There have been a few
different freemium games based off of the Star Wars license, all of which are
pretty much what you’d expect – although probably a little less cynical. And
while Galaxy of Heroes may not take the concept of a free mobile game set in a
galaxy far, far away to new heights, it can be quite entertaining if you go in
with an open mind.
Planning and strategic
use of skills is important in battle, but it won’t amount to much if your
characters aren’t up to snuff.
Always improve your team
when you can. There are a number of ways this can be done, but each one is
important in its own way. Regardless, if you don’t keep upgrading you’re going
to have a really tough time in post-tutorial missions.
Don’t pour everything
into one character. It’s fine to keep your favorite a little ahead of the rest,
but many enemies have abilities that could potentially render your ace
ineffective for a few rounds – and if everyone else is level 1 and does piddly
damage you’re in trouble.
Give everyone gear. As
you play you’ll find items that can be equipped on different characters to
boost their stats. Do this. Not only will it improve their overall performance,
but if you equip every item slot you can upgrade their gear level – thus
keeping the boosted stats and re-opening items slots for even more gear and
Train, train, train.
Combat won’t improve your characters, so you’ll have to use Training Droids.
These one-time use items will grant experience in different amounts, depending
on their rarity. Higher levels equals better stats, naturally.
Check your Shipments
daily. Here you can flat out buy items and character shards that you may not be
able to earn so easily. Remember that each mode (The Cantina, Squad Battles,
etc) has its own separate Shipments, too.
Play on Hard to unlock
more characters. Once you complete a Light/Dark Side Battles section on normal,
you’ll unlock Hard – with tougher enemies but better rewards. This is where
you’ll want to be in order to stock up on the character shards you’ll need to
unlock new characters or rank-up existing ones.
Fight the Powers
Sooner or later, you’re
going to have to take up arms.
Pick your targets. Some
enemies have skills that can really muck things up – consider going after them
Timing can also make a
difference. The blue bars underneath a character’s health indicate when they
act next (they go once it’s full). You can also use this to plan around who
goes when in order to follow up one special ability with another that’s
complimentary, get rid of enemies that will act next, and so on.
Know your own skills.
Each character has a regular attack and a special skill that does something a
bit different but comes with a cooldown. Familiarize yourself with who can do
what (tap and hold a skill icon for details) and put those abilities to good
Attacks that hit
everyone aren’t very effective. It’s great to damage an entire group of
enemies, but the amount of damage is often so low it’s more worthwhile to use
that character to deal more damage to a single target.
A Little Forced
Galaxy of Heroes will
likely feel familiar to anyone who’s dabbled with enough free-to-play mobile
games. But while it may not be blazing any new trails, it does present an
enjoyable and polished effort.
Not So Far Away
Oh look, another
freemium mobile game based around Star Wars. Yippee!
Being cynical is totally
understandable at this point, but truth be told Star Wars: Galaxy of Heroes is
actually quite enjoyable for what it is. Which is to say it’s an entertaining
squad based semi-tactical game that’s fairly simple, and will probably seem
familiar to some, but you can have fun with it if you aren’t already burned out
on similar titles. Plus it makes great use of Star Wars stuff like music and
All About the Cameos
The basic framework for
Galaxy of Heroes is nothing new. You have a small team of characters who fight
other small teams of enemies; those characters can be upgraded and leveled-up;
new characters can be unlocked; energy is used to go on missions, and is in
limited (but rechargeable over time) quantities. It’s a familiar cycle and a
familiar structure. It’s also one that works so I’m not really complaining –
just saying that you’ve probably seen something like it before.
A key difference is Star
Wars (obviously). They’ve wrung out an awful lot from the license for this game
– from sounds to music to tons of characters spanning the entire film franchise
and parts beyond. Gimmicky as it may be, I can’t deny the appeal of hopping
between prequel and original trilogy settings with enemies and backdrops to
match, John Williams’ still excellent score playing in the background as
classic blaster and lightsaber sounds mingle together.
Aside from the obvious
nitpick of the Galaxy of Heroes using a familiar setup, one thing that bugs me
(other than the repeated question of whether or not I want to turn on push
notifications – I don’t) is the randomness when it comes to accuracy. I don’t
know what it is, if I’m just using clumsy characters or what, but I find myself
missing enemies much more often than they miss me – if they ever actually have
missed me, but I’m not even sure of that. It’s not that I can’t ever hit
enemies or anything like that, but I’ve been noticing that my own characters
never really seem to avoid damage. They certainly don’t avoid it at the rate of
their targets, anyway. I’m not sure if it’s a programming thing or an “I need
to upgrade everyone more” thing, but it’s a little irksome.
Yeah Galaxy of Heroes
itself is kinda simple, and it’s not really anything new, but it’s basically an
excuse to play with the equivalent of Star Wars action figures again. It looks
good, sounds great, and is one of the few places where you’ll be able to pit
characters from the Bioware RPGs against those from the original trilogy or the
prequels – from either side of their respective conflicts. That’s got to at
least be worth a look for most Star Wars fans, right?
– Review by David Galvin
Dave Galvin is a freelance writer and avid gamer. Somehow, he managed to find a way to combine the two passions.
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