Something dark stirs in the wilderness… ValeGuard is an independent game developed by Lost Tower Games where the player alternates between turn-based building management and real-time tactical combat against waves of various types of enemy. Not quite a tower defense, not quite a city builder, ValeGuard takes nods from a variety of sub-genres to develop its formula, which ends up largely paying off in the game’s favor.
I went into the game not expecting too much. It’s pretty clearly the work of a small team, and strategy-adjacent games developed by small teams are always a bit of a gamble. The graphics are simplistic – I’m not ashamed to say that the first thing I thought of when I saw the game’s cube-based terrain tiles was Minecraft, and non-hero infantry appear to be mostly little Minion-shaped fellas, mostly told apart by whatever weapon they happen to be carrying. Also, I at first figured the entire game was played on a single map that was small enough to fit on-screen with no scrolling, and I thought I was in for a slightly boring slog through My First Strategy Game. I decided to soldier on and ended up being pretty pleasantly surprised by what I came across.
Let’s take a look, shall we?