There’s something decidedly familiar about Tiny Titans Studios’ sequel Dash Quest Heroes. Coming roughly two years following the launch of Dash Quest — a mobile title that remains one my favourite Android games — Heroes takes everything great about the original’s formula, and adds slight tweaks aimed at presentation, gameplay, difficulty and accessibility.
What Heroes ends up doing, therefore, is repeat a winning formula that will no doubt satisfy fans, while simultaneously welcoming newcomers into the endless runner RPG fold.Just like its predecessor, Dash Quest Heroes is an endless runner distinguished from its endless runner associates thanks to the addition of a tight RPG framework. The protagonist is a nameless hero who embarks on a quest to save the Kingdom of Solas from a seemingly endless number of enemies. Along the way, players can customize their hero with a variety of different equipment, gain experience points to level up, gain powerful skills, forge new equipment from the scraps of trashed gear, and even meet a colourful cast of supporting characters who supply equipment, potions, more skills and aid.
And make no mistake, players will need all the upgrades they can get. While the original Dash Quest was a nonetheless fun game to play, its difficulty never truly overcame its mobile origins. That is to say, Dash Quest only occasionally bordered on difficult, and most game overs didn’t result from a lack of skill on the part of the player, but simply because certain bosses and enemies were artificially overpowered in a way designed to prevent players from continuing through the game.
Heroes, however, tweaks that difficulty formula, eliminates the level-gate enemies, and transforms the game into something enjoyable challenging.Unlike its predecessor, Heroes’ enemy character even level up as the player levels up. Which means that you won’t need to worry about slogging through early levels after every game over — you’ll get to test your skill with more difficult enemies.
Of course, the game is never impossibly difficult, but I found that I had to focus more on combining offensive and defensive gameplay — while actually paying attention to my magic consumption — rather than simply bruteforcing my way by purchasing a particularly powerful weapon.
On that subject of purchasing power, it should be mentioned that Heroes fixes the original’s overabundance of loot drops. In Heroes, players can earn gold by watching short 30-second ads, by waiting for lootbox refreshes every few hours or so, or, of course, spending real-world money on in-game currency. However, the game remains an oft-rewarding experience for players looking for those who choose to invest time, sweat and effort rather than real money.Ultimately, Heroes is yet another enjoyable mobile entry from a Canadian studio leaving their mark on the mobile game market.
Dash Quest Heroes is free-to-download on both Android and iOS.
Sameer Chhabra is a recent graduate from the University of Western Ontario’s Master of Media in Journalism and Communication program. In his free time, Sameer can be found watching Aaron Sorkin-penned dramas and trying to learn about the stories that Canadians don’t know they don’t know.