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IS Defense (PC) artwork

IS Defense (PC) review

"Not something you'd spend all day on but has its place."

If you can ignore the racist undertones (And the not-so-subtle actual racism in Steam reviews) for a moment and you’ll realize that they’re mostly just the same stock enemies as anything else over time. Germans, Russians, Koreans, whatever enemy the US has at any given moment are usually fair game in, uh, games.

What we have here is basically an arcade shooter. It is a sort of tower defense where you act as a lone tower with a few abilities at your command, as well as an RPG element with a talent tree that will help health regeneration, give troops more health, and more rocket ammo. There’s a lot more but that’s just an example.

You start with a beach level where you have to kill 2,000 terrorists. Sounds like a lot, and I died only 300 enemies in… the first time. Turns out all the experience and talents you earn are cumulative. When I ‘failed’ the second time It added my ~700 kills to the previous 300 and then I was at ~1000 or so into unlocking the second map.

You have several weapons in your arsenal including five different active abilities that “Charge up” as you kill enemies. The level 1 is a supply drop and the level 2 summons a few ground troops that I find are actually extremely helpful. After summoning about three groups of them I pushed fairly far into one game.

I will admit, the game feels good. I can understand how some people may find it boring but I find the explosions satisfying and I like watching the evolution from a peaceful beachfront to a horrifying warzone.

The game has more depth than readily apparent. There’s a sort of resource management to a degree. The skills you get work in tiers. For example, if I used the Tier 3 ability (Artillery bombardment), That bar would tank down to the first tier ability (The supply drop). The more you save, the more powerful supports you receive, culminating on an attack chopper that sticks around for a couple minutes to give you some much needed breathing room.

The supply drops don’t go away when they drop, you have to shoot the large boxes to benefit from them. So if the support drops a health, you can leave it there for emergencies. So you have to balance your support out; Sometimes I call for a supply drop but don’t do anything with the health boxes it drops until later on.

You also have to worry about suicide bombers so you can’t just ignore all the ground troopers and focus on vehicles.

The whole game is a unique balancing act of quick decision making “Should I do this… or this?” This is impressive for very simple mechanics.

Not something you’d spend all day on but it’s a neat little sprint to see just how far you can get, and if you can beat your last high score (Which you probably can considering you probably have a couple new skills in your arsenal).


Zydrate's avatar
Community review by Zydrate (July 02, 2017)

Zydrate is most active on Steam and Tumblr.

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