A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes is a fantasy strategy game with no graphic violence, though some of the still images used to progress the story show dead heroes (without blood) and scary demons. The story has players taking on the role of plainly good characters who are attempting to protect the land and those they love from an encroaching evil; nothing too deep, but also nothing particularly concerning. Parents should note, though, that the game’s text dialogue is sophisticated and that the narrative contains some dark and sad themes including death and loss. It is not intended for younger children.
What's it about?
The first game in the Might & Magic series to find its way to Nintendo’s dual-screened handheld, MIGHT & MAGIC: CLASH OF HEROES is a thoroughly original turn-based strategy game that adds a dash of match-three puzzling to the mix. After being introduced to a fairly typical cast of fantasy heroes, including humans, elves, and wizards, players begin battling a demon horde that’s invading the land. These fights take place with the enemy’s army on the top screen and the player’s forces on the bottom. Players need to match their units in groups of three to either ready them for attack or create defensive barriers. Strategy comes into play when players need to decide which of the unit types in their ever expanding armies should be deployed, when to call in reinforcements, and how best to use magical spells powered up during battle. Between battles, players engage in a bit of role-playing, traveling the world map where they will meet allies and enemies, shop for new units, and encounter optional side quests. Meanwhile, a local wireless mode that supports both single-card and multi-card play lets friends battle each other.
Is it any good?
Clash of Heroes has a wonderfully simple and accessible design. The basics take mere minutes to learn, but the tactics grow deeper as the game progresses, thanks to a variety of ways in which to link attacks, defend from enemy advances, and a steady stream of new unit types with varying abilities, such as being able to leap over enemy walls or cause damage to your foe’s supply of magical energy. Plus, the pacing is spot-on for Nintendo’s portable platform. The role-playing elements are quick and free of clutter while most of the battles tend to last just long enough to play during a bus ride or in bed before falling asleep. One of the best strategy games of the year, it’s a surefire bet for strategy lovers, fantasy fans, and puzzle game players.
Online interaction: A local wireless mode that supports both single-card and multi-card play lets friends battle each other.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the difference between seeing graphic violence depicted on screen versus imagining it in your mind based on text descriptions. Is one more impactful than the other? Should it make a difference when considering age appropriateness?
Families can also discuss how the game melds strategy with puzzles? Do these two genres fit well together here? Have you seen anything like it before?
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