Hero U: Rogue to Redemption is one of the best adventure games on Switch.
Sure, the game feels a little rough around the edges in places, but it is full of charm and an excellent cast of characters. Fans of the Persona series who prefer the character interactions over the turn-based combat will probably be right at home. Hero U: Rogue to Redemption captures a lot of what made the old Quest for Glory series fun for a new generation.
Title: Hero U: Rogue to Redemption
Developer: Transolar Games
Publisher: Silesia Games
Hero U combines traditional adventure-game puzzle solving with a light-RPG with stats you can manage. Players assume the role of Shawn Conner, a rogue thief who is caught in the act and sentenced to a hero school. The game itself is limited to the school, so it feels a bit like Fire Emblem: Three Houses in that regard.
It’s a point-and-click adventure game at its heart, but Hero U has lots to offer RPG fans with its deep interactions and character development.
Rating: 4 of 5 stars
You’ll be splitting your time between your studies, relationships with your classmates, and some scripted emergencies that pop up. It works well to provide structure and gives players some choice in how they approach the game.
The game itself is relatively small compared to something like Persona 5 or Fire Emblem: Three Houses. Hero U stretches on for a full 50 days, which may not seem like much at first. But there is so much packed into the first and second school terms that they almost feel like two separate games.
Things that happen in the game are scripted to happen on certain days, which can induce some confusion. As a rogue at a hero school, you’re often encouraged to break the rules. But the line between which rules should be broken and which are game designer commandments is rather blurry. I don’t want to spoil any plot points, but there are some situations that you may think you can prevent – you can’t until a certain day arrives.
On the other hand, sometimes Shawn will receive a task that must be completed with urgency. The only problem is many of these ‘urgent’ tasks seem like trivial side quests that will be there forever. Ignoring them may have dire consequences for your playthrough, though. There’s no real indication between the two types of tasks, either.
The game suffers from some pacing issues, often packing in so much to do that you feel rushed around the school grounds. Other days, you’re struggling to find something to do to fill your time. The protracted development time probably contributed to this, but it’s a minor annoyance.
Time is the currency of Hero U, so choose how you spend it wisely. In that regard, I’m reminded of my time with Fire Emblem: Three Houses. The combat is turn-based and there is a lot of it in the latter half of the game. It’s pretty simplistic and wears out its welcome quickly, though. (You can stealth around lots of combat, but it is ungodly slow.)
Rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Graphics & Audio
The presentation in Hero U is probably its weakest point, which is a shame. That’s not to say that it is a bad-looking game at all. The character portraits are nice and filled with emotion, but environments are lacking. The school itself is supposed to feel alive with classmates, but there are rarely people wandering the halls.
There’s also no voice acting in Hero U, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, modern adventure games at least voice the player’s character. The music is decent, but nothing to write home about.
In true adventure game style, every single item you see in the world is clickable and you can interact with it. It pays off to do so with some of the paintings, which may contain hidden slots and other secrets.
Rating: 3 of 5 stars
Hero U Switch Issues
I spent around 40 hours playing through Hero U on the Switch and didn’t encounter any technical issues. The only real problem I had is the text is kind of small while playing in handheld mode. That’s something even Nintendo games suffer from, however.
Hero U: Rogue to Redemption is a great light RPG with plenty of puzzles to solve. If you’re fine with the quests coming at you at a set pace (like Persona), you’ll find a lot to like about the game. The puzzles feel pretty fresh and the humor is definitely on the ‘dad joke’ level – cringy, but still funny.
Rating: 3.5 of 5 stars
Anyone who enjoys a strong cast of characters and ‘punny’ dialog will have a blast with Hero U. The mouse movement feels a little weird to get used to on console, but it’s not a deal-breaker.
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