07
May
unnamed

Fieldrunners 2 from Subatomic Studios is the sequel to one of the most popular mobile tower defense games out there. If you loved the look and feel of the first game, you're in luck. Fieldrunners 2 turns the charm up a notch and ushers in a host of new content. But if you had your fill of the original or tower defense games in general, I wouldn't say there is enough here to bring you back into the genre.

The Gameplay

If you've run through a few tower defense games before, you'll know your way around Fieldrunners 2. Still, this sequel hits all the right notes for the genre. There is diversity among the available units, and each new unit offers an interesting and unique strategic advantage. There's no lack of baddies, either. Sure, you have your basic foot soldiers that charge blindly into gunfire, and you have troops on motorcycles that do the same thing but faster, but you also have various air units that fly over your units and the trenches that guide most of your enemy's ground forces. This prevents you from concentrating too much firepower around the given path when air units are almost certain to flank them ten turns later. An ample variety of units keep each round interesting, even as you come to recognize all of the pieces on the board.

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You can upgrade units at a cost that's slightly cheaper than buying a new unit, and each unit maxes out after two upgrades. This is standard fare. My biggest gripe is that upgrading to level three doesn't cost any more than upgrading to level two, even though it is a substantial increase in firepower. While I probably shouldn't complain about getting more for the same, it feels wrong. Nevertheless, this doesn't affect gameplay - Fieldrunners 2 is no cake walk, especially at the higher difficulties.

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Each level can be played at one of three difficulties, each progressively awarding you a greater reward, including coins. Coins can be used to buy special weapons that yield various kinds of damage. Landmines can destroy a sizeable cluster of enemy soldiers in a pinch, while "Deep Freeze" temporarily freezes all enemies in their tracks. These power-ups add to the strategy, as some waves will get past your defenses no matter how well organized they are. This is especially true during "Sudden Death" levels.

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The Other Stuff

Fieldrunners 2 isn't exactly filled with groundbreaking visuals, but it's still very attractive. The sprites are bright and vibrantly animated. The game's cartoony visuals and the overall design of the world ooze character, which is good since there isn't much in the way of a plot to pull you in. I'm not quite sure why I'm fighting as I unlock various stages across the world map, but since said map is so nicely drawn, I don't particularly mind.

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The music and sound effects don't do the game any favors. They're not bad, but they're not particularly good, either. They're simply present. Feel free to mute the game and stream music in the background, since it won't affect gameplay one way or the other. At least the loading screens are amusing enough.

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Should you play it?

Fieldrunners 2 has some issues that almost ruin the game for me. I find that many of the stages are just plain too long. The second stage of the game has 60 waves. 60. The game has a diverse range of enemies, but spread out over 60 waves, things do begin to feel stale. And if you lose on wave 59 and have to start over, enjoy enduring 120 waves just to pass a single stage.

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Fieldrunners 2 softens the monotony by showering you with unlockables. There are a healthy number of accomplishments just waiting to measure your talent, and the game is loaded with power-ups and various units for you to spend your hard-earned (or bought) coins on. It's repetitive, but you're still getting a lot of content for your $2.99.

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Full disclosure: I haven't played the original Fieldrunners. I imagine a full seven of you haven't either. Still, should you play this game? That depends on how big a fan your are of the tower defense genre. If you've dried up your current collection of titles and simply seek another one with new maps and units to kill time with, Fieldrunners 2 will not disappoint. It is a beautiful game, a lengthy game, and an addictive game. There's hours of fun to be had here, but I still couldn't help wishing there was something more.

Bertel King, Jr.
Born and raised in the rural South, Bertel knows what it's like to live without 4G LTE - or 3G, for that matter. The only things he likes sweeter than his tea are his gadgets, and while few objects burn more than a metal phone on a summer day, he prefers them that way anyway.

  • Brandon Watkins

    I love it, but for some reason it seems to force close on me every now and then stating I dont have enough memory. They should probably tell you that you need 2gb ram. Maybe its just HTC Sense killing it in the background... not sure.

    • Clay S.

      that constantly happens to me on my gnex. only playable on my nexus 7

      • Brandon Watkins

        Yeah well when version 1.0 was first out I couldn't play more than 5 mins without it happening. Now it only happens every hour or so....so lets hope they keep working on it. I just thought that my HTC EVO 4G LTE could handle more.

    • brkshr

      Ya, I get problems on my N4. Sometimes the screen goes completely black for a few minutes, then one by one (very slowly) things will reappear.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      We couldn't review it for a few days until a low memory mode was implemented by the developer, I believe.

      It could definitely get flaky on low or mid range hardware.

  • xHabeasCorpusx

    Bloon Tower Defense is far superior in my mind. The strategy to pick and place a different variety of attack and stat towers with different branching upgrade trees adds to the gameplay.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1118622192 Edward Germanotta

    Well, let me say that i didnt find atractive this genre but i decide to buy this one and i've enjoyed a lot but I agree on a couple of things with you

  • legato

    there's always something wrong with this type of 'defense' game.
    if you're trying so hard to defense your perimeter, why giving enemy a passable walkway ?

    why not simply build layers of roadblocks or walls, to slow enemy advance ?

    • http://profiles.google.com/marcusleejh Marcus Lee

      Because if there was really a game that let you do what you described, then people would just get bored of it in... 2 seconds?

    • Sam

      I think instead of being able to build roadblocks or wall its better if you can place your tower in between the path. Placing your towers in between the path rather than at the side makes it much easier. I have actually played an online game where they allows to place the tower in the path of attack. But don't think you can completely shut the path as its carefully programmed. Below you'll find the link of the game.

      freewebarcade. com/game/zombie-defense-agency/

    • Vu Viet Anh

      people who played the original waves of tower defense map on WC3 would know that some maps allow you to completely block the way - just that the creeps on these maps also can attack and destroy your tower.

      on mobile devices, it's wise to go for something simpler instead, so they remove this aspect of tower defense games.

    • http://twitter.com/misterE33 Mr E

      blame it on the bureaucratic government... if the defense department doesn't use up all of its budget at the end of the year on fancy towers and missiles, then it won't get squat next year

  • Andrew

    I find this game punishingly difficult at times, especially when you go back and replay levels on the harder difficulty. I've played a hell of a lot of tower defense games, including some notoriously difficult ones, but I think this one is too difficult, it takes the fun out of it. I constantly fail levels on the last wave, and have completely wasted 20 minutes or whatever.

  • http://twitter.com/karlovranjes Karlo

    Game looks great on Nexus 7.
    Cant wait for next update/version.

  • GraveUypo

    i don't like td games where you don't get to build a maze.

  • http://yepi4u.com/ kizi1990

    look, i love it

  • http://most.yepididi.com/ Yepi Juegos

    the gamer category remains attractive

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