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Prime World: Defenders

How many of you enjoy card collecting games like “Magic: The Gathering?” How many of you play “Defense Grid” and “Sol Survivor” religiously like your life depended on it?  If you raised your hand to both of those questions, then there’s no doubt in my mind that you’ll take a liking to “Prime World: Defenders”.  This game reminds me a bit of “BattleForge”, a card collecting real-time strategy game that I was heavily invested in for quite some time.  In this case however, you’ll be collecting cards that will form your tower defense arsenal and be tasked with slaying mutants and baddies by the thousands.  Before we take a look at this game in further detail, I’d like to thank Troy Goodfellow from Evolve PR for providing me with a free review copy.

Prime World: Defenders

Prime World: Defenders (Windows, Mac)

The main menu is very easy to navigate, allowing players to continue their progress in the campaign, adjust game options, view the encyclopedia, and check their progress on the leaderboards & personal achievements.  The options menu touches on screen resolution, audio volumes, and fullscreen/windowed mode settings.  There’s also a button that allows you to reset your account, should you wish to start over from the beginning.  There appeared to be no multiple profile system in place, so you’ll either need to share your progress with other family members in the house or grief them by resetting their progress every time you want to play.  I was pleased to discover that the achievements, while not only plentiful, have a purpose.  You’ll be rewarded with various forms of currency as you complete them to assist you in the campaign.

The world map allows you to choose a mission with ease.  Upon selecting one, you’ll see what your rewards will be for successfully completing it.  You’ll also see your current loadout and the achievements you haven’t completed for that level, which will allow you the chance to go back and edit your cards accordingly.  Missions can be replayed as many times as you wish, which I was pretty thankful for.  Some of the missions I ran into were pretty darn tough, forcing me to go back and grind some of the levels prior in order to gain currency and experience.  From the map screen, you’ll have access to various tools that will allow you to buy more cards with in-game currency, upgrade cards, purchase talents, and manage your deck.  All of these menus were easy to understand and navigate.

Prime World: Defenders

Achievements too hard? Come back to them when you’ve upgraded a bit.

Speaking of currency and experience, there are a number of different ways in which you’ll be upgrading your profile.  Silver and gold coins are earned for completing missions and allow you to buy new cards, upgrade existing ones, and purchase talents in your talent tree.  Experience serves to level up your profile, which makes more talents available for you to unlock in your talent tree.  Your talent tree is broken up into three separate rows, but unlike in MMOs, you’ll be able to purchase each and every single talent so as long as you have the money to do so.

Obtaining cards can be done a number of ways (completing missions, spending coin, etc.), and consist of towers, magic, and artifacts.  Tower cards can be upgraded on the world map via artifacts and other cards at the forge, which allows them to be upgradable during any mission in which you are participating.  Magic cards work a bit like the abilities do in “Sol Survivor” in that you can call them down to inflict hurt on your enemies.  The game boasts twenty different tower types, with each having the ability to upgrade multiple times.  Cards drop randomly, so your progression and experience will be slightly different from anyone else playing the game.

Prime World: Defenders

Some towers can be put on special slots that empower them with unique abilities.

Missions are very clear-cut in that anyone who has played a tower defense game before will know what to do.  Players will be earning “prime” with every kill they make, which they’ll then use to plop down more towers.  Towers can be upgraded (assuming you upgraded them at the forge first) and sold at will.  What I found interesting was that towers become more expensive the more you use them, meaning that you’ll have to have to mix and match tower types rather than spam a particular one.  That also made upgrading towers a bit more attractive, since you’ll eventually reach the point where your tower costs are sky-high.  As for the missions themselves, you’ll switch off between enemies that take off health for simply reaching it (“Sol Survivor”), and enemies who must carry a resource from the core off of the map (“Defense Grid”).

Overall, I really enjoyed my experience with this game.  I’ve thrown hours into this game and have been showing no signs of slowing down any time soon.  “Prime World: Defenders” is an incredibly addicting game that I’m glad to see has brought something new to the tower defense table.  Yes, it’s a bit grindy…but I’m finding it to be the good kind of grindy.  I also want to praise the game for not including any sort of real money store or microtransaction system, which would be very easy to do in this particular type of game.  Everything purchased in the game is done via coin, which you’ll be earning as you play.  The mission generator (which you’ll see after the first few missions) adds almost unlimited replayability to the game.  My only real complaint (if you could call it one) was that the combat and tower animations were a bit generic.  While pretty, I didn’t feel “wowed” by the towers I placed or the enemies I saw…they just simply served their purpose.  If you’re looking for the bottom line, then I’ll simply say that I highly recommend it, especially for the fifteen dollar price tag that it currently advertises (as of 6/8/13).

Final Verdict: 9/10

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