War is Hell, even for toys. There are many puzzle-strategy games in the market these days, especially if you consider the mobile. So can Circle Entertainment bring anything new to the table with their toy-tastic battle set at the backdrop of World War I? Test your skills as a military leader by organising your troops in preparation for the latest attack on your base. Should Toy Defense infiltrate your 3DS collection or does it deserve a dishonorable discharge?
The setup is easy as you start with a minimal amount of money which allows you to purchase rifle men to defend enemy lines. You then gain more money for every enemy killed. This is the whole premise of the game with enemies becoming stronger over time with additional support like wind-up Tanks thrown in to the mix. It may be simple and unoriginal but it works and it works well.
One great feature of Toy Defense that you will be constantly tinkering with are the pause and fast forward buttons. These two can be the most influential, determining the fate of your troops, before a round begins you can prepare the battlefield for as long as want. No time limit is both a positive and negative due to never feeling rushed into preparing your platoon meaning I never felt panicked about the next round. Adding a timer would increase the pressure making your decisions even more impactful. It would also represent what it was like to act under immense amounts of pressure and make the game seem a bit more real. Saying that if you tire of waiting for the obvious outcome of the round choosing the fast-forward button helps make play less stale.
Cheerful music upon arrival is misleading for a war game, even if it is toys. Being this on a Nintendo handheld I thought it was delightful and fitted the experience perfectly. This opening sound made me expected more throughout although this is not the case as during gameplay the only music heard are the weapons fired and yells of pain from soldiers. I would have much preferred more to seep into the backdrop of gameplay as I battled through the many battalions forced upon myself.
Comprising of 72 missions the length is not the problem; the problem lies with only 3 arenas for battles to take place. This with play not really changing up after the first five levels makes the levels seem very similar. Yes the difficulty increases and more enemy variations advance on you, but the repetitive nature sets in possibly a bit too fast. I adored the four historically accurate weapons with 24 upgrades, I just wish there was more. You can obtain all four within an hour making the core experience fizzle out. What you have to consider is do you get bang for your buck because with the game released at a very affordable price the quality might be questionable. Well there is certainly nothing to fear as for the low price, the quality is tremendous value.
The addition of 16 achievements is a nice touch and is a nod to what Nintendo must start including more of. This of all things made me what to keep playing and progress further. I wasn’t interested about my toy soldiers or castle; I just wanted to complete the achievement list.
Toy Defense offers a great take on puzzle-strategy with terrific components like pause and fast-forward that keep the momentum going. The core gameplay factor itself is sadly as typical as you can get making the experience last a bit less than you would hope, yet the addictive achievement list makes you want to jump straight back into the front line.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Nintendo 3DS code was provided to Brash Games for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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