Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes blends wonderful puzzle gameplay with refreshing role-playing elements. Although others in the genre tend to borrow a little too much from Bejeweled, Clash of Heroes branches off to become its own game, thanks to the originality of the mechanics and overall depth of the experience.
After debuting on the DS in 2009, Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes received a HD overhaul in 2011 for PSN and XBLA.
The iOS port is essentially the HD re-release, without being quite as sleek due to the limitations of a mobile device. Don’t let that put you off — it’s one of the best games on iPhone and iPad for just $5.49.
Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes features five young adults from different cultures that must get together to stop demons from taking complete control of the planet. The story is accessible as it doesn’t rely on much Might & Magic mythology to execute the narrative. Clash of Heroes is its own game and story, so don’t worry if you haven’t played other games in the franchise.
That said, the story is hardly anything to write home about and is undoubtedly one of the game’s major weaknesses. As a puzzle game it’s easy to push aside any included story, but this poorly executed and childish story is a little hard to ignore. Thankfully, the gameplay does enough to blanket any poorly written dialogue you might hear throughout the game.
The gameplay is split up into two distinctively different elements: role-playing and puzzle combat. The role-playing takes place between battles as you explore environments, meet up with locals and add characters to your party. You also use this time to level up for your characters using points earned during combat.
When you get into battle mode, your team and the enemy split up into two boards on the screen. The objective is to kill the enemy by depleting their health, which can be done by creating vertical stacks of three same-coloured units to create attackers, and by forming horizontal stacks to create defenses.
These mechanics are the basic combat elements in Clash of Heroes, but the gameplay goes considerably deeper than that. There’s a stack of rules and unit upgrades at your disposal, along with a seemingly countless number of combo opportunities. The game starts off easy enough, but by the second chapter it’s an absolute necessity to be looking into tactics to progress. Clash of Heroes will challenge you to the core once you start getting onto a roll, but thankfully the game has a number of great tutorials to lead you into battle.
Compared to the DS version, there are a bunch of new spells and abilities to find in the campaign, and side quests have also been added to every faction chapter. Visuals have also been given a considerable upgrade, and the game looks fantastic in glourious HD, in-line with the Xbox 360 version. The hand-drawn characters give the game a distinctive cartoony looks which looks great.
Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes on iPhone and iPad offers the same great HD package found on consoles, with the portability of a mobile device. On the gameplay side of things, there’s plenty of depth in the puzzle combat to keep you intrigued, whereas the RPG elements add value and originality to the experience. The story is a little lost but that doesn’t matter, as everything else that surrounds it is great.
If you’re yet to play Might & Magic and want an iOS game you can sink your teeth into, don’t look past the suburb third release of Clash of Heroes.