Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Review: Star Defense

2:00 PM on 06.11.2009 // Brad Nicholson

Star Defense is an appropriately titled tower defense game for the iPhone and iPod Touch. In the game -- and I hope you can read my boredom -- you build towers in order to protect a mining colony's thick steel doors.

Space miners are a worthless lot. They’re willing to hit space in search of glory and capital, but somehow forget to defend their stuff. These dudes really need to come to the realization that there is at least the possibility that they could find ancient obelisks, open gateways to hell, or, well, be attacked by alien invaders.

Anyway, hit the break for our full review of ngmoco’s Star Defense.

Star Defense (iPhone)
Seller: ngmoco
Released: May 25, 2009
MSRP: $5.99

If you’re tired of tower defense games, join my club. The membership is free. My only rule is that all my followers actively grumble about the oversaturated genre on the Internet. Actually, I take that back. My other requirement (it’s in the fine print, but I’m doing you a favor here) is that you carry my throne and scepter wherever I deem the two things need to be placed.

My point in the above mess is that I’m tired of tower defense games. The basic formula -- put tower A here, put similar tower B there, watch enemies -- can become monotonous, and (generally speaking) I don’t see developers making much of an effort to twist or tweak the genre’s conventions.

ngmoco’s tower defense title, Star Defense doesn't revitalize the genre. Hell, it only introduces one new idea. However, like a fool, I find myself buying into the genre like I did before I started my ever-growing club.

Oh, 3D maps; I hate you for making me believe again.

The goal of Star Defense is to erect towers in order to repel various alien creatures from reaching a moon base. You’ve heard it all before, and more importantly, you’ve probably done it before. But what separates Star Defense from most games of its kind are the brilliant three-dimensional maps (or planets) in the game.

Enemies in Star Defense charge down a dirt path around the game’s map. It’s mildly annoying expressing how the aliens navigate around the game's fully 3D map, so here's a couple of examples: imagine yourself flying around a planet (like Earth) or leaping around a sphere as done by Nintendo in Super Mario Galaxy.

That’s it. You got it.

So, the game has a revolutionary tower defense map. Unfortunately, Star Defense nearly throws it away by being so ordinary. The goal in the game, as usual, is to erect upgradable towers around the planet in order to defend a base on the opposite side of the alien villians’ infiltration zone. Boom. Tower defense game, confirmed.

What makes the game fun, for me at least, is navigating its awesome map while brutalizing the alien hordes. Simple flicks and brushes with your fingers will rotate the planet sideways, and pinches (including an outward one) zoom the map back and forth. It’s a welcome design choice -- a breath of fresh air, really.

Star Defense is brutally difficult. Even after seemingly mastering the map, I still found myself staring at countless Game Over screens in the game’s second level. The different kinds of enemies -- fast and slow, bullish and light -- are all weak to one of the five towers at your disposal. Relying too heavily on one kind of tower or focusing your upgrade money (earned by killing stuff) on one variety is suicide.

Still, I find myself playing this game for hours at a time. Star Defense is one of those rare games where I almost find myself unable to explain my addiction to it. I think the reason why I’m stuck on the game is a combination of the wicked awesome map, and the basic and easy-to-master, platform-perfect controls.

I don’t want to confuse you: Star Defense is totally a tower defense game, but it has its charms. If you want a high-quality tower defense game on your iPhone, I find it very hard not to recommend this ngmoco offering.

Score: 8 -- Great (8s are impressive efforts with a few noticeable problems holding them back. Won't astound everyone, but is worth your time and cash.) 



Brad Nicholson,
 Follow Blog + disclosure

This blog submitted to our editor via our Community Blogs, and then it made it to the home page! You can follow community members and vote up their blogs - support each other so we can promote a more diverse and deep content mix on our home page.





 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

Mike Wallace avatarMike Wallace
Damn, my 26" monitor just crapped out on me. S'what I get for buying knockoff brands I guess. Back to the 19" non-HD monitor for me.
Jinx 01 avatarJinx 01
I miss mapping :( I was thinking about learning GameMaker, but now I'm leaning toward Unreal Engine 4, maybe to map for the new UT?
ikiryou avatarikiryou
I've spent the past 3 hours with that Lost Planet spinoff EX Troopers after finding it on sale for $20US on Amazon. It would've been great if Capcom had released it here. Or if they decided 2 turn that IP into Monster Hunter w/ guns set in an open world
Amna Umen avatarAmna Umen
Anyone notice that the Qposts are posting in the Normal Blog list? Niero? Bueller?
SpielerDad avatarSpielerDad
Rubio supporters rough up robot at New Hampshire rally. Mr. Destructoid's long lost cousin?
Fuzunga avatarFuzunga
For a nice mailbox surprise today! Forgot I ordered this a while back.
Shinta avatarShinta
Bosman and Huber running a Nintendo channel show, and playing games with Treehouse during E3? I'd be down for that.
EdgyDude avatarEdgyDude
I just found out Phoenix Wright is getting an anime this year. Color me surprised and very interested.
Operative20 avatarOperative20
I really want to continue my RE playthrough but this FUCKIN JAVA PROGRAM JUST WON'T WORK WHY AM I SUCH A FAILURE
SayWord avatarSayWord
Life is Strange Spoilers: I am about to start Episode 5 but noticed Uzumaki inspiration right away. Beginning scene with the town and lighthouse, tons of Spirals including the projections in the "End of the World Party". Anyone else notice this?
JPF720 avatarJPF720
Is it just me or with only one month and a week 2016 has been hit with some considerable losses, but in terms of severity and scope? From musicians and athletes to freaking websites...Let's keep riding this storm of sadness guys.
Parismio avatarParismio
Cam you believe that hot dog's with cheese in them exist? That is the grossest monstrosity to ever grace the market. The cheese belongs on top of the dog people! All over it!
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Looks like I have a new job doing deliveries which is 50% sitting on my ass in the passenger seat. $12/hr. I wonder if I can do monster hunting during that 50%...
ObliqueZombie avatarObliqueZombie
Holy cow, Final Fantasy VII was actually REALLY good! The PS4/PC "cheats" really helped my enjoyment. Check out my Cblog for extended thought, and what do you think of FFVII with a 2016 outlook?
OverlordZetta avatarOverlordZetta
I regret nothing and I regret everything.
Steel Squirrel avatarSteel Squirrel
Hope my Flash Sale sense is correct this week. I was hoping for more than a Ubisoft sale. Also, is it just me, or does it seem like Ubisoft games are on sale every damn week?
Gamemaniac3434 avatarGamemaniac3434
So far my blog has done quite well. Why not be cool, and read my delectable blog, then furiously fap it like its going out of style, as all of the cool people do? Give into peer pressure today, its what everybody is doing!!! Fap enough, maybe a waifu?
Rico the Penguin avatarRico the Penguin
The Localization team for Rune Factory 4 gets my seal of approval. It isn't every day that a dragon calls me a dumbass. 10/10
t0ss avatart0ss
Overwatch beta today!
trippytip avatartrippytip
Homework really sucks guys. I haven't played Yakuza 4 in weeks. I don't wanna totally drop it again ;_; *goes back to reading nonsense*
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -