Chronicles of 2 Heroes (XSX) Review with stream
16-bit visual theme is well done and looks like a new SNES game
Focuses more on traversal as opposed to action
Character switch mechanic, although it requires time to learn, is something new and appreciated
It isn’t as actiony as you might expect – this is not inspired by Ninja Gaiden despite having playable ninjas
Lack of detail and direction in the map screen can lead to needless backtracking
Precision platforming mixed with quick character swapping can be tough
Chronicles of 2 Heroes is a new action, precision platformer presented in a 16-bit style that sort of looks like a SNES title. The difficulty will keep you on your toes and the character swapping mechanic is unique and demanding.
At its heart, this is a Metroidvania but with a stronger emphasis on precision platforming as opposed to combat. Make no mistake, combat is still important but approaching each encounter with thought and caution is key to survival and progression.
You play as two ninjas at once and can freely switch between the two with the press of a button. The red armored male is a melee fighter who cannot jump but can dash horizontally long distances whereas the female uses ranged attacked and can jump vertically. Along the way, new abilities will be found which in turn expands the map just like any exploratory action adventure.
This character switching gameplay element becomes the focus of the gameplay. Soon after learning how this switch ability works, the player needs to quickly master it as it is common to dash, then switch, jump to that platform, kill that guy, fall down, dash, parry, switch, and precisely jump to that next platform in one swoop. At times, it can be a lot and demands much of the player. With a word of warning, if you cannot perform controller gymnastics, you probably are going to have a tough time especially later in the quest.
Do not let the old school visual appearance fool or disappoint you. This is a nice looking retro throwback right down to the impressively cool main menu. There are some comic book-style cutscenes that have also been made with care. However, I wish the map was a little more detailed as it lacks the symbols used in most Metroid titles. While it provides a sense of overall direction, it doesn’t depict secrets or important items to collect so unnecessary backtracking becomes annoyingly routine especially if you have not played in a few days and forgot where you were going. This doubles down since many platforming segments are composed of high challenge.
Chronicles of 2 Heroes is a quality action game but just keep in mind there is a higher challenge involved so it might not be for everyone. Fans of retro platformers from the 16-bit era will want to put this on their wishlist though.
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By: Zachary Gasiorowski, Editor in Chief myGamer.com
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