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Anomaly: Warzone Earth

April 11th, 2011 by Troy Goodfellow · 4 Comments · Me, RTS

First, the disclaimer. Anomaly: Warzone Earth is represented by Evolve PR, my employer. If you think that means something, I can’t prevent you from thinking that.

Other people, though, seem to be liking Anomaly just fine without the paycheque attached.

Anomaly is a tower offense game. You guide a small squad of forces through a map, changing their path so you can deal with new towers, roadblocks or a changing tactical situation. You don’t control the squad – you guide it, you heal it, you upgrade it by buying new units. But you are the super consciousness that tells it where to creep to.


The design of a tower offense game is pretty obvious on the surface. Just as a tower defense game requires different types of towers and ways to upgrade the ones in place, a tower offense game needs a way to give the creeps a fighting chance without constantly forcing you to spam units. The path should be clear and predictable since you don’t want to be forced to steer your attackers through enemy fire. In many ways, tower offense is as close to puzzle games as it is to tower defense. There is usually only a couple of good choices to make.

The small squad size couple with repairs is clearly the genius bit of design. By giving you a small convoy to pay attention to, 11 Bit Studios doesn’t overwhelm you with decisions. Choosing your path, deciding which towers to avoid and when and where to deploy your new troops are the big calls here. Setting the order for your convoy is usually the most important decision you’ll make. I love how the maps themselves are pretty fast, so failure doesn’t mean that you have to waste a lot of time. Though you will fail.

Oh, and it really looks great. If there is such a thing as a AAA casual game, this is it.

I have not finished Anomaly yet – things get in the way of my gaming more often these days. Stupid life. But I will finish it for sure. And hey, less than ten bucks on Steam. This and Magicka are the two best low cost games on the market right now and are two of my favorite gaming experiences of the year so far.


4 Comments so far ↓

  • Colin

    I like the disclaimer. Doesn’t change my interpretation of the review but it’s nice having it.

    Looks like a fun game, I need to check it out sometime.

  • Tony K

    is there an ipad version?

  • Ethylene Oxide

    Tony – According to their facebook page, an iOS version is in the works.

  • Chris Floyd

    Thanks for the recommendation. A highly accessible strategy game is always, always welcome. I’m really enjoying this after a few missions, even if it appears to use the same gruff Australian for the voice-overs of every single character.