The Evolving World of TD
Back in 2012 the most anticipated flash game that was about to come out was Gemcraft.
It was a time when tower defense games were becoming more & more popular, and that trend has remained somewhat consistent since then. How did this whole thing start?
Tower defense or TD for those who love their abbreviations, is a subgenre of real-time strategy games. Real-time strategy can include games like StarCraft and Warcraft. The objective is pretty simple- to stop enemies from crossing the map and entering your base. You do this by building towers that shoot them as they follow a path. Usually these enemies and towers have varied abilities and the cost for better towers goes up as the game goes on. Usually when enemy dies, you have some kind of in game currency or resource that can be used to upgrade your towers and buy new towers.
Basically, the strategy only comes in the play when you’re trying to decide where to put your towers and what type of towers to put where.
The map usually resemble some kind of a maze. Usually, this includes strategic places to place towers. Sometimes, you can use the towers to actually change the shape of the maze. Desktop Tower Defense was one of the first games to do this. Sometimes there’s a hybrid of these two styles gameplay, where you can change between preset paths by placing towers in specific places.
Tower defense actually started a long time ago with a game called Rampart. This is more like an arcade game away back in the year 1990. You defend the castle by putting Cannons around it and making repairs in between waves of enemies coming in. They actually ported Rampart to super NES, Game Boy, Xbox, GameCube, etc.
By the year 2000, tower defense games are becoming more and more popular.
They were using maps that people made for games like Age of Empires and StarCraft. We are not talking about game developers here making these maps, talking about the people that play the games making the maps. Custom maps became all the rage.
With the advent of Adobe flash and ubiquitous spread of it throughout the Internet, independent game developers started using this new technology to make browser games. A lot of these were tower defense. Desktop Tower Defense came in 2007. This is one of those browser based flash games utilizing the new Adobe technology. Lots of different versions of this game eventually came out.
The newest development in this whole line of evolving new tower defense gameplay is the game Gemcraft. If you haven’t played a tower defense game yet, I recommend you check one out sometime. More on Gemcraft tower defense here. The twist here, is the fact that you can combine towers. This adds a new element to gameplay makes the game more fun.