Artillery towers are also ranged, but have the ability to do splash damage.
Before you leave the first level, you will unlock two special abilities. One allows you to place reinforcements anywhere on the play field, while the other summons a meteor strike to devastate your enemies. After a few more levels you unlock the ability to have a hero on the field. These heroes can be positioned anywhere on the field, and as they kill enemies will level up. While I do not doubt that eventually the enemies will be strong enough to kill a hero, thus far I have not witnessed that.
As you complete a level you are awarded stars for your performance, as well as crystals. The stars can be spent on permanent upgrades, such as increased range or decreased cost. The crystals however can be spent on consumable bonuses, such as weapons or additional gold to build and upgrade towers with.
For a tower defense game, Kingdom Rush is really a nice title, in my opinion, offering initially simple gameplay that evolves into a deeper and more complex experience. I suspect I will be spending a fair amount of time playing it in the future, trying to reach the end to unlock all of the heroes and upgrades. That makes it easy (and obvious) for me to recommend it on both the PC and Android, and picking up the bundle just for it. It is a game worth beating the average for, based on my experience so far, and the potential I see that is holding my interest.