Just when you thought there were enough first person shooters in the gaming world, Grip Games have brought another one to our consoles. Developed by Terrible Posture Games, Tower of Guns is going for that old school vibe, where less is more. Will there be enough within this FPS experience to make sure there’s a jolly good time to be had for all gamers who enter the Tower of Guns?
Well, I’ll begin with the story. This is awkward… as it appears there isn’t a story as such, apart from small bits of random text-based dialogue on occasion. It doesn’t claim to be a grand tale though; in fact they even partially mention the “loose” story in one of the dialogue boxes. Basically though the idea is to tackle the five levels of the tower and ultimately defeat the biggest, baddest boss of them all.
The normal game mode will take you through a couple of rooms per level filled with enemies aplenty to wade through, with the climax to each level being a standard boss chosen at random. “Random” is a word that will come up frequently for Tower of Guns due to the fact that the layouts and enemies within the levels are randomised for each and every playthrough. So far, after many playthroughs I’ve not seen two identical rooms, that’s good going but I must point out they aren’t the prettiest of environments hence they do get boring to look at eventually.
That’s if you get a chance to stop and look. Easily the best part of the experience is the run ’n’ gun feel where there’s so much going on around you, especially when the toughness is ramped up, that you have to keep moving and shooting to stay alive. There’s no hiding behind corners or shooting from cover, instead you’ll be out in plain sight relying on your aim and ability to hop around the place like an athlete doing a triple jump. I was thankful of the unlimited ammo, meaning my finger never had to leave that shooting trigger.
Before entering the tower, choosing which tools to use at your disposal come in two categories – Weapons and Perks. You won’t see a SCAR-H assault rifle or Desert Eagle; oh no these are a little more outrageous than that. A favourite of mine is actually one of the first weapons unlocked, the Portable Pizza Oven which fortunately now shoots sawblades. There are also variations of a canon/rocket launcher, machine gun and pistol, to name but a few of the ten available to unlock.
As for the perks, well the more you play, the more that’ll unlock over time by taking enough damage, firing shots and picking up loot. If it’s too tough then the TooYoungToDie perk is massively helpful as it lowers difficulty whilst improving other stats like armor and damage. Or if, like me, you are prone to using rockets on nearby enemies then you can turn on a perk to avoid self damage. With eleven perks in total there has to be one that makes your next adventure better in some way, even if that’s making everything harder!
The enemies attack in great numbers as you advance through each room and it’s entirely up to the player as to whether you clear the entire room or just the ones in the way of reaching the exit. I personally preferred putting the hurt on these various cannons and flying disc enemies before I ventured onwards. Although the bosses are pretty cool to see, the minions get a little samey as there aren’t that many different ones to see and even those that are slightly different practically have the same look.
Other game modes include Dice Roll and Endless Mode. Endless Mode is pretty straight forward, just keep going as long as you possibly can. Dice Roll adds a bit of spice, where at the start of a level it’ll randomly make enemies tougher or give you more coins (these coins can be spent in levels if you find an upgrade with a price attached).
Whilst Tower of Guns is lacking in bells and whistles it more than makes up for this deficit with the frantic nature of every trek through the tower. When a level can last anywhere from three to ten minutes this becomes a natural pick up and play game. Add in the random item drops that give cool abilities, health perks and secret areas to find too, I never found myself getting bored of the experience until I stopped to take it all in. So the lesson here is, just keep running and gunning for a fun time.
I think the price is just about right for Tower of Guns as on the whole it’s an enjoyably simple first person shooter.