Idle Monster TD is an amazing idle tower defense game with a retro vibe, available as a free to play game over on Kongregate. And today we’re here to help you get better at this game by sharing an Idle Monster TD guide: tips and tricks to help you beat more enemy waves.
Because, even though in theory the game is pretty much straightforward, there are some small details that you might miss – details that could prevent you from achieving greatness. And we’ll talk about them all – and more! – in today’s guide.
So let’s get straight to business and check out some Idle Monster TD tips and tricks below in our guide!
How to spend your Essence?
The Essence is the green stuff that you’re earning when you’re beating each new wave after a restart. It has many uses and, since it’s available in very limited amounts, you should micromanage it in order to ensure a better progress in the game.
Essence is used to unlock new monsters, buy and upgrade spells or conduct research – all of these being important things between which you must distribute your essence through.
Early on, when you start the game, you should definitely invest your essence primarily in unlocking new monsters: even if you don’t have access to the higher Tiers (which improve the chances of you getting rarer monsters), you still need the numbers to take out the enemy waves.
So, if you’re just starting up, I would recommend to use your Essence on summoning new monsters until you have at least 5 of them. And always use Essence to summon the highest tier available to you.
Afterwards, start investing in Spells first – get Strength Aura first, as you will need it to beat the waves later. Research is what should be invested in next, with the Damage increase being your top priority: it’s relatively cheap and offering you massive damage boosts!
The prices for the spells and research increase with each new purchase in a category, while summoning units of the same tier costs the same amount of essence. Keep mixing drawing for new monsters with boosting spells and research in order to keep increasing your overall power.
Important upgrades to buy with Free Gems
You will get a lot of gems for free in Idle Monster TD, which can be used to purchase some really important things – some of which you might not be directly aware of.
One of the most obvious ones is the Tier 2 unlock in the Research category. Eventually, you will want to unlock Tiers 3 and 4, but until then, there’s something else to spend your gems on.
Click the house icon in the bottom bar to be taken to the game’s shop. There, you will have one extremely useful thing to buy with Gems: a permanent damage boost! It is relatively cheap compared to other Gems upgrades that you can get from the shop and extremely useful on the long term.
The second most useful thing you can purchase with gems from the shop is the Prestige rewards booster, but if you’re a free to play player, you should only get the Tier 2 Upgrades first, a few Damage boost second and only afterwards decide to hoard Gems for a Tier 3 upgrade unlock or Prestige booster.
Upgrades: Spells, Research & Artifacts
We’ve covered some of the things here already, but I want to go a bit more in depth with each category, so that things are clear and useful.
Best Spells in Idle Monster TD
You can only have 4 spells in the game bar available at one time, but you can unlock and upgrade as many as you want. However, most of the spells in the game are not that useful.
Here is my rank of the best spells, with the top 4 being the ones that I think you should use at all times.
Rain of Fire – perfect for dealing damage and taking out minions, leaving the boss to be focused on by your towers.
Strength Aura – another great spell for boss battles and not only. Get a damage boost for a limited amount of time.
Frenzy Aura – again, a spell that’s great for taking out those difficult waves, as it increases the attack speed of all monsters.
Essence Storm – perfect for grinding: you get a chance of having regular monster kills drop Essence. Use this one constantly throughout the game, but especially immediately after a Prestige, when you destroy a ton of monsters easily.
Freeze – another useful spell for fighting bosses and difficult waves as it freezes opponents for a while (depending on level) You can switch it with Essence Storm before an important fight.
Deadly Strikes – Increases Critical hit chance. Low percentage and less useful that other spells.
Mastership: Good especially early on for getting more XP points for your monsters. I rarely used it though and still had a great time in the game.
Prosper: You get more gold dropped by enemies. Good when grinding and in need of money, but in reality it won’t make much of a difference.
Death Awaits – This sounds better than it really is: it depletes a certain % of all enemy troops’ health. But the amount is really low and less useful than what other spells offer. Clearly the worst spell in the game.
Now, depending on the situation and in-game progress, you can switch some of the spells and have some active over others. For example, the spell that gives you more money is useful when you’re just grinding, as well as the Mastership spell.
But if you don’t want to micromanage spells too much, just keep the top 4 active and you’re set for easy wins against even the most difficult bosses.
Idle Monster TD Research Guide
Research in the game is divided into Tiers and you can only unlock additional tiers by spending Gems. This shouldn’t be your main priority though, as research is expensive and Tiers 2 & 3 are not that useful early on.
I would recommend investing instead in the Damage research – you can always use some boosts to your overall damage, then attack speed and Critical Hit chance.
At tier 2, increasing the range of your Monsters is the best Research to invest in, while Tier 3 doesn’t give you any real direct bonuses, but you can invest in increasing the coin drops from monsters to ensure faster progress.
Artifacts in Idle Monster TD
You unlock a new artifact in the game for ever 10 new waves that you complete. So if you reach wave 100 and reset, you won’t receive a new artifact until you reach stage 110.
You don’t have any control over the artifacts that you’re getting, so there’s not much to strategize here. You can spend 100 Gems to randomly reassign all artifacts (basically redraw them) but that is not something that seems worthwhile.
It could make some sense if you could do this once you unlock all tiers and the random redraw gives you rarer artifacts, but it’s all based on luck and there are other better ways to spend your premium currency in the game, especially if you’re a free to play player.
Collections: Relics, Tech Tree & Tournament
Idle Monster TD Relics guide
Every time you prestige in the game, you earn Relics Prestige Points which can be used to buy various boosts in the game and upgrade existing ones.
It’s important to note that, unlike how it goes in other games, the Prestige Points here are worthless by themselves as they don’t give you any bonuses. So you should always invest all Prestige points in order to make the most out of them.
The main challenge when managing your Prestige points is deciding between drawing for a new Relic or upgrading an existing one. If you don’t have very good Relics available, you should draw for new ones.
By “very good” relics I mean relics that increase your monsters’ damage, critical hit chance, range and so on. All these relics that directly influence your performance in the game are really good and should be upgraded first.
I have written an in-depth guide to relics and shared a full list of relics here – make sure to check it out to better plan your moves.
Idle Monster TD Tech Tree & Technology scrolls
You only get access to the Tech Tree later on in the game, after beating wave 400 or something like that. Once you unlock it, there’s not really a lot for you to strategize about.
You have two directions you can choose, but you can also follow them all. I recommend investing in this order (after the basic damage increase): invest in all the monster type damage boosts (you will need them later on when resisting monsters are met), then follow with Range, Critical Hit chance increase and Rarer Monsters.
Getting all these will keep you busy for a long time and once you get here, you will get the chance to decide what direction to follow next.
Every now and then, there will be in-game tournaments taking place, rewarding you with goodies based on your performance. What matters the most to you is earning as many tournament points to invest in boosts.
In my opinion, the best ones to invest in are: Damage, Spell Duration, Attack Speed, Range, Critical Hit Chance.
Later on, you can spend Diamonds to unlock the second Tier – but don’t rush to do this unless you already have a lot of leftover points. Otherwise, invest them in the solid categories in Tier one, until the prices become too high.
Prioritize using your rarest monsters
When it comes to deciding which monsters are best in Idle Monster Tower Defense, there is one easy answer: the rarest ones!
So before anything else, always start by placing your rarest monsters on the field. For a long time, this strategy will be the only one that you will have to use.
Eventually, things will get a bit more complicated, when Shielded Enemies will appear (more on this below) and when you will have to consider the monster boosts – some monsters give fellow monsters damage boosts, for example, if they are in their proximity.
If you’re curious, check out a list of all the monsters in the game, as well as extra thoughts regarding the best monsters.
Dealing with Shielded Enemies
When Shielded enemies start popping up, your job of defeating the waves will become a bit more difficult and you will have to strategize a bit.
Start placing the monsters that you have which are not resisted against in key positions: those where they can attack the highest number of enemies and, if possible, within the effect range of fellow monsters that boost their stats.
Shielded monsters are not that difficult to destroy, as long as you take some time to think about the positions of your current troops on the field.
Remember: you can remove and replace monsters and doing so won’t reset the level they’re at before removing, making it a lot easier to mix and match and use the monsters you have based on the enemy types you’re facing.
Control the attack targets of your monsters
You can go even more in depth with the control over your Monsters’ behavior, by selecting who to target first and choosing a Skill Priority as well!
In order to get to these advanced controls, click a monster on the field then click the magnifying glass icon in the bottom menu, above the monster’s portrait. You will get to the menu that allows you to fine tune the monster’s behavior.
You can also instruct the monster to use their skill only against bosses – make sure you do so with those that are high damage for a single target.
Complete the daily missions
One of the best and easiest ways for you to gain a lot of diamonds each day is completing the daily missions.
The best way to play this game is to let it run in a tab in your browser and return to it every hour or so to buy some more upgrades, activate skills and such. You will progress really fast this way!
Don’t forget to bring in the Drones & Cargo
In the upper left corner, you have the option to call in, every now and then, a bunch of drones that give you some regular coins, the Cargo Carrier which has even more goodies and the Tech Ship which drops Tech Scrolls.
Don’t forget to call these in regularly, ideally during an easy stage, not a boss battle, so that you can focus on destroying these special enemies and grabbing the rewards.
When to Prestige?
No matter how good you are, you will have to reset and start over, aka Prestige. But when to Prestige in order to ensure the best gains?
The answer depends on the stage you’re currently at in the game. The more expensive new relics or relic upgrades are, the more prestige points you will need for the reset itself to make sense.
So always prestige when you get enough Prestige for at least one new Relic and a few upgrades on existing ones. The more, the better. Have in mind that you won’t really feel a 20% increase in damage if that’s the only Relic upgrade you buy!
However, prestigious not only gives you the chance to get new relics, but also earn Essence once again – this does take time, but you can use that as well for boosting your stats, like Spells, Research or Monsters. So have this in mind as well.
I personally prefer to Prestige after I beat at least 30-40 stages more than during the previous run. If getting past a new boss takes a lot of time, then this might be a sign that it’s time to Prestigeas well!
Useful tip for getting a massive head start daily
I keep the game running continuously on my computer throughout the day, but I stop playing over the night when I sleep (duh!) But here’s a thing that is extremely useful, one that will help you quickly get back on track after prestiging.
After a long break, you will have your daily rewards in the bottom left corner: if you press that button, you collect whatever gold, essence and Gems that you earned.
But the trick is NOT to collect those rewards! Instead, after your night’s sleep, Prestige first, and only after restarting get those rewards. This way, you will have a ton of resources immediately available, allowing you to quickly upgrade your monsters to a high level.
These would be the Idle Monster TD tips and tricks that we had to share today. Do you have additional suggestions to share, to help fellow players get better? Let us know by commenting below!