Last year, Google Stadia (yeah, f#$%*ng Stadia) secured the rights to a limited time exclusivity deal to one of the most sought after properties in gaming. Though the wait has been long and arduous, finally we can all play it: Orcs Must Die 3.
What? What were you expecting?
The last entry in the Orcs Must Die saga was released back in 2012, so you have no worries of this being yet another yearly installment property if you’re new to the series. Also if you’re new to the series, stay away if you’re not a fan of trap-based tower defense (with some 3rd person combat in the mix).
The story is fine. Basic, nothing special– a set up for you to unleash your inner sadist. While I love that it does connect to the earlier two entries, you don’t need to play them. Hell, you don’t need to Wiki the storyline either.
How are the graphics, you ask? You’re basically playing a really nice DreamWorks movie. Some might assume “oh, so it’s not like Pixar” and see it as a bad thing, but it’s really not. It’s just the perfect way to describe the art style. The enemy design is absolutely fantastic. One of the wolves’ design in particular looks like a cartoony Sabrewulf, and I love it. When the fire demons start coming out, they look like they could be from a Brutal Legend remake. The environments have a great storybook feel to them (and kinda give off Crash Bandicoot vibes).
Now let’s actually talk about the gameplay, which is where OMD3 really shines. For the uninitiated: before each level, you can choose your traps, weapons, and accessories (ring that can summon a mini thunderstorm, gears that reduce trap cooldown, etc). After that, you set your traps, hit begin, and try your best to keep your portal from taking too many hits (each time an enemy reaches it and goes through, it’ll take one point off).
Each round brings more enemies with more variety and higher difficulty. You start off with grunts, then grunts and medium armor orcs, and by the last round, you’re juggling multiple entry points, huge trolls, orcs, flying units, long range enemies… It gets hectic.
The replay value stays fresh thanks to the many different battlefields, trap and weapon upgrades, difficulty settings, and different game modes. The game even has weekly challenges with particularly challenging (and also annoying) modifiers.
Another plus? It’s very cost effective. It costs only 40 dollars for a great game with tons of replay value that you can play for a few hours or during quick breaks. 4/5 Whiskeys, neat.