As the iPad gets more popular, more and more iPhone titles are finding themselves given the HD treatment and blown up to accommodate the tablets larger size. Sadly, not all of these upgrades really work. For example, Across Age was an iPhone RPG in the vein of the 16-bit Zelda titles that won praise across the board. It was given the iPad treatment recently and things didnt work out too well. The virtual d-pad was made far too large in relation to the games overall button placement, and it made the simple to control game a hand-cramping chore to play. But it isnt just the controls that have made some iPad ports a downer when compared to their original iPhone versions. Graphics, features, stability, etc. have plagued some of the best games in their ported states, and nothing hurts more than seeing something you loved hurt by what should be a simple transition to a bigger screen. Which brings us to The Hero, a fun action game that just doesnt work as well on the iPad as it did on the iPhone. Why? There is too much screen and the characters havent been scaled up to match. And it really, really shows.
In The Hero you play as, duh, the hero. You fly around a 2D landscape, stopping criminals, saving innocents, diffusing bombs, etc., generally being the hero. There are a good bunch of different levels to clean up, and high scores and time trials to shoot for. The game controls much like the insanely good and mega popular Super Mega Worm, where you have a slider that governs the angle of your unstoppable flight. Moving the slider left and right swings the hero any direction you please, and while it works well, it does take a little getting used to. Once you are able to get a handle on things, youll be flying around like nobodys business, easily saving all kinds of people from evil. The game also controls with the accelerometer, but the iPad is far too bulky to make this a workable control alternative.
The games presentation is where cracks begin to show. The cartoonish graphics work well with the game, but lack a serious amount of detail that should be present in an HD upgrade of an iPhone game. Also, the hero and the other characters on screen are criminally tiny. This may have worked fine on the iPhones smaller display, but there is too much screen real estate on the iPad that is wasted on boring backgrounds and under-detailed character models. The whole thing comes off as underwhelming and kind of blah, especially when you hold it up next to other games that have successfully made the jump from the phone to the pad.
The Hero isnt a bad or boring game, it is merely OK. It was a lot better as an iPhone title, and the HD upgrade just wasnt put together all that well. If you are in for this type of action, I urge you to check out Super Mega Worm first. If that doesnt sate your appetite for slider-controller scorefests, the by all means, give The Hero a try. Just dont be surprised if you are underwhelmed by the whole thing.
Final Rating: 65%