Jelly Defense [Android Game Review]
YouTube link for mobile viewing
I'm always curious about how tower defense games try to differentiate themselves in what can sometimes become a saturated environment. With heavy hitters like Robo Defense, Fieldrunners HD, and GRave Defense HD dominating headlines (and play time), sometimes the best way to make yourself noticed is by being a little bit absurd (well, and having an incredibly well-designed game, too).
Jelly Defense takes everything you've come to know and love about tower defense games, dresses it up in cutesy, goofy graphics, and delivers an experience of such high caliber that when someone asks you about the best tower defense games, this is one you name without hesitation.
The story is simple: Evil alien jellies are invading your planet, looking to steal your most valuable crystals, and you've got to stop them. This is all achieved by laying down towers at various points, pumping your enemies full of jelly-lead, and going on your merry way.
Mechanically, you're looking at the same old, same old you see on every tower defense game. Destroy enemies, get currency, and use said currency to buy more towers with which to defend your booty. This isn't a bad thing (at all), because it's one less new skill you need to learn to get on with playing.
The only thing that really stuck out to me was how you have to touch the coins that are dropped from former enemies; if you take too long, they'll eventually flash a few times and disappear, leaving your defenses vastly underfunded.
Where Jelly Defense really shines, though, is its visual presentation. Everything on screen is colorful, very upbeat, and quite unique for the tower defense genre. Enemy jellies sort of waddle or sashay over towards your crystals, and your towers dispose of them, in turn. The different kind of towers you have all look great, and their attacks are as varied as their appearance.
Infinite Dreams (the developers behind Jelly Defense) went to great lengths to pay attention to detail, and boy, does it pay off. For example, in the early levels you'll encounter jellies of two colors: red and blue. Towers you place down are similarly colored, and they can only attack jellies of their color.
All of your towers have eyeballs, too, and if enemies are present that they can't attack, they'll close their eyes and go to sleep. It's a small thing, but it really helps hammer home not only a concept of the gameplay, but how much thought went into the creation of such a masterpiece.
Really, there's not much more I can say about Jelly Defense without screaming "Buy this game!" It runs smoothly, looks gorgeous, and offers lots and lots of opportunity for fun. It's a beautiful deviation from the stereotypically violent and dark themes normally associated with games in this genre, and that's something worth applauding.
Jelly Defense is $2.99 in the Google Play Store. We've got download links after the break.
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