Saturday, 3 October 2015

Toy Soldiers 2 - Late Review

Toy Soldiers is a prime example of why the XBLA program (and Indie games) are good for the industry.

Full disclosure: We acquired Toy Soldiers: Cold War Via Games with Gold.

Toy Soldiers: Cold War is an hybrid title - A tower Defence game with Third person shooter elements combining strategic thinking and action gameplay. The original Toy Soldiers was set in World War 1 but the sequel has skipped the expect WW2 era and jumped to the 80's. Complete with Top Gun styled Music, 80's action movie references and iconic 80's memorabilia littering the levels.

3rd Person Tower Defender
It's hybrid nature is fantastic. At any time you can assume control of any of your turrets, which is a great feature seeing as it basicly fixes the issues I have with tower defence games. Most TD games either have me waiting for the cannon fodder to earn me enough to build the next tower or having built a good system have to stand back and watch the AI do foolish things like using anti armour against troops as the tanks roll by unharmed. Two issues that disappear when you can control the turrets yourself.

You place towers on special areas around the map there are 6 towers Machine Gun, Anti tank, Mortar, Makeshift, Anti Air, Artillery. Each of the towers have their unique uses. combined with the limited placement sites you cant just spam AT turrets or Machine guns and hope for the best. The Anti Air and Artillery require larger placements and so are limited to a few spaces per map increasing the need for forward thinking. Towers can be upgraded that improve their functions and at their highest levels allow you to damage thing they wouldn't E.G. A upgraded machine gun gets an secondary grenade launcher that can do damage to tanks, While it's not as effective as an Anti Tank weapon it dose help out on the larger enemy types.  

There are also special units that only work with you in control. There are various Tanks, Helicopters and Jets, all with different on-board weaponry. These vehicles are free to move around and attack enemies as long as you have the battery power. running low on power? either pick up some spare batteries or park on the charging plate. They are powerful and an enjoyable change of pace. They however pale in comparison to the Commando unit. Unlocked via the games combo system. A powerful unit who wields an RPG in one hand and an LMG in the other. He spews Action movie one-liners like a drunken Rambo impersonator and always brings a smile to the face when used

Toy Story
Almost everything in this game is in fact a toy and all the battles take place on scale model environments on a table top. Little details elude to the fact everything is a toy, a wind up key here or an battery there, even summoning the powerful commando who comes in his own little action figure box . Littering the battlefield are 'full sized' items like playing guards, aviator sun glasses and Rubix cubes. Outside the battlefield is an normal room so you can see desk lamps and wall paper. Its not original but its rather uncommon enough in games to make this feel fun and refreshing. The toy aspect really comes into play against the bosses which can range from flying aircraft carriers to giant plane-tank hybrids that also carries smaller tanks with in

Ways To Game
Toy Soldiers features an Campaign mode, Survival mode, Challenges and VS mode. All modes support local/online multiplayer, Leaderboards and challenges. Co-op is pretty much required on higher difficulties which makes it weird that you have to access level select to invite another player (online or off). Co-op is a lot of fun, both players have free reign to place and control turrets and better yet also earns their own money


Toy Soldiers is an easy recommendation for anybody interested in tower defence games.
Local Co-op and unit control make it a great game to convert a friend to tower defence.

+Plenty of replay value
+Co-op is fully integrated
+Direct control fixes Genre issues

-Missions can be short
-DLC only adds Levels
-Co-op is hidden

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