Vikings never really helped their reputation with all that raiding and pillaging, but their reputation isn’t likely to get any better with their conduct in Viking Defense, since Vikings are the perpetrators of get more destruction in this unusual take on the tower defense style of game. Defense of your tiny village from the swimming, flying and diving Vikings is essential in order to save the lives of its inhabitants from certain death at the hands of the Viking enemy. Strategic placement of towers and buildings in effective locations is the only way to stop the Vikings from making their way to the village and causing mayhem, and Iriysoft have made sure that stopping them requires as much as strategy and results in as much fun as is possible.
Viking Defense isn’t really all that different in format from the standard tower defense model. You are in charge of defending your village against waves of attackers that will attempt to navigate the channels of water of varying shape in order to do so; you must place towers and buildings on the pieces of land that surround the water in order to attack those waterborne enemies as well as ones that take an aerial journey over the terrain, ignoring the usual restrictions of following the channel of water in order to travel directly to your village at an accelerated pace. Money is earned from killing each Viking, the accumulation of which will allow you to afford better towers of more advanced function and destructive capability.
In the game, you can choose from two types of tower as well as construct supportive buildings that allow you pay respects to the gods in order to summon special attacks. Each tower you can build specialises in attacking only certain types of enemy. The standard watch tower is capable only of killing enemies that float in the water, for example, but the Sacred Oak lets you attack enemies that fly; the watch tower would be useless for these airborne enemies. The Temple of Thor is an example of the buildings that you can construct in order to summon powers from above to initiate a powerful strike on the approaching opponents.
More advanced towers have to be unlocked by killing certain numbers of enemies in different ways and therefore are introduced gradually, instead of being thrown at the player all at once which can create confusion and often annoyance, particularly for first-time players of tower defense. Introducing you slowly to the different towers allows you to become accustomed to the existing ones and also to develop an understanding of the strengths/weaknesses of particular enemies. It also compels you to refine your skills so that you kill enough enemies to unlock the next tower. Runes can also be unlocked which are simply the equivalent of tower upgrades.
Viking Defense isn’t a game to take the tower defense world by storm when considering the success of the likes of Pokemon TD 2, but it sits in its own little niche as pretty much the only Viking-based tower defense game out there. Its format of revealing new towers incrementally based on your progress and success in the game is a refreshing feature, and there are plenty of towers and buildings to unlock to keep the game interesting. The graphics could have done with considerable improvement, and the interface/towers menus aren’t the most intuitive, but they serve their purpose sufficiently and are just one flawed component in an otherwise thoroughly enjoyable campaign against the Vikings.