Play This: CastleStorm (Xbox LIVE, Steam/PC)

Play This: CastleStorm (Xbox LIVE, Steam/PC)

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From Zen Studios, maker of Star Wars Pinball and Marvel Pinball comes their latest creation, CastleStorm. It’s a hybrid video game mixing elements of puzzles, lane/tower defense and hack-and-slash. Think of it as Angry Birds meets Battlecats, with a touch of Castle Crashers.

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The objective is pretty much straightforward: destroy the enemy castle. Leave none alive. You can accomplish this with three methods of destruction at your disposal: a giant ballista (crossbow), an army and a hero unit. The ballista is used for shooting arrows to impale your foes, or hurl bombs and other projectiles at castles. This is where the physics-based trajectory gameplay of Angry Birds is coming from.

Opponents will be sending ground troops to your own castle, so you must sortie your own army to intercept, or lead the offensive to take down the gate/wall (tower defense), and if things start to get really hairy, deploy your hero unit, to which you will personally take control of, and cut them down to ribbons yourself (hack-and-slash).

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Adding spice to the game is the ability to build/customize your own castle, as well as having multiplayer modes. Currently, there is a survival co-op mode where one player controls the ballista while the other one manages the troops, and a last stand mode where both players control hero units and fight endless waves of invaders.

I haven’t had this much fun in a hybrid game since Sang-Froid: Tales of Werewolves and like it, CastleStorm offers somethig for everybody gameplay-wise. It’s a breath of fresh air. This title is definitely an instabuy, especially with all the gameplay content and the light-hearted humor/simplified story for a low-budgeted price. I definitely recommend it to tactical game aficionados or both hardcore and casual gamers alike.

CastleStorm is out now on Xbox LIVE for 800 MS Points, and it will launch July 29th on Steam for an affordable price of $9.99. If you pre-purchase the game right now, you’ll get it 10% off at $8.99!