By: Casey Curran
One thing about reviewing games is that I tend to forget about a lot of the games I play shortly after I am done with the review. And then, there are those rare games I keep forgetting about even as I’m actually reviewing them, whether I last played it a day ago or an hour ago. Fort Defense North Menace is one of those games, to the point where I had to replay a section while typing this review.
Fort Defense is basically your standard tower defense game. Ships come sailing in to try to attack your home base, and you buy turrets to defend yourself against them. These come in light and heavy varieties, which vary on price, speed and power. You can also buy factories that net you more money to purchase additional turrets as well as upgrade your current ones. Blowing up ships also nets you money.
And that’s it really. The ships have to take a specific path depending on what level you are at, as the islands you place your turrets on vary in layout each time. This does provide a little variety, but not enough to keep the game from feeling tedious fairly soon. And the longer you spend with the game the lack of challenge really sets in, as I never ended up failing at a stage.
On the plus side, the game controls very well on the Vita’s touch screen, using an interface that is able to look sleek while still offering a good amount of precision. Speaking of visuals, the game looks very bright and colorful, especially on the Vita’s OLED screen. The game also has some especially good sound effects and music, which match the tone very well. However, these still are not enough to overcome how boring the core gameplay is.
If you have ever played a tower defense game, then Fort Defense North Menace has nothing new to offer you. In an age where games like Sanctum 2 or Dillon’s Rolling Western are putting interesting twists on the formula, it makes what is “just another tower defense game” look especially bland. Ultimately, this feels less like a game and more like a time waster.