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3DS  header logo

Witch & Hero

For: 3DS

Everybody needs a hero

Product: Witch & Hero | Developer: CIRCLE Entertainment | Publisher: CIRCLE Entertainment | Format: 3DS | Genre: Adventure, Retro, RPG | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
 
Witch & Hero 3DS, thumbnail 1
There's a lot of retro revival going on lately. Be it through high-definition remakes, long-deserved sequels, or even just aesthetics that hark back to a time when things were blockier: that 8-bit look is the new black.

So, it didn't surprise me one bit when I came to review Witch & Hero to discover an 8-bit game built upon the principles of retro-based fun.

What I wasn't expecting, however, was something quite so quirky underneath those beautiful - but forgettable - old skool aesthetics.

Witch hero?

Having set off to fight Medusa - that snake-haired Gorgon of Greek mythology - Witch and Hero (those are actually their names) realise they aren't up to the task at all.

In fleeing from the scene, Witch becomes petrified and so is turned to stone for eternity. This means it's left to Hero to ensure they escape safely to level-up and head back out to dish out the pain.

The story goes far beyond the realms of throwaway nonsense - aside from providing you with a clear goal and a reason for Witch's prolonged immobility, the narrative serves no purpose.

Luckily, Witch's petrifaction makes for an interesting gameplay hook where Hero must defend Witch from an ever-encroaching circle of enemies all set on crumbling her stony frame.

You'll defend Witch with your life by attacking enemies - by just, sort of, running into them - and sacrificing a small section of your health with each hit.

You'll collapse plenty of times, but that only increases the pressure on making sure you recover in time to lay the smackdown on more blobs, ghouls, sharks, pumpkins, demon dogs, and, err, snakes.

Raining blood

You can also level-up through killing beasties and collecting gems. Oh, and by picking up dropped gold, you can level-up your attributes and Witch's magic attacks.

What's that, you say? You thought she was turned to stone? Well, you're right... to a degree. You can actually bring her back to life momentarily by collecting spilt blood from your enemies.

By picking up enough of the red stuff, Witch can hurl fireballs or call upon a typhoon storm to dole out damage. But just like with the super-powerful Holy Sword ability, you don't get the power to use Witch until a little further on.

I am the resurrection

Witch & Hero is far from perfect. The gameplay is repetitive, and the endgame "perks" (survival and a harder difficulty) can only be considered 'bonuses' if you wanted to go back and re-play the game. Which you probably won't.

Once you do delve deeper into the game, though, and perhaps put it down now and again for a break, you do see that there is some method in the madness.

Bull rushing does work, sure, but having to think tactically about your health and position - as well as collected blood and dropped item positions - really turns Witch & Hero into something more than you (or I) were probably expecting.
 
Witch & Hero
Reviewer photo
Vaughn Highfield | 26 April 2013
It may be simple and it may rely far too heavily on its lush 8-bit visuals, but Witch & Hero provides you with some simple, silly fun on your 3DS in short bursts
 
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