The second iteration of the series by Melesta games, Toy Defense 2 is not very different from its predecessor, which is not necessarily a bad thing. However, if you were expecting a major upgrade, you will be disappointed. If we look at Toy Defense 2 alone, the game is definitely one of the better tower defense games you can get on the Play Store, however, it is not quite the best of them.
At the heart of it, Toy Defense 2 is a classic tower defense game. You get a map with predefined positioning spots where you can place your units (4 in total – soldier, anti-tank gun, anti-aircraft gun and airbase). Enemy units, varied between foot soldiers, tanks, jeeps, bikes and planes try to get from one end of the map to your base as your units try to stop them. While all this is standard, Melesta games have invested in recreating a historically accurate graphical representation of WWII, which lends identity to the game and makes it more interesting. Moreover, there are 3 sets of maps available at the moment (Stalingrad, Operation Crusader and Operation Overlord), all of which amount to 84 levels in total. That should, in theory, translate into a lot of variety, but sadly, this is where the game starts to disappoint.
Firstly, there is no tutorial or instructions. Newcomers are expected to know what each tower does, and that takes away from the overall experience. Moreover, the artwork, while well done, is not exactly setting new trends or benchmarks. In all honestly, the graphics and in-game animations are only functional, which ultimately leads to monotony. The units all look the same and the towers are generally dull. Melesta games say that the different map sets have different units which are historically relevant; however, the changes are merely graphical. The substance of the game does not change, only the visuals do. It would have been much more interesting if ‘new’, actually ‘different’ units were unlocked. Furthermore, the sounds and music isn’t going to get awards either. There is nothing memorable about them and you won’t find yourself absentmindedly humming any tunes.
Apart from your units, you have powers that you can use on the battlefield, allowing you to revive a fallen soldier for instance. Likewise, there are upgrades for every tower, increasing damage and slowing down enemies etc. However, one feature which I really liked was the ability to carry forward your heroes from one battle to another. During the course of the game, your units will level up and after finishing a map, you can pick and choose the ones you want to take over to the next level. Unfortunately though, here too, the lack of individuality of units means you won’t really care much for any particular hero. At the end of the day, they are all just towers.
Toy Defense 2 also has an in-game currency and stars, which can be used to purchase units during the game, upgrade them and unlock powers to use in battle. Generally, you earn enough stars after a map to spend on upgrades but you might be inclined to spend real money to get through the harder levels.
Despite the disappointing factors though, there is no doubt that Toy Defense 2 is addictive and you will find yourself picking it up every now and then for some WWII battles. Once the initial few levels are over, the more complicated ones can be a lot of fun, especially when enemies swarm and you have to tactically place your units/towers in the limited spaces you have. However, as you play Toy Defense 2, you can’t help but feel that there is a lot of lost potential here. The game play is, sadly, stale, and quickly gets repetitive. The animations are uninspiring and the music is nothing to remember. The game’s saving grace however, is the variety of levels and how they need you to plan the placement of your towers according to the incoming enemy waves.
If you are a fan of the genre, you will probably enjoy Toy Defense 2. However, that is in no small part due to the fact that the genre is lacking quality options (you can probably count the best recent tower defense games on one hand). It is recommended that you try the free version available on the Play Store before buying the game, but even if you do purchase Toy Defense 2, you won’t be wasting your money as long as you don’t expect too much for your two bucks.