Phalanx of Resistance, on paper, is an absolute “me” game, sporting a 90’s gaming aesthetic and combining tower defense with real-time strategy. I was excited to dig in. Unfortunately, even though the concept and mechanics are solid, it just was not as “me” as I had thought. Let’s quickly discuss why.
As I mentioned in the intro, Phalanx of Resistance puts a twist on the traditional tower defense game by injecting some real-time strategy elements. So while you may be placing turrets to fend off the oncoming hoards, you are also managing several other resources.
The resource management portion of the game does breathe some life into an otherwise repetitive game genre. Having to decide when to buy a building to mine resources versus upgrading a turret is a decision that can easily affect the long game.
Outside of some of the buildings you can buy, resource management, and a few real-time quirks, Phalanx of Resistance is a pretty standard tower defense game. You set up defenses and push back waves of enemy forces. Different enemy types have optimal methods to defeat them. For instance, an anti-air turret will take down a helicopter faster than a traditional machine gun turret.
The last thing I will touch on before giving my actual opinion on the game is the art style. Phalanx of Resistance has a very 90’s videogame art style. Something about it reminds me of a James Bond demo I had on SNES. The key point here is that the graphics are intentional, not necessarily a warning sign.
I mentioned earlier that I thought Phalanx of Resistance was 100% a game for me. It turns out it is not, and there are a few reasons for that.
When I review a game or product, first impressions are everything. Unfortunately for Phalanx of Resistance, there was a bug right off the bat. It caused the game to freeze mid-launch. I could always replicate this bug on the first launch of the game across any computer I owned.
To be fair to the game, it was all smooth sailing post first launch. I mentioned multiple times that Phalanx of Resistance is very much a tower defense game with real-time strategy elements. To drive home the point, this game is 90% tower defense.
While the mechanics related to both tower defense and RTS felt good, the game just lacked something. I guess the best way to explain it is that it felt like a chore to play; I wasn’t having much fun. I’m not sure if the lack of fun comes down to not enough integration between the two genres, the aesthetic, the pacing, or some combination of all of the above.
As I was reviewing Phalanx of Resistance, I wanted to go to the Steam store to see what other players were saying. I always want to get a perspective on my opinion. The opinions of others won’t sway my own, but it lets me know if I am an outlier or not.
Most of the player reviews were positive, but what struck me was the price of Phalanx of Resistance. The base price was 99 cents, with a sale bringing it down to 79 cents at that time. Price does not always equate quality, but this bit of information helped me round out my opinion.
So should you play Phalanx of Resistance? I guess if you like tower defense games and are looking for a cheap option to scratch that itch, it is not a terrible choice. Would I personally recommend this game? Probably not. Again, the mechanics are not bad, but I have a hard time with games that are not that fun.
Phalanx of Resistance is likely a better mobile game than a full-fledged PC experiment, but even then, I’m not sure it would be fun.
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