Sega Heroes Review, Sega Finally Does A True Mashup

Sega Heroes Mobile

Sega, seemingly always the second run to Nintendo, has finally released a true mashup title. I am sure for most fans of Sega this is big news and something they have been looking forward to for years. Sure, back in the 32-bit era they did a mashup of sorts with Fighters Megamix but that was pretty limited in scope to focus on their fighting franchises (outside of a few oddball character additions such as the Daytona car). Sega Heroes gives us a true mashup covering nearly everything character Sega has made available over the years. Almost because, so far, there are no dragons from Panzer Dragoon, or beasts from the Golden Axe franchise (nor cars from their racing games). We can’t win them all. Oh, did I mention Sega Heroes is a match 3 Bejeweled style game?

Yeah, I had to slip in the genre at the end there because most gamers would have skipped this review had I opened with it. Sure, we lost more than a few already but for those that are still here, there is quite a bit going on here that is good, some bad, and some even great.

The story of Sega Heroes is the usual “mashup” fair. There is an overpowering evil person, Dremagen, that has discovered the world of Sega. Not content, nor being part of a powerful evil person, Dremagen sets out to bring the Sega universe under her control. As usual, evil seeks out evil and Dremagen is no exception as she has teamed up with Dr. Eggman Robotnik (um, okay, that is one way to bring the two naming standards together). Dremagen, with the help of Dr. Robotnik has brought Sega’s strongest characters from many of their iconic franchises – Streets of Rage, Shinobi, Golden Axe, etc (though, so far, no sign of Virtua Fighter) to her negative dimension where she reigns supreme. In this dimension, Dremagen has been able to clone the various Sega characters and has set this clone army out to end the lives of the original characters.

Hey, it is about the only storyline trope that can work so I cannot blame Sega for going with it to explain the clones and mashing up of so many different games and their characters.

Now, as already mentioned, this is a match 3 Bejeweled style game. Not like those games that claim that but are closer in design to a game known as “lines”. Here, you are truly playing a Bejeweled style game that has Sega characters battling on the top portion of the screen.

As with similar titles in this sub-genre, the colored icons you are matching are connected to one of the characters or actions available. As matches are made, the corresponding character will attack the enemy. Also with each match the bar underneath each character will slowly fill up (true for the enemy as well). When this bar is filled up you can perform the super move for that character by tapping them.

That is the basics of Sega Heroes.

Now for the more complex parts.

You can upgrade your heroes based on available materials and your gold reserves as each upgrade requires both (sometimes more than one material).

Materials for upgrades and gold are both acquired by winning battles, buying them in the store with gold or gems (both can be purchased with real money as well here), or winning them in daily free chests (several each day).

Yes, there are In-App Purchases in this game and there is a pay-wall to be concerned about.

This is basically Sega’s version of Pokemon with battles occurring on an icon filled board and requiring a bit more strategy than just picking moves from a menu.

In the main game the levels are broken up into island type collections. Complete each level and win the purse – including things like character upgrade cards, gold, material for upgrades, gems, etc. You can replay the levels you have beaten as many times as you have energy to do so (yep, another IAP that restricts just how much you can play over a set time).

One thing that Sega got right, and more developers need to copy, is the ability to simply “loot” a level once, or multiple times if you have the energy, if you have previously beaten it and earned three stars. I like this. A lot. This has saved me a lot of time grinding to get materials or money to do an upgrade I needed for the special challenges.

Special challenges are just that. A collection of levels with a specific goal. The winners purse in these levels is much better than in the normal game – as is the challenge level. Enemies have much more energy, and deal more damage, in these special levels. On top of that, there are often more rounds per level to battle through in these special levels.

Some of these special levels will throw a wrench in your plans by requiring a certain character be on your team. Then on top of that, you may have to have that character at a certain level before attempting the challenge (this can also occur in later levels of a challenge).

This requires you to grind earning upgrades for that character, if you can. If you don’t have any levels in the regular game to grind on, you can sometimes luck out and buy upgrade cards in the store. Unfortunately, as you upgrade your characters they will require more cards to upgrade again. This means more grinding or more spending of in game money.

There is an arena portion where you can fight other players and earn rankings. Other than bragging rights, there is not a lot to say about this mode. There is also a Guilds section where you can join like minded gamers and form a loose team.

Graphically, Sega has created new sprites for the characters and that is great news. They could have just taken the cheap route and pulled sprites from the various games for these characters but they did not do that. I do hope that they expand on these new character graphics with new games in those franchises (a lot of the work is done already).

Just be prepared, there is a pay-wall to worry about. The good thing is, that wall is about 10 to 15 hours into the game. For a free to play, with In-App Purchases, game that is quite a bit of playing before hitting a stopping point where advancement is nearly impossible without certain characters at certain levels.

While not perfect, Sega Heroes is a lot of fun but I also love this type of game. I have been a fan of this style since first playing Puzzle Quest on the PlayStation Portable a decade ago.

Now, who do we talk to about getting a similar mashup for all of those Sega brawlers like Golden Axe, Streets of Rage, etc?

Sega Heroes by Sega
Platform: Android and iPhone
Genre: Match 3, Bejeweled
In App Purchases: Yes, there is a pay-wall about 10 to 15 hours in
Rated: E for Everyone on Google Play and 9+ on iTunes
Available now on Google Play and the iTunes App Store

Carl has been gaming on the go since the days of Tiger Electronics and the original Game Boy. Portability is a big factor in gaming across all ages.