Escape From The Red Planet review – A Perfectly Average and Blissfully Focused Game
Is Escape From The Red Planet a perfect game? No. Is Escape From The Red Planet even a great game? Also, no. Is Escape From The Red Planet an average game? Yes, and it excels in it. For a small game with limited features and simple mechanics, it has opened my eyes to the experience of ‘just enough’. A lot of AAA features can take something away from this unassuming Tower Defense game.
The premise, and how Escape From The Red Planet nails it
Escape From The Red Planet is a small game, with the intent to deliver you a spot of easy-to-learn fun. With a simple premise, crash landing on Mars and being swarmed by inexplicably hostile martians, the game can launch you into the action quickly. Thankfully, the story is as shallow as the premise. There is no grand story arc or complex motivations. You crash landed on Mars and are defeating the martians whilst awaiting rescue.
Playing Escape From The Red Planet provided me a refreshing experience that took me back to the days of flash games. Where you jumped in for the game mechanic and you played it till you had your fill. I wasn’t really expecting a huge plot or grand story, but the absence of one rang out to me. I’ve always said that narratives are the bit about games I enjoy the most, above graphics and above minor issues. But Escape From The Red Planet allows you to simply enjoy the art of tower defense without bogging you down with an overly complex premise.
Escape From The Red Planet masters the art of ‘enough is enough’
If you’ve been paying even a modicum of attention to the gaming scene in recent years, you’ll see that game developers are on a mission to throw in as much content as possible. You can see this with huge titles that have never-ending amounts of content for players to get through, for God forbid they get bored or run out of things to do.
Not only developers, but players are even demanding more and more content out of existing games, such as Minecraft, where content updates are scarcely big or exciting enough. Constantly churning out content, the gaming scene is always starving for more. Escape From The Red Planet performs a full 180 on this concept of ‘more content = better’.
The developers intention was to construct a simple tower defense for players to enjoy, and they stopped as soon as they did that. There is no New Game+, or unlockables or side missions or challenges. There is merely 25 levels of gameplay. With restraint, Escape From The Red Planet puts the core game play first.
Sure, there is an infinite mode and a FPS mode, but they are minimal and are nothing too exciting. If you enjoy tower defense games, then that is exactly what you get here. 25 levels of increasing difficulty with an array or towers and martians is what you get. A pure and simple experience that doesn’t leave you feeling bloated or hungry for more.
Related: Escape From The Red Planet beginner’s tips and tricks
Hardly a spiritual journey, but a solid one
Escape From The Red Planet has a simple premise and a throws at you a solid tower defense game. But that doesn’t necessarily make it a great game. Playing this game was enjoyable, challenging and fun, however it wasn’t anything special. I careened through the story, reaching the end rather swiftly. there was only one mission where I stumbled a failed a couple times, but ultimately the resource management and tower defense isn’t too challenging.
The game isn’t anything special, but that isn’t a bad thing. The game is well polished and paced decently. I enjoyed the one soundtrack for the game and looked forward to unlocking new towers and enemy types. Before I knew it, however, the game was over and there was nothing for me left to do. No sooner had I unlocked all of the towers, I had arrived at the very final mission.
Escape From The Red Planet isn’t a game that transformed my life, but provided a fun and moderately unique tower defense game for me to work away on. It felt like a bite-sized refresher between playing my larger games.
In all honesty, I didn’t really enjoy the game as much as I enjoyed the prospect and novelty of the simplicity. Rather easy and straightforward, the game didn’t leave an impression on me. There were no highs and no lows, just an average experience.
Should you bother with Escape From The Red Planet?
If you are hankering for a tower defense game that gets to the point, then Escape From The Red Planet would be worth a try. For merely £5, it could be worth your time picking it up. You’ll be presented with about 5 hours of solid gameplay before you tire of it or complete it.
Rest assured, the enemies and towers are varied enough to keep you having to adopt different strategies, and for once you can actually get in on the action yourself. If these are appealing mechanics, then this game may be worth the small cost. If you really take to the game, then you may enjoy the infinite and last stand modes more than I did, and you could then really keep changing strategies to see how far you can get.
There are also some pleasant surprises along the journey that may amplify your experience.
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