Dubbed by its developers as a mix of Diablo and The Binding of Isaac, Hero Siege [$2.99] is a dual-stick shooter that immediately has big shoes to fill. With a simplified combat system combined with a load of randomization systems, Hero Siege may pick up some aspects from those titles in terms of theory, but not so much in terms of implementation. Still, while the action-RPG hybrid may not live up to the games that it’s inspired by, Hero Siege is still an enjoyable romp through a 16-bit styled randomized world with plenty of enemies to dispatch.

As an action-RPG with dual-stick controls, Hero Siege has your hero taking on a set wave of enemies before a boss which allows you to move on to the next arena map. In addition to taking on throngs of baddies, players can also explore secondary dungeons that include simplistic puzzles and platforming elements in addition to enemies. Players can earn gold to purchase in-game temporary power-ups and randomized potions can be found and quaffed that can do a wide variety of effects (both permanent and temporary). Despite all these nuances, combat is the name of the game, and Hero Siege is, at its core, a simple action-packed dual stick shooter.

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While the combat system is pretty simplistic, there are a few things I really like about Hero Siege that make it a little more than a mindless dual-stick shooter. For starters, the game features a decent progression system for each character with a leveling system, stat upgrades and class-unique traits that persist beyond individual runs. In addition, a large collection of artifacts (that bestow assistance only for that run) as well as a decent randomization system meant that every game I fired up had some differences. I wouldn’t go so far as to call it as robust as Diablo (as the developers have made no qualms stating), but it’s certainly a welcome addition.

I’m also a big fan of the game’s visual system. With a style emulating the 16-bit games of old, Hero Siege ups the ante with loads of explosions, projectiles, and enemies on screen at the same time. Sure, the this sort graphical theme has been done before, but I think Hero Siege nails it pretty well. There were a few annoying occasions where there were so many explosions on screen that it would mask traps and enemies, but it wasn’t a game breaker.

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A more significant issue with Hero Siege is the simple fact that combat has a tendency to become monotonous. Despite the traits, artifacts, puzzles and loads of different enemies, playing Hero Siege inevitably devolves into moving away from the throngs of enemy waves while launching projectiles (good luck if you want to play as the close-quarter combat Viking) to take them out. There’s very little strategy in actually  taking on enemies and bosses, and the stat customizability is too limited to really adjust to a player’s style. That’s not to say that it isn’t fun, but it there’s tons of potential for Hero Siege to be more than what it is.

This is particularly true with the game’s current presentation issues. There’s little in terms of story and stat tutorials and, more importantly, Hero Siege currently lacks a ‘save state’ feature. I also encountered a few bugs indicative of a game still in development. Still, developer Panic Art Studios has been active in our forums and have already quashed the more significant issues. Another bright spot is the game’s IAP system, which is completely optional and mainly focused on appearance options that don’t really impact gameplay.

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Hero Siege may be a bit rough around the edges, but it’s still a fun dual-stick shooter with plenty of RPG elements that give it more meat than your typical action game. Even with the concerns regarding the combat system, I think there’s still enough longevity in its RPG and Item systems to be worth an investment in both time and money. If you’re in the market for a new dual-stick shooter, definitely give Hero Siege a try.

TouchArcade Rating

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  • dmkeks1

    Save state is implemented :)

  • oneironaut

    This just makes me wish I could play the binding of isaac on my phone.

  • PSquared

    While I don't agree with the reviewer he does make a number of valid points. Unfortunately when he posted the review some of his gripes, such as not having a save state, are inaccurate. It shows his knowledge of the game he is reviewing is a bit lacking, or outdated, so definitely take the review with more of a grain of salt then normal.

  • Ramaz1234

    Just bought the game and for sure better than a 3.5 rating ;-; more like 4 or 4.5. It's better than Heroes of loot which got 4.5.

  • dja1ien

    It's unfortunate that the uniqueness of this roguelike / dual-stick mashup didn't garner more stars. Perhaps the reviewer was expecting more "RPG" than roguelike, but this really falls in line with the character progression in the rogue genre and the randomness imbued in all the systems in the game really do a great job of keeping the dual-stick action fresh.

    I would say if you like both roguelikes and dual stick shooters, you have to try this. It's incredibly addictive!

    • http://rekzkarz.com/ REkzkaRZ

      Does the addictivie part include 'fun'?
      I like your comment, but somehwat unsure that 'addictive' is what I want in a game as much as 'a really fun game'.

      • dja1ien

        "Fun" really depends on how much you enjoy dual stick arena shooters and roguelikes. If one or the other is a turnoff for you, you're probably not going to enjoy this much. If you like both genres, this is a great mashup! Allows for immediate pick up and play, fast character building during individual sessions, and long-term building so you can get further each time.

  • Buzzit

    Is nothing substantially wrong with this game - certainly worthy of 4 stars on its current evolution - knowing that the developer cares about this product and listens to the customers - I expect it will continue to improve for some iterations - job well done so far

  • anabolicMike

    I bought it on tablet and ios. I dig this game for some reason. It's tons of fun. I bought heroes of Loot and it didn't really scratch the itch. Seemed like you grab tons of stuff for nothing. This one just was better. Those relics are sweet!

    • dja1ien

      +1 to this! I feel the exact same way about heroes of loot versus this game.

  • Durduhdur

    This review said there is no strategy in fighting bosses? And it becomes monotonous? The gameplay "devolves". Uh....what!? If there was no strategy to fighting bosses then you could easily stand in one place dodge a few projectiles and be done with it. That is not the case with this game. You never know what random ability the boss will have so you need to pay attention to what's going on and adjust your 'strategy' accordingly. Furthermore, what did this reviewer think the gameplay would be like in a wave based dual stick game, other than avoiding "throngs of enemies while firing projectiles". Ridiculous review.

  • somedumbgamer

    Good game that could be better by simply adding diagonal shooting

  • tehvar

    Not sure if the developer is reading this forum or not... But just found a relic I am sure is going to piss a lot of people off. The hat that shoots out pie signs. The description read "Autism up!" Guaranteed this is going to start some serious ish against you. I know it was meant as a joke, but really low brow jabs at the special needs community doesn't go to lightly in video games. Might want to remove that description, just saying.

  • toolbag2009

    I don't understand why Heroes of Loot is getting better reviews than this. Hero Siege is much better!!

Hero Siege Reviewed by Eric Ford on . Rating: 3.5