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One Man Army™ Review

By , on July 26, 2011


One Man Army™
Download on the AppStore
3 out of 5

PROS

  • Mixes things up by focusing on you as a player instead of the towers.
  • Slowly adds in tactical features; adds some variety over time.
  • Six different zones with unique layouts to exploit.

CONS

  • Sharp difficulty curve; assumes multiple replays of individual levels in each zone for progression.
  • Aiming feels awkward; touch or swipe to aim controls make it hard to see or aim respectively.

VERDICT

One Man Army plays around with the TD concept by turning the player in to a sort of 'ultimate' tower - unfortunately there's no difficulty levels to choose from and things only get tougher the further you progress.


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So, you now own an iOS device and after all of that saving up what's the first thing you're going to buy? Something meaty, something elegant, or maybe something you can slowly plug away at? Don't kid yourself, the idea of playing a tower-defense game on the go was also in the back of your mind too wasn't it? How about a shooter? How about both? One Man Army by Chillingo and Tickled Pink Games tries to mesh the castle and tower defense genres by placing a weapon in your hands, allowing you to back up your towers while defending humanity against the mutants.

Don't think this will be some casual challenge either. Unlike most traditional TDs the field doesn't allow for many towers to be placed, nor do you earn a lot of cash to keep ahead of the quickly evolving monsters charging down your temporary fortification. Your main weapon doesn't pack a large punch either, though your arsenal can be augmented for a price (grenades must be used sparingly) and if you can manage your aiming carefully enough you'll help to whittle down the enemy forces while your towers clean up.

Hitting your mark can be challenging enough thanks to the control scheme that fires in the direction you touch on the screen, partially obscuring the action, but more importantly objects in the level itself can provide temporary barriers that prevent your shots from reaching their target. This encourages some level of strategy in the placement of your expensive towers as you attempt to cover your blind spots and paths that get the most 'traffic'. Unfortunately, while the 2D visuals of One Man Army do provide some realistic (if strangely convenient) designs for each area, it's hard to 'read' tactically speaking as some obstacles and not others block your shots while tower placements only show when attempting to put down a tower.

Other small issues such as being unable to slow down or pause the action to upgrade towers or otherwise use much needed power-ups (like healing) forces the player to make snap decisions that can ruin (sometimes completely) an attempt that was otherwise going smoothly. The lack of difficulty options creates a difficulty curve that may be too much for some to climb, making it all too easy to put this game down when there's plenty left to explore.

If you like your defense games to test your skills at efficient destruction, take a look at One Man Army, but if you need more of a helping hand it's worth waiting until the developer balances things out.

Screenshots

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