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About the Story"A most traditional CRPG experience." [--blurb from Competition Aught-One]
Nominee, Best Setting; Nominee, Best Use of Medium - 2001 XYZZY Awards
-- Carl Muckenhoupt
>VERBOSE -- Paul O'Brian's Interactive Fiction Page
The intersection of landscape and character in IF is a highly fertile one, and Heroes reaps a great harvest from it... [T]he game's gimmick is this: set up a fairly simple landscape and a basic goal, then allow the player a choice of five viewpoint characters, each of which share the landscape and goal...
I can't say enough about how much I loved this. Because the characters are each limited to their own viewpoints, but we are able to see them all, the game gives us a far more complete and interesting picture of the area than any single viewpoint could provide. In addition, because we have seen the area through other eyes, we gain insight into the viewpoint character by noticing what that character does and doesn't observe. Where the adventurer simply notices what ways are open for travel, the enchanter observes how those avenues impinge on a geometrically-oriented magic system; where the enchanter notices only the direction of the walls' lines, the thief notices the lack of handholds and windows. Some games have begun to explore this dynamic -- Wishbringer and LASH displayed the changes of a landscape and the shifting meanings attendant to that change, while Being Andrew Plotkin gave us a variety of characters whose reactions to a particular area conflicted, to wonderful comic effect. Heroes takes the next step, opening up an endlessly fascinating vista.
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It's a good game, but one that over-reaches -- if it wouldn't have tried to make the player go through all five possibilities, but instead just offered them as alternates, it would have worked much better. And I'd advise anyone who tries it to take it that way -- play the game in your one or two favorite flavors, ignoring the rest. That way, you'll be playing a solid, enjoyable game, that someone worked extra-hard on to provide additional paths to, but you don't need to work extra hard just to see them.
-- Eytan Zweig
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Technically and artistically, Heroes succeeds admirably; the few bugs in the competition release appear to have been cleaned up, and the POV-shift is nicely done. The game does commit some design sins, but I appreciated the artistry of the multiple perspectives and the layered plot sufficiently that I gave it an 8 in this year’s competition.
-- Duncan Stevens
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The big picture in Heroes is a complex one and probably won't be easily inferred by many except the most perceptive. The weaving of the story is not direct or blatant. Instead, interesting facts and tidbits are sprinkled throughout each character's prologue and epilogue; the interactions they have with other NPCs; and the various scenery, room, and object descriptions that change with each new player viewpoint.
-- Francesco Bova
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Number of Reviews: 1
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There is the adventurer, who plays as a Zork-type PC, gathering items and chatting with guards; the thief, who remains hidden and has special tools; the wizard, who can use spells; and the royal, who can command everyone and has an entourage. The dragon does, you know, dragon things.
The game is hard, but you can switch between characters at any time, and one character can see things that will help another.
Location and object descriptions are different with each character, giving the game a really varied feel.
By far, this game is the closest to a straight-up D&D type setting, which I love.
If you enjoyed Heroes...
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Recommended ListsHeroes appears in the following Recommended Lists:
Best fantasy games by MathBrush
These are my favorite games that include some sort of magical or fantastical element. Games with mostly horror or sci-fi elements are on other lists, as are surreal games, fairy tale/nursery games, and religious/mythological games. I've...
PollsThe following polls include votes for Heroes:
Unreliable narrators by verityvirtue
I'm interested in games which hinge on the 'unreliable narrator', from amnesia to a plain distorted worldview. The more this distortion affects the storyline, the better.
PC's personality integrated with the story by JasonMel
I would like to be able to recommend to someone many examples of interactive fiction in which the player character is far from a cipher or an everyman or everywoman, but is instead a character with a definite personality within a game...
This is version 5 of this page, edited by Edward Lacey on 12 May 2013 at 7:46am. - View Update History - Edit This Page - Add a News Item