I attempted the third level refreshed today, and I was victorious! To be honest, I did not come up with any sort of strategy (to my knowledge) during this attempt; I just "got out of the rut" I was in and arranged the towers in ways I hadn't tried last night. Going to bed and waking up with a rejuvenated mind definitely helped! I felt relieved to beat the third level after so many attempts at it, and I was ready for a new challenge.
|I finally earned three stars on the third level!|
My mouth may have fallen open when I saw the path structure of the fourth level. That circle meant I essentially had to defend two paths into the kingdom! The stream also broke up the attacks; I had to be strategic about what I put next to the bridge, because I wanted the range to cover while the enemies were on the bridge. I was also keenly aware of the 13 waves of enemies; my biggest complaint about this game so far is how long each level is.
|Here's an overview of level four; the enemies come from the bottom and move towards the top of the screen.|
This time, I developed some strategies regarding where I placed my towers. The tower locations were close enough together that on some path locations, two different towers could be attacking the same enemy at once. Also, the army men held the enemies in the same location as they fought with their swords. Therefore, I placed the army men between two tower locations so that they could hold the enemy in place for multiple towers to attack them. I also adjusted where the army men stood on the path so that they held the enemies within range of the other towers (which were then able to hit those stopped enemies the largest number of times).
|The blue ring indicates the area in which I could direct my army men to stand (but only along the path).|
As you can see in the above photo, another strategy I used was to put cannonball towers near the army men. The cannonballs are able to hit multiple enemies at the same time, and the army men keep the enemies held around the same area. If the cannonball attacks the enemies that the army men are working on, the cannonball is able to do damage to multiple enemies at once. I also specifically put a cannonball tower at the front of the path, right where it diverges. This is where the enemies are in the biggest group, and again, the cannonball attack can do damage to multiple enemies at the same time when they are within range. The downside of the cannonball tower is that it takes a painfully long time to reload; however, this downside is compensated by the fact that the army men hold the enemies in place long enough for the cannonball to reload, and the cannonball is able to hit multiple targets at once.
Another strategy that I adopted was to put arrow-shooters on the tower spaces closest to the exit path. My goal was that none of the enemies would make it to that tower, but if they did, hopefully they would have low enough health that the arrow-shooters could finish them off. I placed the arrow-shooters here because their ranges are large and able to extend up the exit path the most. Additionally, the arrow shooters are fairly accurate (especially compared to the cannonballs, which seem to just aim in the general vicinity of the enemies).
|The range of the arrow-shooting towers extends the most up the path, in order to safeguard my kingdom from the attackers!|
The mistakes and realizations I made throughout the gameplay definitely aided in my survival in the game. Unfortunately, the best score I was able to get on the fourth level was two stars. I was doomed by the two trolls that appear at the same time (and with other enemies!) in wave 9 of this level; I haven't figured out a way to defeat them both yet. Besides my inability to kill the trolls, though, I think the strategies I have developed are valid.
|I've only managed to receive two stars on this level, but I am determined to work it out!|
|As you can see at the top of this image, those two trolls are getting to my kingdom. It's devastating because each troll costs me three hearts as opposed to the one that is typical for other enemies.|
One thing I have been doing to maintain my sanity in this game is restarting if I lose too many lives. At this point, I have obtained two stars; I am playing now to earn all three. If I allow too many enemies through the path and to my kingdom (enough to bump me down from three to two stars) before the level is over, I hit the pause button in the upper right corner and restart the level. This saves me time because I am not playing all of the waves of the level just to find out that I didn't earn three stars (which, at that point, I already knew would be the outcome). As I was playing, this most often occurred on wave 9 because of the trolls. It is frustrating to have to restart, but it would be more frustrating if I hate to "wait out the waves" before I was able to try again.
Tower defense games are not my favorite (I like RPGs that involve storylines the best), but this one has not felt too tedious/monotonous yet. I'm still motivated to keep playing! My goal for tomorrow is to work on how to defeat those trolls. Let's see what progress I can make with another hour of gaming under my belt! Stay tuned for my next post!