Video Game: Kingdom Rush

For honor and glory!

Kingdom Rush (2011), Kingdom Rush: Frontiers (2013), and Kingdom Rush: Origins (2014) are a series of Tower Defense games developed by Ironhide Game Studio. It is set in a fantasy world, where you play as a general trying to stop the evil from taking over the world. It involves placing towers in allocated positions along set paths. There are four types of towers: Barracks, Artillery, Archers, and Mages. Each tower comes with their own advantages and disadvantages. Each tower can be upgraded 3 times with two branching 4th upgrade levels.

  • Archers typically form the backbone of the player's damage dealing forces with a high rate of fire and good damage. They are capable of attacking ground and flying forces.

    • The 4th upgrade options in Kingdom Rush are the Rangers and the Musketeers.
    • The 4th upgrade options in Frontiers are the Crossbow Fort and the Axethrowers.
    • The 4th upgrade options in Origins are the Arcane Archers and the Golden Longbows.

  • Barracks are used to slow foes down by engaging them with soldiers while other towers pick them off. A player may control where the soldiers spawn by changing the soldier's rally point. They are capable of attacking ground and (depending on what your 4th upgrade option is) flying forces. Barracks are especially good when combined with Reinforcements (see below) to stop the maximum amount of foes.

    • The 4th upgrade options in Kingdom Rush are the Holy Order and the Barbarian Hall.
    • The 4th upgrade options in Frontiers are the Assassins and the Templars.
    • The 4th upgrade options in Origins are the Bladesinger Hall and the Forest Keepers.

  • Mages generally have the strongest individual attacks and their primary role is to take out armored enemies. Mages have a slow rate of fire, thus they are best used in conjunction with Barracks troops. They are capable of attacking ground and flying forces.

    • The 4th upgrade options in Kingdom Rush are the Arcane and the Sorcerer.
    • The 4th upgrade options in Frontiers are the Archmage and the Necromancer.
    • The 4th upgrade options in Origins are the Wild Magus and the High Elven Mage.

  • Artillery is the main Area of Effect tower. It deals high amounts of damage to high amounts of enemies using Splash Damage. Artillery have a slow rate of fire, thus they are also best used in conjunction with Barracks troops. They are capable of attacking ground and (depending on what your 4th upgrade option is) flying forces.

    • The 4th upgrade options in Kingdom Rush are the Big Bertha and the Tesla x104.
    • The 4th upgrade options in Frontiers are the DWAARP and the Battle-Mecha.
    • The 4th upgrade options in Origins are the Arch-Druid Henge and the Weirdwood.

Like most Tower Defense games, Kingdom Rush has a feature known as the Upgrades system. Depending on how well a player does, he/she may earn (up to a maximum of three) stars on each stage. These stars are translated into upgrade points, which you may use to upgrade your towers to make them stronger.

In addition, the player also has access to the Hero Room, where hero units may be selected. Each hero unit has different special abilities to reflect what they're good at whether it's tanking, healing, DPS, AOE, crowd control, etc.

  • In Kingdom Rush each hero has two special abilities which gain stronger each time the hero gains a level.
  • In Kingdom Rush: Frontiers and Kingdom Rush: Origins each time a hero gains a level they gain upgrade points. A player must decide which of the 5 special abilities to allocate points to.

Lastly, in each of the Kingdom Rush games are the Spells. In the first two Kingdom Rush games the player has access to two special abilities:

Kingdom Rush: Origins gives the player three special abilities:

  • Thunderbolt Which replaces Rain of Fire.
  • Reinforcements Which remains the same.
  • Hero Power The new ability introduced. This ability depends on what hero you have selected.

The first two Kingdom Rush games are free to play and can be found here and here! All three games are available to purchase for iPhone/iPod Touch, iPad, Android, and Amazon Apps. In addition, Kingdom Rush has also been ported to Steam.

The series includes examples of:

    Kingdom Rush 
  • Action Bomb: Demonic foes will explode on death, doing big damage to any Barrack units near it. Rotshrooms and Myconid will explode into poisonous spores that deal damage over time.
  • Airborne Mook: The Gargoyles, Demon Imps, Rocket Riders and Black Hags. All four will fly over your Barracks defences and cannot be targeted by artillery (although splash damage still hits), making them dangerous foes. Gulaemons are a partial example- they can fly over a small group of soldiers for a short while.
  • All Trolls Are Different: "Very tough warriors that can regenerate their wounds quickly."
  • Anti-Air: At the start of the game, only Mages and Archers can tackle flying enemies, as Artillery and Barracks are defenceless against them. However, the Barracks upgrade to Barbarians allows them to both attack and hinder flying foes, whilst the Artillery gains the Tesla X104, which can attack flying foes, and the Big Bertha, which has a heat seeking missile ability to target the flying foes.
    • The last upgrade to the Reinforcements gives them a spear-throwing attack that is very effective against flying enemies.
  • Area of Effect: The Artillery make a living off this. Musketeers also have an upgrade that allows them to fire a cluster of shots at an enemy and all its surrounding buddies. The Player-controlled Rain of Fire spell also has this.
  • Armor-Piercing Attack: Mage towers' attacks will pierce the armor of Heavily Armored Mooks, which normally reduce damage from other sources.
  • Asteroids Monster: Myconid doesn't have much health, but he splits into 25 rotshrooms upon defeat (unless you're playing the Steam version, in which case he doesn't). If you're relying on Mage towers to kill him, you'll be in for a rude awakening unless you have Splash Damage or Rain of Fire ready.
  • An Axe to Grind: The Barbarians' weapons. Also, the Troll Champions throw these, which act as Anti-Armor.
  • Bad Boss: Vez'nan is portrayed as one in the comics.
  • Baleful Polymorph: An ability of the Summoner Wizard tower upgrade. The Black Hag can turn your barracks troops into toads, essentially a One-Hit Kill.
  • Bigfoot, Sasquatch and Yeti: Yetis are white and are Giant Mooks (and in the case of J.T., a boss). Sasquatch on the other hand is brown and acts as a purchasable ally.
  • Big Bad: Vez'nan.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: The Steam exclusive campaign, The Curse of Castle Blackburn
  • Big Red Devil: Vez'nan's One-Winged Angel form, as well as Moloch, the boss of Pandaemonium.
  • Boom, Headshot: When the Musketeer's Sniper Shot is successful, the Written Sound Effect is "Headshot!"
  • Boring but Practical: Reinforcements can really save your ass if used correctly.
  • Black Knight: Highly armored foes, ironically introduced exactly when the Paladins are.
  • Came Back Wrong: Every time one of your human soldiers dies in the Rotten Forest or Fungal Forest, a Husk forms from the green pool of slime. Every time an Earth Golem is killed, a Swamp Thing is formed from the pool.
  • Chain Lightning: The Tesla x104 has an upgrade that does this.
  • Clown Car Base: All of those soldiers were in that one barracks?
  • Clown-Car Grave: In levels with graveyards, a skeleton will spawn every time a humanoid enemy dies.
    • The Poison Pool in the Rotten Forest will spawn a husk every time one of your soldiers die, and a Swamp Thing every time one of your Earth Elementals is killed.
  • Combat Medic:
    • Shamans are this for the enemy.
    • On your side, Paladins from the Holy Order Barracks when upgraded to have a healing spell.
  • The Computer Shall Taunt You: Vez'nan taunts the player mercilessly from his tower as you fight to survive the final stage.
  • Contractual Boss Immunity: All bosses are immune to upgrades such as Wrath of the Forest, Teleportation, Polymorph, Death Ray, and Sniper Shot. They could be immune to all non-damaging abilities.
  • Cool Gate: The summoning circles in Vez'nan's Dark Tower which allow enemies to bypass some of your defences.
  • Critical Hit: Archers have a universal upgrade that leads to a chance for this.
  • Damage-Sponge Boss: Sarelgaz. Aside from summoning her children and eating troops/heroes in one hit, she has no other special tricks, not even an area attack. She does however have lots, lots, lots of health.
  • Death Ray: The Arcane Wizards have this, complete with the enemy crumbling into ashes.
  • Dem Bones: One of the possible enemies. They are either summoned by necromancers, or pop out of the graveyard every time a humanoid foe dies. Elite Mooks will produce Skeleton Knights instead of regular ones.
  • Dual Wielding: An upgrade for the barbarians.
  • Dungeon Bypass: Some enemies have this ability, sometimes, there are also tunnels the enemies can use to bypass your defenses and allowing them to appear further in. High level mages also can be upgraded with the ability to do the reverse.
  • Endless Game: The Endless Challenge level Rage Valley.
  • Enemy Summoner: The Necromancers, whilst supposedly raising the dead, are able to summon skeletons from any place, even where there should logically be no dead, so they are little more than this. The Juggernaut fires Golem Heads to distract your towers from him. Spider Matriarchs can lay eggs that spawn three Spiderlings, who are lightning fast and are a considerable threat.
  • Evil Overlord: Vez'nan, the Big Bad.
  • Excuse Plot: "The kingdom is under attack" is basically the extent of story we get for this, though the individual campaigns at least have believable backgrounds.
  • Fallen Hero: Lord Blackburn.
  • Fire and Brimstone Hell: Pandaemonium. Of course, you see the recently-deceased Vez'nan there, locked up in a cage.
  • Flunky Boss: All of them.
  • Fragile Speedster: Spiderlings and Wulves.
    • Myconid is also one compared to other bosses, with only 4000 HP compared to at least 6000 HP, like other bosses. He also does less damage compared to others. (150-350, comparable to the Giant Mooks.) However, he moves very, very fast for a boss and regularly spawns flunkies with a quite a good bit of health.
  • Giant Mook: Ogres, Marauders, Spider Matriachs, Troll Chieftains, Yetis, Dark Slayers, Demon Lords, Magma Elementals, Sons Of Sarelgaz, Forest Trolls, Tainted Treants, Swamp Things, Pillagers, Troll Breakers, Gulaemons, and Cerberus.
  • Giant Spider: There are normal ones, fast but weak spiderlings, and then there's the Matriach who have the ability to create spiderlings. And of course, we have the boss Sarelgaz who's even more massive. Also, we have her sons, which are Nigh Invulnerable. Don't forget about the Noxious Creepers, which are Spider Matriarchs with even more health, that spawn mutant hatchlings, which are tougher spiderlings.
  • Glass Cannon: The Barbarians, having less armour than the Knights that precede them. In exchange for this, they have upgrades for their damage by Dual Wielding and can even throw axes.
    • Bandits, as early game enemies. They have about as much health as a orc and wear no armor, but their attack does 4-5 times the damage of an orc. Needless to say, upgrade your barracks or these nasties will tear through them.
    • Vez'nan's first form. 6666 hp compared to at least 10000 for other bosses, but his attack does at least 666 damage and kills all soldiers except Earth Elementals in one hit.
  • The Goomba: Goblins.
  • Guide Dang It: Don't worry about that, because the game's website has videos on how to beat every level.
  • Heavily Armored Mook: Dark Knights, Dark Slayers and later Raiders and Troll Breakers. You'll want mage towers to deal with these guys, trust us.
    • Lord Blackburn is the boss with the highest armor to date.
  • Hell Hound: Demon Hounds. They're like Winter Wolves, but they explode on death too. Then there's Cerberus who's much tougher and faster.
  • Hero Unit: You can use Heroes in battle, who have special skills to make a fight easier.
  • Hired Guns: The Sylvan elves.
  • Holy Hand Grenade: The Paladins' Smite ability upgrade gives them a chance to do holy damage on their attacks, in an area.
  • Improbable Weapon User: Most enemies use swords, axes, spears, tridents, or clubs. Except for the Forest Trolls, Troll Breakers, Troll Pathfinders, and Troll Chieftains. They use a freaking TREE, a log, a sled, and a drumstick, respectively.
  • Instant Gravestone: Every time your hero dies and needs to respawn, their body gets replaced by a gravestone where they fell.
  • Instant Militia: One of the abilities you get, Reinforcements.
  • Instant Runes: The Arcane Wizards have these for their Teleportation and Death Ray spells.
  • Jet Pack: The Rocket Riders have one.
  • King Mook: Most of the bosses, particularly the ones that are found in bonus campaigns. Your own Heroes tend towards being based off the 6 upgrade paths (4 towers, reinforcements and rain of fire) as well.
    • Sir Gerald is the "Barracks" hero, and works well with your other troops in a defensive line, and despite his lower hp for a melee hero, is very tough thanks to his skills and high armor.
    • Alleria is the "Archer" hero, and is extremely effective at DPS, much like most archer towers and can take down enemy air units.
    • Bolin is the "Artillery" hero, with powerful area abilities that let him take care of large crowds and can slow (and thus crowd up) enemies for Artillery pounding.
    • Magnus is the "Mage" hero, with powerful abilities to delay and harm enemies as well as a fair ammount of raw damage from his own attacks.
    • Malik is the "Reinforcements" hero, like reinforcements, he's best used to add extra muscle to your forces and deal with large crowds.
    • Ignus is the "Rain of Fire" hero, like rain of fire, he's absolutely devastating on concentrated groups and can be sent in wherever you need extra firepower.
  • Klaatu Barada Nikto: One of the phrases uttered by the Arcane Wizards.
  • Kneel Before Zod: One of Vez'nan's many taunts is commanding you to kneel before him.
  • Ludicrous Gibs: Anything that gets killed by artillery.
  • Lightning Gun: One of the possible final upgrades for the artillery.
  • Me's a Crowd: The Demon Legion's main ability. The clone shares the same health as the original, so pile up the damage before it starts cloning!
  • Money Spider: Aside from the start of each level, your main source of income is going to be killing the ZergRushing enemies.
  • Mook Maker: Spider Matriarchs, Necromancers, Noxious Creepers and Demon Legions.
  • Mook Medic: Shamans.
  • Mordor: Vez'nan's realm. The Pit of Fire and Pandaemonium count as well.
  • Mushroom Man: The Rotshroom enemies. These attack in Zerg Rushes and explode into toxic spores on death. Their boss Myconid moves quickly, is able to spawn more Rotshrooms via a spore cloud, and splits into many smaller Rotshrooms on death.
  • Name's the Same: No, the Flareon demons aren't flaming fox-like critters.
  • Nitro Boost: Rocket Riders will use one when hit, making them move super-fast for 2 seconds. This is very dangerous as they are flying units they cannot be blocked or ensnared by anything.
  • Number of the Beast: With each attack, Vez'nan deals a minimum of 666 damage.
    • Demon Legions have 666 health on Normal.
  • One-Hit Kill: J.T and Sarelgaz can devour your soldiers, Vez'nan can turn them to dust with a spell, Moloch can crush them with a headbutt, and Black Hags turn them into toads. On your side, the Arcane Wizards have a Death Ray that does this, the Musketeer tower's Sniper Shot skill has a chance of doing this, and Hacksaw's Tiiiimber! instakills a mook (and prevents revival against Fallen Knights).
  • One-Winged Angel: Vez'nan will revive as a demon after you kill him for the first time. Inverted: his demon form is actually weaker, since he can no longer kill soldiers instantly.
  • Our Demons Are Different: Demon Spawn, Demon Lords, Demon Hounds, Demon Legions, Flareons, Gulaemons and Cerberus. All of them have "Infernal Combustion", which means they explode on death and do big damage to your barrack troops.
  • Our Dwarves Are All the Same: The "industrious" part is exaggerated to the point where they use modern (or at least post-industrial) tech in their artillery.
  • Our Elves Are Different: Mercenaries who fight with Bow and Sword, in Accord.
  • Our Goblins Are Different: "Small evil humanoids with no outstanding abilities".
  • Our Orcs Are Different: "Tough savages with light armor".
  • Our Zombies Are Different: Husks in the rotten forest. "Fallen warriors, their bodies claimed by the forest. They are now only husks of their former selves." Every time one of your soldiers dies, these are formed from the pool of green slime.
  • Rat Men: Wererats.
  • Regenerating Health: The Trolls' main ability.
  • Rocket Ride: Strangely subverted by Rocket Riders. Their rockets are more similar to Jet Packs, which they can use for a Nitro Boost.
  • Rodents of Unusual Size: The Giant Rats.
  • Savage Wolves: Wulves, which are fast but weak units that can evade melee attacks, Worgs, which are tougher, magic-resistant wulves, and Winter Wolves, which are even tougher. Then we have Demon Hounds, which are not only as tough as Winter Wolves, but they explode on death too! Taken Up to Eleven with the Cerberus, a giant three-headed hound, with a lot of health (compared to other Giant Mooks), high physical armour, and runs fast.
  • Shout-Out: Most of the game's non-informative writing.
  • Splash Damage: The Artillery attack allows for this, and so it's primary advantage over other towers is its ability to wipe out Zerg Rushes
  • Stone Wall: The role of the Barracks troops in general, but this especially applies to the Holy Order's paladins, who have the highest armor available for the player's side and have access to even more damage resilience upgrades as well as healing spells to stay alive.
  • Supervillain Lair: Vez'nan's awesome Dark Tower serves as the game's final level.
  • This Is a Drill: Hacksaw's Tiiiimber! attack. Like the DWAARP's Core Drill, it also kills foes in one hit.
  • Tin Tyrant: Lord Blackburn, a once-noble knight whose bloodlust corrupted him and his lands. His evil-looking armor isn't for show either- it makes him nearly impervious to physical attacks.
  • To Serve Man: J.T. and Sarelgaz devour all barracks troops, Golems, and heroes they encounter in one attack.
  • Turns Red: Rocket Riders will move faster if they get hit.
  • Use Your Head: Moloch's One-Hit Kill attack has him do a massive head smash on your troops. The Rotshroom enemies also use headbutts to attack your troops, since they have no arms.
  • Waddling Head: The Rotshrooms in the Fungal Forest. Subverted by Myconid, who has arms.
  • Wave Motion Gun: Arguably, the Sunray Tower.
  • We Have Reserves: You get an achievement for sending a certain amount of soldiers to their deaths.
    • At that note, you get one for having enough of them heal themselves up instead of dying.
  • When Trees Attack: Tainted Treants in the Rotten Forest, as well as the boss Greenmuck.
  • Wicked Witch: Black Hags, which can instakill regular troops by turning them into toads.
  • The Wiki Rule: You better believe it.
  • You Dirty Rat: The Giant Rats and Wererats. Also taken in the literal sense, as they spread disease/poison status on barracks troops.
  • You Shall Not Pass: Your purpose in the game. Also uttered word for word by arcane wizards earning their teleporting abilities.
  • Zerg Rush: Sort of the entire idea behind the game, and Tower Defense games in general, is stopping Zerg Rushes.

    Kingdom Rush: Frontiers 

  • Action Bomb: The Abomination. It's a giant mook that doesn't deal too much damage when attacking, but when it dies and explodes...
    • Other examples include the Blazefangs, whose Plasma Cannon explodes upon death, and the [1]s Sha'Tra and Bonehart.
  • The Ahnold: Cronan the Beastmaster is an obvious Captain Ersatz of a certain Barbarian Hero and his actor.
  • Airborne Mook: Giant Wasps, Wasp Queens, Poukai Riders, Razorwings and Quetzals.
  • Anchors Away: The Bootswain mercenaries smash enemies with their anchors.
  • Anti-Magic: The Axethrowers' Totem of Spirits prevents many foes from using spells, such as shamans' auras and especially the summoning abilities of Saurian Savants.
  • Asteroids Monster: Giant Wasp Queens will spawn four smaller wasps on death.
  • Bait-and-Switch Boss: Lord Malagar is killed by Umbra after he is released.
  • Baleful Polymorph: Hired Genies can turn foes into dancing frogs.
  • Big Bad: Lord Malagar.
  • Big Boo's Haunt: The Shadowmoon Campaign
  • Booze Flamethrower: Buccaneer mercenaries attack enemies this way in close range, otherwise they will just throw the bottles.
  • Boring but Practical: Alric eschews the fancy abilities of the other heroes (besides summoning sand warriors) in favor of getting up close to enemies and quickly slicing them to ribbons. Works perfectly fine.
  • Breath Weapon: The two dragons, Ashbite and Bonehart, breathe fire and plague, respectively.
  • Cannibal Tribe: You face these as enemies in Frontiers' jungle stages. They can eat your dead soldiers to regain health.
  • Chicken Walker: The Battle-Mecha has bird-like legs.
  • Clown Car Base: One alien pod can produce up to five Parasytes in one go.
    • In the pirate ship level, hundreds of enemies total come out of one pirate ship.
  • Creepy Centipedes: Baj'Nimen the Hateful rides a gigantic one.
  • Cthulhumanoid: Bluegales in the Rising Tides campaign.
  • Damage-Increasing Debuff: The Axethrowers' Totem of Weakness makes all foes near it suffer 40% extra damage.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: The necromancers are now on your side, and are an upgrade to the mage tower.
  • Dem Bones: The Necromancers (who are on your side now) can summon skeletons from dead bodies. An upgrade allows them to summon a Death Rider - a skeletal knight on a horse with an aura that buffs nearby skeletons.
    • Furthermore, these skeletons can get facehugged by Parasytes, but will not hatch into Reapers when they die from it (essentially, they make a meat (bone?) shield against Parasyte swarms).
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: You defeat Umbra (who is pretty much an Eldritch Abomination) in the final level.
    • In the bonus content Rising Tides, the boss is pretty much a Kraken/Cthulhu expy. Which you punch out, of course.
  • Dracolich: The hero Bonehart. His attacks deal area damage and cause disease on enemies.
  • Drop the Hammer: Xyzzy's Weapon of Choice is two energy hammers that can dish out lots of damage.
    • The dwarves also wield hammers, which you can upgrade in their barracks-like hall. Rurin, the Guest Star Party Member that accompanies them, also wields a hammer.
  • Dug Too Deep: Level 14 has you join forces with a dwarven mining crew that dug too deep. They come with a few towers already built and a special hero that you can control in addition to your own.
  • Dungeon Bypass: There are of course the same caves as found in the first game. One noticeable other example is your first encounter with an Executioner in the level Buccaneer's Den. Instead of coming down one of the two already established paths, he cuts a lane through the swath of forest at the eastern path, adding another path for enemies.
    • It happens again in the jungle with a Witch Doctor on one side and an Executioner on the other. However, the Witch Doctor uncovers an additional strategic point in which to place a tower.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Umbra.
  • Endless Game: The Endless Challenge level Ruins of Nas'de.
  • Enemy Summoner: The Sand Wraith. This nasty guy can not only attack and summon mummy-spawning sarcophagi, it can also heal its own units!
    • Blood Tricksters can raise fallen Savages into Savage Zombies. One reason you should use artillery with them around so that there is nothing left for them to resurrect.
    • Savant Saurians can summon other Saurians into battle and also attack your troops.
  • Everything's Worse with Bees: Giant Wasps serve as the weakest Airborne Mooks in Frontiers.
  • Evil Is Not a Toy: After summoning Umbra, the force of the crystal explosion knocks Malagar to the edge of a cliff. He pleads for Umbra to save him... and Umbra just zaps Lord Malagar off.
  • Expy: Several of the Mooks in are equivalents to those in the first game.
    • Desert Thugs and Dune Raiders to Goblins and Orcs/Bandits and Brigands.
    • Sand Hound and War Hound - Wulf and Worg
    • Immortal - Marauder
    • Fallen - Skeleton
    • Desert Archer - Shadow Archer
    • Giant Wasp - Gargoyle
    • Sand Wraith - Necromancer (plus Shaman)
    • Executioner - Ogre
    • Witch Doctor - Shaman
    • Jungle Matriarch - Spider Matriarch
    • Gorillon - Yeti
  • Face Hugger/Face Full of Alien Wing-Wong: Parasytes in Frontiers, fast-moving critters that hatch from pods that resemble xenomorph eggs. These will latch onto the faces of barracks soldiers and slowly drain their health- when the soldier dies, they burst into deadly insectoid aliens called Reapers. Get them off your soldiers before they suffer such a fate.
  • Fake Difficulty: Nazeru the Red Efreet. He can summon three lesser efreets right in front of your exit, where you don't have anybody to guard as the rally point is too far. You'll need reinforcements and your hero to stop them, and a Rain of Fire to take care of this- if he does it again, you're screwed.
  • Fighter, Mage, Thief: The Frontiers standard heroes fit this. Alric is the Fighter, Mirage is the Thief, Bruxxa is the Mage, and Cronan is the Jack of All Stats.
  • Fish People: A number of the Deep Devils are these.
  • Flesh Golem: The Abomination, made up of mutilated limbs and bodies of creatures. And they also blow up on death.
    • Frankie the Flesh Golem. However, this one is on your side.
  • Flunky Boss: All of them.
  • Fragile Speedster: Mirage the Assassin fits this role among the heroes- she has fast movement, throws knives from a range, and can Flash Step, but is frail and depends on OneHitKills in melee combat.
  • Genie in a Bottle: Nazeru the Red Efreet gets put back into a lamp when he is defeated.
  • Giant Enemy Crab: Bloodshells in the Rising Tides expansion. These have EXTREME armor like the previous game's Dark Slayers, you'll need Magic to stand a chance against them.
    • There's also the Hero Karkinos, who's a Giant Ally Crab-man.
  • Giant Flyer: Poukai. These are giant birds ridden by savages who rain spears on your troops. When the savage is killed, the bird goes berserk and rushes quickly to the exit.
    • Razorwings and Quetzals, the latter of which can lay eggs that hatch into Razorwings.
  • Giant Mook: Giant Wasp Queens, Executioners, Jungle Matriaches, Gorillons, Saurian Brutes, Bloodshells, Abominations.
  • Giant Spider: The spiders and Matriarchs are back, and their Jungle counterparts are even stronger than the Forest versions.
  • The Goomba: Desert Thugs, although they are stronger than the first game's goblins.
  • Heavily Armored Mook: Dune Raiders, Immortals, Giant Scorpions. The Earth Shamans provide heavy armor to all savages around them. The Rising Tides update gives us Bloodshells, which are souped-up Dark Slayers that are also immune to artillery.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: Alric the Champion is the closest hero to a typical fantasy protagonist and he wields a nice scimitar.
  • Hive Queen: The Reaper Queen in the Temple Of Evil, who commands the Parasytes and Reapers. She's also the new Dark God of the Ma'qwa tribe.
  • Humongous Mecha: The Battle-Mecha upgrade for the Artillery. It can't be damaged, and rains bombs, missiles and oil (slows foes) on hapless targets.
  • Hungry Jungle: The jungle area. The plants eat you, the savages eat you, the giant spiders return, and there are facehuggers too.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Savages in Frontiers will eat your fallen soldiers to regain health.
  • Immune to Bullets: Ghosts and Phantom Warriors are immune to non-magical attacks by virtue of being ghosts.
  • Instant Death Radius: Vasile's second phase has a rapid life-draining aura that makes short work of units and heroes alike.
  • Instant Gravestone: Every time your hero dies and needs to respawn, their body gets replaced by a gravestone where they fell.
  • Invisible Monsters: At half their health, Saurian Nightscales will stealth cloak and become invisible to your towers. They can still be hit by Splash Damage, though, and Furnace Blast is a great way to burn a whole bunch of them.
  • Jungle Japes
  • Kung-Fu Proof Mook: Besides Airborne Mooks and Heavily Armored Mooks, there are Dune Terrors, who are invulnerable to damage while burrowed underground (use troops to lure them out).
  • Kraken and Leviathan: The boss of the extra content Rising Tides. It looks like a Kraken but is named Leviathan, and uses its tentacles to temporarily disable your towers.
  • Killer Gorilla: Gorillons in Frontiers. Acts like a Yeti. Then there's Quincon, the second boss, and his Mandrilos flunkies.
  • Laser Blade: The Hero Sha'tra uses a pair. The Saurian Brutes wield a pair of energy whips.
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: A single Predator is hidden in three of the levels; they're called 'Alien Hunters'.
  • Life Drain: Myrmidon Saurians can bite your troops to regain health.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Unlike most bosses who tend to be unarmored and quite slow, Xyzzy is fast, has a Medium amount of armor, and sports a One-Hit Kill where he eats your soldiers and a painful AOE hammer attack that hits 8 times and even targets flying heroes.
  • Lizard Folk: The Saurians, whom you fight underground.
  • Long-Range Fighter: Saurian Deathcoils in the Darklight Depths fire very painful crossbow bolts with a range of nearly half the map. They suck at close-range fighting, though, so reinforcements can temporarily draw their attention for a while.
  • Man-Eating Plant: Snapvines along Snapvine Bridge. These will devour both ally and enemy alike, should they get too close. You can get an achievement for letting the plants eat 50 people (ally or enemy).
  • Mighty Glacier: Alric the Champion fits this role for the heroes- he's the toughest and heaviest hitting at melee but has average movement speed, no ranged attacks (besides summoning more sand warriors), and can't hit flying enemies.
  • Malevolent Masked Men: The Savages.
  • Molotov Cocktail: Buccaneers attack the enemies by throwing burning booze.
  • Mook Maker: Quetzals are pretty much flying versions of the Matriach, except they can't attack because they fly over everything.
  • Mook Medic: The Sand Wraith in Frontiers combines this with Enemy Summoner, making it a very dangerous foe.
    • Witch Doctors will cause savages around them to gain a health regeneration.
  • Motivation on a Stick: The Gorillon rider uses a banana-on-a-stick to guide it.
  • Necromancer: These guys are on your side now. They can raise dead bodies from fallen enemies, poison foes, and summon a skeletal knight on a horse that attacks opponents.
    • Bonehart the Dracolich also appears to be one, he has powers over plague and can animate bones.
    • For the enemies, there's the Sand Wraith that can summon mummy sarcophagi that spawn mummies, and the Blood Trickster, who resurrects savages that die around it into voodoo zombies.
  • Nobody Touches the Hair/Not in the Face!: Rurin the dwarf hero cries out "Not the beard!" whenever he dies — given the amount of Saurian Brutes, you'll be hearing it often unless you can micro-manage.
  • One-Hit Kill: The DWAARP's Core Drill drills an opponent for a guaranteed instant-death.
    • Some level have genies you can hire. They can turn an opponent into a random object, which is an instant-kill.
    • There's a Giant Mook called the Executioner, who holds a giant axe. Guess what it does to your troops. However, he cannot kill Hero Units in one hit.
    • Saurian Blazefangs have hi-tech plasma guns that have a chance of vaporizing the victim.
    • Nazeru's attack involves him snapping his fingers and turning any nearby soldiers or heroes into dust.
    • Lucrezia's Spin Attack does this to Vampiresa enemies caught in the area of effect, which makes her vital in killing groups of them.
    • Mirage has an ability that gives her a chance to Flash Step to an enemy and Back Stab them, instantly killing them.
    • Assassins have the Sneak Attack ability, which works just like Mirage's — either an instant kill or heavy damage — but only to enemies they are currently fighting.
  • Our Genies Are Different: Nazeru the Efreet, the first boss. He can summon smaller genies, as well as trapping your towers in a temporary sandcastle, making those towers useless.
    • You also can hire Genies in stage 4. These can turn foes into random objects, instantly killing those foes.
  • Pirate the level Buccaneer's Den allows you to hire Corsairs and Buccaneers as additional foot soldiers, and features an actual pirate ship that can take out enemies for you in return for payment.
  • Regenerating Health: The Werewolves and Lycans (in wolf form) have this as their ability. If the moon is out, they regenerate faster.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: The only reptiles that show up are Saurians, who serve as Lord Malagar's Elite Mooks.
  • Sand Worm: Dune Terrors in Frontiers. They are immune to damage when burrowed underground, and move very quickly. Use some barracks troops to lure them out.
    • There's also the giant sand worm in the Dunes of Despair that eats a good number of your troops (or even your hero) should you fail to heed the Worm Sign. You get an achievement for not letting the worm eat any of your units. In the Heroic and Iron Challenges, you can see its huge carcass.
  • Savage Wolves: Sand Hounds and War Hounds are pretty much Wulves and Worgs with a different name.
  • Scary Scorpions: Giant ones in Frontiers. These can poison your troops, and have heavy armor.
  • Schizo Tech: How could these saurians have possibly acquired plasma guns and energy whips?
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: Umbra
  • Shifting Sand Land
  • Shout-Out: The Parasyte and Reaper are obvious ones to Alien, in terms of how they breed. The Parasyte looks very similar to a headcrab. The Reaper's description also makes a reference to Alien vs. Predator.
  • Status Buff Dispel: The Totem of Spirits used by the Axethrower tower. This dispels any buffing auras, which is very useful against Witch Doctors, Earth Shamans, and Spirit Shamans.
  • Stay Frosty: One of the Hero Unit Alric's quotes. Could be because he's introduced in the desert level.
  • Stock Scream: Saurians climbing the chasm vines make a Wilhelm scream if you kill them before they reach the surface.
    • Lampshaded with the achievement "Is that Wilhem?"
  • Teleport Spam: Darter Saurians will teleport when hurt.
    • On your side, we have Nivus, who teleports when you move him around. People tend to move him around quite a bit.
    • Deirdre is also capable of this when her Wings of Light is upgraded, granting an armor buff around her departure and destination points to nearby troops.
  • This Is a Drill: The DWAARP has one. It uses it to create earthquakes, and can drill an opponent with it for a One-Hit Kill.
  • To Serve Man: The Saurian Myrmidon's Life Drain ability involves them taking bites out of your troops.
    • Also, Ghouls in the Shadowmoon campaign eat troops after killing them, regenerating their health. Lampshades by the "OM NOM NOM" sound clip that plays when they do this.
    • Ashbite can also do this with his Feast skill, though it's often used on Giant Mooks, which, barring Executioners, aren't human. Usually.
    • Xyzzy does this when encountering your troops, using his chameleon-like tongue.
    • Savages eat soldiers they kill, regaining health; they can't do this with Reinforcements, thankfully, since they disappear when they take fatal damage.
  • Trampled Underfoot: Cronan the Beastmaster periodically beats his chest and roars, summoning a herd of rhinos to trample a large part of a lane.
  • Turns Red: When a Poukai Rider's rider is killed, the bird flies faster and rushes towards the exit.
    • Saurian Broodguards become faster as they lose health, because "their wounds fuel their combat rage". Saurian Nightscales use an Invisibility Cloak when they drop to half their health.
  • Turtle Power: Blacksurges in the Rising Tides mini-campaign. These are nasty enemies that can temporarily disable your towers, as well as get into an invulnerable defensive stance where they regenerate health rapidly. Using barracks is a must.
  • The Unfought: Although he does cast spells on your troops, you never actually get to fight Lord Malagar as he gets zapped off a cliff by Umbra after summoning it.
  • The Virus: Lycans have a chance of turning the troops they kill into werewolves.

    Kingdom Rush: Origins 
  • Action Bomb: The Boomshrooms, Munchshrooms and Fungus Breeders all explode on death. In the case of the latter two, they're also Asteroids Monsters.
    • The Twilight Avenger can "curse" other enemies to make them explode on death.
  • Airborne Mook: Perythons, Gloomies, and Cloud Stalkers are the respective flying enemy for each area.
  • All Webbed Up: Webspitter Spiders can do this to any barracks troops they are facing, temporarily making them useless.
  • Asteroids Monster: Munchshrooms explode into two Boomshrooms on death, while Fungus Breeders explode into two Munchshrooms on death.
  • Ball of Light Transformation: A number of The Fair Folk enemies do this when they cross the crystal paths. They're invulnerable when doing so.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Both Mactans and Malicia are killed, but the Tear of Elynie has been corrupted, and will eventually fall into Vez'nan's hands.
  • Contractual Boss Immunity: The Twilight Golem cannot be instakilled.
  • The Corruption: The Bloodsydian Crystals. They're able to turn Gnolls into Blood Gnolls, which gives them significant speed, attack and durability. It does come with a drawback of being vulnerable to magic, however.
  • Damage-Increasing Debuff: The Golden Longbow's Hunter's Mark ability marks an enemy for a period of time, making them take double damage.
  • Dying Curse: Twilight Scourgers use this when killed, cursing a tower to prevent it from action for a few seconds. It gets annoying fast when they appear in large groups later on.
  • Enemy Summoner: Satyr Hoplites can bang on their shield to summon Satyr Cutthroats, while Arachnomancers can summon various kinds of spiders.
  • Face Full of Alien Wing-Wong: The Cloud Stalkers. Essentially a flying version of the Parasyte, they swoop down and latch onto a unit's face. If not remove quickly they will spawn another Cloud Stalker.
  • Face-Heel Turn: Beresad is an "ally" that you can spend money on to attack a large group of enemies. In Frontiers, he's been convinced to work for the Saurians. And of course, Vez'nan is an Hero Unit in this game, and the Big Bad in the original.
  • The Fair Folk: Most of the baddies in the forest area are these. The Twilight Elves are basically Drow by another name.
  • Fallen Hero: Vez'nan, the Big Bad of the first game was a hero when he was younger.
  • Fauns and Satyrs: The Satyr Cutthroats and Satyr Hoplites in the forest.
  • Full Boar Action: Razorboars, large boars with a good amount of health, medium armor and a flaming charge attack.
  • Fusion Dance: At the end of the final level, Mactans and Malicia both leap at the Tear of Elynie, which corrupts the crystal and fuses the two together into the Final Boss, the Spider Goddess.
  • Giant Mook: Ettins, Bandersnatches, and Twilight Golems.
  • Glass Cannon: The Redcaps. They don't have much health at all, but they move fast and there's a chance where they One-Hit Kill troops with their scythes.
  • Injured Vulnerability: The Twilight Golem gets slower and slower as it takes damage to its massive health.
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: The Redwood Stand level features creatures called 'Awoks' that live in huts (some are placed in trees with wooden walkways). Additionally, the Grimmsburg level contains a candy house inhabited by a witch; killing her releases two children named 'Hans' and 'Ethel'. The achievement for this is called 'Candy Rush'.
  • Made a Slave: A younger Malik Hammerfury can be seen in the Blood Quarry being forced to mine Bloodsydian for Gnolls. If you kill his guards, he joins you as an ally.
  • Megaton Punch: Bram the Beheader's regular attack is a One-Hit Kill where he smacks a unit and literally sends them flying away. It doesn't work on Hero Units, thankfully.
  • Mook Medic: Twilight Evokers can heal enemies around them.
  • Multiple Head Case: The Ettins in the first area. Every now and then their two heads will argue, causing one to hit the other with a club and stun the monster for a while.
    • There's also the Blood Ogres and the Ogre Magi in the Hulking Rage mini-campaign, but their heads get along with each other. Bram the Beheader is an aversion- he beheaded his other head and stuck it on a pike.
  • Our Ogres Are Hungrier: They're all two-headed giants that have lots of health and attacking power.
  • One-Hit Kill: The Redcaps can use a killing blow on barracks troops with their scythes, while the Twilight Heretic can absorb their soul to gain a temporary buff.
    • Bram the Beheader can smack a unit away with his normal attack.
    • Tower-wise, the Golden Longbow Archer tower can be upgraded with the Crimson Sentence ability, giving each shot a chance to insta-kill a Mook. The Wild Magus can be upgraded with Eldritch Doom, which detonates an enemy and damages surrounding ones.
  • Prequel: Origins takes place before Kingdom Rush.
  • Prickly Porcupine: The Bandersnatch is basically a huge monster hedgehog.
  • Rain of Arrows: Eridan's Hero Power, Arrow Storm.
  • Regenerating Health: The Ettins have this as an ability, making them hard to take down without good DPS.
  • Self-Duplication: The Gloomies have this as an ability. This makes them very irritating as they're Airborne Mooks, meaning that the Earth Druids can't target the group.
  • Spider People: Driders, which attack with poison and also cocoon any troops they kill, which will hatch into another Drider. The Final Boss of the game, the Spider Goddess, is also one due to a Fusion Dance between Malicia and Mactans.
  • Synchronization: The Ogre Magi's lifelink aura causes a downplayed form of this, all damage dealt to nearby units is partially taken by the Ogre Magi instead.
  • The Virus: Cloud Stalkers and Driders can turn barracks troops they kill into more of them.
  • When Trees Attack: The Weirdwood Artillery tower. They attack by throwing exploding nuts as well as using a Ground Pound for an Area of Effect attack.