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Android App Video Review: Heroes of Loot

by Andrew Koziara

I don't know about the rest of you, but I have been thoroughly enjoying this resurgence of the Roguelike genre in the last couple years, thanks to games like The Binding of Isaac on PC, and numerous rougelikes on iOS. The latest one being Heroes of Loot from OrangePixel, a developer that usually makes platformers, but always makes retro goodness. It's an extremely basic, almost stupefyingly simple game that is nonetheless addicting as possible.

Basically this is a dungeon crawler in which you mow through huge numbers of enemies ala Gauntlet, with perma-death for your characters, multiple classes plus unlocks, a crazy streamlined quest system, and the gameplay of a twin stick shooter. Well, that's actually not really accurate. You don't even aim your attacks. Everything is done through one button with auto-aim, like in certain arcade shooters such as Ballistic SE. I know it sounds too simple to be fun, but it really is pretty compelling, in that you are compelled to try again and again.

What makes this game stand out is just the speed of it all. Each randomized floor will hold a key to the exit, and either a quest room, with one quest to take, or a store, with one item to buy. Within that framework, you'll pick up tons of items and gold, level up extremely rapidly, with noticeable increases in power and upgraded attacks. Plus there are lots of secret rooms to find crammed with a cornucopia of goodies. It has that Binding of Isaac mechanic going on where you can find or buy a certain item early on, like a potion of regenerating health or several experience scrolls that boost your level, making you feel godly early on and really great about that particular run. Though you also feel stressed, with more to lose.

The four starting classes of Archer, Warrior, Wizard, and Valkyrie all bring something a bit different to play, whether it's faster leveling or extremely long usage of spell scrolls that you find in play. Like I said, the game is so simple it's almost mindless, but the game is designed with that play style in mind, and it all just works wonderfully. Heroes of Loot is available for two dollars at the time of this review, but you can also grab the free version, which I'd recommend.