Rolling Hero in Review – Chillingo’s Still On A Roll…

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One of the things I really admire about Chillingo is that they have a knack for digging up games that take tried and true mechanics and give them enough twists and flair to make them feel like fresh games.  Such is the case with Rolling Hero.  Anyone that has played games on their iOS device for a reasonable length of time has probably played one or more titles where you rotate the board to get your hero to the proper location, yet this one feels different somehow.  It definitely has a cute factor that seems to permeate a majority of Chillingo’s best titles, but there’s a certain spin this game takes that keeps me wanting to come back for more.  Even if I never completely put my finger on it, I guess that’s a good thing since I’m spending my time with the game.

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Even animated ball like creatures fall in love, and it seems that evildoers wish to keep you apart from your girlfriend.  You’ll need to roll your way through 48 levels to get her back, and it’s certainly not going to be easy.  Each level has a portal that you must unlock by collecting the key, and there are plenty of things standing in your way.  The evil boss’s henchmen and spikes spell instant death.  A timer makes sure you stay punctual or you’ll have to start over.  Your worst enemies, however, are momentum and falling off the board. One thing I find interesting about this game is that they give you a lot of leeway towards getting back on the right path if you take an accidental leap.  You’ll still have plenty of reset moments as you realize that you’re not going to recover from a ledge plunge, however.

There are several things to help you along the way like potions that make you grow big and small, buttons that temporarily disable spike traps, shields that protect you from all the evilness around you and trampolines that give you a boost in what is hopefully the right direction.  What I find a bit odd is that several of these elements are introduced and then all but forgotten as you progress through the game.  I was particularly looking forward to some of the level designs that would incorporate the big and small potions, but so far the only one I’ve seen in three worlds is the one where the potions are introduced.  At least the elements that are taken advantage of are used well, as there is some interesting and sometimes crazy level design to keep you occupied.

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To manipulate the world you tap left and right to rotate the surroundings accordingly.  It doesn’t take much to get the ball rolling, so to speak, so be sure to keep in mind the force of momentum when you decide too late to try and turn back the other direction.  If you use your control sparingly you’ll master the game, otherwise you’ll be playing space cadet more often than unlocking portals.  In addition to simply exiting each level there are flowers to collect for bonus points.  You can also collect letters to spell the phrase “rolling hero” which will unlock a bonus world for you to explore.  Rolling Hero also takes advantage of Game Center to provide 13 achievements and leaderboards that you can rank on.

The graphics are pretty cartoony, which fits the whole premise of the game quite well.  Things are animated when necessary and the backgrounds are a bit more realistic and detailed to add a nice contrast.  At first I wasn’t too keen on the audio, but the more I listened (especially the last time I played) the more I realized they were cartoon like sound effects which compliments the visuals nicely.  I always appreciated the sighs when you accidentally died.  The music is not bad but not really thrilling either, until you get to the lava world.  Then the soundtrack really picks up.  On the plus side, each world does have its own theme.

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There’s not really much left to add other than to say chalk up another winner for Chillingo.  It’s nice to know that you can rely on a publisher to turn out one solid game after another.  They might not all be the most original efforts, but there aren’t too many games from these guys that I haven’t enjoyed.  Just remember that in Rolling Hero, gravity and momentum are not always your friend.

Grab It Rating - 4/5

App Summary
Title: Rolling HeroDeveloper: Chillingo Ltd
Reviewed Ver:Min OS Req:4.3
Price:$0.99App Size:
  • Interesting, challenging levels
  • Easy control scheme
  • Colorful world
  • Decent soundtrack in later worlds
  • Need more variety of special items in various levels
  • Music is somewhat lackluster through most of game

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