Wait…aren’t we surprised to PROTECT the towers? The heck with convention, as 11 bit brings their unconventional strategy offering to the PlayStation Network.

Somewhere a zombie with a traffic cone for a helmet shudders - with the popularity of mobile device-based gaming to thank or blame, the tower defense genre remains an unstoppable beast. There are literally dozens of these suckers serving as mainstays on download leaderboards.

I’ve got no beef with the tower defense phenomenon; a good strategy game capable of short spurt sessions is a wonderful bedfellow for mobile devices. Now when the same damn game…albeit with graphical skin tweaks…is re-released x 10 but continues to sell like hotcakes...I openly question the game preferences of all among us.

This is why Anomaly Warzone Earth is such a refreshing change of strategy pace. The game successfully flips the tower defense genre upside its head, the same disregard to grid/hex-based tactical warfare simulations where combat is normally confined to artificial variations in unit capability and terrain.


If you haven’t played Anomaly Warzone Earth before – hard to avoid as it’s literally on every platform at this stage – the general premise is to take the fight to alien invaders literally defending their towers. Your units – via leadership of a commander who assigns capabilities, upgrades and tactics – takes it to evil baddies hell-bent on blocking traffic. (Anomaly Warzone Earth veterans will note the commander role absent from mobile device counterparts in lieu of touchscreen selection.)

To explain, Anomaly Warzone Earth’s battlespace is comprised of street grids, with units confined to a constant, one-way forward progression within. (Envision rush hour, Toronto commuting albeit with giant enemy ships shooting at your SUV.) The commander – being both traffic cop and battalion strategist extraordinaire - can redirect units away from excessive enemies and/or obstacles. Said commander, however, says GPS be damned. He is free to roam the entire gameplay area, most importantly pick up upgrades needed to heal units, create diversions and order airstrikes. Too much wandering mandates twinkle toes, as enemies will open fire should the commander venture too far, too long to secure needed upgrades.

Perhaps most importantly for a console-based strategy title, Anomaly Warzone Earth’s control scheme is surprisingly easy to implement. Button mapping is intelligent, command execution logical, redirecting units a refreshingly simple endeavor. Even in situations racked with battle chaos, Anomaly Warzone Earth never devolves into a haphazard mess of trying to locate menu options simply to do what one intends. This is no easy accomplishment, as even the best console-based strategy titles tend to hiccup in transition from their original and more intuitive mouse-based and/or touch screen formats.

Unit diversity and mission requirements are varied enough to keep re-playability high…albeit formulaic at times. Also, and as mission stages were short and sweet, I confess to a near-constant sensation that I’d rather be playing this on a touchscreen and/or mobile thingamabob versus chained to a DualShock. Still, Anomaly Warzone Earth kept me coming back for the ‘one more level’ approach. Especially with a difficulty level that – even on casual – can be challenging and thought provoking.

Last and on the eye and ear candy fronts, Anomaly Warzone Earth sports strong visuals, average music and serviceable sound effects, also the usual suspect of campy, military style dialog. Thus and combined, Anomaly Warzone Earth presents quite well for what it is, noting other strategy offerings’ half ass style for near-exclusive dedication to substance. With no guarantee they even get the latter correct.


Anomaly Warzone Earth finally makes its way to the PS3…and does so wonderfully. The game is an intuitive, interesting and engaging change of pace from traditional tower defense titles. For previous owners of Anomaly Warzone Earth, however, there’s little new here.

  • Refreshingly different take on tower defense
  • Excellent control scheme
  • Solid presentation
  • Similar to earlier versions
  • More of a ‘mobile’ versus console game
  • Sometimes formulaic
Quote: "Anomaly Warzone Earth finally makes its way to the PS3…and does so wonderfully. The game is an intuitive, interesting and engaging change of pace from traditional tower defense titles."
Reviewed by Paul Stuart - 09.18.12 - Platform Reviewed: Playstation 3


Anomaly Warzone Earth

11 Bit Studios

11 Bit Studios


US Release
August '12



Players 1-2
Trophy Support
Price $9.99
600 MB