Bad Hotel Review

Bad Hotel Featured

Bad Hotel Boxart

Developer: Lucky Frame
Publisher: Lucky Frame
Platform: iOS, PC – Steam

Many gamers have tired of the tower defense genre as it was shoehorned into many games in the past year. I wouldn’t blame you for wanting to tune out any new games which rest within the genre, but even so, you might want to check out Bad Hotel. That’s because Bad Hotel creates something quite different out of the simple tower defense conventions.

First is the plot which sets you out as a hotel owner. The hotel is effectively your “tower” and, under normal circumstances, there should be nothing threatening its existence. However, Tarnation Tadstock happens to be in the neighborhood and he isn’t pleased with a new entrepreneur in his midst. As such, he sends legions of seagulls, swimmers, clouds, and a host of other enemies at you to make your hotel crumble.

Of course, you’re able to fight back! The player is always presented with a handful of possible rooms they can build. For example, there are main rooms which offer you money. Then there are rooms that house guns or healing stations. Unfortunately, of all the rooms, only the standard ones (aka, free of any other function) will generate cash. Without cash, you can’t build more weapons to fight. Each level is always a test to see how much weaponry you need versus funding.

Bad Hotel Screenshot

Each section of the building has its own health. Once it has been whittled to zero, it disappears, meaning you lose whatever benefit it offered. Skillfully deciding between how to orient weapon or health rooms is important because they’re usually expensive and you don’t want them going to waste. Housing them safely between standard rooms is helpful, but sometimes circumstances go so fast you’ll barely have time to think. It seems at these times that playing on an iPhone or iPad would be preferred, simply because it is hard to maneuver new rooms onto the hotel fast enough otherwise.

Bad Hotel’s gameplay is pretty fun and quickly increases in difficulty. However, that’s not all it has going for it. There are also the visuals that stand out as distinct amongst any other tower defense games, as well as most titles in general. It’s attractively designed with an art deco style and 80s color scheme. Musically the game stands out as well thanks to its procedurally-generated tunes. Each building offers its own sound effect, meaning the player is changing the music simply by how they choose to play.

If there’s any reason to knock Bad Hotel it could just be because it’s a bit too hard. The money given at the start of a round is always sufficient to get going, but if you’re not quick to come up with a strategy it isn’t enough. This could easily be solved by having two difficulty modes. Mostly though, it seems to me that playing on PC is not the ideal way to go. As I said before, quick hotel building would be much easier with touch controls, rather than mouse-based drag and drop functionality. Still, Bad Hotel provides a challenging and unique tower defense experience.

Score: 3

3 out of 5 alpacas

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