Early Access Review: Ultimate Summer – Satisfying Shooter with Decent Tower Defense Mechanics
Developed by Polish studio Asmodev and published by Ultimate Games S.A., Ultimate Summer is a brand-new third-person shooter and tower defense title. Combining two great genres, the game takes its inspiration from titles like Serious Sam and multiple tower defense games. Both of these genres are brilliant and have seen some of the best titles in the past however what is even more beautiful is the merger of these genres and giving us a title that is the best of both these worlds. Ultimate Summer is one such title that aims at combining both these genres into one. This is our Early Access review of Ultimate Summer in which we lay down some traps and shoot enemies spawning from various dimensions.
The story of Ultimate Summer does not make much sense as you are a retired butcher called Marvin who arrives at a zoo to see some animals but when you arrive there, you see a completely different picture. The zoo is on lockdown and all guests have been killed and piled up in a burial site. The animals have all been gathered in one place for safety while a huge washing machine is sitting in the middle that glows. The zoo is under attack by forces of hell, aliens, large carnivores, Purgatory, and whatnot. If there is an evil place, creatures from that place are attacking this zoo and everyone wants to get to the giant washing machine that you must defend in the game at all costs. You team up with some locals to save the animals from these waves.
The enemies spawn in the form of waves and they use tourist paths to reach the washing machine. Your goal is to lay down traps and towers along the way so that the enemy waves are dead before they reach the washing machine in the middle. You meet some twisted characters here as well who explain to you what happened to the zoo and they also sell you guns and traps. Since the game combines both tower-defense and third-person shooting, you are not just laying down traps and towers for defense in the game.
You are also shooting at the enemies throughout this time to kill them as well. The traps and towers are there for your support, but the main killing is still done by you using your weapons. Each level in the game is a day and each day is a unique challenge. At this time, there are 14 days in the game for you to complete however as you progress in the days, the challenge further increases in the game. The initial days introduce you to all in-game mechanics and after that, you are on your own. You are free of how you want to proceed in each level because the game has a huge number of slots for putting down both traps and towers. Progressing in the game unlocks new traps, weapons, and towers for you to place down in these slots.
It is also worth noting that all purchases for a specific level as well. You have to purchase traps and weapons again and again for each level at the start. For your purchases, you have to collect resources for which, the game follows a Fortnite-style resource collection system where you use your ax or guns to break down different things around you such as trees, buildings, stones, and walls. Each thing that you break, gives you the resource of which it is made of. You use these resources to purchase new traps, towers, and weapons. After putting down traps and towers in their slots, you can also upgrade them by spending these resources to make them more effective. If you want to change them, you can also remove and put down new traps in their places.
At the level start, you have a few minutes for the preparation of traps, collecting resources, and purchasing weapons. Once the timer begins ticking, the waves start appearing and even if you’ve not managed to complete one wave, if the timer is over for the next wave, the second wave will begin. The waves have set paths and as you progress in levels, these paths continue to increase. Since the zoo is pretty big, it takes a little time to reach all waves but the game has shortcuts that transport you back to the main hub quickly so that you can approach a new wave quickly. Apart from the traps and towers doing their job, you will be shooting at your enemies as well.
Apart from wood, metal, ad stone, there is a fourth resource in the game as well and it is called Sin. Sin is earned by killing enemies and each kill grants you additional Sin. Collect enough Sin and you will be able to purchase new weapons from the weapon’s vendor. Weapons play a big role in the game because your traps and towers can only control the enemy waves to a certain extent. You cannot expect to win in the game by just using your traps and towers. Some of the heavy enemies take quite a lot of beating and you will have to use your weapons on them as well.
Apart from collecting Sin as a resource, you also collect Sin in a bar below your health which can be used to enter the AMOKK mode. During this mode, you deal massive damage which comes in handy to kill heavy enemies and killing a large number of enemies quickly. The game has unlimited ammo so finding ammo or reloading is not an issue and you can keep shooting enemies non-stop. However, the enemies come in massive health pools so this does not give any sort of advantages in the game at higher levels. Shooting is pretty satisfying and each weapon in the game comes with its own pros and cons so you have to keep them in mind while using them.
At this point, the very first thing that I would like for the developers to work is making the controls and gameplay a little crispier and more responsive. The gameplay could be made better by tightening up the controls and making the movement feel more responsive to player commands. Overall, I did have a great time with the game. It starts really easy but as you progress in the game and The feeling of an open-world level despite the enemies coming in set-lanes gives freedom of how you want to proceed in the game and also allows you to take care of multiple enemy waves at the same time approaching from different directions. Strategy plays an important role in survival here.
The third-person shooter and tower-defense is a beautiful merger and we have not seen many titles in this genre for a long time. The last time I had fun in such a game was Orcs Must Die! 2 and that was a long-time ago. Ultimate Summer is bringing back the genre to life and although the gameplay might not be crisp and refined at this point, it still offers satisfying shooting and trap-killing. The game is still in Early Access which means that the developers will be further refining the game until its full release, so we have high hopes for the title. You can jump in Ultimate Summer right now and have a blast with its easy-to-learn mechanics and tense tower-defense mechanics on Steam even in its current state.
Final Score: 7.5/10
Content courtesy of GamesHedge.com published on , original article here.