Half-Minute Hero

You may have seen me talk about Half-Minute Hero on here, or on the Twitter feed a couple of times so I thought I’d do a post explaining what it is and the appeal of it a bit more.  Half-Minute Hero is a game for the PSP where each level lasts (on average) 30 seconds but is played out like you are playing through a full RPG – so you have to go out, fight monsters, level up, buy items and then go and defeat the bad guy.  On most levels it’s practically impossible to do this within 30 seconds so you are given the option to rewind time to the initial 30 seconds though this is at a cost which increases each time this is used.  There’s other game modes included as well giving 4 different game types including a strategy, an action game, and a shooter before you get the more advanced modes of 300 Second Hero (beat the game in 300 seconds, no rewinds) or 3 Second Hero (guess the time limit here!).

The whole game has been designed with a very retro feel – it’s all pixel graphics with 8-bit music which gives it a very fun feel.  It’s also very self-knowing and willing to mock itself which makes it all the more fun.  What’s more surprising however is the depth found within the game – playing through the Hero mode I discovered by accident an extra route that I could take which is affected by the actions you take in the level leading to levels that I had previously never encountered; and given the shortness of the levels it makes it a great game to sit and play when on the bus – I finished 3 levels on the way in to work this morning.

It’s one of the games that shows that you don’t need good graphics to make a game great – the focus is on the gameplay and the story, and as I played through I found myself more and more gripped, and the game was harder and harder to put down – going back and getting all the titles for each level is going to prove a fun challenge, as well as trying to find all the routes that I may have missed leading.  If you have a PSP give this game a go – its amusing harmless quick fun that replicates the joy of a flash game on a handheld device {http://xkcd.com/484/} – you can’t go wrong (and if you can find someone else who has the game it even includes Multiplayer as the cherry on the cake).

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