Tower defense games challenge you to destroy incoming waves of enemies by placing towers or units on a map. The invasion routes are generally clearly marked so you can carefully plan the best spots for different kinds of towers. Usually there is some kind of resource to protect, but the key factor is always to try and kill the invaders before they reach your goodies, whether it’s your base or a bunch of glowing orbs.
There are loads of great tower defense games on the Android platform. It’s a really addictive genre and the gameplay works perfectly on a smartphone. They are great for dipping into because the individual levels are generally pretty short, but don’t be surprised if you find yourself glued to your phone for hours. I’ve tried out quite a few so here the best tower defense games on Android in my humble opinion.
This is the first game I bought for my Android smartphone and it’s a fiercely addictive tower defense game. It sticks to the classic tower defense formula challenging you to construct a maze of gun towers, rocket launchers and towers that slow down the invaders so you can inflict more damage. You’ll be attacked by waves of troops including infantry, land-based vehicles and aircraft.
The basic challenge is to stop them from getting across the map and entering your base. If a certain number get in then it’s game over man. Getting the right pattern of towers is essential for success and as you progress you’ll earn various achievements and unlock upgrades. You can get flame towers, mines and even teleport towers that send enemies back to the start.
You need a strategy to deal with the aircraft because they can soar over your defences and ignore your carefully constructed maze. The mixture of enemies and the various tower types and upgrades make this a deceptively tactical game. At first glance it seems very simple, but when you get into it you’ll find there’s a lot of strategy involved. This is especially true in the paid version where the maps have multiple entrances. The free version is excellent though and you’ll easily get several hours of fun out of it.
GRave Defense HD
This is another addictive option offering fast paced tower defense gameplay in a post-apocalyptic setting. This time you’re facing off against hordes of mutated zombies and monsters. It has a storyline, but to be honest who wants a storyline in a tower defense game? The good news is you’ll face off against loads of monsters with different powers and you have a ton of high powered weaponry to help you send them to hell.
The tower positions are fixed here so there is some strategy to choosing the right type of tower for each spot to get the maximum use out of them. The locations are more interesting than your average TD title and the graphics in general are pretty decent backed up by some nice special effects. You’ve also got a military tree to climb and the more monsters you kill the higher in rank you go. There are all sorts of upgrades and bonuses available to keep things interesting.
Guns ‘n’ Glory: WW2
The original Guns’n’Glory was set in the Wild West but this time around you are pitched into the Second World War. This is a nice twist on tower defense gameplay because instead of towers you have troops and tanks that you can move around. The enemy will still attack in waves along predictable paths and the aim is to protect your buildings.
You can choose to play as the U.S. or the Germans and each side has different special units to take advantage of. The Americans have a flamethrower unit and the Germans have a medic who can heal up other troops. It gets very tough as the levels wear on and you may struggle beyond a certain point without splashing out real cash for in-game coins which is a bit of a turn off, but there is plenty of free gameplay on offer here. It also looks great — especially the wee angels rising skyward after you kill an enemy unit.
This was the tower defense champion on the iOS platform and it is available for Android now as well. It is a beautifully made TD title there’s simply no arguing with that. The graphics are great, the range of enemies makes things exciting and there are plenty of weapons to choose from. It features pretty standard TD gameplay and you can build mazes of towers to force land-based units through, but like in Robo Defense, you’ll have to cater for aircraft that can fly overhead and ignore your paths.
The big selling point for Fieldrunners is the fact it is very slick and highly polished. The units and animations look great, the busy battlefields are chaotic, and the visual effects and even the sound effects really add to the immersion.
Tower Raiders 2
In Tower Raiders 2 you are protecting your store of crystals which the enemy will try to carry off. This game is a lot like a mobile version of Defense Grid which I got addicted to on the PC. The extra hook here is that you have fixed spots for the towers, but you have to think about the placement carefully in order to make it harder for the enemy to get to your crystals. You can actually block certain routes and funnel them in the direction you want.
You’ve got the usual range of towers and enemies. You can upgrade as you make cash and you’ll have to deal with aircraft as well as ground units. You also have special weapons with a long cool down that can be employed when you really need them. It doesn’t look amazing, but gameplay is king and this is a real tactical addiction to get your teeth into.
There are loads of other great Android tower defense games. Here are a few honourable mentions — Sentinel 3: Homeworld, Myth Defense, ZDefense, Armored 2 and Element Defense. If you want to recommend anything else then post a comment.