Heroes of Loot is a basic twin-stick roguelike shooter that acts as something of a crossover tribute to the Gauntlet and Geometry Wars franchises.
The premise for our heroes is a simple one. They have been tasked with going into the dungeon to clean house as it hasn't been done in a little while. Utilising a standard dual-stick controller control format, players select one from a handful of different hero types, and must brave each dungeon floor on their own through hordes of different enemies that would eat them for breakfast.
Getting comfortable with the controls and your character is going to be important as the lower you go, the harder it becomes. This would be the normal course of things, however, not only do the enemies become more numerous and more powerful but the actual dungeon also levels up and it in turn makes everything harder. Permanently. As this is a Roguelike prepare to die several… hundred times. Knowing that the enemies you face again are now harder than they were before can be daunting but worry not for is also powerful magical equipment hidden within the depths of this dungeon. Finding these artefacts will even the playing field back to balance again, making everything feel fair even as the weakest enemies remain capable of killing your hero.
Players are also able to track down powerful items called 'runes'. These items cast powerful magic attacks and are gone just about as fast as they arrived as they are automatically activated and drain as you fire at enemies. Runes should be picked up strategically as they can completely change the course of a bad situation, but they are such a limited resource that they'll also make you careful about how you fire at enemies.
Over the course of your dungeon crawling there are two special kinds of rooms that break up the basic action somewhat. The first of these is a shop, which is fairly standard stuff for roguelikes. Stuff that can be purchased at these shops range from health restoration to extra armour to protect yourself with. The second set of doors are quest doors. These are timed events that each offer some significant rewards, such as extra keys that allow skipping floors, or runes that can be used for a bit more destructive power.
To break up the fast-paced action, every now and then there are tiny animation skits that help break up the pace to let your fingers relax a bit. While these skits may be short, they can quite entertaining in poking fun with popular video game and anime tropes. Heroes of Loot doesn't exactly offer a classic narrative, but at least it has fun with it.
Heroes of Loot is a fun dual-stick shooter that adds in humour to break up the pure action... but is mostly about the action. Fans of roguelikes will find themselves right at home within these narrow halls, but the group of people that will get really hooked on this one are fans of the twitch arcade games of yesteryear.
- Pierre-Yves L.
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