Author Topic: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game  (Read 1000 times)

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Offline tanqtonic

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I took the plunge and bought this thing -- massively addicting and well done, even though it is still in beta.

The crux is to build a colony and defend it from zombies.

Groups of zombies are already on the map and if you are not careful they come barreling at you.  You build houses, manufacturing, power, extractive industries in order to build your manpower up and field a defensive force.

But while you are exploring for 'stuff', you have to figure a way out to expand your power base to get to the stuff.  You cant just 'grab' it and build stuff anywhere on the map.

But, from time to time in survival mode, these big massive huge blobs of zombie hordes bear down on you.  So you have to research technologies and grow the economy to build defensive structures and traps in order to control these mobs.  And when the mobs come they will barrel through your defenses by literally tearing them down.

So another aspect is marshaling your economic base to rebuild what you thought would be an impenetrable defense.

I have been playing at the 8 per cent level and havent won a game yet.

At the 100 per cent level I have yet to survive three zombie hordes in a game, and almost invariably go knuckle biting through horde #2.  Trick is to build walls and layered defenses then force the hordes through natural checkpoints.   Any time you have a wall system more than 9 across you are going to be toast there.

In addition the zombie hordes come from random directions, so you dont know which direction to buttress.   My best go is when I had dual sets of two deep walls, the outside layer having 3 deep stakes or wire with concentric fields of fire from at least two towers.  The inner and outer layer are spaced such that the towers and forces just inside the inner wall can fire to the outer edge of the outer wall, thus bringing 4x fire from the towers and that of the unprotected forces just within the inner wall.

The outer wall defenses were set up as a tripwire to allow a heavy mobile force to reach the inner wall.  Thus I could economize with a tripwire around the edges and a larger force that could get to them.

Unfortunately it looks like I will have to actually build static trebuchet defenses into the inner wall (expensive) to be able to withstand the hordes.

Really good game.

Linky to steam page:
http://store.steampowered.com/app/644930/They_Are_Billions/


Online Jarhead0331

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2018, 10:28:55 PM »
I spent some considerable time agonizing over whether to purchase this or not. In the end, I decided against because the unit type, both combat and structure, are just too limited. No ranged explosive units, no machine gunners, no mortar/artillery/air units, etc. They could have been so creative with units in this game, but they just have 4 or 5 limited types to choose from. Would seem to get boring and repetitive quick being relegated to the same basic strategy every time.

I have heard overall very positive comments and impressions though...
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Offline tanqtonic

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2018, 11:05:42 PM »
You actually have 3 normal and 3 'special' units.

The normal are rangers, soldiers, and snipers.   Rangers are bow and arrow and run quick as hell.  Soldiers have rifles and a lot more range, but the rifles draw hordes.  They are slower than Rangers but more deadly.  Snipers are massively powerful and great range, but literally stroll the battlefield.

The 3 special are Titans, Lucifer, and something I forgot.  Have never played a Lucifer.  Titans are mobile armor with massive machineguns.   Enormously expensive but in a group of 5 or 6 can deal tons of damage to a horde.   They are like an anvil.

The defenses are the key to the game.   In the early going all you have are wooden walls and towers.  Towers hold 4 units and increase your range and sight by 2.  Double walls with towers behind can keep decent size hordes at bay.

You can research stakes, which both deal damage and slow zombies down.   Kind of like the concept behind minefields.  You can build lookout towers that really increase your sight range, but not arms range.  Helps with exploring without committing units.

In the first 'epoch' you can research ballista towers, which are very powerful defensively but static.

In the second 'epoch' you go stone age.  Stone can be used for walls and towers and are far more sturdy; but --- the hordes are correspondingly more agile and powerful.  I think you can research zap towers here -- these are towers that have defense HP but send out big jolts of juice to adjoining squares, but have to be recharged with precious energy and time.

In the last epoch you go 'metal'.  This is when you get the 3 special units mentioned above.   In addition you can use barbed wire as a trap instead of stakes; they deal more HP, have more HP, and slow the hordes down more.

There are more defensive structures, but I have never gotten to them.

The name of the game is defense and finding good places to lay *heavy* defense.  Units are at a premium due to low manpower, but the functionality of the structures is integral.  So while there are not a lot of unit types, the structures also count greatly in that role.

Steampunk theme which allows you to ignore the mix of guns, arrows, and individual Sci-fi armor.

You might be relegated to a basic strategy, but the map is integral.  You have to tailor your defense to the map you are given.

I just found a nasty surprise -- I sent a group of ten rangers out to scout (a *very* powerful force for scouting purposes and normal clusters of Zeds.)  Found a ruined village that Zeds came out of and my Rangers handled the mini-surge well with constricted channel and range.  Unfortunately some of them shot at the houses which triggered an even larger surge --- think of Custer racing through the village he just found and literally kicking an anthill.

Just at that time a random big horde surged onto the map.   The combination just tore through what had handled the previous horde with ease.

Seriously, this thing is well constructed, albeit with simple pieces.

Amazingly addictive, and kind of a good frustration with a perma-death implementation that Rogue-likes tend to employ.  If you make a bad decision, can't back up and make it good.  And what might have been a great decision in a last game may be disastrous in the next; and vice versa.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2018, 11:07:30 PM by tanqtonic »

Offline Geezer

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2018, 07:14:02 AM »
This looks like a fair review of the game:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C29efC3pAv8

I have way more games than time already but this is tempting.  Must resist...even though I know resistance is futile.
We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.  George Bernard Shaw

Offline solops

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2018, 11:03:58 AM »
From their game page:
"This is a real-time strategy game, but don’t get too nervous. You can pause the action to take the best strategic and tactical decisions.
In Pause Mode, you can place structures to build, give orders to your army, or consult all of the game’s information. This game is all about strategy, not player performance or the player’s skill to memorize and quickly execute dozens of key commands. Pause the game and take all the time you need!"

I'd buy a lot more games if they did this! War for the Overworld and Dungeon 2 fail really hard here. This has convinced me to buy it.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2018, 11:07:19 AM by solops »
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Offline Geezer

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2018, 12:06:11 PM »
Here is the first of a 7 part "Let's Play" by quill18 that I really enjoyed:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zessjiT9_KE
We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.  George Bernard Shaw

Offline JasonPratt

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2018, 12:11:02 PM »
I've been watching this closely, but will probably wait for full release.
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Offline Tuna

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2018, 11:14:57 AM »
Here is the first of a 7 part "Let's Play" by quill18 that I really enjoyed:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zessjiT9_KE

Watching Quill's videos, makes me really want this game!

Offline Tuna

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #8 on: February 20, 2018, 04:56:41 AM »
Grabbed the game this weekend, and really enjoying.. Addictive and frustrating at the same time!.. One thing that pisses me off, is there is no "Save", Ironman only. You have to keep exiting and copying backups of your one save file. Kind of a PIA, but well worth it, if you want to get far learning the game.

Other thing that is kind of irks me, is the later maps are all 'locked', until you get a victory in the previous map. I don't know what it is, but some developers love to piss off their possible fan base.

But putting all that aside, I am loving this game right now. I don't know if I'll feel the same if I never beat the first map. But then, the game is in early access mode. hopefully the developers will come to their senses and make some reasonable feature changes.

Offline Geezer

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #9 on: February 20, 2018, 05:56:28 AM »
I bought it a while ago and put a few hours into it.  Eventually put it aside for the reasons you stated above Tuna.
We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.  George Bernard Shaw

Offline solops

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #10 on: February 21, 2018, 07:23:29 AM »
+1. same here. I got it and would play a lot except for  no "Save", Ironman only and locked maps, two terrible design decisions developers keep repeating. Sure keeps the casual gamer away.
"I could have conquered Europe, all of it, but I had women in my life." - King Henry II of England
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Offline Tuna

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #11 on: February 21, 2018, 10:41:37 AM »
I'm still loving it regardless, but manual backup of save file is a PIA!

Offline Tuna

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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #12 on: February 26, 2018, 05:30:48 PM »
Finally won the first map, boy this game is hard!!!


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Re: They are Billions -- addictive Colony Mangement / Tower Defense Game
« Reply #13 on: February 26, 2018, 08:13:11 PM »
 O0
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