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30 Genres of Christmas
Tower Defense
By Cyril Lachel     |   Posted on December 10, 2009   |   Episode 15 (Show Archive)  

   

It's that time of year again, a time when Defunct Games celebrates the holidays by posting a daily theme article that should inform and delight gamers all over the world. This year we're counting down the days until Christmas by looking at 30 different video game genres. From the most popular games to the tiniest niche titles, everything fits into a genre and we're going to be there to shed absolutely no new information about that genre in this month-long feature. Join us as we celebrate this joyous season with the 30 Genres of Christmas!



Tower Defense games are the least interesting genre to watch, and not much more fun to play!
How Do You Know You Are Playing a Tower Defense Game? If you're playing a small downloadable desktop game, then chances are you're playing a Tower Defense title. This relatively new genre didn't just make it big, it blew up and took everybody along for the ride. These days there are hundreds of games where all you do is place defensive items to combat hordes of high fantasy bad guys. In fact, there are so many of these games that even Square Enix and South Park are throwing their hats in the ring. Not together, unfortunately. I would do just about anything to see a Final Fantasy meets South Park video game mash-up.

Patron Saint: Atari's seminal game, Rampart. As well as towers that, you know, needed to be defended and stuff.

Typical Story: You are the proud owner of a tower. Unfortunately, this is a tower that a lot of

"Hey guys, over there is the crappy genre we're about to create. Let's get outta here!"
your enemies want to destroy. The good news is that your enemies walk in a single-file line and attack in predictable waves. To keep these attackers from tearing down your tower, you add artillery and soldiers to the ground, battling anybody that gets close. If you can defeat enough of these waves then you get to rest easy in your beautiful tower ... for now!

What Fred the Militia Man Says: "This is complete crap, these games are making light of an extremely important topic. I'm sorry that you city-dwellers don't want to hear it, but the government is going to wage a war against you, steal your women, rob the banks and then control everyone and everything. You'll wish that these games taught you how to load and shoot a gun. You'll wish that instead of goblins

Not even South Park can make this genre worth playing!
and werewolves that it was soldiers and socialists. Mark my words, the new world order is coming and I'll be the one having the last laugh!"

Not a Tower Defense Game: Despite using the word "Defense" in the title, X-COM: UFO Defense is not a Tower Defense game. That goes for E.D.F.: Earth Defense Force, Navcom 6: The Persian Gulf Defense, NATO Defense, Meteor Defense, Last Line Defense, Global Defense, Colony Defense, Earth Defense Force 2017 and Worms Defense.

Then vs. Now? Seeing as this is a relatively new genre, it's hard to compare it to games of old. If Rampart is the first Tower Defense game, then I'll go on record and say that this one Atari game is better than the rest of the Tower Defense games. Still, it's so different from what we have today that I don't feel it's fair to judge South Park: Let's Go Tower Defense Play! against it. Then or now, it doesn't matter, if you're into the genre then so be it. I personally fail to see the appeal of playing such a repetitive game.
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