Games of the Year

Lock’s Quest

Lock’s Quest Screenshot 1
Lock’s Quest Screenshot 2
Lock’s Quest Screenshot 3
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Build Defenses and Battle against the Clockwork horde in this 2D Action RPG / Tower Defense hybrid. Experience a gripping story, which unfolds as you progress through 75 Days of warfare, aided by a collection of turrets, traps and special attacks. • Place Kingdom Force units to defend your capitol in a brand new Endless Mode - Antonia Defense! • Build up your fortifications each day to defend against a timed Clockwork assault. Use dozens of Turrets, Traps and Helpers to stop the advance. • Fight alongside your defenses, using context sensitive Special Attacks, and devastating Super Attacks, which impact a wide range of enemies. • Unlock the secrets of Kingdom Force and the Archineers via an engrossing story with a multi character cast, told via hand drawn cinematics and cutscenes.
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Game Discussion

Review by Anonymous
Review from Steam

TLDR: PC keyboard mouse controls harder than the NDS version, 1st map unusually hard, other bugs, hard but playable, mixed recommendation but hopeful. Probably should wait to see new updates, caution advised.
I was about to write an angry rant for my favorite NDS game remaster, but took another crack at beating the first map before I posted. I have now finished the game and updated this review. The controls on PC keyboard and mouse for ratching and special attacks are indeed harder than the NDS version and changes absolutely must be made to make them easier. At the bottom are my ideas for keyboard changes, but here are other important differences between the PC version and the NDS version:
1) The first map is unusally hard.
On the NDS, the first map is a breeze, but you can and probably will lose structures on this map. The biggest part of that is the controls for ratching and special attacks, however, there are a few more problems that contribute to the overall difficulty.
2) Clockwork aggro is not exactly the same as the NDS version.
They will not target Lock as well as before, meaning your structures take more damage and the game becomes harder. This actually feels present mostly on the first map for some reason and less on the later maps.
3) Targeting lag and suspended fire from turrets
Assuming a straight wall going left to right, turrets sometimes do not attack clockworks if they are attacking a wall piece to the left or right of the turret. I know the archer clockwork is made to be partially out of range, but this happens with the melee clockworks. Furthermore, Lock can have some problems when chosing a target, but that was already in the NDS version so its not a big problem. Brutes do not counterattack if Lock attacks them mid charge, and they stand next to Lock perpetually charging while they are killed. Brutes don't stop their charges if they don't reach a structure, which wasn't in the NDS version, but it helps when they get stuck against terrain. Some targets for Lock to free or set explosives etc. have trouble being targeted when first right clicked from a distance. Many or nearly all physical barriers do not stop arrows, this can be a problem when archers are out of tower range, but that is their intended role.
4) Build mode selecting and rotation and support towers.
Selecting from a cluster of structures is harder on PC than the NDS version. At the stone fort on the second map the stone structures cannot be rotated. The NDS version allowed for this, so I am unsure if the developers intend for us to move them. I feel these stone structures should be allowed to be rotated because that was how the NDS played out. I am not sure that helpers, the support towers, do much. The tower for detecting phantom clockworks works properly, but the repair helper did not seem to repair anything no matter the orientation relative to the damaged structure. I cannot speak for the other helpers because even in the NDS version I never really used them.
5) General movement problems.
Movement problems were in the NDS version too, but on PC, clicking and draging to guide Lock in a timely NDS like manner is not possible. I use left clicking to get by, then right clicking while on the way to a target.
6) The later levels will become harder if you are not prepared.
Given the differences in controls and movement, strategies that I used to get by the first few levels with as little resources as possible do not work as well as before. I play an extremely agressive Lock that looks to engage in fisticuffs and tactical pick-offs, but I can definately say the game is harder with PC keyboard controls. I definately use more resources than before to passby all levels than the NDS version.
If you cannot bank resouces you may have trouble on some levels where you must defend two to three targets.
7) Seige Mode is replaced and there is no post game like the NDS version.
The cute seige minigame-like defense of Antonia is replaced with the new Antonia defense, the one with the Kingdom Force. It is a sad tradeoff. The far worse change is the disapearance of the post game. I wanted to go to the developers hall but no, the file resets to day 74 every time after completion.
8) Personal differences I noticed (the little things).
The brute charge cannot be stopped by using Lock as a meat shield and this makes me sad, but hey, at least they reduced the charge damage. Where are the scrap pieces too? They give the structures unlike the NDS version. Graphical errors are present too, I saw a knight in a cutscene freeze in a hurt position, but there are other cases throughout the game. Some images appear to be partially behind the background or flash in and out of view. Lock can also phase though a lot of terrain that used to be impassable in the NDS version. However, this phasing actually helps you to repair your structures. When a clockwork is being healed by a healer clockwork, its healthbar and maybe sound effects may stay around if it dies during healing. I don't like the new healing sound effect, its loud. Mute, the mage clockwork boss is much easier than before. The special abilities must be selected at the start of every battle round, unlike the NDS version where your preferences stuck.
9) Story and cutscene changes.
Kenan's recruit quiz is gone. I believe there are a few dialogue changes but none that I can say are game changing. There are fewer days so the story is easier to follow, but it's a shorter game now.
I have played all of the PC version as of now, and I can say that there are problems with this version, particularly the difficulty increase. If you are a veteran who has enjoyed Lock's Quest who is considering to play this version, the answer is yes if you want to revisit the story and gameplay. But, you may be better off not playing it if you own the NDS version. If you are not a veteran, you should consider if you want to see a unique tower defense rts with a nice story albeit difficult and buggy. Hopefully they will improve it; it is playable but harder than the NDS version. It is possible to finish the game.
After playing the game I decided to make a strategy guide for new players:
Don't sit in your base idle, you need to be an active player; you cannot wait for the clockworks reach your walls. If you run out at the start of the round you can kill or damage one clockwork. Prioritize types you hate the most. For most towers you should try to connect them to walls, they gain damage reduction bonuses based on how connected they are as seen through the shield and wrenches above them. Try to angle you towers so they face the clockworks directly in front, especially since of targeting issues (and always make sure your towers have their front sides forward because they have reduced range in the back). There is no hope for the first map. Try your best. For some reason its hard, probably because of the strange controls. Always try to reduce total costs for your runs, you need to save up for the end map at the Antonia gate to spam when the bosses come out. Use traps asap, they make the early maps easy until the fliers come out (poison freeze poison freeze...). I only use the basic and splash turrets, sometimes the last turret they give too. Not every level will have fliers, phantoms or burrowers, don't be afraid to reset your defenses to save money.
Personally, I hope special attacks will allow for keyboard controls. For the strong hit, 12345 will work. For the other abilities that I know appear later in the game, maybe Q,E, and R will work for different rotations on poison touch, maybe going up and down between arrow keys or Q and E will work for freeze touch, and maybe vampire touch can actually be the sliding bars with the mouse. The stylus on the NDS is simply far faster than the mouse on PC, so keyboard keys should be adopted for speed. The most important thing in my opinion, is ratching. It needs to use the scroll wheel up and down on the mouse.

Review from Steam

Game is good but clunky keyboard and mouse controls might be a bit annoying for some. I tried using a DS4 controller and the native support is not complete or fully implemented(no way to choose wall or weapon types) so I needed to open the game while in Big Picture mode to automatically configure the controller. After that, I was able to use the DS4 with no issues.

Review from Steam

Lock’s Quest, a beloved game from the DS years, makes its way onto Steam.
When it comes to ports there are two ways to look at it. The first usually is, “Hey that game I loved is coming to a new platform I have access to, cool!” The second is, “Oh sweet dear lord what is this buggy mess!” I feel we have more of the former then the latter, but that isn’t to say I haven’t ran into bugs.
Lock’s Quest originally released on the Nintendo DS back in 2008. If you aren’t familiar with Lock’s Quest, it is a hybrid tower defense/action rpg. Mostly tower defense though. The action/rpg aspect takes the form of your main character being able to individually attack enemy units and even use spells. The new port features a streamlined version of the original campaign unlocking all sorts of new and different towers as you go along.
The story remains true to the original. Lord Agony has returned with his army of Clockworks and it’s up to young Lock to stop them using his Archineer powers. In all, the story and the some of the new art does a good job of making the game feel fresh again. The game looks fantastic and when it came to visuals there is really nothing I could find a fault in. The music has also undergone an overhaul and it shows. There is an orchestral score, and most of the tracks sound a bit sharper.
The problems began for me when I finally hit combat. Lock’s Quest has a wash-rinse-repeat type of gameplay. Nothing new if you are familiar with tower defense games. Everything you loved about the original is there and it plays rather well with the new built in controller support. You have a build phase where you lay down walls, towers, and traps, etc. Then the action sequence. Rinse, repeat. You gather resources from defeated enemies and usually just have to outlive the timer. There are of course the bosses, special abilities and plenty of different strategies to formulate. Experimentation is usually rewarded.
As far as bugs go, there are times that animations get stuck, your cursor gets stuck in the corner requiring a restart, and there are also ways to completely break the game, gaining unlimited source. While I personally enjoyed the game. There is a part of me that thinks this game was still best suited to the DS. Mainly because you begin to feel the repetition rather quickly. This is especially tiresome in later levels where you need to rework your entire defense as the level just ever so slightly shifts.
Better to have something then nothing.
Not all is bad though, as I mentioned before the streamlined progress. You also have “Antonia Defense Battles” and a new endless mode if you just can’t get enough of Clockwork killing action. This certainly adds quite a bit of replay value and length to the original campaign of Lock’s Quest.
Keep in mind the developer and publisher didn’t have to add or do anything to Lock’s Quest. I have seen ports that are just awful, lazy and slapdash. They took the time to go back over things and at least cared to enhance it for PC. I give them kudos for that. In this day and age we have plenty of games that have been lost. Lock’s Quest could’ve easily been one of them. So as they say, “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.”
I can recommend Lock’s Quest to fans of the original and new fans who are looking for something a little different then the usual TD style game. It has a good story, good art, and gameplay for those that enjoy tower defense games. While it isn’t quite so innovative anymore, Lock’s Quest was impressive for its time. I personally would love to see a Lock’s Quest 2 revived with far more RPG elements mashed in. Given its price and how much gameplay you are going to get, it’s more than a fair deal. Lock’s Quest is a classic and it would be a shame for it to be completely forgotten.

Review from Steam

Tower Defense meets RPG, what a blend indeed!
Lovely deep story as we are used to with RPG's, but then with building walls, towers and traps to defend that what is most important of life: Water. Set in a world infested with Steampunkish evil robots heavily influencing the storyline. After playing a while, you find out it's not always just building defenses, sometimes it requires offensive measures. That your character has to go out and demolish some of those campers out there, risking it's fragile life for the cause of others.
You will get to know the main characters persona, how it's struggles with it's childisch way of thinking towards the greater good. "But mommy, I want to keep playing with my teddybear" - "Nope, it belongs in that hole of the dam, otherwise hundreds of people are going to drown!"
Awesome blend, wonderfully animated. In most RPG's the characters are non-animated, dull figures standing like a brick on the road and when they talk, well that is most common: nice drawings and intelligent conversations. ;)
To think of it, this is not my type of a game, like RPG for instance, but I do like Tower Defense and a good story. Learning curve is easy. Just remember the controls. If you are done placing turrets and want to switch to traps, just press middle mouse button. I had this problem myself, because I can be very impatient.
The story itself has some interesting details that are not completely explained right away, but later on while you progress in the game. So worth it! The other characters are so vivid that you get involved with the story, making you keep playing it.
You will like this game, if you like RPG, a good story and Tower Defense Games!

Review from Steam

In the end, no one wants to read a 400 word long essay about a game.
You should know what kind of game Lock's Quest already is, and you should also know how great its concept, art and music is. Sadly the game falls apart because of the PC, PS4 and XBONE ports. If you cannot get your hands to the DS game (emulators don't really work with touch controls), then this is the best version for you.

Review from Steam

Growing up playing this game on the DS was amazing, but I never truly understood the severity of the story. It's a touching tale of a boy who was willing to sacrifice everything for the love of his sister. The twists and turns were still shocking despite playing this game many years ago. Great story for newcomers and a nostalgic trip for old players.

Review from Steam

This is an amazing game that I used to play all the time when I was younger.
Im glad i played it, and im playing ti again since I found it

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