What is Has-Been Heroes?
Has-Been Heroes is a Nintendo eShop game released on March 28th 2017 in the US by Frozenbyte for the Nintendo Switch, PS4, Xbox One, and PC. Has-Been Heroes is a lane-based roguelike game of strategy and action. It features a band of heroes that are on a quest to take the King’s twin princesses to school.
The story sounds silly, but like all other roguelike games, the story isn’t the focus. The focus is the trial and error form of gameplay. The massive amount of randomness of items and spells, and unlock able heroes allow a fresh play style on each new game.
What is the gameplay like?
We played the Nintendo Switch copy and the experience is very enjoyable. You control the band of heroes by switching lanes to repel enemy attackers. As enemies move down the lanes you pick which hero you want to control using the X, B, and Y buttons, then attacking with button A. The strategy or puzzle like gameplay occurs with the involvement of stamina, health, and strikes. Each hero has a limited number of each of these. So for example: the starting wizard has 2 strikes, light health, and 1 stamina. Stamina is treated kind of like armor. When he gets hit once, his health is exposed. He can also strike enemies twice. That is where the fun begins.
With approaching enemies the strategy is to strike them a number of times that matches their stamina. If you do match it, they are stunned and their health is exposed, but if you go over, they are knocked back and regain all their stamina. It sounds easy, but when hordes of enemies are flowing towards you, it gets stressful fast.
The strategy is best explained by example. Let’s say an enemy is coming toward you in the warriors middle lane with 3 stamina. Well he can only strike once, so you can strike with the warrior, pause the game, switch the wizard to the middle lane and strike twice. The enemy is now stunned. We can then pause the game and switch in the rogue character and she can strike 3 times.
If you do catch yourself without the ability to strike evenly, you can always cast a spell.
What is the point of items/spells?
Each hero has a spell to cast. The rogue has a spell that will double the amount of strikes a hero has for one attack, the wizard can cast a freeze spell to stop an enemy in their tracks for 7 seconds when attacked, and the warrior can cast a fireball that burns all surroundings. Additional items and spells are found throughout the journey of the game to help buff your heroes in unique and creative ways.
I think this game is a very unique game. You can take it as fast or as slow as you would like. There isn’t a ton to it, but what it does have it achieves it perfectly. I think for guys or girls, either one can enjoy the game for what it is. Has-Been Heroes is very replayable. For example, you start it up and it has a small tutorial and then throws you into the game. You then achieve victory by basically dying and retrying. You learn every time you hit that new game button. The game is actually quite difficult, but not so much to where you are scared to pick it up.
- Great Controls
- Fantastic Art
- Learning curve
- Can be quite difficult at times
His score: 7/10