Gods of Defense couldn’t be simpler, it’s a tower defense game with basic voxel graphics. So what makes it special?
The store page for the game brags about its “roguelike progression” and “distinct towers”. Roguelike should already be a bit of a red flag, meaning when you play Gods of Defense you’re in it for a long haul.
Rather than stage-based or arcade style gameplay, each gameplay session is effectively just grinding for the next one. But if you’re into roguelikes already, that’s hardly a deal breaker.
When you first start the game your only towers are a basic gun tower and a mana fount. While the first is obvious, the second is just a passive structure that generates mana when placed near the correct terrain.
Then you’re thrown into your first round with little explanation. The mana generation is functionally worthless and the gun turret does what it says on the tin.
Don’t expect to last long though, this is a roguelike remember? With just a dinky gun turret and a useless mana farm, you’ll probably last a couple waves before getting overrun.
Rather than any sort of tutorial, you get thrown into a second round. Only this time you had a little bit of resources to spend on unlocking a new turret. Most likely the Pyro turret.
Now that you have a second turret, it’s time to consider the second roguelike aspect of Gods of Defense: temporary upgrades.
After every couple of rounds you’ll get a “blessing” which gives you a buff for the next wave or will let you unlock a tower you’ve already unlocked for the rest of the run.
That’s right, you have to use your blessings in order to even buy your new Pyro turret in a new run. Other benefits include small boons like a storm that slows enemies for one round.
Conversely, if you amass Corruption you’ll get a curse instead of a blessing. These are small drawbacks that are the opposite of blessings.
Instead of a storm that slows enemies, the storm gives enemies 50% fire resistance. Instead of double gold for one wave, you only get half gold. It’s a nuisance but they generally won’t spoil your run.
Fundamentally, Gods of Defense is a fun timewaster sort of game but falls short of its Tower Defense peers by sacrificing strategy for procedural generation.
That isn’t to say that Gods of Defense doesn’t require thought, but in games like Kingdom Rush stages are treated like puzzles to be solved. In Gods of Defense, you stick things where they make sense and hope that luck is on your side.
If you like Tower Defense games, Bloons TD 6 has more depth; and if you want a tower defense roguelike then I’m sorry to say that it’s already been done.
Developer Blue Math is set to release Gods of Defense sometime next month for Windows PC (via Steam).