A Hero We Can All Believe In
As a gamer, I have simple tastes. I like my games to be straight forward, easy to pick up, and above all else, fun. That’s why I thoroughly enjoyed Raydem Inc’s action, run and gunner, Robot Hero. The game lacks a plot and any sense of story, and gameplay is a little unoriginal, but that doesn’t stop Robot Hero from being an exhilarating and challenging game..
Easy To Play, Hard To Beat
Robot Hero stars a nameless blue robot that sort of looks like a cross between Mega Man and Ultraman. For the sake of convenience, I’ll just call them Robot Hero. Players guide Robot Hero through various rooms filled with enemies and different obstacles. Gameplay is very simple. Use the cursor to control Robot Hero’s movement. They’ll automatically lock on to a target and begin shooting arrows when they’re standing still. The fact thatplayers can’t run and shoot at the same time is what makes Robot Hero so challenging. Some rooms are filled to the brim with enemies, so players are forced to constantly be on the move until they can find some breathing room and begin to open fire. Players only get one additional respawn once per run, so it’s best to be wise about when you begin to shoot.
Rooms are randomly generated with new enemies and obstacles, so players will rarely feel like they’ve been somewhere before. Enemies vary from short to long range attackers. Short range attackers will try to chase Robot Hero and do direct damage, while long range attackers have a plethora of shot-types from snipers to explosives, each with different patterns of attack. After every ten rooms, players face a boss, which is just a larger version of one of the regular enemies. Boss fights can be challenging, but some are rather easy and simply serve as a break in monotonous waves of enemies. Once players reach the 50th room, they’ve beaten the world and unlock the next world of stages.
Let Me Upgrade Ya
The best part of Robot Hero is trying out all of the various power ups available in the game. When Robot Hero clears a room, all of the enemies drop gold, which serves as both in-game currency and experience to help Robot Hero level up. With each level, players choose between three randomly generated power ups that offer a unique buff. Some power ups allow Robot Hero to shoot additional arrows at a time, some will give the arrows an elemental property to do extra damage and some will cause enemies to blow up upon defeat, damaging other enemies around them. Figuring out the best possible combination as well as which power ups compliment a given enemy or situation was my favorite part of the game. Unfortunately, power ups aren’t permanent and don’t carry over after a player dies, so enjoy them while they last.
As an in-game currency, gold can be used to add upgrades to Robot Hero. These upgrades boost Robot Hero’s base stats and help make it easier to clear stages. Players spend their gold and a random part of Robot Hero’s body is selected and upgraded. The cost of an upgrade raises with each purchase, which does present some grinding for players. The other form of in-game currency is crystals. Crystals are used to open chests, which contain equipment for Robot Hero. Equipment includes blasters, breast plates and helmets that can boost Robot Hero’s stats. Crystals can be found gradually throughout the game, or players can just pay money to acquire them at the in-game store. I have to tip my hat to Raydem for making crystals easily accessible to players without paying because Robot Hero would be impossible to beat otherwise.
Lacking In Creativity
For as much as I enjoyed this game, it all felt unoriginal. That’s not to say this isn’t a fun game, it’s just one I’ve basically played before. And that’s my biggest issue with Robot Hero, everything just feels a little bit generic. From the stages to the enemy designs, nothing feels all that original or unique. Even the game’s main character looks like two other famous action characters, combined together.
Robot Hero’s gameplay and upgrade system are very enjoyable, but there’s little else that stands out. The game’s carton graphics are fine, but they’re nothing worth writing home about. The stages randomize, but the finite number of enemies and obstacles can feel repetitive. Certain elements change as new worlds are unlocked, but a lot remains the same. The areas and enemies look different, but it all feels very similar to the previous world. While the difficult ramps up in later worlds, it isn’t enough to make later worlds feel different. If there were one other positive to Robot Hero, it would be the limited commercial interruptions. Ads appear rarely and players are never forced to watch them. Players have the option of watching a commercial when they wish to respawn after a death, or receive bonus gold, crystals, or an additional power up after defeating a boss.
While it may lack originality, Robot Hero is a perfect game for casual gamers with its easy controls and replay ability. The game’s lack of plot or the cartoonish graphics will turn off some hardcore gamers, but Robot Hero is more than challenging enough to keep even then best gamers on the edge of their seat.
Is It Hardcore?
With its simple controls and fun, fast-paced gameplay, Robot Hero is the ideal game for casual gamers. While the lack of story and overall unoriginality may turn off some, Robot Hero’s exhilarating action and difficulty should be enough to entertain even the most hardcore gamers.