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Author Topic: [iOS] Heroes and Castles  (Read 2919 times)
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rittchard
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« on: January 17, 2013, 07:45:06 PM »

http://appshopper.com/games/heroes-and-castles

This has got to be one of the best original iOS games I've played in a long time.  It's kind of like a castle/tower defense game mixed with an ARPG.  Some similarities to Dungeon Defender but I'd say more immediately accessible and clearly developed for a touch interface. 

Essentially you choose one of three classes and defend your castle in waves through buying buildings and units a la TD, but jump into the fray in 3rd person combat.  Of course there are various upgrades you can make in between battles, to your character, your buildings and/or your units.   The action is fast and furious and can get a little overwhelming, but it's a blast and although a bit limited, the 3D environment is very impressive all things considered.

After you finish the campaign, I guess it unlocks an "Endless" mode and I think there is co-op play as well.

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« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2013, 08:32:57 PM »

It does look somewhat interesting.

http://youtu.be/W45fiG33h3M
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rittchard
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« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2013, 11:42:19 PM »

Surprised this isn't gaining much traction here, it seems to be doing really well on toucharcade and is steadily rising on the iTunes charts.

While it is kind of repetitive, it certainly becomes very challenging very quickly to create a build order that works for the scenario and with your class plus your style of play.  Balance could use some tweaking but overall it's a fantastic game and it looks like the devs will be supporting and enhancing it.
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« Reply #3 on: January 24, 2013, 01:15:55 AM »

Tried some co-op and it's a blast!  Co-op is essentially a 2-man survival mode.  You can either go in with a Game Center friend or choose to Auto Match.  For the latter, I wish there were some way you could communicate with your partner before you jump in so you could decide what to focus on and split duties up.  I had a great game where the other guy was knight and did a lot of taunting and summoning of units, and I had happened to bring a rune for cost reduction to buildings, so it just naturally worked out well by dumb luck.

It looks like they are working on a Versus mode and some form of Arena as well as adding new classes, etc.  This is looking like it will end up on my iOS game of the year short list.
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« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2013, 05:05:31 PM »

A very favorable review on Toucharcade.

http://toucharcade.com/2013/01/25/heroes-and-castles-review/

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« Reply #5 on: January 27, 2013, 10:06:16 PM »

Finally got this last night and played about a hour.  Lot's of fun and gets to be quite challenging after a few missions.  Can't just button mash to win as I soon found out.  I find myself playing more ios games than anything else lately.  They reward my impulsive gaming habits with their cheap price and quick to play style.  Anyhow, any gamer who likes ARPG and/or castle defense type games need to grab this.  It needs a little more fleshing out and variety but it seems like the Dev is still working on it and as always the price is cheap.
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rittchard
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« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2013, 01:46:15 AM »

Yeah I played a bunch during the weekend, really got its hooks into me.  For those of you who like "challenging" games, this one can be really tough and frustrating at times.  But what I like about it is that even though you can fail a particular mission 50 times, you will always gain at minimum some xp and hopefully some insight into a certain strategy.  I also recommend you play without using any IAP; I got some to support the developers and used it on some upgrades, which didn't unbalance anything but I think for the "pure" challenge I would have preferred no extra help.  Upgrades are only for units and city buildings, not directly for your character.

The game reminds me a lot of Diablo 2 in terms of the "gameflow" - not so much the details of the gameplay but the flow.  You start out with 1 of 3 (soon to be 5) classes, and when you level you get to specialize.  Here it's tough because each level you only get 2 points to spend, and that is for stats as well as skills/unlocks.  There are limited stats but they are each important in their own way.  Next you have to deal with "gear" - again it's vastly simplified with only one "rune" to equip but choosing the right one can be critical to your success in a given mission.  So even with a fairly simplistic system on paper, there's tons of customization/specialization.  Then once you enter a mission, you should go in with a baseline strategy, but be ready to adapt at any given moment.  Sometimes an extremely tough melee unit will just rip down your walls, other times a super far ranged unit will shoot your keep down at a distance.  You have to balance your own combat with summoning the right units or making the right choices in upgrades, and it can get frantic very quickly.  There are a few levels that are just horribly difficult (likely may be balanced down to be a bit easier) but you can beat them with a combination of strategy, persistence and if needed, levelling up.  If you get sick of one class, you can play the other classes for a while, which will help universally with upgrades.  Or you can take your guy into coop which seems the fastest way to level.  Beating the tough levels (19 and 20 in particular) is incredibly gratifying.

Overall a fantastic game that's perfect in small 5-10 minute spurts but can easily suck you in for much longer.  There are some balance issues, bugs and problems with coop (freezing and crashing primarily due to Game Center), but overall it's a really solid initial release.  Next update should bring bug fixes, 2 more classes, a Versus mode and a Siege mode. 

I'm rittchard on Game Center if you want to play some co-op.
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rittchard
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« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2013, 01:53:55 AM »

Oh wow the devs have already released the changelist for the update (submitted today)!

New skins, ranger and mage classes, lots of fixes, Good vs. Evil mode, Evil Siege mode!!

(sorry my copy paste is malfunctioning due to excel lol)
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« Reply #8 on: January 31, 2013, 12:46:19 AM »

Ritt, I sent a friend request on Game canter, definitely interested in Coop.  Great game people and very impressed with the continued development.
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« Reply #9 on: February 04, 2013, 04:36:59 PM »

The 2.0 patch is already out, great time to check the game out if you were on the fence.  Incredible bang for the buck with all the added modes and two new unlockable classes. 
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rittchard
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« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2013, 07:12:39 PM »

A little surprised at the tepid response for this game here, it's definitely one of the most addictive games I've played on any platform for a long time.  In spite of numerous other gaming choices this weekend, I found myself quickly drifting back to "just one more round" of H&C.  It's got that great combo of player skill, action, RPG, strategy and TD that keeps me wanting to play again and again.  

For me the Co-Op mode is the one I'm most into presently (most rewarding as well since you always gain xp and crystals, sometimes runes as well), but on the Toucharcade forums there's a big following for Vs. Mode (PvP) with the usual ranting and raving about balance and such.  One cool thing about co-op is the unpredictability depending on who you get matched with.  If you get some low level n00b the entire session depends on you.  If you get some high level super dude he can carry you and you just need to find a niche to help the best way possible.  I had my best game last night with a high level Paladin (using my mage) which to me is the perfect combo.  Mage works off of losing health to do damage while Pally regens health and buffs damage, so as a duo it's perfect.    

Anyway, if you like a challenge (but not TOO challenging), this is a fantastic game.  The engine is pretty darn impressive with the amount of stuff going on.  It's actually nice to die and pan the camera around to see the view from the other side; it really looks like a castle being sieged upon, and when there are giants fighting trolls and spell effects and arrows, explosions, etc - it's just really cool.  The 5 classes play differently enough that you should be able to find a style you like.  If sieging is more your style, you can play as the bad guys now and do that as well.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2013, 07:14:32 PM by rittchard » Logged
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« Reply #11 on: February 11, 2013, 10:11:40 PM »

I was basically waiting for it to drop to $.99.  The dollar seems lame, I agree, so I just got it a couple of days ago.  I only had a chance to play a little bit, but it was really cool.
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« Reply #12 on: February 11, 2013, 10:54:42 PM »

Quote from: rittchard on February 11, 2013, 07:12:39 PM

A little surprised at the tepid response for this game here, it's definitely one of the most addictive games I've played on any platform for a long time.  In spite of numerous other gaming choices this weekend, I found myself quickly drifting back to "just one more round" of H&C.  It's got that great combo of player skill, action, RPG, strategy and TD that keeps me wanting to play again and again.  

For me the Co-Op mode is the one I'm most into presently (most rewarding as well since you always gain xp and crystals, sometimes runes as well), but on the Toucharcade forums there's a big following for Vs. Mode (PvP) with the usual ranting and raving about balance and such.  One cool thing about co-op is the unpredictability depending on who you get matched with.  If you get some low level n00b the entire session depends on you.  If you get some high level super dude he can carry you and you just need to find a niche to help the best way possible.  I had my best game last night with a high level Paladin (using my mage) which to me is the perfect combo.  Mage works off of losing health to do damage while Pally regens health and buffs damage, so as a duo it's perfect.    

Anyway, if you like a challenge (but not TOO challenging), this is a fantastic game.  The engine is pretty darn impressive with the amount of stuff going on.  It's actually nice to die and pan the camera around to see the view from the other side; it really looks like a castle being sieged upon, and when there are giants fighting trolls and spell effects and arrows, explosions, etc - it's just really cool.  The 5 classes play differently enough that you should be able to find a style you like.  If sieging is more your style, you can play as the bad guys now and do that as well.

At the core, this is a tower defense game, right?  That sort of thing is completely lost on me.
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rittchard
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« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2013, 12:55:24 AM »

Quote from: Gratch on February 11, 2013, 10:54:42 PM

Quote from: rittchard on February 11, 2013, 07:12:39 PM

A little surprised at the tepid response for this game here, it's definitely one of the most addictive games I've played on any platform for a long time.  In spite of numerous other gaming choices this weekend, I found myself quickly drifting back to "just one more round" of H&C.  It's got that great combo of player skill, action, RPG, strategy and TD that keeps me wanting to play again and again.  

For me the Co-Op mode is the one I'm most into presently (most rewarding as well since you always gain xp and crystals, sometimes runes as well), but on the Toucharcade forums there's a big following for Vs. Mode (PvP) with the usual ranting and raving about balance and such.  One cool thing about co-op is the unpredictability depending on who you get matched with.  If you get some low level n00b the entire session depends on you.  If you get some high level super dude he can carry you and you just need to find a niche to help the best way possible.  I had my best game last night with a high level Paladin (using my mage) which to me is the perfect combo.  Mage works off of losing health to do damage while Pally regens health and buffs damage, so as a duo it's perfect.    

Anyway, if you like a challenge (but not TOO challenging), this is a fantastic game.  The engine is pretty darn impressive with the amount of stuff going on.  It's actually nice to die and pan the camera around to see the view from the other side; it really looks like a castle being sieged upon, and when there are giants fighting trolls and spell effects and arrows, explosions, etc - it's just really cool.  The 5 classes play differently enough that you should be able to find a style you like.  If sieging is more your style, you can play as the bad guys now and do that as well.

At the core, this is a tower defense game, right?  That sort of thing is completely lost on me.

It's a tower defense in the sense that it has the elements of you making choices (build walls, summon units, etc) to deter enemies from destroying your castle.  However the gameplay itself is all in 3rd person with a very action-oriented, simple interface that involves you fighting.  From a gaming "feel" point of view, it is very RPG-like.  Really the closest comparison I could make is Dungeon Defenders, but in this game you are much more involved in up close and personal combat as opposed to setting traps, etc.  OF course that statement is class dependent (for both games), but in general H&C is you fighting bad guys while protecting your castle from getting overrun.  It['s much more focused on you than a traditional tower defense game where generally you summon stuff and hope for the best you placed it in the rigkt spots.  Here you just make the choices and the rest is up to the AI in terms of units and castle upgrades. 
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« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2013, 05:15:41 PM »

Thanks Ritt.  Dungeon Defenders bored me within an hour, so I may pass on this one.
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« Reply #15 on: February 13, 2013, 11:38:33 PM »

This felt just like backyard monsters on facebook to me.  Not really my cup of tea
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rittchard
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« Reply #16 on: February 14, 2013, 01:03:41 AM »

Quote from: Harkonis on February 13, 2013, 11:38:33 PM

This felt just like backyard monsters on facebook to me.  Not really my cup of tea


Uhhhh seriously are we talking about the same game(s)?  Backyard monsters looks like a sim-city 2.5D builder game.  H&C is a 3D 3rd person action-RPG plus tower defense.  Whatever you're smoking, can I have some too lol?
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« Reply #17 on: February 16, 2013, 01:20:48 PM »

Quote from: rittchard on February 14, 2013, 01:03:41 AM

Quote from: Harkonis on February 13, 2013, 11:38:33 PM

This felt just like backyard monsters on facebook to me.  Not really my cup of tea


Uhhhh seriously are we talking about the same game(s)?  Backyard monsters looks like a sim-city 2.5D builder game.  H&C is a 3D 3rd person action-RPG plus tower defense.  Whatever you're smoking, can I have some too lol?

Yea, I don't get that one either.  It's a more intimate Dungeon Defenders without the loot pinatas but with more rpgishness.  The last free 'patch' more than doubled the content.  There is a whole lotta game for little money here.  I played for a good 2 hours last night before my phone died.
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« Reply #18 on: February 16, 2013, 11:12:26 PM »

This looks fantastic.  I'll be picking up an iPad next weekend and this is definitely on my list of games to get first.  Thanks for the heads up.
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« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2013, 07:26:02 PM »

Yet another update came out this weekend with some stability fixes and a new class, the Clockwork Defender.  At first glance he seemed kind of redundant in terms of being a tanky melee dude, but as you level up it's definitely a new style of play.  His core strength is in increasingly powerful buffs to himself, both in giving and receiving damage.  He also has a unique passive that gives him defensive boosts and knock-over capability while running.  It eventually dawned on me I should strap on a +10 run rune and just go all out.  Basically as soon as the close-in portion is reasonable, I make outside runs to knock bad guys over and take out ranged attackers, it's very effective. 

This game is just incredible for the amount of gameplay it offers.  Every class plays differently and requires different strategies and skills to do well in, and in spite of identical maps, the co-op experience also changes drastically depending on what 2 classes/levels are playing together, what runes they have available, and how skillful each player is.

Even better, they've announced yet another major update with 3 more classes.  Can't wait!
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« Reply #20 on: March 05, 2013, 07:38:47 PM »

Just picked this up based on your recommendation. I generally don't like twitch IOS games because I'm not fast enough on the small screen, but the action is not terribly frantic.

Any hints or tips for starting. Must have skills? How many goldmines to build? Etc.
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« Reply #21 on: March 06, 2013, 10:37:52 PM »

Quote from: Jag on March 05, 2013, 07:38:47 PM

Just picked this up based on your recommendation. I generally don't like twitch IOS games because I'm not fast enough on the small screen, but the action is not terribly frantic.

Any hints or tips for starting. Must have skills? How many goldmines to build? Etc.

Tough question, depends on which class you've chosen, what runes you might have, which scenario you are playing, and how good your twitch/aim skills are.  Some of the classes are better at relying on units, others on mortar/ballista, others are more geared to just go out and solo everything.  Having the right runes can really change up your strategy as well.  +10 run on a Clockwork really changes the way you play him.  If you can land +2 gold income a lot of things open up to you quickly.  Personally I had a lot of luck using a +100 health +100 starting gold.  The beginning gold advantage was just a huge jump.

Very generally when you first start you don't have a lot of options.  Armor you want to get to 10 one way or another as once you hit 10 you can't be knocked down.  Gold mines you want a minimum of 2 to get +3, but really you want +4 or +5.  Fully upgraded walls asap, and generally you want to get to at least the second upgrade fairly quickly.  My first run through with the game I was playing Paladin and had limited runes, so I generally relied on peons and pikemen.  As the game moves on, peons become less and less useful, and pikemen eventually aren't great either.  Many maps I've been relying on giants but you don't get access to those until fairly later in the campaign.

A rule of thumb that you'll need to keep in mind is that at some point (I think starting around scenario 4) you will need to venture into the back half of the map and take stuff out yourself.  The sooner you get yourself mentally prepared for this the better.  There are annoying archers and bomber types that will take your mines out in 1 hit and wreak havoc on your keep.  Pikemen can eventually roam out that far and hunt them down but that presumes you've totally controlled the front portion of the map.

In Co-Op/Endless, the general pattern is a couple mines, walls, wall units and ballista/mortar, forge, dwarven hut...  I still like giants but they don't last nearly as long as they do in the campaign.  I've seen some people load up a full line of blunderbuss to protect the entrance, but you really need good wall support for this to work well.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2013, 10:42:00 PM by rittchard » Logged
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« Reply #22 on: May 13, 2013, 09:16:11 PM »

Awesome 3.0 Update just released with 3 new heroes, new units, a 2nd campaign, more upgrades, etc.  An awesome game just got that much more awesome!!!

Also a little while back they released a free version if you were wavering because of the $1.99 pricetag.  But seriously for all the content and replay value this game is worth at least $20-30 if not more.
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