Tower of greed is one of my favourite flash games out there. Let me explain why.
When it comes to computer games, I have a kind of kleptomania. If there are pick-ups or collectables to be had, then I have to get them all or at least as many as possible.
This holds true with all my favourite games from when I was growing up. With the Sonic games, I wanted to pick up as many shiny rings as possible. With Final Fantasy VII, I made sure I collected every materia and enjoyed gaining 99 of as many items as possible.
This borderline obsession continues to this day and now even more people are being encouraged to fall under its spell, with achievement whores doing their utmost to play through games and collect everything it has to offer.
So why do I like this game so much? The clue’s in the title.
You see that white-faced blob? That’s you, that is.
As you can tell from the above pic, the graphics in this game are very basic. Though this may put some people off, I think they perfectly suit the action.
The basic aim of the game is to collect as many gems as possible. Rarer gems give you more points and the higher your score, the better.
But of course it’s not as easy as that for our marshmallow-like friend. There are various spiky enemies charging or bouncing through the levels, just waiting to attack our friend and… well, knock him backwards a bit.
He may not look that scary but you’ve got nothing on him.
There are also power ups aplenty to either kill your foes, freeze them in time or render yourself invulnerable, as well as a magnet power that summons gems to you.
So if the enemies can’t kill our friend, what is there to fear?
The answer: the bottom of the screen.
You may not be afraid of it now, but you will be. You will be.
The screen is constantly scrolling upwards and if you fall off the bottom, it’s an instant game over. It soon gets to a decent lick of speed but never so fast that you feel it’s unmanageable. This is where the game’s true villainy lies.
You see, the aim of the game is to collect as many gems as possible and then bank them by ending your game in one of the doorways that comes along every five levels. Doing this means you have to start again from the bottom of the tower but it also saves your actions and adds towards the many achievements to be had.
You can theoretically keep going until you gain millions of gems, gaining every achievement along the way, but if you make one slip off the screen then you lose everything.
And then you’ll make marshmallow boy sad.
It’s a canny game mechanic: you want to keep playing because you’re picking up new achievements all the time, but there’s the constant fear you could suddenly lose it all.
And there are some real doozies to achieve. The most imposing ones are cumulative: you have to climb 1,000 levels and earn $2.5 million over all games.
But the real challenge is collecting $250,000 in a single game. Considering that the most common gems are worth only $50, you’re going to have to collect a lot of items and take some real risks to pick up the more costly gems.
Some people may be put off by the simple graphics and gameplay. Some people may be put off by the deceptive difficulty. Some people may want to throw their computer across the room as they come within touching distance of the 100th floor, only to be knocked to their death by one of those blue hopping bastards.
But to me, this game is near perfect. Every aspect of what it’s trying to do is done well and the central mechanic is very clever.
You know it’s a good game when you die, think “damn this horrible game!”, then go straight back for another go.
Get greedy: Tower of Greed
Written by: Richard Wilson
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