REVIEW: ‘I Am The Hero’ is an Immersive, Fun, and Challenging Game (Switch)

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I Am The Hero

When corrupt big-pharma steps into your community, the whole neighborhood suffers. The town you know and love is in upheaval as joblessness, homelessness, and violence plague the streets. In a world without superheroes, this terrifying world will remain the same unless someone breaks the cycle. Not all heroes wear capes, and in I Am The Hero, you won’t need to. From Ratalaika Games and Crazyant comes I Am The Hero, a side-scrolling action brawling video game that puts players as regular citizens, with a burning desire to rid the streets of the filth and toxicity. Featuring an incredibly stylistic 2.D presentation, players are in for a brutally satisfying good time, even if the time isn’t terribly long.

In I Am The Hero, players will fight through waves upon waves of enemies, all in an effort to save their city.  As the lone hero, it is your job to kick out the ruthless gangs and criminals. Players set off across the city from the streets to clubs, and factories all the way to the corporate headquarters that have sentenced your city to a horrible demise.  There is a secret to uncover and The Hero will stop at nothing to settle the score. Large pharmaceutical corporations have entered the town, selling their product to the masses. Disguised as a positive addition to the community, bringing job and a positively boosting product, the Hero knows it is a cleverly designed veil to hide the sinister truth. The corporations are fueling city violence and drug wars.

Along the way, players will gain new abilities and attributes as well as encounter a strong roster of foes, from muscle-flexing links to hooded figures with mysterious dashing powers. The gang leaders will also take precedent, using their special abilities in firmly-challenging boss fights to eliminate The Hero. Using a variety of fighting abilities and special powers will be the only way to defeat his enemies.

I Am The Hero adopts a very distinct style that combines a flat, but very well animated 2D sprite against a 3D background, creating the sensation of a full environment while maintaining the momentum and style of a brawler. Most brawlers feature characters on flat backgrounds that were oriented in a warped view, so where the background remained flat and animated, the foreground perspective had players looking down on the battle. I Am The Hero adopts this unique style as a means to distinguish itself from the competition, but it creates an interesting and unique effect. The environment moves in a 3D space, but the characters are presented in a flat 2D space. It makes for a fascinating effect of foreground and background, where the character modes in a 3D space, but fights in a 2D plane.

I Am The Hero

The fighting in I Am The Hero is fierce and incredibly enjoyable. Players will punch, kick, jump, and tap into their special abilities to fight the waves of bad guys heading their way. The fighting is raw and impactful, as there is a certain feeling of impact felt with each move. The Hero can be a tad fidgety with jumping and aerial attacks. Jumping has a sense of gravity taken away and landing an aerial dropkick can be tricky,  but the brawling has a sense of weight and sensation that is exciting and refreshing. Some of the tougher enemies will require tight timing and quick thinking but are nonetheless a thrill to take down.

I Am The Hero encourages players to get wild and go crazy with the fighting since being aggressive often leads to victory.  There are combos to use in fighting, but mashing the buttons and using a combination of aerial and ground attacks works well. Fighting also builds your special meter, which allows you to take reduced damage, but unleash a flurry of supercharged attacks for a short timeBetween levels, players can either unlock more characters or new fighting abilities. The additional heroes have their own unique fighting styles and abilities as well. The fighting is made enjoyable thanks to the game’s presentation and a rocking soundtrack that portrays a grimy, grungy adventure into the criminal underworld. It’s a heavily pixelated, almost rock and dance soundtrack to get players in the mood for beating up the bad guys.

When everything comes together, I Am The Hero makes for a solid and enjoyable fighting experience, with a sharp presentation in which the fighting seemingly bursts off-screen. the colors, effects, and presentation give an impression of an animated graphic novel. It’s immersive, fun, and challenging.

The only glaring drawback I have with the game is the length. The game is only a few short stages and could potentially be finished in one sitting. The game takes about three to four hours to complete with some replayability in securing collectibles and unlocking more characters. Despite this, it can be inferred that the game’s length is satisfying, given the fact that it is an easy title to pick and play in short rounds, not requiring a lot of input. Players can also play with an additional player for extra fun and playability, especially to unlock all of the characters.

I Am The Hero is fast, brutal, and fulfilling with great combat and presentation, despite its length. Fans of brawlers and action games, especially newcomers, should jump in into it and go crazy with the gameplay and combat. The action brawler genre was all about having fun beating up bad guys with your friends. I Am The Hero accomplishes that with flying colors.

I Am The Hero is available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Steam, and Nintendo Switch.

I Am The Hero
  • 8/10
    Rating - 8/10
8/10

TL; DR

I Am The Hero is fast, brutal, and fulfilling with great combat and presentation, despite its length. Fans of brawlers and action games, especially newcomers, should jump in into it and go crazy with the gameplay and combat.