Review: Monster Trouble HD (iPad)

3 mins read

I’m not sure when the real time strategy genre expanded to include tower defence games, but that’s apparently what happened, because the promotional material of Monster Trouble claims on numerous occasions that it is a “RTS” game.

Don’t be fooled though, it’s not. What it is is a true tower defence game, with a bright and colourful fantasy setting, and some half heated attempts at humour. It doesn’t always work, but in HD on the iPad, it’s a pleasant enough experience.

It’s a pretty game. Unfortunately, its also of a lower quality than other tower defence games

The basic plot line is this – monsters attacking, villagers defending. Seriously, that’s it. There’s some attempts to throw in some “funny” dialogue, but it misfires more than it hits. The tower defence genre is starting to evolve to feature some interesting stories and settings, so a traditional fantasy setting is neither breaking new ground, nor is it comfortable enough in being a cliche for it to click with its audience.

Monster Trouble doesn’t do a great job in differentiating itself on the battle field, either. You’ll be building a variety of towers to beat back wave after wave of single minded enemies. The maps are actually quite large, and enemies can spawn from quite number of different places on each map, which means placing towers to cover all possible angles of attack takes some work.

The one point of difference for this game is that building towers in itself isn’t enough – you’ll also need to build units to man those towers. While in concept this opens up a level of customisation that other tower defence games can’t offer, in execution it doesn’t do a whole lot for changing up the gameplay.

That said, if you like difficult games, this will keep you busy

There’s a wide variety of maps to cover, but unfortunately there’s a limited number of gameplay modes. You’re mostly going to spending your time in the campaign mode. There’s Game Center integration, but only for leaderboards. While there are no achievements is mind boggling.

The difficulty level is also way too high, even on the easy settings. Finding a good balance between accessible, and difficult, is an important element for Tower Defence game, and here it’s skewed in the wrong direction entirely.

Really, the only thing this game gets right is the visuals. It’s a gorgeous looking game in HD, with bright, charming toon maps, and cute, detailed characters.

The tower defence genre is oversaturated now, and we really don’t need more entrants that are fundamentally uninteresting. Especially when they make the claim that they are something they are not. It’s not a RTS.

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