Version Reviewed: 1.5.5
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The original The Creeps was one of the first awesome tower defense games in the App Store; our own Kevin Stout described it as "almost perfect in my eyes" in his review. Now, its developers have released a new app entitled The Creeps! Holiday Edition. The Creeps! Holiday Edition is a spin-off app with new, holiday-themed content. In this case, the game has received a Valentines-themed makeover as well as new level layout. The gameplay remains the same, however, and it's a great example of tower defense done right.
The basic premise of The Creeps mimics that of most tower defense games. "Creeps" emerge from a portal at one end of the screen and follow a preset path, marching towards a child's bed. If they reach said bed, they presumably give the kid nightmares, so your job is to protect him! The game arms you with a variety of weapons, from an electrifying flashlight to boomerangs to toy blasters. You build these "towers" on the map, and they swivel to attack Creeps as they march by. During the game, you earn cash by destroying Creeps or obstacles in the landscape. Cash can then be spent on new towers or upgrades to old towers.
One thing I love about The Creeps! is its level designs, which add variety to each play. On some levels, for example, obstacles (in the form of giant hearts or diamonds, for example!) squat on the field, so you'll have to destroy them before you can place towers on those spots. In one level, it was almost impossible to reach any Creeps if you left the obstacles untouched! (The Creeps! Holiday Edition has different levels than its "normal" counterpart app.) There's a good amount of strategy involved, and you'll have to carefully juggle building your towers to prepared for each wave of oncoming Creeps.
But how does this app compare to its original sibling? The Creeps! Holiday Edition appears to be a little brief, with only a handful of levels. Still, there's enough replay value given three difficulty levels and bonus badges for things like destroying all obstacles in a level. I also like the Valentine's Day theme; it's whimsical and bright, and in my view an improvement from the somewhat dark, dull cartoon style of the original Creeps. The Holiday Edition may be small, but it's very fun, and I expect it'll receive more themed updates in the future.
If you're a Creeps! fan looking for more tower-defense goodness, the Holiday Edition is a no-brainer purchase. If you've yet to buy the first one, you may want to check it out, as it has more levels. Still, The Creeps! Holiday Edition is a great continuation of an excellent tower defense game, full of challenge, humor, and engaging fun. Any fan of the genre, or someone interested in diving in, should enjoy this one immensely.