‘Square Heroes’ from Gnomic Studios preview

I'm square and ready to make combat with your friends via cross-platform mayhem.
I’m square and ready to make combat with your friends via cross-platform mayhem.

Square Heroes is a game that I’ve been looking forward to for months now. Although I’m mainly an RPG guy, with interests in RTS and some sports games, my eyes have been opened by some great indie games lately. Many of my regular readers know that even though we report on big companies like Ubisoft and Marvel comics, our love is independent comics, games and music. So, when I found Square Heroes while trolling through Twitter for goodies to review, I was pleased to find this quirky looking indie game.

Cartoon shooter with cross-platform play

Cross platform was one of the features that was supposed to change games as we knew them. Windows and Xbox 360 promised this feature last generation, but it never truly materialized. It seemed like one of those features that would fall by the wayside. Like Smartglass , Cross-platform took a bad seat to features like twitch integration and a renewed focus on VR like Oculus Rift. Luckily, Indie companies don’t always follow the trends and do what they want. That’s the case with Gnomic studios and Square Heroes. Being able to play with friends that have Windows while I fire up my Mac laptop is important. I can’t even count the amount of times I was disappointed to find out I couldn’t play a game with friends because they’re still playing on Windows based PCs. It’s a missed opportunity in my opinion, and I’m pleased to be able to soon encourage my pals to play Square Heroes with me. The co-op options and arena format lend themselves perfectly to this game.

Speaking of teaming with friends, another feature that has been ‘Left 4 Dead‘ is couch co-op. This type of play hasn’t been a hallmark of PC/MAC games, but it’s offered in Square Heroes. Not only can you play LAN or online if you happen to find yourself in a friends living room or bedroom, but it looks like you’ll be able to snuggle in closer than comfortable on your pals futon and really smell those Doritos he had for dinner. I’m not certain about how the couch co-op works with PC/MAC yet, but I’ll find out soon once I take a look at the MAC version that Gnomic provided to me.

Features

I pointed out a few, but here is the full list of features provided by Gnomic.

  • Online and local multi-player, at the same time. AKA couch vs couch gaming.
  • Cross platform multi-player.
  • Unique arms-race gameplay mechanic where chosen weapons are earned during each round by collecting loot.
  • Unlockable weapons and hats with stat-buffing perks.
  • Various game modes including Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Gnome Hunt, Team Gnome Hunt and Survival.
  • Numerous challenging Achievements.
  • Seven stylish 2.5D arenas of doom.
  • Originally scored music and professionally crafted sound effects. ( I really want to start reviewing sound effects and music for games, so I’m going to be paying extra attention to this in Square Heroes)

The Appeal

What do you mean I need legs to be in an arena combat game? Wait, I don't have legs?
What do you mean I need legs to be in an arena combat game? Wait, I don’t have legs?

Again, this isn’t typically my kind of game, but I’m willing to take a look at a game by hard-working indie companies. So, what’s the appeal to me other than it’s independent? I’m a big fan of Castle Crashers, and Square Heroes reminds me of that in a way. The visuals are closer to Super Meat-Boy, but the semi-side scrolling nature and the possibility of co-op mayhem looks fun to me. Collecting “Mountains of loot” as the trailer points out is always a fun time too.

The ability, though apparently simplistic, to customize a character is always a huge draw for me. Creating a custom Nord in Skyrim or creating a neanderthal in NHL 2014 was fun for me, and there’s something personal and engaging about making my own character. I’ll never forget my characters in Fallout-3 and Fallout New Vegas either. My time with my character in New Vegas helped provide me with part of the name of this blog too.

More info and the Blah Blah Blah

Here’s more information on Square Heroes that includes their website and even a video for the game. Please check back here for the latest on the game and for my review that’s coming soon. The game released already on Linux and PC, and I’m waiting anxiously for my MAC version to post so I can dig in. Spread the word about the this blog too, where we make it a point to give unvarnished reviews, news as soon as we get it and some opinions and more fun quirky per square inch than any other game/comics/nerd site anywhere.

Developer:
Gnomic Studios
Based in Perth, Western Australia

Release date:
Oct, 2014

Platforms:
PC / Mac / Linux
Steam Greenlight

Website:
squareheroes.com

 

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