Orcs Must Die! 3 – Review
Follow Genre: Action, Tower Defense
Developer: Robot Entertainment
Publisher: Robot Entertainment
Platform: PC, PS4/5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X
Tested On: PC

Orcs Must Die! 3 – Review

Site Score
Good: Fun co-op
Bad: Not much variety
User Score
(2 votes)
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Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)

Back in 2011 the original Orcs Must Die! was released as an action-tower defense hybrid game. After garnering quite a success and positive attention, a sequel soon appeared the following year. Nine years later, the latest entry to the series, Orcs Must Die! 3 has been released, but what does it bring to the table after such a long wait?


While OMD3 has a story, it is rather shallow, told in its entirety through a few seconds of dialogue at the start of each level and a handful of cutscenes. The plot follows two Rift Mage apprentices, Egan and Kelsey, studying under the powerful Sorceress, both the villain and protagonist of the previous two games.

After the disappearance of the Order of Rifts’ hero Maximillian, the couple is tasked by the Sorceress with protecting the Order’s strongholds from the onslaughts of orcs surging from mysterious red rifts. Soon enough, the source of these rifts is discovered to be the elf Vorwick, once a member of the order, corrupted and seeking vengeance by unleashing the orcs on his ex-comrades.

Alongside the main campaign, the game also features a secondary one consisting of five levels explaining the events leading up to Max’s disappearance.  Even with this, the story of the game remains little more than a setting for the gameplay, generally relying on knowledge of the previous games’ story to flesh it out.


The game features pretty good 3D graphics with a plastic-like touch added thanks to the glossiness of the models. Besides this, OMD3 features a decent amount of unique enemies, all easily distinguishable. Even recycled models of other enemies look quite nice.

That said, the same doesn’t apply to the scenarios themselves. These, despite some outliers, generally consist of generic medieval fortresses with different layouts. Only those with somewhat unique features, such as the last level, truly stand out from the crowd.


OMD3’s sound design is pretty decent with a serviceable soundtrack which mostly consists of background “action” music, good SFX, and great voice acting. Despite the general quality, there are some flaws worth mentioning, mainly the incessant quip spouting by the characters, particularly Kelsey, during battles. Another issue worth noting, although this one is also gameplay-related, is the alert for enemies entering the rift playing at wrong times, and not triggering when it actually should be played.


As already stated, the gameplay in OMD3 belongs to the action and tower defense genres. The main loop consists of players setting up traps in preparation for incoming waves of enemies, eventually springing into action themselves to clear any survivors.

The traps at the players’ disposal come in different types, depending on their placement type (floor, walls, or ceiling) and each has different properties, such as damage over time, freezing, or short stuns. A few examples could be electric ceiling lasers, wall-mounted freezing vents, or springs capable of catapulting those enemies that step on them. Combining the different traps is very much necessary to defeat the different types of enemies; particularly so when those with resistance to certain types of damage are introduced.

On top of having to carefully consider the traps’ placements, players will need to keep in mind the cost of each of these. In order to place a trap, a certain amount of currency must be spent, which can later be regained by killing enemies and finishing waves. Besides this, traps can also be sold and replaced by others, although in the hardest difficulty this can only be done for a few seconds in between waves.

Alongside the traps, players will have other tools in their arsenals, such as a variety of weapons and trinkets. The weapons are mainly straightforward items that can be both melee and ranged, each also featuring a secondary ability that may be employed by consuming mana for a variety of effects. On the other hand, trinkets are objects with cooldowns that can be used for a special effect, alongside providing passive bonuses depending on their type.

While most ranged weapons are alright enough to use, OMD3 has a rather big issue with the melee ones. These have a complete lack of impact on their main attack. Even the more impressive-looking ones run into this issue, and this is particularly obvious when using the Warhammer. It is also worth noting that in most cases these weapons also deal less damage than their ranged counterparts, despite putting players in harm’s way, generally being only useful for their secondary abilities.

Besides the straightforward upgrades, each item also features two special upgrades, which can be unlocked by meeting the conditions while using the item. In order to upgrade their equipment, players will need to beat levels while accomplishing a series of objectives, such as their rift not taking damage or killing everything fast enough.

Besides the campaign mode, OMD3 features three additional options: Weekly Challenges, Endless Mode, and Scramble. Firstly, Weekly Challenges present players with modifiers for each level, which change each week. Secondly, the Endless mode lives up to its name, simply pitting players against continuous waves in a resistance test. Lastly, Scramble presents players with a choice of two levels, each adding a unique debuff but providing a selection of three buffs after beating it, with the end goal being to beat 5 levels in a row. Each of these modes also provides skulls for the players to continue upgrading their arsenal, and this becomes the main way of gathering currency after beating both campaigns.

Additionally, the game can be fully played in co-op with another player, splitting the money between the two and allowing for different load-outs and more trap combinations.


Orcs Must Die! 3 is a unique and entertaining take on the genre and is very welcoming for both veterans of the series and newcomers. Although its content is simple and can be exhausted after a while, it offers some amount of replayability thanks to its extra modes. At €24,99/$29.99/£23.79 it is a recommendable purchase, although perhaps waiting for extra content to be added down the line or a sale could be advisable.

Personal Opinion

“It was pretty entertaining to play through OMD3. In all honesty, I didn’t enjoy it that much while playing alone, but the co-op was certainly fun. That said, the game could do with some improvements, mainly some more variety in level design, better hitbox detection, and a few other quality of life changes. I found it pretty surprising how little the game utilized the elements, with only a pair of enemies being directly affected by them. It was also quite odd that flying enemies were only introduced in the secondary campaign, although it was painfully obvious that this had been done because the other levels weren’t designed with them in mind.”

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Orcs Must Die! 3 - Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings

No longer writing for the site, pursuing other things.

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