Monday, January 4, 2016

Sol Survivor - great Tower Defense co-op

I did it! I survived the Steam Winter Sale (feels weird saying that, because it's definitely not winter here, last few days it's been close to 40 degrees Celsius!).

I only bought two games. And both were with Steam Wallet money I made selling cards. The first one was Sol Survivor:

I got it for all of R27.25 - loosely translated, at the time of purchase, to about $2, although with our Rand being so low to the Dollar these days, it's closer to about $1.80

I also bought Tomb Raider, which was also listed for under R30. Also paid with wallet money.

Anyway, back to Sol Survivor.

It's a TD game. Tower Defense. And this one is quite old, and came out for the Xbox 360 in September 2009, and for Windows in March 2010.

Now, me and Jayson has been on the never ending search for a great Tower Defense game that we can play together. Our love for TD games started with custom maps for Warcraft 3. Our ultimate Tower Defense map is still, to this day, the classic Warcraft 3 map, Burbenog. We played that map for months and months, and finally beat it one Sunday afternoon back in 2006. We still talk fondly about how glorious that was. And ever since we've had this void that we just cannot seem to be able to fill - our next cooperative tower defense high.

We've tried lots of the options out there, but nothing came close to actually gripping us. Especially for a co-op game.

Enters Sol Survivor.

I only played this first single player mission, so I cannot comment on that part of the game. But we did play several games cooperatively last night. Me, Jayson and Nathan. Over the internet. In South Africa with terrible lag. Jayson hosted, and he did the invites through Steam.

As with any online game we play, we always find it extremely refreshing if we don't have to fiddle around with stuff like port forwarding and vpn's and the like just to get the game to work. So, first thing we loved about the game - we could play it TOGETHER with no effort at all! Already a huge plus in my book!

The first couple of games we played were the co-op endless mode, called Survival. You basically have to see how long you can survive with the waves of mobs getting stronger and stronger. In both games we lasted about 18 minutes.

Another cool aspect of the game is that you can select a general to play with, or create your own. Each one has a set number of towers he can build, and a set number of support options - these are basically things like orbital strikes that you can call in anywhere on the map.

There are two kinds of resources. One you use for your towers and upgrades, and you earn more by killing mobs and surviving waves, and the other one is a recharging resource used for your support powers.

The goal is simple - prevent the mobs from reaching your base and steal the souls of your inhabitants.

With this game mode, any player can build anywhere on the map. So you can really diversify your roles on the battlefield - Jayson, for example, built inhibitors all over the map - they detect stealth units - and Nathan and I just focused on doing damage - nice touch that you can compliment each others towers like that...

For our next game, we played a co-op map where we had to survive a set number of waves. On this map, which was made specifically for three people, each player gets a designated build area for his/her towers, and there are overlapping areas where everyone can build. The mobs also followed a set path and each enemy would pass by each player. Very similar to BURBENOG. It was an awesome map and we had a great time - for the first time in years something got me close to the great experience we had with Burbenog 10 years ago.

In the end we had great great fun. Nathan experienced some lag, but even with that, it still was an awesome co-op gaming session.

Can't wait to play Sol Survivor some more - I don't think I'll play the single player campaign, but damn, the multiplayer is great!

Even at full price, I'd easily recommend it. If you love Tower Defense games, this one is not to be missed!

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