MarZ Rising – PC (P)Review

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Genre: Indie, Strategy, Early Access
Developer: doorfortyfour
Publisher: doorfortyfour
Release Date: Sep 26, 2017
Edited by KnightAvenger

MarZ Rising is an early access game being developed by doorfortyfour, and it will be released on September 26th, 2017. The Drastik Measure was provided with an early copy of the game for review. It is a single player tower defense/strategy game with a playable campaign story mode.

The first thing I noticed when loading the game and checking over my settings is how different and nice the menu is laid out compared to most indie games, especially those in early access. It has a full range of settings, and hey, they all actually work.

Your first few missions, once you start a new game, lead you through a set of small tutorials that teach you the game basics: how to place power structures, manage your crew, gather resources which you need to build/upgrade equipment, and defend your base are all well explained. Additionally, there is an artifact that you need to research and yep, you need to defend that, too.

Defend from what, you say? Mars is a dead planet? You couldn’t be more wrong. Soon after you start building your structures, the zombies come. That’s right, folks; now even other planets in our solar system are not safe from zombie infestation.

Each time you complete a level, you get a little more of the story, and the next level increases with difficulty. Honestly, I found this to be more challenging than first expected, as, by the third mission, I had to retry a few times before succeeding.

As you progress through the game, new upgrades, structures, crew reinforcements, and perks are unlocked to help you cope with relentless zombie hordes. Thankfully, you always get a heads up from what direction they are coming from, and, if you are running low on funds, you can recycle other buildings to build new defenses on the fly.

Both the visuals and music definitely fit the Mars/sci-fi theme of the game; the sound effects are a good fit to the atmosphere as well. The only audio qualm I have is that the voice acting seems to be a little drab.

For an early access game, MarZ Rising is surprisingly polished and functional, and I will add that I haven’t quite played another game like it. It does, of course, have the tower defense and strategy feel to it, but the developers have expanded the genre and created something quite unique.

If you are looking for a challenge, love strategy, are a fan of tower defense, want to search out and destroy zombies wherever they may be, or enjoy a good mystery, any of those reasons could make this game a good fit for you.

Pros:

  • Original concept
  • Very polished for an indie early access
  • Good graphics and animations
  • Helpful tutorial
  • Zombies in space
  • Unique in the tower defense/strategy genre

Cons:

  • Voice acting
  • Early Access

XariusPrime gives MarZ Rising a Drastik Measure of 7.7 out of 10 (77)

I look forward to reviewing it again when it is out of early access.