Sometimes you want to sit down and play a game that will require all of your attention. You’ve got some time carved out, you’ve got your good chair, you’re good for the long haul.
Sometimes you want to have something to play in another window while you’re doing a whole bunch of other things. You’re writing a short essay, maybe. Listening to EU on the School Daze soundtrack. Doing research for something else in another window. Trying to keep abreast of the twitters in another. Trying to eat some bacon and eggs and get your caffeine. And, yeah, go back to the game for 2 minutes here, 2 minutes there.
Defender’s Quest is the perfect little game for when you’re in the mood to do a half dozen things at once. It’s a tower defense kinda game. The basic idea is that your main spellcaster is the goal toward which all these fantasy-themed zombies are inexorably shambling. Along the way, you pick up various “towers” such as sword-wielders, archers, knights, ice-wizards, priests, dragons, and such. Your “towers” can go up levels, they can be equipped with various swords, bows, or staves (as appropriate), different kinds of armor, and, as they level, different skills. For example, your swordsmen start off with “slash”, but they can learn “double hit”, “flurry”, “swipe”, and “whirlwind”. On top of that, they can gain skills that enhance other skills. “Swiftness” gives a bonus to speed, “madness” gives additional chances of critical hits for “flurry”, and so on. Each “tower” has different skills and different specialties. I’m sure you won’t be surprised to hear that swordsmen do a lot of damage but only in a small area in front of them while archers do less damage at long range.
Perhaps the most important feature for this kind of game is the way they have pause set up. Sure, you can completely pause the game entirely, but you can also switch the game to half-speed or quarter-speed and just keep an eye on it. If you’re pretty sure that your towers are set up good and proper, you can speed the game up to double, quadruple, octuple, and even sexdecuple speed (careful with that last one… if your towers are not, in fact, set up good and proper, you’re going to be replaying the map).
The storyline revolves around some great evil or something that explains the various zombies and there are some twists and turns and all that, but that’s a lot less important than being able to play a game in one window while you’re doing a half dozen things in the others. Available for $15 on Steam.
You’ll find yourself saying “oh, maybe just one more”. That’s the best kind of game for when you’re trying to do something else.
So… what are you playing?
(Picture is HG Wells playing a war game from Illustrated London News (25 January 1913[/efn_note]