Kingdom Rush Frontiers – Tower Defense in Apple Arcade (Pick KW03)

Kingdom Rush Frontiers in Apple Arcade

Actually, I should soon present Apple Arcade as a pick, because I like this flat-rate game subscription just as much as SetApp for Mac apps. But this time, my pick isn't one of those services, but an older app that's been around in Apple Arcade for a while: Kingdom Rush Frontiers.

What actually is a tower defense game?

Kingdom Rush is a classic tower defense and that's why it plays like this:

  • on the game board there is a more or less tortuous path that the enemy troops take
  • the enemies come in on one side of the path and they must not run out on the other end, otherwise you get minus points and lose
  • the path later has several entrances and exits, which makes it more difficult
  • along the path are free spaces where you can build towers and buildings with soldiers for defense.
  • Building or upgrading defenses costs money
  • Killing enemies brings money
  • certain towers work well or badly against certain enemies

In principle, it is about using different defense systems to prevent as many enemy waves as possible from reaching the end of the path (and thus the exit).

This often requires some strategy and tactics, as the enemies sometimes have armor against archers, sometimes have resistance to magic attacks or fly and are therefore undetectable for foot soldiers and artillery.

This is what it looks like when you have properly upgraded your turrets and the artillery fires guided missiles at some point.

This is what it looks like when you have properly upgraded your turrets and the artillery fires guided missiles at some point.

Kingdom Rush Frontiers - lovingly made

I have to say that for me the enjoyment of a game also depends on how beautifully designed it is. And Kingdom Rush Frontiers is really a head turner here. The small characters that run across the playing field and the buildings are beautifully drawn and overall one gets the impression that the developers have a great love for detail.

In each level there are some things to tap, which then trigger little things, but are actually unimportant for the gameplay. It's just for fun.

There is a level where cauldrons of bubbling lava are on the field. A small, dark head can be seen in one. If you tap this, the message comes up that you have killed the T-1000 - on easter egg, which only fans of the Terminator movies will appreciate, but nice nonetheless.

Kingdom Rush Frontiers is one of the best tower defense games to be found on Apple Arcade - and it's beautifully designed too.

Kingdom Rush Frontiers is one of the best tower defense games to be found on Apple Arcade - and it's beautifully designed too.

Crunchy difficulty level and special missions

I'm certainly not the king of tower defense games and I can't give a generally valid rating, but I had to try several levels with different approaches in the game again and again until I cracked them - and that on the "Easy" difficulty level. So if you like nibbling on strategic tasks, you will definitely have fun here.

In addition to the levels, there are two "special missions" in each map, in which you are restricted to certain towers, for example, and yet you are not allowed to let a single enemy through. This is sometimes something that takes several attempts to choose the right towers and the right sequence on the playing field.

If you complete maps well or very well, you get up to three stars. You can use these in turn to permanently improve your towers and troops in the game.

If you complete maps well or very well, you get up to three stars. You can use these in turn to permanently improve your towers and troops in the game.

My verdict on Kingdom Rush

In addition to Kingdom Rush itself, there are a whole range of other editions such as Kingdom Rush (Classic), Origins or Vengeance. The game principle is always similar, but there are some extensions, such as a selection of different towers that you unlock little by little or various heroes that you can level up.

I've only played through Kingdom Rush Frontiers so far, but I'm really excited about this type of game. It's not really stressful and still challenging. In the easy level of difficulty you don't have too many defeats and you gradually get to the end.

And it's kind of fun when you gradually drill up your towers and at some point the waves of enemies roll off the defense without being able to break through. Anyone who likes fighting small armies and likes strategy games should be happy here.

If you can do it but weren't particularly good at it, you only get one star, like I did in this case.

If you can do it but weren't particularly good at it, you only get one star, like I did in this case.

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