Isle of Arrows (2022) is a strategy game where you defend a magical crystal from waves of enemies. Using randomly assigned pieces and cards that grant you bonus abilities, you construct the invader's path and then fortify it to travel on with weapons, traps, and other structures. It flips the usual tower defence play; rather than just choosing and placing weapons, you must also dictate the attacker's route based on which weapons you have available to stop them.
At the start of each run, you get a small floating island and a series of random structures to place down to defend the crystal. Like Tetris, you see which piece you'll get to place next and can skip them for two coins. Roads are one piece you place and dictate the path the waves of invaders will take to get to the crystal. Towers that shoot cannonballs at nearby invaders, gardens that earn money, flags that expand your island, and deadly spike traps are also important. Considered deployment of each piece is essential; placing a tower at a road corner, for example, allows it to hit invaders for a greater time.
Once you've placed all your pieces the first wave of invaders starts to follow the road pieces to the crystal. If enough invaders reach it, you lose, but if you survive you place additional pieces before starting the next, larger wave. At the end of a run, you unlock new structures for use later. Cards are randomly drawn at the start to grant you special bonuses, like extra health points on our crystal, extra money, or unlocking helpful structures and items.
The result is a challenging game where you must balance both geographic advantage and the placement of weapons. Similarly to drawing tiles in [link Carcassonne Carcassonne, once the waves have begun, quick thinking and adaptability is important to cope with the unfolding scenario.
Our examiner, Ben Kendall
, first checked Isle of Arrows 15 months ago. It was re-examined by Jo Robertson
and updated 7 months ago.