Version Reviewed: 1.0.2
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5
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Tower defense game, Dead Defence, is best summed up with a slightly bored sounding proclamation of "it's fine", with added whiney tone to suggest that one is being polite about it. Maybe for those who have never played a tower defense game before, or never encountered zombie hordes (in a game, hopefully), it might have a certain spark about it. For everyone else though, it's been done before. A lot.
The world is mostly ending thanks to a virus that's turned many people into zombies. Predictably, a series of bases are all that stands between humanity's destruction or success. To protect these bases, players must place a series of towers in order to fend off the hordes. It's simple stuff and its mildly entertaining facade quickly loses its touch.
Twelve different levels are available from the start and these should last players a reasonable length of time. This is mostly because Dead Defence is one of those awkward kind of tower defense games that require very exact placement in order to truly succeed. One such early stage, for instance, offers just enough money at the start to buy one turret yet immediately pits players against a pretty fearsome spider type zombie thing. Having experimented with each placement, there's seemingly only one place that the tower can be set in order to take it out. Yes, it's that kind of restrictive game we're talking about.
When money is a bit more plentiful there's more variety, but Dead Defence fails to really captivate. It's possible to acquire or purchase gems which can be used to buy special one-off power ups (such as a missile strike) and I get the feeling that some harder levels rely on players to succumb to such a temptation.
New towers can be gained either by collecting up research points through completing levels, or by spending real money. It's a rather eye-watering $10.99 to unlock all the towers, something that I doubt many will be particularly keen to do.
Cynical in-app purchases aside, however, and Dead Defence just isn't that compelling. It's a title that we've all seen before backed up by an enemy that we've all seen before. It's not so much that Dead Defence is a bad game, it's just not worth paying much attention to amongst a genre that's already overflowing with alternate options.