Cocoro Line Defender (3DS eShop) Review
- Beautiful water-color art style
- Easy to learn, difficult to master
- Challenging, should be appealing to enthusiasts
Not so much?
- Can be difficult, especially early on, if you don't come up with a plan
Cocoro Line Defender is a gorgeous strategy game, inspired by Japanese water-color art, where warring elemental factions do battle.
The thing that immediately drew me to Cocoro Line Defender was the cool Japanese inspired watercolor art style, as well as the interesting elemental characters that reminded me of the googly-eyed fuzzy-balled sticker creatures that I grew up with in the 80′s. But you’re not here to listen to me wax nostalgic from my childhood. On with the review!
Cocoro Line Defender, or Coroco for short, is a beautiful style strategy game for the Nintendo 3DS, developed and published by French studio Moving Player.
While the game’s beautiful art style looks even more fantastic when you utilize the 3D features, the gameplay is very two-dimensional in nature, where warring factions, on the left and right sides of a very linear battlefield, do battle until only one is left standing.
The wars in Cocoro are fought by the Yoko, who may look like walking furry blobs, but they are, in fact, elemental creatures. There are four armies, each one based on the basic elements: earth, air, fire, and water.
The objective in each mission is to overpower the enemy Yoko, and destroy their base on the far side of the level. Units are generated in real time, and once they’re ready to be deployed, you’ll toss the units onto the battlefield using the stylus.
Flicking the Yoko into the battlefield takes some skill, that I have yet to master perfectly. With a really good throw, you can put your guys more than halfway across the battlescape. At worst, they’ll ricochet around the inside of the base and barely stumble out the door.
Yoko come in many different unit types. Some are quick and weak, while others are slow and strong. Like building a unit in a real-time strategy game, like StarCraft, Yoko take time to build and those build times differ depending on the body type. In addition to choosing each Yoko’s type, you must also choose their weaponry. Weapons include short and long-range weapons, as well as magic.
The strategy is knowing when and where to try and toss the Yoko onto the battlefield. If they’re too thinly spread, a group of enemies will run them through pretty easily. It’s been my experience to “Zerg attack” the enemy, by quickly building up a group of weaker melee characters, followed by a group of longer ranged lance-throwers, followed by another cluster of short-ranged attackers.
Over time, you’ll also be able to use magic and rain fire from the sky to decimate all of the enemies in view.
Cocoro starts off quite difficult. By the third level, you can be easily defeated if you are too slow with your planning. I was a little taken aback by this, and could foresee this being an issue for those who don’t have a lot of patience or are easily frustrated. You’re still rewarded with points to upgrade your weapons, even if you lose, so if at first you don’t succeed, grind, grind, and grind.
Because the tides of war can change so quickly, it makes each level exciting, where you can never get too comfortable until the enemy is completely destroyed. At the same time, I’m not sure how well Cocoro will go over with anybody but the enthusiast gamer.
Cocoro Line Defender is available as a premium digital download through the 3DS Nintendo eShop for a cost of $4.99, which is one of the game’s saving graces. I would have had a harder time recommending the game based on the cost if it had been $9.99 or even $14.99, because of the likelihood of a strong frustration factor and as well as the linear nature of the battle, but for $4.99, I think it’s well worth your money. It’s a beautiful game, that looks like it was crafted carefully for the 3DS. I definitely recommend it!