This guide aims to teach you the basics of Element TD 2 so that you can enter a single player or multiplayer game knowing what’s going on.
Basic Guide to Newbies
Hello and welcome to the Beginner’s Guide to Element TD 2. Before we get started I would just like to set some expectations:
- This guide will not cover specific builds or strategies.
- This guide will not cover advanced mechanics for optimisation.
- This guide aims to teach you basic mechanics and everything you need to know to get through a game of Element TD 2 understanding what is happening.
In order to learn the basics applicable to every game mode, I will be making examples from a game of Survival, or FFA as the Multiplayer variant is called.
Making sure that you have enough gold to build the towers required is one of the first essentials of any tower defense. In Element TD 2, gold can come from three sources.
- Killing creeps.
- Income/Extra Creeps.
Income from extra creeps is something you have to choose when you get an element pick (more on that later).
Interest is earned every 15 seconds, and gives you 2% bonus gold based on the amount you currently have (Example: with 200 gold on hand, you gain roughly 4 gold from interest – seen in top right corner of your screen).
Choosing your Path to Victory
You will begin every match by picking either income/extra creeps for some extra gold, or one of the six elements to add to your arsenal.
The extra creeps upgrade is one to be careful with. It does net you extra gold, but it also means that if anyone kills faster than you, you’re gonna be under a lot of pressure very quickly.
Pro-tip: You can disable the element prompt from settings and just select your elements from the top right UI instead.
Picking an element gives you access to a basic elemental tower of that type, which later can be upgraded and combined into other towers as you pick more elements.
It may be difficult to decide on what to pick early on as you’re getting into the game, or consider all tactical implications of your choices, so if you want to check out some of your options in peace, you can do so with the Tower Table in the Extras Menu.
Building towers is very convenient in Element TD 2. You can just left-click for each tower individually and re-select it from the build bar. You can also hold shift to place multiple towers of the same kind once you have it selected, similar to how you would in an RTS game.
Or you could just simply drag a box to place a group of towers at once, this also works with shift-building so you can place multiple spread out groups of the same kind very easily!
Setting Up for Success
Placement and Weaknesses
As an example, I have picked Light as my first element and set it up in a central location where it reaches most of the map. This tower is referred to as a single because it is made up of a single element.
Different elements have different strengths and weaknesses. Each element is strong to what’s to the right of it, and weak to what’s on its left according to the order in the top right UI.
Light is strong to Dark but weak to Earth, which means it’s weak to the first wave as you can see at the top of the screen if you hover over the incoming waves. This display is very useful because it will also tell you which abilities each wave has and what they are weak to(if there is an obvious counter).
Since my starting tower is weak to the first wave, I’m going to support it with a cannon tower.
Arrow and Cannon towers are the basic towers of Element TD 2 and you will always have access to them no matter your pick. They can be upgraded into any elemental tower of your choosing later on.
This is normally referred to as a double pass.
You should always keep in mind how you are placing your towers. By placing towers where creeps will pass more than once, you will maximize the damage output of each tower like I did with the cannon tower up above.
Upgrading and Combining
Element TD 2 is a game about upgrading and combining elements into new towers.
You get to make a new pick every 5 waves up to wave 50. In total, you get 11 picks throughout the course of a game.
Every elemental pick after the first one will summon a boss that corresponds to the element. You won’t unlock access to the new element until you’ve killed the boss.
In my example run I picked up Fire as my second element and killed the boss that spawned.
Since I had Light before and now picked up Fire, I can combine the elements and transform my Light tower into a Lightning Tower. This is called a Dual because it’s made up of two elements.
Since I’ve invested so much gold into a Light damage tower and harder waves are approaching, my defense may need some extra help on future Earth waves. I will try adding a fire tower or a few extra cannon towers to support my Lightning as soon as I can afford it to make sure those evil creeps don’t get through.
This is something to always keep in mind and adapt to as you upgrade your defenses.
By pressing the spacebar or clicking the rightmost button in the build bar at the bottom, you can see the entire tower table which shows all available towers in the game.
The singles are shown at the top, duals in the middle and triples at the bottom. A triple is a tower made up of three elements and it holds some of the game’s most powerful towers.
Hovering over any specific tower shows you information about that tower and also highlights what it can upgrade into below it as well as what you need to make it in the first place above it.
As an example my Lightning tower here is made up of Light and Fire as is highlighted above it, and can be upgrade into the Nova, Runic, Windstorm and Money Towers as highlighted below.
The tower table is very useful, not only for planning out what you can build into next by selecting certain elements, but you can also select and build towers directly from it assuming you have the required gold instead of upgrading a base tower from the bottom up! For the elementals though, keep in mind that they can give you trouble if you don’t have the proper elements or enough single-target towers to deal with them.
As you start getting more elements in your build and have upgrades available, you can also hold Ctrl while selecting a tower or while placing it to automatically upgrade it to the highest tier you can currently build and afford.
The Essence of the Endgame
You may have noticed there being a Diamond icon that was greyed out and unavailable to pick early on. This is called Essence and it is a resource that is only really relevant towards the end of the game.
When you pick it, a unique composite boss will spawn. Killing it gives you essence, which you then use to upgrade singles to level 4, or, if you have all six elements picked, build a Periodic tower from the build bar.
Each Essence pick gives you the ability to build 2 level 4 singles or Periodic towers(however you choose to mix that up). You also get a free Essence when you’ve beaten wave 50.
The Periodic tower deals composite damage, so it’s neutral to all types of enemies and has no strengths or weaknesses.
Excuse me, the horse hat makes me look smart.
I mentioned before that you had picks up until wave 50, but what happens then? Well, the “normal” waves end at wave 55. After that, you will face an endless onslaught of Doom Lords that eventually will kill you. Your only objective at this point is to survive for as long as possible, and get a good score to show off to your friends.
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