|Now available on Steam|
Tower defence games are a dime a dozen these days, as they’re a perfect fit for touch controlled games. The creatively name Shad’O, from the small French indie developer Okugi Studios, has opted to not stick with the smartphone/tablet platforms with their title, bringing their creative take on the genre to another well-fitting venue instead: PC/Steam.
|Another Christmas nightmare?|
Like the fog of war in the Command and Conquer games of old, Shad’O brings this idea into light, err… darkness in the popular tower defence gene of today. Each map is covered in a fog of pure black, with one end housing a portal spawning the shadowy creatures and the other holds the desired memory they want to selfishly take from young William. Each map finds a small patch of light that you can place a few luminous miners upon to gain the needed mana to start building your defensive arsenal to combat against the waves of attacking creatures. Placing defensive units here is essentially done in the same generic fashion that you’ve likely become accustomed to, as you’ll strategically place as many units possible to fight off the progressively strengthening waves of enemies. What’s unique here though, is how the shroud of darkness plays to the game’s advantage. You can only place your light companions in areas that can be seen and with each unit placed the darkness is pushed back a bit further – revealing the map hidden beneath. As the maps get continually larger and paths begin to branch, tension levels build, seeing how you never know where the enemies might appear from beneath its black veil next.
|Castin’ a spell|
While the striking aesthetics and outlandish storyline are indeed great aspects of Shad’O, they can’t completely cover-up the fact that the nature of the gameplay quickly becomes repetitive and is best taken in short doses. The game is also quite taxing on your hardware and requires a relatively high-end PC to properly run, or you’ll face a large amount of slowdown and stuttering, even on the lowest settings. All in all though, Shad’O is a nice change of pace from the typical tower defence game and one that fans of the genre should try if they’ve got a capable PC to do so with.