He-Man: The Most Powerful Game in the Universe

App review by
Chris Morris, Common Sense Media
He-Man: The Most Powerful Game in the Universe App Poster Image
Awkward controls hamper nostalgia-powered platform game.

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The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

He-Man: The Most Powerful Game in the Universe wasn't created with educational intent, and we don't recommend it for learning.

Ease of Play

Most of the basic controls work well enough, but the critical jump function is awkward and unresponsive, which causes the player to sustain more onscreen damage than he or she should have to. 


He-Man smashes his way through wave after wave of enemies, using his sword and relying on allies, who sometimes use guns. Spikes can also lower onto He-Man, but simply cause him to lose a heart health-meter, rather than squish him. All of the violence is very cartoonish -- and no suffering is shown, nor is there any blood. 


Via in-app purchase, players can buy additional crystals (the in-game currency) to buy upgrades. This option is not thrust up on the player, though. The game ties in with an older TV show that still has some toys on the market, which may cause kids to ask for them when they see them at stores. 

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that He-Man: The Most Powerful Game in the Universe is an arcade brawler game featuring the characters from the 1980s cartoon. While incredibly (and intentionally) campy, the game is loaded with cartoon violence and does have in-app purchases. Players can also share high scores via the Game Center social network, but participation is optional.

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What's it about?

Players control the game through a series of thumb strokes on their touchscreen. Swiping to the left or right with your left thumb moves He-Man through his adventure, while tapping the right side of the screen swings his sword (other attack motions are unlocked throughout the game, such as double tapping to swing overhead). Swiping your right thumb upward is used to send He-Man airborne -- a move that is essential in the game, but doesn't work so well in practice.

Is it any good?

The nostalgia that goes with He-Man: The Most Powerful Game in the Universe is undeniable -- and the sense of humor Chillingo has about the game is very welcome (they know exactly how cheesy the franchise is). And as an arcade side-scrolling brawler, it's actually a pretty fun game. 

Where it stumbles, though, is the controls, which are often non-responsive and non-intuitive. Jumping is an essential skill, but the action required for the move is not a natural one -- and it only seems to work some of the time. It's a cheap app, so you won't feel as if you've wasted money, but it's not something that will hold your attention for a long time. 

App details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love action and adventure

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