Back with another first impression, Nathan took the time to play a little game called Mission Defence. Created completely by Mark Smith as his first title, Mission Defence aims to be an enjoyable experience and set itself apart from others in the genre. With that being said, the game is still in Beta but I figured I’d give my two cents. Below My Thoughts are a brief description of Mission Defence, a features list, a few screenshots and a trailer. As always, all the needed links are further down the article.
Mission Defence is exactly what it aims to be: a free tower defense game that is playable via web browser. Your main goal is to defend your base. An added feature is that your base has 3 abilities, of which I won’t spoil, but they do come in handy. Mission Defence features a few standard towers (normal shooting, missile, electricity) and a few not as common (healing, photon, laser). Each turret has their own range, damage, health, and armor. Of course, you can always upgrade these towers to make them even more powerful. Upgrades include: Power/Damage, Shields/Armor, Health, and Range. There are even special upgrades for some towers to change how they work.
The first thing I always notice about a game are the graphics, or aesthetics if you will. The art style of Mission Defence is simple and doesn’t burn your eyes while playing, but it doesn’t exactly stand out from other tower defense games.
Second on the list of things I notice is the audio. Mission Defence has standard background music and firing/collision noises, but again, doesn’t stand out against the competition. It could definitely use some more work. The background music can even get repetitive at times.
Also, for all you developers out there, please consider adding volume sliders to your game. Simple and, in my opinion, always great to see.
When I first dove into Mission Defence, I couldn’t help but notice there wasn’t a tutorial of any sort. Nothing in-game to explain what was going on. There was just me, my base, and a timer that was counting down to the first wave. Not entirely an issue for those that have played a tower defense game before, but it doesn’t hurt to explain a few things, namely the abilities of your base (I didn’t find out I even had these until my second attempt). Every tower, upgrade, and ability has a tool-tip, but a simple overlay before the battle wouldn’t hurt. Note: There is a Game Guide that will help you if you decide to play. (Links below)
Mission Defence is still in Beta. I want to emphasize that as much as possible. All of the issues above were not game-breaking at all. Merely pointing out my thoughts and giving some suggestions. The real problems I had are next.
One of the main problems I had with Mission Defence were the randomly placed mushrooms/foliage. They had collision boxes so turrets were not able to fire past them, but flying enemies could get over them. This really, really hindered the distance that even the long-range turrets could shoot. I believe the game definitely needs some tweaking here. Personally, I think the laser and missile turret should at least be able to fire over them. Sure, it adds some challenge to the game and makes you re-think your turret placement, but there should be some exceptions to what can shoot past them. While we’re still on the topic of the foliage, at one point a ground monsters even got stuck in-between two mushrooms. He walked back and forth for almost two waves until his AI finally decided to head towards my towers.
I also had a few lag issues. Not because of my computer, but just some random freezing of the game. It could be that Mission Defence isn’t fully optimized yet, but I felt the need to point it out. Just be ready in-case wave skips and you’re either dead or on the next wave.
My last and final problem was the sudden spike in difficulty. As you can see from the image below, I made it to wave 22. The mini-boss was accompanied by a few large spiders, and I thought, “I’ve dealt with these before. No problemo.” Well, I was wrong. I had multiple towers upgraded completely, each with their own healing tower, which were also upgraded. That one boss and a few spiders demolished everything I had within 20 seconds. A bit discouraging, but it happened. Such are the woes of tower defense games.
Not bad eh?
Overall, Mission Defence is a fun, challenging, albeit buggy, tower defense game. I definitely enjoyed playing it despite the issues I had. I understand the game is in Beta and will more than likely improve over time. I look forward to playing it again.
I would recommend trying this game at least once, and even giving the developer some feedback if at all possible.
If you’re not that into tower defense games, I’d say give it a shot anyway. You could always try to beat my score and have bragging rights. That is, until I beat your score.
About Mission Defence
It is the year 2530 and Earths natural resources are running out. In a desperate attempt to find new resources the world government sent scouting ships into space to find new planets. One such scout has arrived at a new planet and has discovered large quantities of resources. Soon after setting up a small base camp on the planets surface it was attacked by a huge insect. The insect was killed but not before it damaged one of the rockets thrusters. Taking off is now out of the question, a distress signal has been sent but help will take some time to arrive. The mission is equipped with designs for defensive structures. Building these might be the only hope for survival…
- 6 different buildable structures
- 6 different enemy attackers
- Boss Waves
- Upgrades for all towers
- Special upgrades for towers which alter how they work
- Highscore system
- 3 difficulty levels, easy, medium and hard