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Steampunk Tower 2 Review

Steampunk Tower 2 is an action-strategy title that hosts more enemies and turrets than its predecessor. Along the way, you meet interesting characters whose banter provide a laugh or two while you explore the heart of Europe in an alternate universe with a steampunk style that takes center stage. Compared to other titles in this genre I’ve played, Steampunk Tower 2 is different because it doesn’t feature perks to work toward that grant an edge in battle, such as a bonus to resources gained or reload speeds after killing some number enemies. That doesn’t mean your efforts are in vain or that there’s nothing to work for, however.

#GOALS

Resource farming allows you to upgrade your turrets. You can collect gold regularly from living districts buildings, which is useful for repairing your tower if it takes damage during battle, and for upgrading your turrets. Etherium is another valuable resource obtained through battles or by sending out your agents on missions for a small cost of gold. You’ll need it to upgrade your buildings in the city.

For turrets, you must choose between one of two upgrades on occasion, such as increased firing speed versus armor-piercing bullets, or increased firing range versus more ammo capacity. You may upgrade these multiple times, and you can always dismantle a turret to retrieve a portion of resources if it’s no longer needed. There are only so many slots available, making these decisions meaningful (especially if you want to rework your turret setup), but you will acquire more slots for turrets as you progress.

Outside of the city, you may explore Europe and engage in battles or repeat prior ones for resources if you’re having difficulty with another skirmish and want a competitive edge. There are three types of battles: ones that progress the storyline, random ones which might reappear after time has passed (which is an aspect reminiscent of mobile titles), and bonus ones that grant a unique turret upon their completion. The bonus ones are difficult, testing your tactical skills, while the storyline ones grant you but a fraction of your total tower armor, two floors, and two turrets. Unless you prefer a challenge, you might like the bonus missions the least.

FAST-FORWARD

The random ones, after you’ve already cleared them, offer an auto-battle option which allows you to reap the rewards without having to sit through the fight. This staves off repetitiveness, but isn’t an option that’s always available. An alternative, to speed things along, is the in-game speed. You can set this to double, drastically reducing time spent in a match. But you must be careful with this, for unless you are familiar with how a match shall go, having the speed cranked up makes certain parts dicey and can easily lead to defeat. You may also skip the wait time between waves if you’re ready.

BATTLES

Matches vary in enemy type, enemy number, and the number of waves. You’re debriefed on the troop types and their relative quantity or strength before the match, but you won’t be told how many waves there will be. If you’re looking to farm for resources or experience you’ll likely want to farm efficiently, making how many waves you’d face worthwhile to know, so I wish they’d included that information.

AFTER INITIAL EXCITEMENT...

Unless you’re really into this genre, the tedium starts to wear on you sooner than expected. At least there’s the progression system in place — not only can you upgrade your buildings and turrets, but you can also expand how far into Europe you may venture. For enough gold, you can buy extra regions to explore. Besides resources, the main limiting factor is your level; this holds true for upgrading your buildings as well. Previous skirmishes still yield experience points, although not as much as you’d obtain upon clearing them for the first time.

Another aspect that staves off any tedium you might experience is that as you venture further, enemies are more varied. The simple ground troops you face at the start give way to fantastical creations of technology. One cannot help but marvel at the masterful design of some of these machines.

The title feels polished — there are no noticeable glitches. Perhaps the worst I noticed was an optimization problem when the application introduced a new super weapon; it produced a second or two delay until the weapon's effect began. Aside from this, the time in game clock seems quite off. I assume it measures how long you’ve played a particular file, but after just a few hours, this in-game statistic registered over twenty-six hours (and I hadn’t even had the game for that long).

6

The Verdict: Good

While this release felt repetitive at times, I remained interested, wanting to see what new characters might arrive and what new enemies I might encounter. The dialogue is intriguing and the attire of the characters seems rather fitting given the overall theme and design of the game. If you’re a fan of tower defense releases or steampunk aesthetics, you should check this out. However, if you’re not much a fan of the tower defense genre, its mechanics might wear on you, although the progression system can help retain your interest.

Chris Hubbard
Written by
April 23, 2018
Published in Strategy

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A fan of RPGs above other genres, Chris has been playing video games for as long as he can remember. Some of the games that had the most influence on his gaming preferences have been the Final Fantasy and the Diablo series. More recently, most of Chris' gaming time has been going toward Gems of War and Clicker Heroes (give it a try, it can be addicting), along with open-world RPGs such as Skyrim and ESO. He's also dabbled with RPG Maker software, and it is a goal of his to someday create an RPG.

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