Anomaly: Warzone Earth - game review

Author: Filip „fsm” Grabski
Date: 2011-04-08 11:10:00
The review was based on the PC version.

What is a tower defense game? The matter is very simple and extremely addictive: with the help of limited financial resources, we have to set up various types of turrets along the route that the enemy will pass, which will effectively destroy his efforts to get to the other side of the map. The more efficiently we kill the enemy, the more we earn virtual coins, which in turn we spend on improving and expanding our own forces. This type of game has been known since the beginning of the nineties of the last century and has already settled in the PC community for good. What if you turned everything upside down?

The idea that the boys from 11bit Studios decided to implement (the company is new on the market, but brings together veterans from the late Metropolis, so its employees undoubtedly know their stuff) is based on reversing the mechanics described above. Now we are the enemy on whose path the turrets are to eliminate him. Perverse ... But does it work? In short - yes. A little longer - yes, and how!

Anomaly: Warzone Earth is a title intended for electronic distribution, with no ambition to conquer the charts with aggressive marketing. Oh, such a nice game is priced adequately to the content and will also be assessed in this way. However, do not be fooled by the apparent budget of this production. Everything has been prepared very carefully - the title has a plot, a nice animated intro, it is properly complex in its simplicity and looks really nice. Although the story is not sophisticated, it fulfills the role of the "motivator" perfectly.

In the near future, a spaceship crashes on Earth, and its two largest parts form force fields called anomalies in Baghdad and Tokyo. The brave army (British, judging by the juicy accents) decides as soon as possible to find out who and why made a forced stop on our planet. It quickly turns out that our opponent is evil, angular, red machines, which in the form of various turrets make it difficult for us to fulfill the assumptions of each of the several missions. During the game, we get to know a few characters (their voices to be exact), and a handful of twists and turns await us - all straight from a nice B science-fiction movie.

Anomaly offers three game modes - at the beginning, only a fictional story is available, which lasts over a dozen more and more difficult and longer missions. First, we land in sun-baked Baghdad, then jump to the picturesquely ruined Tokyo. Completing the mission in the first city unlocks the Doom of Baghdad mode, in which we have to deal with successive, stronger and stronger waves of enemies, and extermination of the UFOs in Tokyo results in the availability of fun hunting for an extremely nasty bastard, reaching which depends on the performance of several specific tasks. Three modes provide addictive and fresh entertainment for a good 8 hours, which is a satisfying result - Anomaly certainly does not have to worry about taunts from such a Homefront or even Star Wars: The Force Unleashed 2 (and at the same time costs 1/3 of the price).

Everything is fine, but what is it with? The game places only one unit under the direct control of the player - the commander. Members of our unit with a maximum of six vehicles move on their own along the previously marked path. The trick is to properly navigate among the rubble and occasionally pop up on the route of new turrets, eliminate unwholes and without any delay in achieving the goals set for us at a given level. An example mission looks like this: the starting point and the place to which you need to get are marked on the blue map. Having limited funds, we buy the best-suited units (there are 6 types in total - a tank, lightly armored, but effectively digging space asses, a creeper, a mobile shield, etc.) and start planning the route. The maze of angular roads is equipped with a lot of crossroads where you can change the direction of travel - sometimes the shortest route is the best, but often it is worth visiting all nooks and crannies in search of extra cash (taken from defeated "tin cans" and a stupidly named cosmic mineral that fell off the ship ), and the conditions and objectives occasionally changing during the mission force quick decisions regarding the direction of travel. It should be remembered that after releasing our war machine in motion, at any time you can open the mentioned map and correct the route, or buy new or upgrade already owned units (time then kindly stops its course). When everything goes on the right track, we have to support the squad with our brave commander, using 4 special skills - damaged units can be repaired, and enemies can be bothered by mechanical life with an area fog of war, a distracting decoy and a good old bombing raid. Before we know it, we sink in for good, leading our units through the inhospitable areas of the above-mentioned two capitals.