By – Carlin Au

Kingdom Rush He1

Every morning, I always have 30 minutes to spare before class starts.  There’s a choice I have to make: I could check Reddit, Facebook, or email.  Now, I have a fourth – I could play Kingdom Rush.

In all seriousness, Kingdom Rush is a great game when you want to pass time on your daily commute or in between classes.  Being a tower defense game, Kingdom Rush is pretty easy to pick up.  The controls are relatively simple, being mostly a standard point and click game.  The only other controls that are necessary to know are “1” and “2” for abilities and Spacebar for Hero movement.  Combined with effective use of the Abilities, Heroes are pretty awesome due to their ability to move anywhere on the battlefield.  There are many different types of heroes, each with their own skillsets and abilities.

Some can give defensive bonuses to nearby units, while others can dish out tons of damage with a large warhammer.  The Abilities are pretty limited because there only two of them: the meteor strike and peasant reinforcements.  Peasant reinforcements can hold off a few of the enemies to take some of the pressure off of your towers.  If the enemies ever clump up, you can drop some meteors on them to do area of effect damage.  However, the abilities become less effective in the later levels if you don’t upgrade them.

Kingdom Rush

After completing a level, Kingdom Rush awards the player with stars based on how well they did.  This adds a bit of replayability to Kingdom Rush; if you didn’t get the most stars possible last time, you can always try again to get that last star. Stars are important because they give upgrade points for improving towers or abilities.  Improving the meteor strike or peasant reinforcements is a good idea, and their upgrades have a large range of extra buffs.  Some of them include getting extra meteors in the meteor strike or giving the peasants more health.  Towers can get more damage, more range, or faster attack speed, depending on which tower you’re upgrading.

Kingdom Rush has four types of towers: the Barracks, the Mage, the Archers, and the Artillery.  The Barracks produces foot soldiers that stay around the tower to fend off against the invading forces; they’re your first and last line of defense. The Archers will shoot arrows at incoming enemies at a relatively fast fire rate; they don’t deal as much damage as the Mages, but they easily support the foot soldiers when they’re nearby.  The Mage tower doesn’t have the range or the fire rate of the Archers, but they can pierce armor with magic.  The Artillery fires large shells at incoming enemies, dealing area of effect damage which is great when your foot soldiers are forcing the enemies to clump up as there is no friendly fire in the game.

Part of the strategy in Kingdom Rush is being able to recognize where the choke points are and building the towers to account for those points.  For example, I might choose to put Archers in front and place Artillery behind my Barracks.  The Archers would weaken the enemies before they get to the Barracks, but if the foot soldiers don’t kill them, the Artillery will.  This is my personal strategy, but someone else may make use of the Mages to support the soldiers while using Archers and Artillery to cover the backend and clean up any remaining resistance.  But you don’t have to do either one of these strategies; Kingdom Rush lets you figure out which towers you like more and build around what you prefer doing.

Kingdom Rush

Conclusion – Is It Worth Your Money?

If you want something to kill time during your commute, before classes or something to pass time in general, Kingdom Rush is a great game for that.  It was only repetitive because I liked sticking with my playstyle rather than trying to change up my strategy.  All the towers have their own role and can present some interesting mixes.  Using the abilities and heroes effectively makes the game more interesting and entertaining.  Kingdom Rush is a solid tower defense game that has character and interesting gameplay mechanics which promotes interactivity.

Kingdom Rush Technical Summary:

Kingdom Rush

  • Time Played – 7 Hours
  • Widescreen Support – Yes
  • Resolution Played – 1200×800, 1368×768
  • Windowed Mode – Yes
  • FOV Slider – N/A
  • 5.1 Audio Support – No
  • Bugs/Crashes Encountered – None
  • Control Scheme – Mouse and Keyboard
  • DRM – Steam
  • System Specs – AMD Phenom II X4 955, Radeon HD 6870, 12 GB RAM
  • Game Acquisition Method – Review Copy
  • Availability – Steam
  • Demo – None
  • Saved Game Location – \SteamApps\common\Kingdom Rush
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