If you’re familiar with real-time strategy or tower defense games, Cubemen 2 (out now, $1.99), which blends both genres, will feel immediately intuitive to play. Like in its titular predecessor, you will command blocky soldiers on various maps built of blocks. Your mission in the main campaign is to defend your base from enemy attacks, just as you would in a typical tower defense game. The difference is you can move your soldiers and select targets. In addition, you won’t have much breathing time before the waves start.
Other game modes are also available. In Rescue, you’ll have to protect civilians from enemy attack as they make a run for your base. Three additional types of games may be played in either single-player or multiplayer mode. These include Capture the Flag and Territory. The latter involves a more unique gameplay: Each team’s troops will paint blocks in your team’s color by walking over them. You can, however, lose your colored tiles, so you’ll have to defend them. When time’s up, the team with the most painted tiles wins.
The controls are generally good. However, with small cube figures to control, it can be a little too easy to sometimes accidentally misdirect your troops, even on the iPad. Only two upgrades are possible for each soldier, which is on the poor side compared to the average tower defense game.
Personally, I find the graphics a letdown. It’s great that the game’s appearance can be customized. However, if you’re unwilling to pay for IAP unit skins or level themes, the regular unit colors and themes built into the game are far from exciting. On the iPhone though, the soldiers are so tiny it won’t actually make that much of a difference to your enjoyment of the game (some built-in level themes look fairly decent compared to the plain unit colors).
This may not be the best tower defense game around. But one terrific aspect of Cubemen 2 is the ability to design your own levels, as well as play levels others have created. So you theoretically have unlimited maps.
iFanzine Verdict: If you enjoyed the original Cubemen, you’ll probably also have heaps of fun with Cubemen 2. Those familiar with typical tower defense games should be aware that you won’t be given breathing time between waves to deploy your troops. Neither can you pause the game to position troops. Thus, if you’re the sort who prefers a more leisurely, strategic game, Cubemen 2 may not suit you. On the other hand, if you’re an RTS fan who enjoys fast-paced challenges, you should by all means give this a try.