Mixed or average reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 15
  2. Negative: 4 out of 15
  1. Crystal Defenders is a very original game for the Xbox Arcade scene and is a real challenge to play.
  2. Unfortunately it falls short on map variety, and graphical polish, which is what is stopping me from really recommending this game.
  3. Crystal Defenders doesn’t do much that’s new or revolutionary, but with very slim tower defense competition on the 360, it’s an addictive distraction.
  4. The tactical pace of events will ensure you won't feel ripped off, making this an inoffensive enough waste of time for fans of the genre or the Final Fantasy series. [Issue#45, p.101]
  5. The tactics are fairly simple (especially considering their source material) and the small scope of the game will turn off many who expect more depth from their tower defense titles. The game also looks too much like a mobile title for a console port, and it just doesn't really stand up as its own tactics title.
  6. Square Enix's Crystal Defenders is just a correct game and one of the weak tower defense-style games of the last months. Challenging, but not specially deep; fun, but too short. For people who have never played a game like this, it can be a nice option, but definitely not for the hardcore gamers who are waiting for a new Ninja Town.
  7. Odds are if you have access to any other console, there are plenty of better tower defense games to enjoy.
  8. 55
    As both the first Square Enix game and the first tower defense game on Xbox Live Arcade, Crystal Defenders is a disappointment. Yes, it succeeds in providing a tower defense experience with Final Fantasy job classes, but what’s the real value in that? There is a ton of content here, with hundreds of stages to plow through, but I was bored and unimpressed in the first five minutes.
  9. Yes, people, it finally happened - a phone game's been ported to Xbox Live Arcade! [June 2009, p.79]
  10. Regardless of the decent strategic elements that Crystal Defenders offers, the fact that there is no story, any sort of progression or reward makes this a hard game to recommend to anyone. With so many other quality tower defense games available, you would have assumed something set in the Final Fantasy universe would have given gamers a better experience rather than something so completely basic.
  11. This Final Fantasy-themed tower defense game is bland and uninspired.
  12. Okay, there are some compelling strategies at the heart of Crystal Defenders, so it might draw you in for a while—in one of those “Why am I still playing this game?” moments—but it’s such a dull presentation that it ends up dragging down the whole gameplay concept.
  13. A good game in its original form, but a port so shoddy can't be encouraged. [June 2009, p.95]
  14. It's like PixelJunk Monsters without the heart and soul.
  15. Not only a poorly disguised mobile game but one of the shallowest Tower Defence strategy games ever.

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