Hands-on with reverse tower defence title Anomaly Korea

Ready for round 2?

Hands-on with reverse tower defence title Anomaly Korea
| Anomaly Korea

Back in August last year, Anomaly Warzone Earth hit the App Store and earned a prestigious Pocket Gamer Platinum Award.

Developer 11 bit studios is hoping to release follow-up Anomaly Korea before the end of the year. The game will feature - among other things - new units, player powers, and missions.

We recently went hands-on with an "early sampling" of Anomaly Korea that featured the game's first four missions, and it appears to be shaping up nicely.

A new ball game

Anomaly Korea (which looks gorgeous, by the way) is a reverse tower defence title that takes place months after the events of its predecessor. East Asia has been ravaged by machines, and you're tasked with taking back your homeland by force.

At the beginning of each mission you're presented with a tactical map of the area you're about to launch an assault on. If you've played Anomaly Warzone Earth, you'll be more than familiar with this process.

Using this map, you can view the placement of enemy units and plan your team's route to best avoid large clusters of defensive towers.

Mission 1 - Escape

Anomaly Korea's first mission won't cause you much trouble (providing you're playing on the lowest of three difficulty settings, that is).

You're asked to direct your squad safely to a military warehouse complex where they can rest and resupply for the battles ahead, but several towers stand in your way.

This battle is more of a tutorial than anything else, so you'll receive instructions on how to reorder units and other tips throughout. You're also given your very first power-up: Boost.

This perk, which you can place on any area of the battlefield, improves the range, power, and rate of fire of any units that fall within its perimeter.

You have a limited number of Boost power-ups, and they don't last very long, but you can often pick up additional numbers by destroying towers.

Mission 2 - Air Transport

Your primary objective in your second mission is to secure a large "air transport" that will later be used to ferry comrades out of tight spots.

In this mission, you're introduced to a new unit called the crawler - a light-armoured vehicle that packs a pretty hefty punch - and a valuable resource called Carusaurum that can be spent on new vehicles and upgrades on the fly.

Carusaurum is visible on your tactical map. You can collect it simply by moving your units close to it, but this often means passing by more towers than you normally would if you concentrated solely on your objective.

It's a toss-up: do you take the risk and put your team's backsides on the line for some cash or take the easy way out and leave it behind?

Mission 3 - To The Rescue

Things start to heat up in your third mission. Before you can begin, you're asked to construct your own squad from a selection of different units. You're guided through this, though, so you can't really go wrong.

Once you're on the battlefield you'll be fighting your way towards a female lieutenant named Park, who's been left stranded by large defensive spires referred to as Scorcher towers.

These towers are extremely powerful (compared to the towers found in the game's previous two missions, at least) and they'll quickly deplete your squad's armour if you're not careful.

Luckily, they're few and far between in this mission, and you're given a Smoke Screen ability that will help you to overcome the ones you do cross.

Mission 4 - Factory

Anomaly Korea's fourth mission was the toughest we faced. We actually died a few times before we finally managed to complete it.

This was mainly due to the many Flamer towers that shoot molten inferno streams and cause prolonged fire damage to any units that come into contact with them.

In this mission, you're tasked with retaking control of a factory by completely wiping out the evil machines that reside within it.

You're given a powerful Horangi tank and shown how to use it at the beginning of this mission, but you're pretty much on your own from there on out.

As we said earlier, Anomaly Korea is shaping up nicely. If you're already a fan of the series, you shouldn't be disappointed with this instalment. The game should hit iOS and Android in December, or early 2013.

Anthony Usher
Anthony Usher
Having flirted with a career in Forensic Science, Anthony left university to pursue other interests. These mostly consisted of video games which he has been fond of ever since popping Super Mario World into his SNES. Numerous gaming platforms and endless hours of button bashing have passed following that moment, with iOS taking the crown as his current favourite.