From the intense stripes, bloops and squiggles of Missile Command to modern iterations like Plants vs Zombies and Orcs Must Die!, the tower defence genre is one of the most storied in videogames. Then we have MOBAs, the all-modern esport that sees you attacking an enemy base alongside a team of heroes and army of minions.
These two genres seem like opposites - old and new, defence and attack - but that’s exactly what makes them such a great fit for each other. Skydome, the new 4-v-4 MOBA from gamigo, has just gone into Early Access, and is inviting players to experience what makes this unusual coupling so special in a free stress test this weekend (for which you can register here).
Suspended high above the ground by forces unknown, Skydome is an ancient temple where legendary heroes sharpen their skills before heading out into the universe, where they compete in battles requiring a scintillating mix of tactical nous and fast thinking.
Once you pick your Champion - who may be a human, dwarf, or mysterious tree-like Trunkar - you’re sent to the battle arena to defend the precious Artifact of their deity, which is surrounded by formidable defensive towers. You do this by building a lethal labyrinth of defences, designed to trap and destroy the waves of enemy minions, who will get more varied and relentless as the match goes on.
But you can’t just sit back on your battlements as enemies crash upon your walls, because unlike a regular tower defence game you’re a Champion here, so you need to go out there and fight like one!
In the wilderness between your base and the enemy’s, you’ll find untold treasures to aid you in battle, which you can then use to strengthen your team’s assault on the enemy Artifact.
And while we don’t question your twitch reflexes and any past achievements you may have in online games, you won’t win without working closely alongside your three teammates. That’s what makes Skydome such a great game to jump into with friends: it’s free to play, revolving heavily around teamwork and communication as you coordinate who’s going to be manning the defences and who’s going to head out into the field to clash with the enemy. Once you’re in battle, you’ll need to support each other with your Champions’ unique abilities to topple your foes, and eventually their tower.
Prove yourself in battle, and you’ll please your gods, who may even descend from the heavens to fight alongside you when you need them most. It adds a spectacular layer of unpredictability to this most vibrant of genre-mashing MOBAs.
As you play, you’ll learn which Champions best suit your play style, and over time you’ll master tactics to complement your allies. Matches are faster-paced than most MOBAs, so you’ll get plenty of opportunity to experiment with the different defensive structures and Champions at your disposal.
Skydome is easy to jump into, but once you start exploring its different layers - from the intervention skill to the intricacies of the invasion system - you’ll start to see that when it comes to skill ceiling the sky really is the limit.
Skydome is out now in Early Access on Steam and it’s free, so gather a party of your worthiest champions and ascend to its lofty arenas.