You and your friends vs. robot alien scum.
If a game has online co-op, that immediately gives the game some redeeming qualities. Even if the game is not very good, having a friend going through it with you always helps matters. Luckily, Fortified isn’t a bad game, and having four player online co-op makes it fun to play. It does have its issues here and there, but for three friends and a few nights of fighting off hoards of aliens, it’s not a bad ride.
Set in a futuristic 1950’s world, players take control of heroes who must defend areas from an alien invasion. These aliens come in the form of small robots, larger ones, UFO space crafts, and much more. Much like Dungeon Defenders or Orcs Must Die, players must protect certain bases from being destroyed. Luckily, they can plan their moves accordingly, since the team knows where the aliens will be coming from as well as the path they will be taking.
Platforms: XB1, PC
Price I’d pay: $14.99
Step 1: Collect traps. Step 2: ??? Step 3: Profit.
The game is set up into two phases, building phase and action phase. During the building phase, players will see the paths the enemies will take and can set up traps they have unlocked along the path to damage, slow down, and hinder the incoming waves of robots. Each trap costs money to set, and killing aliens during the action phase will earn them some dough. Much like the previous games I have mentioned, during the action phase players can move their character around the battlefield and attack using two specific weapons. Players are never passive in the game. Their “towers” are there to help, not actually kill the enemies. That’s up to the characters to do.
After each wave is complete and the players have sent the alien invaders to their graves, each player will receive experience points that go towards their specific character’s level. Leveling up will give that character skill points they can use to unlock new traps, new weapons, and upgrades to each to give the traps and weapons a special ability. Each class has their own unique weapon. My personal favorite was the Spaceman’s freeze gun.
Waves and waves of robots.
There is a campaign mode where the game and levels get progressively more difficult. Having to protect multiple spots, more enemies per wave, and multiple lanes and options for where the robots will move and attack add a lot more to the hectic game play. When players are looking for a real challenge, they can take on the endless wave mode that starts out difficult and springs into madness rather quickly with modifiers to both the players and the enemies.
The online works and works well. Very rarely did I experience much lag in the online play and having some partners to take on the aliens with made the game even more enjoyable. I did notice some rather hard dips in frame rate when a lot of things were on the screen. It could be a bit jarring at times. Mix that with some slightly sluggish aiming mechanics, and it did hinder my experience a bit. Nothing game breaking, but it was noticeable.
The 1950’s comic book art style is a really nice look for the game and the voice acting, which while repeated a bit too much fits well in with the entire aesthetic. It’s a nice colorful look that kept things fresh. The look of all the enemies really nailed the 1950’s futuristic sci-fi look. Large enemy robots look a lot like a guy in a tin foil robot suit and as such made it feel authentic.
Fortified is a fun little romp for about six or seven hours. After that time, players will have already unlocked most of the traps and weapon upgrades for the four classes that are available. They will start to notice that many traps are reused for each class, but choosing the right load out is essential for matching up with your partners’ load outs. With some co-op friends, it’s a fun little game with a nice look to it. Playing solo may prove to be a bit difficult and somewhat uninteresting, as I tried playing some maps alone and found myself unable to manage many fights. The game play is not going to blow anyone away, but it was interesting enough to keep me entertained for long enough to get my money’s worth out of it.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.