Monday, March 9, 2015

Swamp Defense 2 for AmigaOS 4.1 on X1000

Today I wanted to take a look at the recently released Swamp Defense 2, released on AmigaOS4.1 on my AmigaOne X1000.

Swamp Defense 2 is by Entwickler-X, the team behind the original Swamp Defense (which I reviewed in 2012 here), and countless other games for AmigaOS 4.1 in recent years.

A demo of the game is available to download from their website here, and the full game costs EUR16.99 and can be purchased for immediate download from their website.

Alternatively, you can also purchase Swamp Defense 2 on AmiStore for GBP10 for immediate download as below (click any photos in this post to enlarge):

You can also soon buy a physical boxed version with CD and manual from various Amiga dealers too!

I decided to purchase it from AMIStore on my X1000.

BTW if you haven't installed/used AMIStore yet, it is an App Store for AmigaOS 4.1 released in November 2014. I covered AMIStore in some detail here and here if you want to check out more about it.

Once purchased in AMIStore, I started downloading Swamp Defense 2 from my purchased items:

When download is completed, the installer then starts automatically:

Choose where you want to install the game:

Installation of files happens quickly:

And we are done!

Now I have the Swamp Defense 2 drawer with the following icons in it:

I run the Config program first to check out the options available:

From the Config program I can change the game to run in full screen or a window, and the screen aspect ratio, Sound card AHI selection, amongst others. I chose to run it in full screen 1920x1080 with 16:10 aspect ratio, and clicked on Save.

When I run Swamp Defense 2 itself, it initially comes up with the AmiBoing online profile login, which allows your progress and high scores to be submitted to an online global highscore table.

Once logged in, the main title screen shortly appears:

The Question Mark option allows you to see a quick guide on how to play Swamp Defense 2.

In summary the game is similar in gameplay to it's predecessor Swamp Defense in that it is 2D and viewed from above. It consists of a series of maps you need to complete, now divided into mulltiple zones, each with a number of maps to complete. This is very much like the popular game Angry Birds in zone concept. 

Each level has one clear route (generally left of screen to right of screen but does vary) which a number of different aliens take in separate waves. The route changes with each level. You need to stop the aliens from reaching the end of the route, which require you to place various people with different levels of weapons at key points along the route to shoot them. You can also attack with other weapons (new to Swamp Defense 2) that can be purchased with in-game money earned as you play the game.

You clear the first level when you have cleared 10 waves of aliens. The next level is 20 waves, and the difficulty of killing the aliens and the map strategy changes each time, providing quite a challenge.

You get money for each alien you kill, which can then be used to add additional people or upgrade the weapons people can use, depending on what kind of person they are. 

From the Main Title screen you can click the Shop icon to see what People and weapons can be purchased with your money:

As you can see, the upgrades have been enhanced substantially here for Swamp Defense 2, with the addition of extra bombs and weapons you can use during the game, in addition to the familiar people (called Towers in the game) from the original Swamp Defense:
Much like with Angry Birds, Swamp Defense 2 includes a Star earning system, that allows you to get extras along the way. Clicking on the Star icon on the Title screen allows you to see your progress to date:

For those all important bragging rights, you can also click on the Podium icon on the title screen to see how you rate compared to the global competition!

When you start the main game from the Title screen, you are presented with a map, which shows your current zone progress and which level is next to conquer - initially we are in The Swamp zone - if we have money we can click on the Shop icon to purchase weaponry and upgrades before we attempt another level:

You can see I have already attempted this first level and completed it successfully. It also shows the stars earned, and the option to select Normal or Hard mode (Hard mode needs to be unlocked - here it is). You can only attempt levels that are green, the others are locked and cannot be played until you complete the previous level that then unlocks the next one.

So let's see if I can do any better this time on the first level! As the game begins, I position two people, one that slows down the aliens by shooting them with some kind of pink glue, and two shooters.

Positioning of people along the route is crucial to how successful the kills are. People have a certain range that they can fire at the aliens and no further. For example, locating people inside a turn where they can twice at the aliens delivers better results than people positioned on the outside of a straight piece of the route where they can only fire once.

As each wave of aliens comes through, we get more money to afford to buy more people to defend the route. This can be done while the aliens are progressing through the level, allowing you to add extra firepower downstream if you find that you are not able to get all the aliens before they pass your last line of defence!

To position people, click on a valid location on the level next to the main route. Certain positions are not allowed - eg. in the swamp itself, on the far left and right of the map and where obstacles have been placed. When a valid location is selected, the people available to be purchased for the position then appear - the others are greyed out:

As this point I have made it through 7 waves of aliens of the 10 waves required to pass through this level. You can click on the 1x lightning icon on the top of the screen to speed up the wave advance so you can't move through the levels quicker (useful if you have everything positioned and don't need to add anything):

You can also upgrade the weaponry or remove a person from their position on the level during the game. By clicking on the person you get these options. You get a partial money credit that helps to buy another person. This tactic is useful when you want to replace a low end killer with a higher level one but have no spaces left to put them in on the level:

You have 10 lives to start with - every time an alien makes it to the end of the route you lose a life. The game ends when you have no more lives left:

My game is going well and I have reached the 9th wave on the first level now:

Last wave and the last alien is proving rather tricky to kill:

I didn't manage to kill the last alien, but only lost one life to complete the first level:

As the game progresses, it gets a lot harder - here I attempt the fourth level, a level I am still stuck on! This level has 20 waves, and my best attempt so far got my to Wave 17 - as you can see the Hard mode for this level is locked still:

This level is tricky as there are much less spaces to position your people initially (lots of positions that can't be used), and some of the enemies seem almost impossible to kill as the waves move on!

As normal I position my people for best effect in the level:

I could really use some of the extra weaponry but having trouble getting the cash needed!

Unfortunately things are not going well - starting to let too many aliens through:

When your lives get down to 2, it starts to pulse with a plus symbol in it - I believe it is possible to add extra lives if you have enough stars and money to buy it, but I don't regrettably!

The game over screen comes often, but this is definitely one addictive game - you can see the extra weaponry icons on the top right of the screen in this shot as I still have some left at this stage:

I can strongly recommend Swamp Defense 2 - the music and graphics are excellent, and the new features added into this sequel make it considerably better than the original game in my opinion!

The online scoreboard and addictive gameplay complete the package and definitely makes Swamp Defense 2 a worthwhile purchase!

It is really great to see new games for AmigaOS 4.1 in 2015!

Looking forward to even more games - but in the meantime, back to try level 4 again! :-)

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