The world of TD Games

June 21 2007

As I slowly unjack myself from the gaming of World of Warcraft ... yes, I need to not plan my life around the raiding schedule of a game ... I find myself looking for games that can play in short moments or while watching TV. Enter the world of the games of TD. Tower Defense, otherwise known as TD, is a gaming style that is as much strategy as shooter.

The TD gaming style started with a custom map in Warcraft 3 and Starcraft. The map is designed to send waves of baddies (or creeps) down a fixed path. The waves get progressively harder. If the creeps get to the end, they do damage to your base/castle/etc. When you base hits 0 the game is over. To stop the creeps, you build towers or people. They are in a fixed position and do different things. They can be upgraded over time to be stronger. You get a certain amount of money at the start. For every creep you kill, you get money, and for each successful wave you survive.

So what you have is part strategy ... how do I build a mix of towers that works? The creeps have different levels of strengths. Some fly, some are immune to some kinds of attacks. There are boss creeps that have huge numbers of health. You can not build the defenses to block the creeps. But a tower that slows the creeps followed by a tower that fires slow but powerful attacks makes good sense. But the great part of this game is you don't have to fight them actively. They just move along the path. It is not about twitch reflexes or how powerful your computer is. I find it a great way to play a game for 30 minutes while a TV show is on.

If you do not have Warcraft 3 or Starcraft, no worries. Two TD enthusiasts, Paul and Dave, started making TD style games in Flash. These are pretty minimal designs ... not fancy creeps or towers, but they have added features and difficulty to make it fun. Master of Defense might be the closest fantasy version of the Warcraft 3 TD maps without requiring an existing game.

Below is a listing of all of the TD games that I have found. Try one out and let me know what you think.

Map Name:

Map Name Designer Dependencies
Element Tower Defense Survivor Warcraft 3
Zoator TD Final Classic Warcraft 3
Turrent Defense Toad Starcraft
Blizzard Tower Defense Blizzard Warcraft 3
Skibi's Tower Defense Blizzard (started by Skibi) Warcraft 3
Desktop Tower Defense Roman Sanine
Master of Defense Voodoo Dimention
Flash Element TD Dave
Desktop TD Paul
Flash Circle TD Dave
Vector TD Dave
Starcraft FA 5 dz2001 None - but I can not imagine Blizzard loves this one :-)



I am also a fan of having local copies of these when possible ... I use FlashGet to do that. Check it out.

Updated on 6/21/2007 at 11:30 PM - added Flash Circle TD to the table