Hero of Sparta, a Gameloft creation ranks among the best iPhone apps available on the App store and for all the right reasons. The game has some amazing graphics and concepts that are fairly new to the world of iPhone gaming.
This game has been around for some time but I just downloaded it and liked it so much that I wanted to share it with you folks. Worth mentioning is that this game is available at a discounted price of $.99, which is $9 less compared to its actual price and according to me is a steal.
Objective of the game:
Well, this is a character playing game and the concept is close to the famous PlayStation game, God of War. If you are a God of War fan (I am) then it's another reason to own this game.
You are King Argos, a Spartan warrior who finds himself washed ashore with his entire crew either missing or dead. Your objective is to travel across different mythical worlds, killing the legions of enemy creatures and thus creating your own legend by completing various quests.
Game Play & Features:
The game play, as you would have guessed, is based on the hack-n-slash concept. Readers who have played God of War will quickly be able to relate to the game play.
1. Life-bar: This is the green coloured bar at the top left of the game screen. As it is in every game, this decides how long you can survive. You are out of action the moment this bar goes empty. Each enemy hit that you take reduces your life based on the enemy's attack level. Thus, the longer the life-bar, the better are your chances of survival.
- Life Crystals: With each quest that you undertake, you will also find some 'crystals'. Collect 5 of them and you get to increase your life-bar.
- Fountain of Life: You also get a life replenishing fountain (world of warcraft fame), which brings back your life-bar to full. This comes in handy when you are short on life and surrounded by enemies.
2. Energy Bar: This is the blue bar right below the life-bar. It works similar to the way 'mana' works in WOW. You need this to carry out your special moves. Your energy bar replenishes itself slowly with the passage of time.
- Energy Crystals: With each quest that you undertake, you will also find some 'crystals'. Collect 5 of them and you get the increase your energy-bar.
- Enemy Kill: Each enemy that you kill adds to your enerygy bar in the form of red-orbs (God of War).
- Special Attacks: The energy bar can also be used to deliver special attacks that cause more damage to the surrounding enemies. Ex: Activating your ascesion power by dragging the skull symbol on your shield.
3. Pause or Go Home button: This icon resembles the pantheon and is located right below the Energy bar. You can tap this in the middle of the game to either go back to your inventory to upgrade or to just pause the game for a short while.
4. Shield button: This option, as the name suggests is meant to protect you. To block the enemy attack, simply, press the shield icon. But as the game progresses, it also turns in to a lethal weapon.
Upgrades: You can upgrade your shield power by spending the red orbs. This adds to the power of the shield and makes it more effective.
5. Attack button: This is your primary weapon of attack. You start with a sword and as the game progresses, you can upgrade as well as acquire various new weapons. There is a range of weapons available and each one gets used based on the situation in hand. Ex: The bow and arrow is used to kill enemies at a distance etc
- Combo Attacks: This allows you to deliver more lethal blows by tapping a combination of different options. Ex: By tapping your primary weapon symbol three times in a row, the hero does a combo move that does more damage than a single tap on the weapon.
A list of combo attacks can be found in the Help section of the game. I have listed a few below:
– Attack + Attack hold = earth bomb
– Attack hold = slash spin
– Hold direction + Tap sheild button = dropkick
– Tap Attack then tap shield = Shield smack
– Attack, Attack, Attack hold (hold until he stops moving) = smashes the ground and knocks over everything within range.
- Upgrade: You can upgrade your primary weapon and increase its attacking powers by spending the red orbs.
- Acquire New Weapons: You also acquire new weapons in the game and swap them with your primary weapon of attack.
6. Movement: This is a truly remarkable feature of this game. It offers you a virtual joystick, displayed at the bottom-left of the game screen. The control is easy to master and works by just pressing the joystick symbol and moving your fingers to the direction where you want the hero to go.
An arrow at the top of the screen indicates the drection in which you are supposed to move.
- Jump: You just have to move the joystick forward and the character automatically jumps between cliffs and broken bridges.
- Climb: An upward arrow automatically appears right above the 'Primary Weapon' symbol. The hero will climb up or down if you just press this arrow icon.
In my opinion, this game gives an incredibly simple user interface for the movement of the character, which combines, walking, running, jumping and climbing successfully.
7. Special Finishing Move: When closer to certain powerful enemies, you will be able to perform a Focus Kill. With certain ememies you will see circular symbols that appear around that enemy unit. These symbols appear one after the other and at random positions. If you succeed at tapping them as and when they appear then you are said to have performed a Focus Kill. You will get to see a nice little visual of the Kill as well.
You also get more orbs by doing a Focus Kill compared to doing the regular hack-n-slash kill.
8. Videos and Music: I liked the video as well as the game play music in the game. The in-game videos are a good add-on and helps build up the story.
9. One noticeable thing is the speed with which the game loads. I found this much faster compared to some other graphic intensive games.
Tips to play the game:
Honestly, I don't have any great tips at the moment as I just downloaded the game. But I will share a few:
1. Watch out for the 'bigger enemies' and finish them first as they do you maximum damage.
2. Go for the Focus Kill: Be quick to tap the round golden-green coloured skull symbols that appear around your enemies. This will help you quickly get rid of the bigger enemies. I have noticed that while you are in the middle of a Focus Kill, the minions don't attack you untill you are finished.
3. When surrounded by enemies, use your special powers. (ex: drag your shield when you see a skull symbol on it).
4. You can go back to play previous Chapters and gain more orbs by killing the enemy soldiers all over again.
Please do share if you have any tips that could be of help!
I think its one of the best game that I have played on the iPhone but it I have observed some minor issues:
- The in-game graphics are heavy but at times, patchy. I am guessing the game would perform a lot better on iPhone 3GS.
- The game crashed few times when I was in the middle of a Boss-fight which can get frustrating.
Overall, it is an amazing game and great addition to the world of iPhone gaming. The comparisons to God Of War are meant as a compliment.
I think it is an intelligent game and not just a simple press-attack-and-win game. I love the game and I hope that at a discounted price of $0.99, you will love it too!
You can purchase Hero of Sparta from the App Store using this direct iTunes link.
As always, let us know your feedback about the game and if you have any tips in the comment section below.