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Jelly Defense Review

By , on September 29, 2011
Last modified 1 year, 4 months ago


Jelly Defense
Download on the AppStore
4 out of 5

PROS

  • Unique, strategic binary tower/creep system.
  • Stunningly gorgeous artistic style; like a re-imagined Neverhood.
  • Occasional mini-games and progressively unlocked towers smooth out progression.

CONS

  • Play-style hard to peg down; potentially a 'pro', but less 'strategic' and more 'you need THIS TOWER at THIS SPOT before NOW or you lose'.
  • Relatively long levels with no checkpoints; failure is absolute.

VERDICT

Jelly Defense injects a much needed dose of fresh gameplay in to a genre that is far too often parroted without much deviation; just don't expect to knab perfect completions regularly - they're a true challenge for many levels (and that's not such a bad thing).


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It seems odd that despite having other games under their belt, the one thing that stands out in my mind from Infinite Dreams is 'Let's Create! Pottery'. It's strange because Pottery is less of a game and more of a toy with some objectives, but more importantly because their Jelly series of mini-games has finally culminated in the recent release of Jelly Defense on the App Store.

What's immediately striking about Jelly Defense is the simple, yet perfectly zany aesthetic that uses little more than bright splashes of color here and there to offset the gray and drab world the immobile Jelly creatures live on. Being immobile it was only a matter of time before their plight against more mobile foes were depicted in a TD, though aside from some of the usual tropes this isn't the kind of game you're used to playing.

Jelly Defense places you in control of various jelly-types (essentially towers), though they're colored either red or blue (in the case of the basic tower, both). This isn't simply for show as enemies fit in to either blue or red categories, with red tending to be a bit beefier, while blue tend to be faster. Towers are paired up in a binary system of color vs color with blue towers ignoring red enemies, but otherwise unloading on blue units. This encourages players to be careful about over-spending on upgrades or placement of various towers until they're absolutely needed.

This does lead to some difficulty curve issues early on as the usual 'simple' perfect clears are anything but easy and you'll have to eat humble pie a few times before knowing the order of the waves (and which paths they take) before picking up those gold medals. There are other reasons to get the gold ratings as the gems you preserve are used for an unlockable side objective.

Additional mini-games break up the game's later, longer levels, providing a much needed distraction from watching creatures slide around a map.

Whether on an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch (the game is universal), playing Jelly Defense will provide TD veterans with a challenge while still being accommodating to newer players (albeit with some replays being needed). A great addition to what is an otherwise hard genre to stand out in.

Screenshots

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Comments

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andrew 1 year, 4 months ago

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