Has-Been Heroes (PS4, Switch, Xbox One, PC)

In a fantasy kingdom, legendary heroes have saved the land multiple times.  But time has passed and the heroes have gotten old.  However, the king of the land has one more quest for the remaining heroes: take the king’s daughters to school.  Guide the last two heroes and an accompanying enthusiastic rogue as you escort the king’s daughters and fight evil along the way in this action-strategy roguelike.  It’s available to download for nearly all current game consoles and PC, but reviewed on PS4 here.

You view the action similar to an old school 2-D RPG, with your heroes on the left side and the enemies on the right.  The baddies will creep up on you in three rows, corresponding to the three heroes in your party.  If the enemies reach one of your heroes and take down all their hit points, it’s Game Over.  Press one of three buttons corresponding to each row to have a hero attack.  You can also switch rows, which you’ll have to do a lot since monsters like to block and it may take multiple hits to stun them and whittle down hit points.  Then you must wait for a meter to fill up so you can attack again.

On the bottom of the screen you can cast magic spells to give you a boost in battle.  There is also a randomly generated map that you will travel with, but you can’t go backwards or you’ll run out of candles and die, supposedly.  Sometimes you may run into merchants and other characters you can buy items and keys from.  If you die, you’ll go to Heaven and if you defeated enough monsters and collected enough souls, you may get treasures to use on your next run.  You can unlock many more heroes to play as, too.

The game has a few problems.  I found the text too small to read, and the button assignments for some of the tasks didn’t feel intuitive to me.  Plus the learning curve in this game is extremely high.  You can do a tutorial to explain the basics, but they pretty much throw you to the wolves once you start playing.  If you enjoy challenging roguelikes where you have to keep track of a million things at once, you may enjoy this one.  Me personally, I just couldn’t get the hang of it.

Kid Factor:

Has-Been Heroes is rated E-10 with ESRB descriptors of Fantasy Violence, Mild Blood, and Mild Language.  You do hit all sorts of cartoony monsters with weapons and spells, but they just fall back and disappear into a cloud of smoke when defeated.  I didn’t really come across too much blood or bad language in the game at all.  But reading skill is needed, and because of the high difficulty level, this game would be best enjoyed by older kids and up.

One Response to “Has-Been Heroes (PS4, Switch, Xbox One, PC)”

  1. The rows make me think of that game Might and Magic: Clash of Heroes on 3DS.

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