Anomaly: Warzone Earth - 11 Bit By now you've probably seen your
share of tower-defense games — whether it be the classic Desktop Tower Defense,
or the iPhone's geoDefense, or our own free webgame Castle Defense, it's a
well-mined formula. But have you ever
wondered how the other half lives? Well,
the folks at Warsaw-based 11 Bit studios did just that, and came up with an innovative "tower attack" game — Anomaly: Warzone Earth.
The premise draws inspiration from last year's sci-fi hit District 9. As
with that film, a mysterious alien presence has suddenly appeared in the midst
of a major urban center. Only this time, the city is Baghdad — a locale that, as we know, had plenty to worry about before little green men decided to show up. And
the anomaly is a gigantic force field containing mysterious structures. Somebody's got to lead a military team inside the force field, through the streets of Baghdad, to investigate the alien source and eliminate the threat. And you
guessed it — by "somebody," we mean you.
The core gameplay in Anomaly has you shepherding a hand-picked squad of vehicles past alien defensive structures. Your job is to scout the
road ahead, determine the safest route through perilous streets, and utilize
temporary power-ups to assist your vehicles — for instance, you might give them
a brief shield (with a limited radius) to protect them from damage, or create
holographic decoys to lure enemy turrets into firing in the wrong direction.
The strategy lies in the judicious use of limited resources: those power-ups don't grow on trees, and you'll have to marshal them wisely in order to make it to the conclusion of each
level. As you probe deeper into the Anomaly, the story campaign will reveal its secrets.
Anomaly is being developed for the PC, the iPhone, and the iPad (with an HD graphics upgrade over its smaller cousin). We got some hands-on time with
all three versions, and found the learning curve smooth and the interface
intuitive — particularly on the iPad, where the touch-based control scheme and
large screen combine to create a fluid experience.
If you're tired of defending and want to show all those towers who's boss, look for Anomaly to release on major download distribution channels in the first half of 2011 at a modest (but undisclosed) price point.