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Am I Hero?

Am I Hero? It’s a valid question to all of us. One many of us shall surely ponder in later life. What good – if any – did we achieve. Where Jackie Chan once asked Who Am I? and answered it with a slice of flimsy cinema bolted together with some tight action scenes, here there’s a look for the truth in a short repetitive quest and the allure of in-app purchases. The question isn’t so much answered as priced up and flogged.

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Running like a Flash game with a hand drawn appearance, this is a top-down auto-run quest to escape a chasing dragon, slay the enemy force and pocket gold on route. Events kickoff with a slash of sweet anime-esque garage rock and this remains the high point. Swiping left and right moves your avatar while tapping attacks. To survive you must dodge boulders in your path and take out the limited enemy types. Make it far enough and the dragon momentarily catches up, sprouting balls of flame to be evaded.

“Priced up and flogged”Mechanically Am I Hero? could have been close to a modern iOS twist on Golden Axe, but the result falls far from this. Hit collision is often suspect and variation is minimal. Most will see everything that’s on offer in the first run and then memory lane is well and truly trodden into a muddy path. Dodge boulders, kill the same the few foes, dodge fire, repeat, occasionally purchase a item boost with the gold saved. And then there’s the matter of the in-app purchases.

There are five heroes to choose from. The Fighter is instantly available, with others such as The Thief, the highest priced class, costing $4.99 to unlock or roughly two hundred and fifty playthroughs. This pricing is completely out of touch. $4.99 would bag a couple of the iOS stores finest titles. Or here a new class to run through the same level with. It’s not up for consideration: this IAP culture is detrimental.

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Back in high school this would have been a welcome Flash-based distraction in IT lessons when Spreadsheets were the last thing a growing boy wanted. Now, however, these once light and enjoyable titles, often used as an ever-growing portfolio for indie developers, whimper out onto the iOS store in the hope that some lunatic will thrown down $49.99 on obtaining all the locked characters and item boosts. Am I Hero? isn’t morally questionable in the manner of other titles recently reviewed, but this doesn’t excuse the laziness and one hopes that a $49.99 IAP never happens, for I shall make a stand against it. I am hero.

2 out of 10

The author of this fine article

is the Deputy Editor at Thunderbolt, having joined in December 2010. Get in touch on Twitter @shaneryantb.

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