Babel Rising from White Birds and BulkyPix, was a successful tower defence game released on IOS, Android and Windows Phone back in December 2009. Its simplistic controls and addictive gameplay saw it sail past the one million sales mark by April 2010.
The 3D remake, published by Ubisoft and developed by Mando Productions for multiple platforms, takes the original concept and redesigns it with improved graphics and gameplay. Unlike the original mobile version, you have four elemental power sets at your disposal, each with two basic powers. You are then either given or allowed to select two of the power sets with which to play. These range from lightning strikes and tornados to rain and flash freezes. Use the two abilities enough and it unlocks a super ability, which, with a wave of the Move, summons a meteor storm or a Tsunami among others, which causes a high level of devastation on the poor unsuspecting peons and can grant you a brief respite from the onslaught.
Playing with the PS3 and using the Move for this game was a pleasure and allows you to rotate the world and use your powers with the greatest of ease and the highest of accuracy.
The gameplay is simplistic yet effective. Using your two standard abilities, stop the advance of the Babylonians while they try to complete the construction of a tower at the command of their High Priest and in defiance of their all powerful deity, You.
Most of the enemies consist of standard builders, but in addition the Babylonians have priests and cursed jar carriers who make occasional appearances. The priests are immune to one of the elements you have equipped and cast a dome of protection on all others around them, while the jar carriers if killed will disable the ability used to destroy them for around 30 seconds, limiting your peon killing skills for a time.
Periodically they will also make use of construction towers to give them an additional entry point into the tower increasing the locations or levels you need to defend, but these towers are easily destroyed with a couple of blasts from your basic powers.
The game itself is split into three play modes: survival, campaign and multiplayer, which are played out over three different maps: The Ziggurat, Tower of Babel and the Hanging Gardens. The campaign does a good job of introducing you to the basic concepts and how to use your skills, and also unlocks new maps and difficulties in the survival mode the further you progress.
The aim of Survival is to get the highest score or the longest time before the Babylonians complete the tower, and the obligatory leaderboards help encourage that “one more go” mentality. It’s a shame then that on either of the two difficulties, survival becomes more about how long you can endure the repetitive waves of enemies, rather than the skill required to protect your tower. Regrettably, this is not the worst part about the game itself.
Unfortunately, the multiplayer section is a huge let down as it only allows local play. The failure to use the online services to go head-to-head against another god is an obvious omission that takes away from a genuinely fun game.
There is no doubt this game was made to cater to the casual gamer, with approximately five hours of campaign, and only its quick blast appeal will get the more core players to come back to this game.
Overall, Babel Rising is enjoyable in short bursts, and if you have yet to find a purchase to justify your Move controller this could be an ideal pick-up-and-play party game, or even one to introduce console gaming to any non-gamer you may know, however its repetition and lack of online play severely hampers replayability.
MLG Rating: 6/10 Platform: PS3/ Xbox 360 Release Date: 20/06/2012
Disclosure: Midlife Gamer were provided a digital copy of Bable Rising 3D by the promoter for review purposes. The title was reviewed over the course of one week on a PS3 with Move. For more information on what our scores mean, plus details of our reviews policy, click here.