MAD: Mutually Assured Destruction

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Rating: 4.7/5 (31 votes)
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PatrickMAD: Mutually Assured DestructionMAD: Mutually Assured Destruction is a souped-up rendition of Missile Command with great art by Brian Baum and clever resource management design by Nic Daniel. Shoot missiles in an attempt to intercept other missiles, just like in the classic arcade game, but with a twist: Each missile you fire garners some resources that can be spent to upgrade buildings.

Control is simple: just click where you want to shoot. Use the number keys (1-4) to activate your secondary buildings' special powers, or click directly on the icons. Press the [space bar] to pause the game and open the upgrade menu.

Your first building acts like a generator for the other buildings, and when activated will transfer its own shield power to your other buildings. Upgrading will give it capacitors that store energy rather than transferring directly from its own shield resources. The second building uses an EMP (Electro magnetic pulse) device to disable missiles. Upgrading this building will dramatically increase its effectiveness. The next building slows down time allowing you to aim much more accurately and take some of the pressure off. Upgrading this building uses less energy when slowing down time, thus slows time longer. Lastly there is a flak cannon that shoots randomly into the sky (hopefully) taking out or at least disabling some missiles for you. Upgrading this building increases its general effectiveness. Note that all buildings are extremely vulnerable to attack after use since they use their shield energy to activate their powers.

Analysis: The real issue with this game stems from the secondary functions not being automatic or implied. If your investment in time-slowing, for example, were re-balanced to work well on a periodic basis, without you having to manage it personally, it would make a lot more sense. As it stands now, you have to baby-sit a wider area while at the same time deciding when to use your secondary shots, and as the game is currently balanced this is a dominant strategy. You need to invest in the most expensive upgrade, improving shield recharge and reload rate, in order to survive. Losing those secondary buildings is actually a blessing in disguise, as there is less area to babysit.

If you like intense gameplay and great art, and if you don't mind that the RPG elements are somewhat imbalanced, you should definitely get M.A.D and play Mutually Assured Destruction!

Play Mutually Assured Destruction


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Thanks, Matt! It's late, I should be sleeping rather than coding HTML. :)

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Psychotronic December 19, 2007 4:00 AM

I definitely had the same issues with the auxiliary buildings at first. After a few games, though, I started getting much higher scores by using the buildings effectively. I'll just spoiler my strategy in case folks want to try other things first.

First, you level up the flak cannon as fast as possible. It helps out a lot once you reach 10,000 points and the screen gets flooded with missiles. Eventually, the flak cannon will be doing most of the work, and you'll just be taking out the missiles that slip through the barrage (and later, the dangerous parachuting missiles and satellites).
In order to keep the cannon going all the time, you need to level up the shield building and activate it whenever the flak cannon has less than 50% energy. The shield building regenerates faster than the flak cannon depletes, so you shouldn't ever have to let the cannon stop firing.
The EMP building is pretty useless until level 4, and then it has the ability to take out every missile on the screen in one shot. Use it whenever things get out of control. Then try to let it recharge on its own before you activate the shield building again. If your shield building runs out of energy, then your flak cannon isn't far behind, and if the flak cannon goes out, you're pretty much dead.
The time stop can be very useful if you're running low on ammo, because you recharge quickly while the missiles are paused, but if you pace yourself, you shouldn't ever need it.
You can pretty much power-up all the auxiliary buildings before you ever touch the main building this way. As long as you keep the flak cannon going all the time, you can keep a single missile from hitting any of your buildings, so long as you have a good eye for which missiles are actually dangerous and which ones are going to fly off the screen harmlessly.
Naturally it gets a lot harder as your score goes up, but with this strategy, I can easily score all the power-ups with no damage to my buildings, and after that it's all down to mental focus.

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The artist's name is Brian Baum.

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I really enjoyed this game. The little details like the way the buildings animate are great as well as the look and sound of the explosions. I like using the flak cannon because it can be fired almost constantly without sacrificing shield resources.

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Some time ago there was one small fun game for PC with the same title about the same thing:


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I found a good strategy...

Only invest in the shield/energy regenerating tower and the flak cannon tower. If you keep hitting the regeneration you can keep the flak cannons up indefinitely. After that invest in reload time, then main shields. Ignore the other upgrades.

This worked pretty well for me. I think I agree that the upgrade system could be improved. I don't mind hitting extra buttons, what got me was that it actually uses shield energy to do the special attacks. It would be nice if each tower had a separate energy bar for its special moves. As it was, it didn't feel worth it to ever use some of the other towers.

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Thanks, Nic. I've made the correction to the review. :)

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I like it. The name is rather funny.

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23392 points. Having only the middle building to worry about made it quite easier, so I suggest you invest on it's upgrades (the most expensive ones).

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I agree that the

flak cannon and shield thingy are the way to go

It's quite a fun game, but can get boring after a while. Good music though.

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29000 points. I used flak cannon + shield but at 20000 points I lost all my buildings.

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Thank you Jay.
And thanks for the review!

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I got to 48256 points on my first try using Jay's strategy: focus on the main base only. I did keep a second building alive for a long time for timefreeze purposes, but I could rarely keep its shield high enough to be useful. My ability to pull off a 119% accuracy helped a lot (it was near 98% for most of the game, until late when it got impossible to not hit multiple incoming missiles at once!), but eventually the swarm overwhelmed me.

Main complaint: unlike Missile Command, incoming missiles' explosions do not blow up other incoming missiles.

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58004 points.
The later levels made my adrenalin shoot through the roof.
The variety is astounding.

I counted 6 different types of missiles:
- normal
- guided (one curve)
- super guided (curving a lot)
- fast (those suck)
- parachutes, hover and throw small bombs
- robot missiles, unfold hover and then fire at your buildings)

I lost my last secondary building at 15000 points or so. after that it was simply mayhem.
But I got 2 gold medals in the end, so I guess it was worth it.

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I enjoyed the game but, like the reviewer, found the RPG-like elements leaving a little to be desired. It simply became too hard to protect all the buildings - at a certain point it really was impossible, and the fact that the abilities are unusable unless the building has full shields makes it that much more frustrating.

Overall enjoyable, worth a few tries, but it could be polished a bit and be that much better.

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I don't really like those games where you have to do the very same thing over a long period of time and this one is such a game - but it's a good one still.

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Great game, thanks for providing it. I like the gameplay and unlike others, I actualy enjoy that you have to activate the upgrades - that adds some strategic element to the game - diferent strategies result in very different results.

I tried it five times so far, with my best result being 91,646 score (general there any bigger?) and 5 platinum medals (and the worst one just under 50k). My strategy?

First upgrade the flak. Then upgrade the energy tower. Then upgrade the flak once more. Then the energy tower once more. This should let you use the flak almost nonstop. Now concetrate on killing all dangerous rockets and save cash. As soon as you have 800, upgrade your reload rate. Now upgrade the flak tower, energy tower and EMP tower to max (the order does not matter since at this time you still should be handling the incoming rockets pretty easy). At the end, you should have flak running all the time. Use your EMP cannon only for emergencies - like when a rocket is about to hit your tower or such. Try to conserve energy in energy tower and use it only when realy needed - trust me, you will be glad you did when you will need to launch the EMP two or three consecutive times. With the cash that is pouring in, upgrade your fire rate once more and than buy the shield upgrades. If you wish, upgrade the time-slower, although I found it quite useless. Concentrate on taking out the fast rockets, the rockets that are about to hit your towers and the "spitter" bombs. Leave the rest to flak. When you can no longer defend all of them (around 40-50k score), concentrate on defending your energy tower and flak. Let the other buildings fall if needed rather than recharging them. The situation gets even harder and around 60k you will probably lose the rest of the buildings (when the flak stops, they are doomed...DOOOOMED). Now comes the tricky part - only shoot down rockets which are aiming on your tower, any parachute bombs directly above you and any green bombs ANYWHERE - they can spit fire on you even from the edge of screen! Keep doing it until you make mistake or until overwhelmed.

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I noticed that I continually forgot to use my auxiliary buildings, and my EMP always got hurt right before I could use it. Although a great game, I ended up quitting after I played for about a half hour with the main building.

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Sorry about the double post, but I forgot to mention I had 122% accuracy... :P

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Well, about an hour later, I'm playing this again, when I finally upgraded everything! I rather enjoy turning the time slow (well stop if it's fully upgraded) on and letting loose. When time starts again about twenty missiles come flying out, destroying a surprisingly small amount of missiles. Still fun though.

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I was able reach 22,000 using some of my own strategy mixed up with Jaysigames strategy.... Cool and challenging game. :)

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Score 18,280, 1147 missiles endured, 119 perfect hits, 97% accuracy. My only upgrade? Timestop, and let everything else die.

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This is how I play.

Do not upgrade any of your secondary buildings. They're just a waste. Concentrate on getting your missile reload upgrades. When you've got them, go for the shields. Then just shoot whatever comes near your main building. Leave the others to die. But at the start, try and get a streak for additional points. As the game goes by, look out for helicopters that drop bombs. Take those out, especially the green ones. If you have trouble, play the game in full screen and use the lag as a time slow thing. I would be dead very early if not for the lag. Consider it a free time slow upgrade. Thats a bout it really

I get 81713 with 7 medals: Die hard (4354 missiles disabled); Guardian (1921 total kills); MoneyBags (8224 resources saved); Marksmanship (134% accuracy); Combo (56 hits in a row); Surgical (212 Missiles Disabled); DeadEye (362 perfect hits). This is my first time playing.

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Score 213,353 12185 missiles endured 131% accuracy
Rank: H4X!?!!!!1. All I did was use gASK's strategy and it worked well for me.

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I played and got 58,842 pts. with a rank of Cornel and i did it by keeping the emp alive. In the end i got 7 medals with 137% accuracy cuz i kept getting 2-4 missiles in one shot.

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Anonymous July 27, 2009 6:41 AM

ive got 70,900 points and i was the rank brigadier,{{my strategy...first upgrade the shield at 2 level ,then the flak cannon at max., then ive upraded the middle base at max. and then ive upgraded the clock stop at max because i needed it when there was too many missiles}} thats it( and ive got 6 medals, 1 bad medal and 5 good medals the accuaricy was 115%.

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