Bloons TD 5 Review-A thick sludge of repetitive fun

If you’ve been hanging around on one of the Internet’s many online gaming websites the past few years then it’s highly unlikely you haven’t heard of Bloons Tower Defence. This franchise has dominated the Tower Defence genre for quite a long time now, so it’s no surprise it has now got it’s own full retail game on Steam. Although you can play it for free online like all the previous BTD games, you can also buy the Steam version for £6.99. Considering the majority of the game is free to everyone, you’d think this was quite an exorbitant price, right? Granted, it does come with a few extra perks however. So today I will be assessing whether the price is worth it and reviewing Bloons TD 5. Is it worth it? Let’s find out!

First, let’s look at the various bonuses you get if you decide to purchase the game on Steam. For one, the Steam version has more tracks, an Odyssey and Mastery Mode and a difficult “impoppable” difficulty to challenge those avid fans of the genre and series. You also have access to three more towers: the Heli Pilot, the Bloonchipper and the Engineer. As well as that, the Steam version is in HD if you care about that thing. I honestly don’t care whether the heads of the monkeys I place have smoother hair. The biggest difference however, is that the Steam version doesn’t have any microtransactions. Bloons TD 5 on browser allows you to pay real money for special towers and buffs such as double damage to give you an easier time while Steam doesn’t pester you with this intrusive drip-feed of momentary fun.

Overall, I’d say that if you’re a dedicated fan who is sure to get dozens of hours of enjoyment out of it then I’d go for the Steam version. You can usually get it for cheaper when it’s on discount, especially on one of Steam’s famous sales. Otherwise, I wouldn’t bother paying the extra £6.99 as you’ll most likely lose interest after a few hours due to the endless landslide of content that isn’t all that satisfying to dig your way out of. Talking about that…

One of the best things about Bloons TD 5 is just how much there is to do to give you that sense of fulfilment. So far, I have pushed my way through around 40 hours of game time and I only have 16 of the 125 achievements on Steam. And I haven’t even touched the Odyssey or mastery modes included as part of the Steam version. There are over 40 tracks each with four different difficulties you can complete them with as well as the reverse version of each track. I also found myself quite drawn to the hundreds of special challenges that prevent you with various situations such as using only one type of tower-or more complicated challenges-for you to overcome. It helpfully displays the difficulty so you know if you’ll be out of your depth and there’s nothing to stop you from selecting another one to attempt but the annoying, random way it assigns you these tasks.

However, I  have no desire to continue playing Bloons TD 5 anymore due to just how repetitive and boring these missions are. Every single wave is always the same, no matter the map meaning you’ll get bored of seeing the same combinations of bloons over and over and over again. Speaking of the bloons, the enemies of the games themselves are incredibly boring and have no special abilities to spice up the gameplay. The only thing that really changes is how many hits they can take and how fast they are. Some bloons are lead meaning sharp weapons have no effect or have camo meaning most towers can’t spot them but those are the only variations. On the other hand, the towers are a bit more interesting. There are simple dart monkeys, monkey engineers, super monkeys, monkey planes and boats and monkey farms that provide sweet banana cash every wave. You can upgrade them a total of six times, choosing to go down a certain upgrade path after four upgrades which allows for many different strategies. As well as this, there are special agents you can hire with in-game money that are used up after a game to give you that extra edge you need to win though I personally never found myself using them.

There are a few other things you can do before you start a level to increase your effectiveness. A monkey lab allows you to make non-specific upgrades and you can also build speciality buildings that make certain towers more powerful and formidable though you only have space to build one. Finally, there are daily challenges with special restrictions similar to the challenges you can complete for monkey cash that changes every day.

Overall, although Bloons TD 5 is a wide expanse of almost never-ending content with plenty of maps, challenges and achievements, trying to get through it all is like trying to wade your way through a murky marsh. Progress is slow and repetitive and you feel constantly bogged down by all there is at offer. If you’re a diehard Bloons fan, I highly recommend this game assuming you haven’t got it already. There is lots to do and plenty of special challenges to test your skills. But for anyone else, you may as well stick to the free browser version as you’ll most likely find yourself burned out after a few dozen hours or possibly even less. Bloons TD5 is as wide as the universe but as deep as a pothole.

Pros:

  • Bursting with content
  • Lots of achievements
  • Special challenges offer challenging situations for the experienced player
  • No microtransactions
  • HD graphics
  • Variety of towers

Cons:

  • Pricey considering the majority of the game is free
  • Slow progress
  • Repetitive gameplay
  • Boring, samey enemies

Verdict: 7.5/10

Get it on Steam here: http://store.steampowered.com/app/306020/

Or play it free here: https://ninjakiwi.com/Games/Tower-Defense/Bloons-Tower-Defense-5.html

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