Review: Excubitor – A Different Take on Tower Defense

Review: Excubitor – A Different Take on Tower Defense

Excubitor is a different take on tower defense. It’s a brand new, innovative style of the too easily repetitive tower defense gameplay. Check out our review of this title and find out more about exactly what it is below! 

Overview

Excubitor is a fresh take on the saturated world of tower defense. Instead of the classical top down zig-zag maze of turrets found on most other tower defense titles, Excubitor promises to deliver a new experience to veterans of the tower defense genre. You play as a pilot flying an armed spaceship called the Hammerhead, a small but very powerful aircraft. The primary goal of each mission is to survive waves of enemies while protecting your mothership known as the Antares. A variety of land and air threats come from all sides in waves, as well as boss units which cause devastating damage to the Antares should they get within range.

Gameplay

At the beginning of the campaign you have the option of playing through a tutorial, which I recommend given the difference between this game and others of it’s genre. As mentioned, defending the Antares is the primary objective of every mission, the Antares carries a decent compliment of weaponry but her destruction occurs surprisingly quickly even when surrounded by fully upgraded turrets. Protecting the Antares requires the player to actively participate in every battle. If you leave her side for just a few moments to collect resources – which are obtained by killing enemies and also by destroying objects scattered across the map – or by collecting  power-ups which are occasionally dropped by fallen enemies, you may return to find the Antares nearly destroyed and on fire. The health of the Antares does not regenerate in any way so it’s in the player’s best interest to try and engage enemies as they come in from the edge of the map and quickly return to her side if she gets attacked.

Wrap up

If you are looking to add a new game to your library, and enjoy the concept of tower defense, but have grown bored with building endless mazes, I would suggest you give Excubitor a play. The campaign is decently long and very challenging. I found that even when I set the difficulty to the lowest setting I was still challenged, setting the difficulty to medium proved to be quite difficult with the weapons I had equipped in the first half of the campaign. Once you upgrade your Hammerhead however, things get a bit easier. Requiring the player to do the shooting themselves adds to the experience. Dodging enemy rockets using the thrusters on your Hammerhead proved to be rather entertaining in and of itself. Excubitor will be available to download on Steam beginning May 26th 2016.

The Good

  • Graphics are pretty good for a game of this type.
  • Player involvement – flying in your very own attack ship means there’s always action with few moments to rest between waves. Also, since you’re largely doing the aiming yourself it adds to the skill required to master the game.

The Bad

  • Pre-placed turret build sites takes away from the complex maze construction found in classical tower defense games – your only choice is what type of turret to build.
  • Once you obtain enough resources to purchase weapons of your choice there is little incentive to spend time destroying world objects in order to obtain more resources. Additionally, like most tower defense games, replayability is not high – especially with the fixed turret sites which limit creativity.

*This review was completed by site contributor Danny Vanco

Have you played Excubitor? Will you? What are your thoughts on this new title?

WTFGO Staff

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