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Gaming Evolution
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Gaming Evolution
Gaming Evolution
Published By: Peltfast
Developed By: Peltfast
Genre: Real-Time Strategy
Players: 1-4
Rated: E (Everyone)
Release Date: April 2, 2009
Screenshots: Link
Price: $9.99
Written By: Matthew Prunty

For many, this isnít the first tower defense game that they have downloaded and played on the PlayStation Network. At first glance, a thought popped into my head saying this game isnít something I would enjoy. Seeing how I am open to pretty much any gaming experience that comes my way, I decided to give it a go. Within the first 5 minutes, I was craving all the information the game was cranking out in order to survive in battle for a possible victory. Though a bit complicated, the unique presentation and gameplay mechanics utilized by the developer Peltfast, made me want to continue playing the game more and more.

For those experienced with real-time strategy, you often will feel the urge to jump right into the single-player action without diving into the tutorial mode of the game. While I canít vouch for everyone, spending time within the tutorial mode; getting a handle on the gameplay features and tactics will be a vital key to how successful you are within the single-player campaign. Once you have completed the tutorial, youíre ready dive head first into the main campaign and its 28 intense levels. Once you are actually in a battle, you will realize just how cruel the AI can be.

Each of the 28 campaign levels you are competing on will require you to think of defensive measures before planning an offensive strike on your enemy. The reason why is because when you go into battle, your enemy has its defensive and offensive measures set in place, while you must devise yours A.S.A.P. Comet Crash doesnít conform to the norm in which enemy attacks follow a scripted process. Each enemy company you go up against determines when they feel like attacking you, which can be at any point within the battle. Because of the unpredictability of the computer AI, setting up your defensive measures as soon as the battle starts is essential to surviving and ultimately winning the battle in the end.

To truly test out how cruel the AI can be, within my first battle, I went straight into offensive mode. At first it seemed like I was getting somewhere, however all of the sudden the enemy turned the tides and I was dead within 3 minutes flat. With that embarrassment ingrained into my brain, I decided to go with what I learned within the tutorial mode. Your enemies always take the shortest path possible in order to attack you. Blocking their path with a gun turret will force them to take another path in order to reach their destination. You canít however completely block off their path to your base, but by re-routing them, you are able to set up gun turrets to take out the enemy units long before they reach your base. Another nifty tactic you can use in battle is setting up a node, which will block the enemiesí path in a similar fashion to a gun turret; it allows your troops to pass through in order to get to the enemy base as quickly as possible.

Considering the difficulty curve ramps up with every completed level, mastering these and other defensive measures are essential in order to build and utilize your offensive live for a decisive strike. Once you feel that your defensive line is solid, you can switch your attention to offensive strikes. When it comes to the offensive, you have numerous structures that can be built in order to gather the troops. One is the Basic Ops structure, which is utilized to produce hundreds of offensive units. The BO structures can churn out units--scouts, tanks, drones and torpedoes--that have a sole purpose of attacking the enemy base head on. Think of them as kamikaze units, units that will die for a good cause.

Another structure that can be built is for Special Ops. While you will certainly have fun with the BO structures, the SO have way more variety to offer you offensive line. Within the SO structures, you can churn out hammers, thieves, switches and carriers; all of which bring something unique to the battlefield. The hammers can stun your enemies, leaving them open to the gun fire of your turrets. The thieves are like your right-hand man. They have the ability to convert enemy forces to the side of good, and send them back towards their home base on an attack mission. Rounding out the list are the switches and carriers, which short-circuit pulsars and can air lift your land vehicles through the sky (respectively), avoiding all ground obstacles. Whether using the BOs or the SOs, upgrading and refining your units is key to defending and retaliating against more vicious enemies as you progress through the game.

With worrying about defensive and offensive measures, one can forget that wars arenít free; they require lots and lots of money in order to keep them going. Thankfully the game knows that and helps you to acquire such money through destroying meteors that float along the battlefield. Once they appear on the map, you must drag them over to your turrets in order for them to be destroyed; releasing yellow coins, which then can be used when you need to upgrade weaponry and/or defensive measures.

When it comes to the visuals, thereís a 50/50 split. On one hand, the presentation is very simplistic yet functional. While on the otherhand, the environments are very mundane. Itís obvious that the main focus was placed on the strategic factors within the combat system, however that lack of flavor being added into the visual presentation, gameplay proves to be increasing more difficult as you do battle on the latter levels. Itís on the latter levels, where more battle units are utilize within your fight, and where the visuals become more of a hinderance. The gameís soundtrack neither enhances nor takes away from the gameplay experience. While itís befitting of the game, the score doesnít quite seem to match the intense battles that take place in the game.

Once youíre done with the single player campaign, you can jump right into the multiplayer experience. Comet Crash features an offline multiplayer option thatís even more chaotic that the single player campaign. There are twelve distinct multiplayer maps for which up to four players can battle it out for ultimate victory. What makes this gaming experience so chaotic is due to the fact that thereís no restriction on where you can place bases and defense structures, thus requiring opponents to be aware of their surroundings, while also structuring themselves for an attack. Thereís also the inclusion of a three player co-op mode, which is based off the single-player campaign. You will traverse the same levels as in the single-player campaign, only this time there will be an additional set of eyes monitoring the battlefield, thus helping to prevent sticky situations and increasing the entertainment value of the gameplay experience.

Being my first tower-defense genre title for the PS3, Comet Crash is a rather enjoyable experience. Sure there are a few issues here and there that could hamper the gameplay, however once you get into the game; you tend to overlook the little things in order to enjoy the grander presentation. Though online multiplayer would have been greatly welcomed, the online multiplayer options are very well done and will create hundreds of hours of memorable battles. Whether competing in the co-op, multiplayer or the single-player campaign, a great blending of offense and defense measures makes this game of the best experiences offered via the PlayStation Network.


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