Anomaly 2 is the successor of the highly successful Anomaly: Warzone Earth. The first Anomaly completely turned the tower-defense genre on its head. For the first time ever, you had to play the role of the attacking forces.
Back then, the game was extremely refreshing, especially when it came to iPhones and iPads and faced the hundreds of traditional tower-defense games available.
Does Anomaly 2 feel as refreshing and original as the original Anomaly did? Is it a worthy successor?
Enter Anomaly 2
The core gameplay mechanics remain largely unchanged. You are still in charge of the attacking forces and play the role of the commander.
You have to choose the path your convoy will have to take to avoid traps and grab points and bonuses. You do this at the start of every mission but can change it at any given moment. After your path is selected, the battle can start. As your convoy advances, you’re in charge of supporting your units. You can heal, set traps, deploy power-ups, etc.
I played with a mouse and keyboard and although the mechanics feel simplistic at first (you point and click to control the commander), but don’t be fooled. You can easily find yourself clicking all over the screen, struggling to keep up with the action.
While the game is fun and the gameplay satisfying, Anomaly 2 does feel less original, as the gameplay hasn’t changed much since Anomaly: Warzone Earth. However, one key addition makes the difference: morphing units. Every unit has 2 forms, and in most cases, one form will be better for close quarter combat while the other will be more effective in long-range combat. This fleshes out the gameplay, bringing a new layer of complexity and more choices.
The story isn’t spectacular but does the job. Humanity lost the war, you failed to defend Earth and this is mankind’s last effort to defeat the aliens. There’s a secret weapon out there and you are in charge of finding it and give Mankind one last chance to defeat the Aliens.
As much as I enjoyed the Single player campaign, it’s the Multiplayer mode that took all the glory. It is refreshing, original and lots of fun.
You play 1 on 1 against another player across several different maps. You can play either as Mankind or the Alien force. As you probably guessed, when you play as the attacking force (humans), the game plays pretty much like the single-player campaign.
However, playing as the Alien Force is a completely different beast. One player will need to attack (as you did in the single-player story) while the other will have to defend (as in most tower-defense games out there). The Alien force plays more like traditional tower-defense games where you need to buy towers and upgrade them.
Anomaly 2 is a good looking game. Everything has been improved since the original game. Everything is more detailed and looks sleeker.
The units are detailed and have nice morphing animations. The environments are particularly gorgeous and very varied. You will fight in destroyed cities, snowy mountains and jungles.
Don’t expect jaw-dropping graphics though, à la Battlefield 3, but as for most indie games, it’s more about the experience than the raw graphics. In this regard, Anomaly 2 doesn’t disappoint.
Anomaly 2 is not a very demanding game, at least performance-wise. This is a good thing, as it means more users will be able to fully enjoy this game, even those rocking MacBook Airs or 2-year old MacBook Pros.
The minimum requirements are:
- OS: OS X 10.6
- Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo 2.4 GHz
- Graphics: 512 MB GPU
- RAM: 2GB RAM
- Storage: 3 GB HDD
- OS: Mac OS X 10.8.2 Mountain Lion
- Processor: Intel i7 3,4Ghz
- Graphics: GTX 660 Ti 1GB
- RAM: 16GB
- Geekbench Score: 12701
I played this game with maxed out settings and had no issues whatsoever. I am happy to confirm 11 Bit Studio did a great job on the Mac version of the game, bringing us a stable, bug-free game.
- One of the best looking tower defense games out there
- Good balance between quick decision-making and long-term planning
- Killer Multiplayer mode
- Gameplay largely the same as before
Some may argue Anomaly 2 feels more like a big expansion than a fledge-out sequel to Anomaly: Warzone Earth. The gameplay remains largely unchanged, yes, but this game offers more units (each with its own morphing ability), better-looking graphics and a killer multiplayer mode.
For many, the multiplayer mode alone justifies getting Anomaly 2 and they are right.