Hero Academy Review (iPhone)
For anyone looking to play a decent strategy game on iPhone (or iPad), look no further. Hero Academy has clinched the top spot in the strategy category and I can assure you it is merited. And the best part; its free to play.
I like to think of Hero Academy as a very small and simplified version of Warhammer. Two players face off over a grid based board and vie for dominion in turn based fantasy combat by either destroying the opponent’s crystal or defeating their team.
Each turn consists of five actions; summon in a new team member, move, attack, heal, cast a spell, or equip. But the best feature of the entire game: all actions are undoable until you hit the submit button. I have spent hours replaying turns. Okay maybe not hours, but minutes have been known to go by before I find the best solution.
The Council, which is what they call the human team, comes bundled with the free game. The three other teams currently available, Dark Elves, Dwarves, and Orcs, are purchasable. Each team comes with its own set of heroes, spells, equipment, and bonuses, which makes each team’s strategy very different.
The teams play somewhat like a magic deck. The Council contains a total of 26 ‘cards’; this includes heroes, equipment, and spells. A random selection of six is revealed at the beginning of the game and any ‘cards’ that are used during that turn are replaced after the player hits submit.
Though I understand that having teams/decks be preset and unalterable is much easier for balance, I still feel this lack of customization is the game’s weakest point. The randomness of the draw pile helps, but it doesn’t solve that each team becomes rather railroaded into a certain type of strategy.
As of patch 1.2.3, single player challenges have been added. This is an incredible addition and makes the free game even more of a deal. Before this, the game was limited to Player vs Player matches only.
Each of the teams has their own set of challenges. This makes for a great introduction, as many of the team’s strengths are highlighted. It should be noted that they are not tutorials. Basic knowledge of the game is needed, so don’t start on the challenges if you are new, go for the tutorials first.
Release date: January 11, 2012
Genre: Turn Based Strategy
Played: 10+ games played
The new single player challenges are a really interesting insight into all the teams, but I was done with them almost before I know it. Brief but fun foray into single player puzzles. I haven’t been very interested in buying more of the teams, but would be quite interested in a larger set of the single player challenges.