The fascinating Greek myths often become the subject of games, videos, and movies. The unique characters and their adventures contribute a powerful ingredient for entertainment. Heroes of Hellas effortlessly blends match three (keep reading — it’s not just another one) with the myths into a fine storyline beginning with someone stealing the scepter of Zeus.
Now what makes Heroes of Hellas different from the zillions (maybe not quite that many) of match threes? For one, instead of a typical square grid, the grid appears in honeycomb style with hexagon shapes. With the honeycomb-shaped grid, you go in different directions in making a match instead of just up and down, and sideways. Here you can go six directions. The grid’s outside shape changes with each level as you travel through Ancient Greece and Hades to find the scepter.
Along the way, you earn help from the heroes. Their help is what most refer to as a power up. Zeus, of course, is the first and he shuffles the grid when you need more matching objects. The others have special powers that do different things: Achilles can destroy rocks that block your way. Jason opens a path. Once you discover multiple heroes, you get two heroes per level plus Zeus.
Lightning-style and extra time power ups and coins show up on the grid for more support. Anytime you have two matching items nearby with a power up or coin in between, you can make a match. Heck, you can make a match of two power ups and one object. You still need at least three items and in this case, power ups are like jokers or wild cards in that they work with anything.
The objective for each level also changes. It can be that you need to clear the gold tiles behind the objects, release the jewels from the grid by helping them make their way down to the bottom of the grid, or both. With the grid changing shapes, the changing heroes and the change objectives, the game can turn monotonous especially since you’re on the clock through all of this.
While the game only comes in one mode, it offers three difficulty levels: easy, medium, and hard. In playing easy level, I run into trouble by level four. Some reviewers believe the game is too easy — I differ. I may not have needed the heroes’ help in the first few levels, but needed them in later levels. Several levels took at least five tries before I conquered them.
One thing that drives me crazy is slipping up and missing a hexagon or two. People who have a hard time navigating with a mouse won’t like this. Heroes of Hellas requires careful mouse movement and tile selection. You must keep the mouse button pressed while you select the tiles — instead of just click on each one. This is a good and bad thing. It’s harder to keep the mouse down and select, but it’s faster. To keep clicking might get tedious. Maybe the next edition — if there is one — can provide this as an option.
I also like the music and music isn’t one of the more important features in a game for me. Somehow this catchy music grabs me along with its sound effects. You can also earn wallpaper with scenes from Greek myths by playing a mini-game. The mini-game enters when you earn a hero. Here you need to move puzzles pieces where they belong by swapping two pieces at a time. For those who don’t like puzzles — you can skip the game, but it means no wallpaper for you.
Regular players of match three games may recognize features here and there from other games. Heroes of Hellas incorporates the features nicely to create an all-around fine match three package.
System Requirements: Windows
- Windows ME/98/2000/XP/Vista
- 400 MHz or faster processor
- 128 MB RAM
- Hard drive space 40 mb
- Video card: 16 MB VRAM
- DirectX 8.0 MB or later