Kingdom Rush: Origins is the third entry to the Kingdom Rush series by developers Ironhide Game Studios – taking the tried and tested formula from the previous 2 games, giving it a tweak and a polish along with some new content.
Kingdom Rush: Origins is a Tower Defence style game with a twist of an additional “Hero” unit and the concept is simple enough – various waves of 30 new types of enemies will try to infiltrate your base by travelling along a set route.
Except it isn’t always quite that simple, enemies will often take multiple routes to multiple exits and will occasionally blow up an entirely new path to the end! Sometimes they will even forego the path entirely and take secret routes across the map. This makes learning the best ways to position your towers and hero a rather important process.
With 3 levels of difficulty available there is a good range to test players of all abilities. In the standard level of difficulty you have 20 lives to defend and completing a stage on normal mode unlocks two other versions of that stage – Heroic and Iron Challenges
- Heroic Challenge makes the player abide to a strict set of rules to complete the round, for example the Heroic Challenge for scenario 1 consists of 6 “elite” waves of enemies, consisting of more baddies that hit harder and take more damage. You have just one life so if one slips by then its game over and on top of that you are restricted to constructing “level 1” towers (so no upgrades here!)
- Heroic too easy? Try the Iron Challenge which add even more rules! using Scenario 1 again as an example – you have one life again to defend against one “super wave” of enemies you are again restricted to level 1 towers, only this time you aren’t allowed archer or mage towers !
There are 4 types of towers available in-game – Ranged, Magic, Area of Effect and Barracks, with each tower type having 2 sub-types offering unique specialities giving a total of 8 various tower types available in-game.
Along with the genre standard towers the Kingdom Rush series has the inclusion of a Hero unit – a special unit which you can place anywhere along the route to help deal with the waves of enemies. Initially there is just the one choice of Hero Unit with 2 others unlockable through progress in the campaign. There are 6 others available as In-App Purchases but there is more than enough replayability with the Heros already available in-game.
Each Hero will gain XP over the course of stages which will increase the level of your selected Hero, awarding points to put into the Hero’s skill tree of 5 unique skills, with each skill costing a different number of points – increasing in cost the higher up the tree you go.
Each stage has hidden (and not so hidden) easter eggs to search for which adds a nice little touch to all of the maps. So far I’ve come across Gandalf and Frodo leaving for the undying lands, lemmings, worms, Edward Scissorhands, Hansel and Gretel, 3 little pigs and many more!
Through out the various scenarios you’ll also unlock a number of in-game trophies from things as simple as killing X number of enemies in Y manner but some are unlocked by finding various easter eggs. A lot of the trophies give a nod to popular shows or series from Back to the Future to Lord of the Rings to Hunger Games
Clocking in at £1.88 on Google Play there is a lot of game play and replayability for your money here and the in-app purchases are completely voluntary and not at all pushed onto you. The additional Hero characters will add extra replayability but do not affect your enjoyment of the base game and the “premium” in-game gem currency used to purchase boosts from the in-game shop is more the readily collectible from completing scenarios.
Whether your new to the series or completing your hat-trick on Kingdom Rush games this is a great addition to your gaming library. With a good length campaign to keep you entertained and the Heroic and Iron Challenge modes will test your strategic skills in an number of ways, Kingdom Rush: Origins is well worth playing time and time gain.