33RD Random Defense Gameplay Impressions

33RD Random Defense Gameplay

Today I want to reach out to all you fans of tower defense games out there, as we’ve been invited to give 33RD: Random Defense a go. This game puts cute pixel art animals front and center, and the best bit is that they’re armed to the teeth to fight the invasion of slimy creatures, with your help, of course.

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Let’s begin by examining the name of the game – 33RD: Random Defense. Why’s that number? Because there are 33 enemy invader types for you to blast away. As for the Random word in the title, that’s due to some randomness to the way that the matches unfold. You have control over your team, but not full control, as this element of RNG throws a wrench into your plans. Let’s learn more about this tower defense subgenre, the random defense.

Legend says that the random defense genre started with StarCraft’s use map settings game type. Fans of Blizzard’s RTS masterpiece will surely know this better than I do, but apparently it spawned a genre where animals and monsters are randomly deployed. In 33RD Random Defense, animals have weapons such as pistols and rifles to take down slimes, but also use other ingenious weaponry such as hairdryers and slingshots. There’s a lot going on under the hood, because some weapons are more effective against a specific type of monster, but honestly I haven’t been able to tell due to the frantic pace at which the matches unfold. If you’re a better player than I am, you can wrap your mind around the arsenal and figure out what’s the best approach.

I should mention that there’s an anniversary event with a new special game mode, as well as limited edition Christmas skins for those who love their tiny pixel animals in cute outfits.

But let’s get to the basics of this game. The first twist is that you’re not supposed to stop monsters going from one side to another; instead, you must avoid having 33 simultaneous monsters moving around. It’s a fast-paced game where you’re constantly switching between spawning animals, leveling up, enhancing your wizard, and relocating animals. This is where the random factor steps in, as you never know how they will be deployed, sometimes resulting in great groups, but other times putting them in ineffective positions. It’s up to you to relocate them until you find a satisfactory spot and combination, preferably resulting in a simultaneous barrage of projectiles. Spawns are random as well, so you may be pleased with the animal that decided to show up… or not. The randomness goes on and on as monsters appear without any set order and buffs show up without any hint on what to expect, so it’s a constant test of skill where luck also plays a significant role.

All of this in three minutes or so for the single-player and player-versus-player game modes. There are over 100 stages to face, so you can picture the chaotic nature of the later levels.

The co-op mode takes a bit more time and depth, as you connect with other player for a frantic session where the monsters won’t give you a moment to breathe. Advanced games in this mode can last a lot longer than the regular matches, going up to 20 minutes in the most challenging sessions.

At the beginning you’re stuck with a handful of animals, but you’ll expand your little zoo of defenders in no time, with over 50 unique animals to recruit and summon. Collecting daily event and match rewards will make your gold pile increase, and this can be used in a couple of gacha machines, of which there are six currently, for animals, items, skins, and summoning stones. Animals come in different tiers, and I’ve managed to score an Epic Donkey in my first hours of playtime, I don’t know if that was a hint for me or something, but I’ll let it slide because it’s the strongest animal in my current team and it uses a machine gun right off the bat. Now for that coveted Mythic Yeti…

I found 33RD: Random Defense to strike a nice balance between luck and strategy, even though your tactical approach is mostly based on tapping the screen as fast as you can, typical of idle games. You tap to summon animals, to level up your wizard and animals, to randomly relocate your animals… There’s skill to your finger presses, because you’ll want to use your best animals all the time. It starts slow, but in a couple of days you should be zipping along through the levels, enjoying your newly recruited animals and especially having fun in co-op mode. It’s a nice time killer that I find to be best enjoyed in short bursts, as it can get quite frantic after a while. Plus, there’s the cute pixel animals to appeal to your collector side. Give it a shot if you like tower defense games, the link is in the video description, and as always, have fun!

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