Developed By: Heliocentric Studios Published By: Team17 Categories: Adventure, RPG, Roguelike Release Date: 02.23.19
What do you get when you take a classic 2D Legend of Zelda game, mix roguelike type dungeons, add some pretty indepth RPG elements. You get Rogue Heroes: Ruins of Tasos, a game that puts you on a quest to defeat four titans that were sealed away, but are slowly growing stronger in power and have unleashed monsters upon the world.
Upon first look, you’re playing something reminiscent of an older Legend of Zelda game. You visit towns, you have your sword and soon shield, and you go into a big overworld full of monsters, and you need to go into dungeons to proceed. Attacking, blocking, and other tasks use stamina. Certain weapons use ammo, but others use magic, much reminding me of how A Link Between Worlds handled weapons. With the main town, it’s rather bare at first. There’s no buildings, no people living there, no business. You’re tasked to build the town up. You’re not going to do this with gold that you find in the overworld though. You’re going to need gems, which can be found in the dungeons.
While every dungeon has a set place in the overworld, the insides are all randomized. Throughout the three floors to each dungeon, the way the rooms are all put together are random. If you die a lot, you’re going to probably see a new first room to each dungeon every time. Eventually you will start seeing repeat rooms, but they’re never in the same place. Defeating enemies, destroying the pots and plants around you, and opening chests will all grant you the gems I mentioned earlier. Keep a keen eye in the dungeons as traps are everywhere, and if you’re not paying attention to a switch on the floor, you’re going to be in either a world of hurt, or on the rare chance, vast riches. You’ll find glass weapons randomly in the dungeons, which are temporary versions of the weapons you can either buy or acquire after finishing a dungeon, for use only in the dungeon they’re in. After finishing a floor of a dungeon, you can pay a fee of gems to make a permanent shortcut to the upcoming floor, but you might want to save the gems for something else.
You’re going to die in the dungeons, a lot in fact. Don’t worry about it though, as you never lose the gems you’ll earn in the dungeons upon death. It’s time to use them to build the town up. Homes, places of business to upgrade your strength, stamina, health and magic. A place to upgrade your weapons. A bar, a farm, a fishing hole, a witch’s shack to brew potions. Don’t feel the need to get everything built up right away, it’s a bit pricy and it won’t be the only use of gems. After you build say…the blacksmith, you can upgrade your sword, but that’s going to cost gems as well, a lot of them. I’d personally recommend upgrading your health and strength as soon as possible as enemies as soon as the second or third floor of the first dungeon can and will hit hard and take a lot of damage. This might mean a decent bit of grinding, but the randomized dungeons kept it from getting boring.
Rogue Heroes also employs a class system. Don’t like the default one, then just change your class, which changes your stats and special move. I opted to use the Thief class, which had much better stats than the default class, and replaced a stabbing dash with a sleath like evasion. Getting these classes, also cost gems, but it’s definitely worth the time and gems.
It’s a colorful, cute artstyle. It’s fitting for the style of game. I wasn’t the biggest fan initially of the character sprites, but I grew to like them after a while. It all in all reminds me of what I’d see from what we’d get from a Legend of Zelda clone on a GBA or DS. This is a good thing. Music was catchy, with my favorite song playing when you jump inside of a big friendly frog that lets you traverse over mud that would otherwise pull you under.
Rogue Heroes is fun by itself, but it also has online and offline co-op. That heightens a game I had trouble putting down, to one I begged my friends to play with me. And since everyone if they want can be a different class, everyone could play their own way together and it wouldn’t just be a set of identical sprites everywhere.
I loved Rogue Heroes. Recently, games that seem to be inspired by Legend of Zelda seem to miss what made those games good, or are just clones of Breath of the Wild. It’s refreshing as a fan of those classic, more traditional titles in the series. I love that I can play this with friends online and that every time we play a dungeon, it’s random, even if we can remember how some rooms work. I can without a doubt recommend this game.