A tower defense sequel that is a worthy successor to the original
Tower defense is one of those genres that really translates well to a touch-only device, and one game that has made that extremely apparent is Fieldrunners. For coming up on two years now, it has been a staple in the Tower Defense category on Android and iOS alike. If you've been playing it from the start, there's no doubt you've been waiting for the sequel -- even more so as we saw it launch on iOS first.
The wait is now over, and whether you're an old pro or new to the entire genre, we think you're going to be impressed. Stick around with us after the break and see what Fieldrunners 2 is all about.
The first thing you can say when opening up Fieldrunners 2 and entering the first level is "wow". It's clear that a whole lot of development time has gone into the smoothness of animations, the clarity of graphics and the overall tidiness of how everything comes together. From the subtle animations and sounds in the menus down to the way the levels are drawn, this feels like a game made to impress on all fronts. While this probably isn't the most resource-heavy game available today, we still have to give credit where credit is due that the game ran absolutely flawless for us.
If you haven't tried out Fieldrunners (or another tower defense game) before don't worry, as it is extremely easy to pick up and start playing. Veterans of the original will feel right at home as well -- a tough balance to achieve. When playing the game for the first time, you're quickly taken into the first level on an easy mode to get acquainted with all of the new features. Tutorials and tips pop up as you place your towers, making sure you understand the way everything works. Tower defense is pretty simple though -- just stop the incoming enemies by placing different towers in a strategic pattern. You'll quickly pass the level, and get onto the real fun. After the first level you'll be able to get a look at the whole world of levels available going forward. Double tap or pinch to zoom in on your next one, and if you're up to it select one of the two harder difficulties.
Beyond a complete visual overhaul, Fieldrunners 2 adds a whole host of new upgrades, towers and gameplay mechanics to keep things fresh. As the game progresses, you'll have the option to unlock and equip up to 6 different towers at a time, with over 20 to choose from in total. Beyond the normal towers, you also have about a dozen different special "items" as limited use tools to help you get through tough rounds of enemies. Items for example can rewind game progress or kill enemies with hidden mines -- things that will be basically required when on "heroic" difficulty.
New towers and items are unlocked by passing levels on harder difficulties, and purchased with in-game coins that you also receive for passing through levels with higher marks. You can buy additional coins as in-app purchases ranging from $1.99 to $99.99, but if you want the biggest challenge, you'll just grind it out yourself. The developer, Subatomic Studios, says there is well over 20 hours of gameplay to be had in Fieldrunners 2, so don't worry about finishing this game too quickly.
If you're even remotely interested in trying out a tower defense game, Fieldrunners 2 is well worth the $2.99 price of admission. You may never make it through over 20 levels on heroic difficulty (although they say it is possible), but for some good casual fun when you need it, this game hits the spot. It's no understatement to say that this game is a joy to play.
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Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.