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Boss Wave: Defender's Quest Gold, Steam Release

Oh no! The zombies are coming in easily defineable channels of right-angled marching!

It’s time for my regularly scheduled Defender’s Quest plug: Defender’s Quest is a disarmingly low-fi tower defense/rpg hybrid adventure released last year which immediately excelled due to its easy charm and unending efforts to make the player happy. Speaking of, the previously announced free-for-existing-customers Gold Edition has just released, and boy oh boy is it a doozy. The chaps at Fortress of Doors just love to spoil their fans, and if you haven’t yet tried it, now’s the perfect time because it’s just become bigger and better than ever.

The actual game has remained as accessible and worryingly moresome as ever, with just a few tweaks to make it even more entertaining. As a quick introduction, you lead a merry band of adventurers on a surprisingly interesting story-driven quest across a diseased and cursed land, fighting the enemy through your magical ability to Tower Defense (each character in the group representing a tower) while leveling up your party in an RPG metagame, replete with divergent skill trees and item equipping, all hung around an eminently customisable experience that you can tailor to your own petty whims and thoughts on difficulty.

It’s fantastic, is what I’m saying, and it remains the best Tower Defense game I’ve played. Have a gander at mine and Adam’s thoughts of the previous edition for a better idea, but be quick about it! The new stuff is coming thick and fast like a late-game horde:

New Game+ mode!
7 new sidequests!
Lots of new cutscenes! (for the sidequests)
8 bonus battles!
8 magic books for Azra!
Unique item upgrades, with special powers!
Re-balanced spells that grow with Azra’s level!
Advanced targeting logic for defenders!
New enemy types!
New bosses!
Mod support!
Tons of bugfixes!
Tons of balance tweaks!
Preview enemy stats before battle!
Detailed enemy and status effect info in battle!

There’s a detailed explanation of all the new features on the Fortress of Doors blog by Lead Developer Lars Doucet.

So it’s not just new stuff – fantastically, Fortress of Doors fixed things I didn’t even realise were broken, such as the targeting logic for your Towers. Here’s one of the new features: “CHEAP: If the current target can be killed outright with a cheaper attack, use that instead of the best one. This lets you avoid overkill.” I mean, I certainly never thought I’d be getting excited over targeting systems in a Tower Defense game, but for someone who is apparently completely obsessed with efficient horde destruction this is the sort of thing that gets me hard. Factor in the newly added ability to save targeting configurations for individual Towers so you don’t have to fiddle with them every time you deploy so you can further create a discrete army of Towers specced for different situations and, well, I’m going to have to take a moment.

I’ve only dreamed about this fidelity of control. It’s everything you could possibly want from a Tower Defense game. Well, I mean, if you’re as mad as me – the difficulty level scales such that you don’t have to worry about things like targeting logic at all, if that’s your thing (you weirdo). But it’s there if you want it, which is the entire ethos of the game. It’s also coming to Steam (no set date yet), so then you’ll have no excuse.

Alright, I’m going to try and defeat that bastard god-sheep once and for all.

Defender’s Quest Gold is currently on sale direct from the developers for a piddling £6.44, and you can also try the large demo, updated to Gold version, on their website. Clear your lunchtime plans.

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Andrew Smee

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