Release Date: 10/1/2009
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The Good: Pretty epic music and environments, solid combat, lots of enemies
The Bad: Super short, a tad ugly in spots, a tad unresponsive in other spots, not much in variety, very linear
Hero of Sparta is probably the most technically impressive PSP Mini that has launched alongside the PSP Go. Hero of Sparta follows a Spartan warrior who is trying to seek the entrance to Atlantis. Along the way, you pick up ancient weapons and armor to help you along the way. Sparta has a simple combat system with heavy and light attacks along with a magic attack with each weapon you get. Simple combos can be created to wipe out these mythical creatures you fight. Larger enemies can be taken down God of War style via timed button presses. While this isn’t nearly as epic as God of War it’s nice to see the devs at least tried.
Along the way you can jump across gaps by just moving over to them and climbing up by pressing X. Navigating can be fairly simple thanks to the compass arrow on the top of the screen to its kind of hard to get lost. If you are wondering about boss fights there are a few epic ones, but they are short lived and it makes you want more. Every one of the 6 or so levels is very linear and you have to be a moron to get lost in them. Some times you will venture upon spikes coming out of the floor, or like in one level, swinging axes, but traps and obstacles are far and few in between.
If you get low on health or mana you can get the orbs from fallen foes (kind of like in God of War) or through power up pools which can be used an infinite amount of times. The hardest part of the game is fighting off the mass amount of enemies that get tossed at you. While they are pretty easy to take down it will be the lack of checkpoints that will kill you. Some levels don’t have any at all, and the ones that do have them in the wrong places.
Playing the game is pretty straight forward and you can’t expect much from an iPhone port since the iPhone has limited controls (shut up Apple fanboys it’s true). However, the game features some pretty epic music and backgrounds. The graphics kind of look like first generation PSP launch titles (dropped two notches from there) and you have an idea of what the game looks like. My biggest gripe is that most of the enemies are hard to see in detail, but that’s alright the game is too short to really care anyway. If you really want a God of War knocks off or something remotely entertaining have at it.