Star Wars is filled with exciting events throughout the films, from the assault on the first Death Star, to the Battle of Hoth, and onwards to the final conflict with the Empire, the Battle of Endor. With great moments such as these fans wanted to experience these epic battles and game developers answered the call: we were given Rogue Squadron, Star Wars Battlefront, and perhaps one of the most treasured of all Star Wars Trilogy Arcade. However, before EA released the new Star Wars Battlefront they had published a mobile game through its subsidiary developer, Capital Games. And while EA DICE´s Battlefront let’s you experience famous battles in Star Wars’ history. Star Wars Galaxy of Heroes (for iOS and Android) let’s you pit popular characters from the franchise against each other in a turn-based RPG simulator.
As the new player of the holotables at your local Catina you must collect, train, and battle characters from the canon Star Wars line and dominate the competition. The path will be long and possibly costly, but the road to fame and fortune will eventually allow you to take the title of “Lord of the Holotable” from the smug Hutt that knocked you into said holotable. Rest assured you will have your chance to battle him after winning some victories, and thankfully there are no wookies in the Cantina.
As far as gameplay goes you’ll spend most of your time in the Cantina itself. As with many free games with in game shops, there’ll be a power resource for engaging in battles, different currencies to buy items such as data cards loaded with random hologame data such as characters (or character shards you collect to create the character), items, or random amounts of currency. As mentioned data cards can be purchased with in-game currencies, or they can be purchased with cash.
There is also a supply section where you can buy randomly generated items you need to equip and train your character with. The supply section has a lengthy restock time, but that can instantly be done if you have the resources. You could also sell some items for a few credits if you’re short on training funds. On the Cantina menu, you’ll collect rewards from achievements, daily goals, and login rewards. After reaching a player level of 18 you’ll unlock a “friends list” called Allies where you can add people and use their leader character for a sixth unit (players can have a maximum of five of their own in battle).
Character management allows you to equip and train your party/collection. Stats from the equipment can permanently be attached as an equipment tier when upgrading the character with all item slots filled. Training bots, with different star levels (the more star the better the experience), are used to level the character easily. Both Upgrading with equipment and level training cost credits, with level training costing the most depending on the quality of the training bot. Through the character management screens you can find which stages will reward you with equipment pieces or character shards. While shards will create one new character after collecting a certain amount (no duplicate characters are allowed for the player) you can increase the star level of the character after getting the same number of shards.
The battles on the holotables are simple and straightforward. The objective for each battle is to survive and defeat the opposing party in an RPG simulator. Select the attack or special character skill when it is one of your characters’ turn and repeat until there’s a victor. Most of the game will take place on the main table for the Light and Dark Side campaign levels, but more tables will be unlocked as the player levels go up, which include a challenge´s table and a vs. ranked battle´s section.
The 3D presentation is easy to run on a mobile device, and the art design is accurate to a Star Wars settings. The characters look like the ones they’re supposed to be and their animations are quick and match the character’s fighting style. Animations for the “killed” characters as well as for negative status has a static effect to reflect the game’s meta setting. The scenes where the battles take place are precise to their film/TV counterparts and the Cantina itself also resembles one you would find in that universe.
The music is reminiscent to the scores written by John Williams and performed by the London Symphony Orchestra. Some of the popular tunes from the franchise are used in the game, such as The Imperial March playing as you unlock a Dark Side character. Sound effects are accurate to the ones heard in the films. The background noises are even on par with the settings used in the game, down to the beeps of an MSE-6-series repair droid roaming around an Imperial stage.
The controls are simple touch screen commands. Aside from the usual tapping on menu options and commands the camera in the Cantina can be focused on another section of the holotable lobby by dragging your finger across the screen. Holding down on a character’s skill during battle or an item while in the Cantina will activate a pop up with a description of the icon in question.
+ Easy to pick up.
+ While not canon with the main series the game does give a sense of immersion in the Star Wars Universe.
+ Features a variety of characters from the films and TV shows.
+ You can’t purchase Darth Vader. Players have to earn him.
– While the game gives out plenty of freebies and handouts, it’s still cash shop heavy.
– All too easy to burn through resources.
While Galaxy of Heroes is a good Star Wars mobile game that came out of a subsidiary of EA you can get burned out from grinding and with several other classic Star Wars titles up for digital purchase with better immersive experiences, it can be easy to overlook Heroes. Nevertheless, Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes is at least, something to play while waiting to see The Force Awakens unless your movie theater has a Star Wars arcade cabinet. Happy Holidays and may the Force be with you.
Title: Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes
Developer: Capital Games
Genre: RPG Simulator
Resolution: Varies with device
Release date: 2015-11-24
Spent time: +4 hours
Average grade internationally: 75.00% Gamerankings.com
PEGI/ESRB age rating: PEGI 7+/Everyone 10+
Price: Free (Cash Shop)
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