It was a quiet and peaceful until they came. Lead by a dark lord they thought that they could arrive on my island, disrupt my peace, and steal the treasures therein. They thought wrong for I am a master of the four elements and remove them from my island I shall by any means necessary.
The Keeper of 4 Elements is a Tower Defense that is easy to get into either for a quick fix of the genre or for a longer stint if you’ve got the time for it. Set into the role of the Monk who guards the secrets of the island, it’s up to you to defend it through the use of the four elements that can be built into towers essentially from the money that you pick up from the corpses of your enemies. Sounds a bit macabre and you also have to wonder… why are the invaders carrying money on them anyways?
Gameplay is fairly standard for a Tower Defense and overall there’s nothing new here. Enemies come from either one, or one of several, entrances, you build your towers and your Monk acts as the final safeguard if they’ve managed to make it past all of said towers.
Towers themselves can only be placed in select locations which adds to the strategic aspect of each map. This is nothing new and pretty standard for the style however this point can easily be countered for the few few waves by building an Earth Tower which does an area of effect instead of a single target. By spending all of your money on this, the difficulty of Easy -> Normal -> Hard can instantly be set to Hard in order to coast through to the later levels all the while gaining upgrade points to spend on a “skill tree”.
The skill tree is divided into three sections, the Towers, the Spells and the Monk. Each category can be upgraded by using stars which are acquired by successfully completing stages. Completing the higher difficulties will grant the stars of the one beneath it such as finishing a stage on Hard will grant you all the upgrade points that the stage had available. By using the Earth Tower method mentioned above and upgrading it early on, coasting through the levels can be done for that much longer essentially making it a waiting game to see if spells are even needed.
The idea of spells were neat but they were really last resort items as they took too long to regenerate between uses. Unfortunately there was one that didn’t quite seem to pull its weight which was unfortunate because a flaming meteor should have done a substantial amount of damage instead of being shrugged off. Rainstorms for slowing enemies down, Tornadoes which were glorious to see mow down groups of enemies and the Earthquake however were a marvel to use.
The Keeper of the 4 Elements isn’t a bad title by any means but it doesn’t bring anything new to the field. Stages are over too quickly with the above described tactic changing what looked like it could have been a challenging experience by having to strategically use all four elements into essentially stoning the enemies to death with very large boulders.
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Article by Pierre-Yves