Sunday, January 09, 2011

Dungeon Defenders successfully melds tower defense with action-RPG in this Unreal-powered adventure

Platform: Android

5 out of 5


Merging the popular tower defense and action-RPG gaming genres into a wildly fun, deep gaming experience.

Runs on the latest Android devices only (OS 2.1, 512MB RAM, 800MHZ processor, OpenGL ES 2.0), and requires a 600MB download of graphics to your SD card.

Alternates between phases of turret placement and combat via a full 3D gaming environment powered by the Unreal Engine.

Dungeon Defenders joins Infinity Blade (iOS) as yet another mobile game employing the amazing Unreal Engine, successfully merging the popular tower defense and action-RPG gaming genres into a wildly fun, deep gaming experience that’s oozes quality from every pixel.

Read all of my Apple iPad and Google Android application reviews at Appolicious and Yahoo! Tech.

The Dungeons of Etheria (eight in all) and their magical crystals need defending from those would destroy them. Traditional turret defense games provide you with an overhead view of a gamefield, and send never-ending waves of enemies across it to face your turrets. Dungeon Defenders, instead, alternates players between phases of turret placement and combat in a full, “on the ground” 3D environment.

You’ll need to run to map locations to place turrets, then tap your dungeon crystal to unleash a wave of baddies. While your turrets do their worst, you can run to each entry point with your warrior (melee) or wizard (magic) and engage the enemy directly. This elevates the entire experience to a whole new level, and I’m glad to say the game perfectly melds these once-separate game types.

Along the way you’ll earn more mana to place additional towers, be able to upgrade your defenses, pick up items to equip on your character, and more. The addition of boss battles will challenge you to confront these huge enemies in different ways. A full-on frontal attack is, of course, not the best course of action in all cases.

Both local and online play with up to four players is available, allowing you to team up to destroy the crystal-loving horde.

Pro tip: Each entry way is clearly marked with how many baddies (and which type) will come through the door next. Be sure to place your turrets near these active portals only, and use the map overlay to more easily navigate.

Owners of older Android devices are, unfortunately, left out of this experience. Your phone will need to have an 800MHZ or faster processor, offer 512MB of memory (RAM), run OS 2.1 or newer, have a graphics processor that can handle OpenGL ES 2.0, and you’ll need 600MB of room to store graphic files in your SD card.

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