When dragons, orcs, and evil goblin kings threaten your fair homeland, what should you do? You should visit a tavern, of course. No, not to tip one back and forget about impending doom, but to recruit other well-meaning lads and ladies who will help you do away with demon scum– for a price.
Battleheart is an aptly-named tower defense/ strategy/ beat-em-up game: it’ll thrust you and your warriors into battle, and it has a whole lotta heart. Your band of four warriors travels from level to level, beating down the hordes of enemies that swarm you. Your recruits are pretty standard fantasy fare: knights, clerics, wizards, thieves, the works. There are some surprises, though, like pirates, berserkers, and a lonely prince named “Edwardo” who disguised himself as a bard after the love of his life was attacked and killed by enemy forces. Hmm, we’ve heard that one before.
I shall dispatch them with a song!
You give orders to your warriors by tapping on them and dragging their path to to the relevant task. For instance, a knight will need to be directed towards an enemy to punish, whereas a cleric will need to be shown which ally to heal. Every character also has access to special powerful attacks that can turn the tide of a battle, but require a “cool down” period of several seconds.
A handful of seconds might not seem like a big deal, but the action in Battleheart is so frenzied the struggle between life and death can be decided in the blink of an eye. Enemies pour in relentlessly, and the bigger baddies are often accompanied by swarms of underlings. The good guys usually attack the closest threat without waiting for your order, but on occasion they’ll just stand in place, wall-faced, while a warg chews on your cleric.
Get the Raid!
Ergo, Battleheart is a great deal of fun, but only if you indulge in small bites. You only command four warriors at a time, but even that’s enough to make you wish you had eight eyes and four arms. When the action gets particularly heated, the battlefield becomes cramped and then it becomes difficult to dole out proper orders. The result? Dead heroes.
Also, there’s not much to do in the downtime between battles. You can recruit more warriors, upgrade equipment with the merchant, examine battle skills, but not a whole lot else. It would have been nice to engage in some interaction between your characters, especially since the humor-filled script for Battleheart is a perfect accompaniment for the well-animated, super-deformed fighters.
Battleheart is a little low on strategy compared to many tower defense/ kill-‘em-all games, though not entirely devoid of it (enemies will go after the most heavily-armored character first– use that to your advantage!). If you’re okay with sacrificing brainpower for heavy-duty action, this kingdom cries out for your protection.