I fell in love with Tower Defense games years ago when I experienced the original Fieldrunners. Because of this I still get excited (and happy) whenever a TD game lands on my playlist and sigh…more often than not I find myself sighing with boredom. Now another TD game, Vikings vs Dragons, was on the top of my play list over this past weekend and I sighed–because I had to turn it off and meet up with my brother.
Today the TD genre is so massive that it’s split into several sub-categories and Vikings vs Dragons is best described as an Action Towed-Defense game. Here, you’ll be defending your Viking Combat Hall (your tower) by swiping across the screen to shoot arrows at dragons as well as sea serpents. The speed as well as the angle of the motion of your swipes will alter the velocity of each arrow. At times this control scheme (especially Boss battles) highlights its fine-tuned approach to controls, a real treat compared to such other games. Without a doubt, the control mechanics creates one of the best Acton TD experiences that I’ve had in a long time…a very long time.
The game is split up as waves of enemies (dragons and serpents) and you’ll need to fend them off before you can move on. The positive side of things is that this creates a great pick-up ‘n play style that lets you to dive right into where you left off without the need to waste time playing easier levels. On negative side, is that once you beat a stage you can’t go back and replay it. This means that if you find yourself getting stumped on a level you won’t be able to build up resources and upgrade your towers and try it after you’re more prepared. Hitting this brick wall is the only main issue that I have with Vikings vs Dragons.
Why would replaying earlier stages help? Easy, playing each stage earns you money which than can be used to upgrade your defenses. There’s a massive amount to upgrade from magic spells, shooting multiple arrows at once to of course enhancing the strength of your Combat Hall. Trust me, upgrading stats (and opening up new magical attacks) is what makes Vikings vs Dragons addictive but sooner or later you will hit a brick wall where you can’t progress unless you spend money on IAP. On the positive side again, what you get with IAP is very generous and I didn’t mind spending an extra buck. On the negative side, if you don’t purchase IAP there’s no way for you to grind in order to progress…which means there will always be a brick wall to hit that won’t allow you to progress any further.
The Bottom Line:
Vikings vs Dragons has awesome controls, killer boss battles, and one of the best control schemes that I’ve seen in a Action Tower-Defense. I just wish that there was a way to replay past levels to help get past that inevitable brick wall.