Games for the Weekend is a weekly feature aimed at helping you avoid doing something constructive with your downtime. Each Friday we’ll be recommending a game for Mac, iPhone or iPad that we think is awesome. Here is one cool enough to keep you busy during this weekend.
He-Man: He-Man: The Most Powerful Game in the Universe (Free, Universal) is an arcade-style game based on the classic 80s cartoon hero He-Man and the Masters of the Universe. Skeletor is up to his old tricks and manages to steal He-Man’s key to castle Grayskull. It is up to you to get it back.
Sliding your left thumb back and forth controls which direction He-Man is moving. Tapping on the right side of the screen will attack and a quick swipe up on the right side of the screen will cause He-Man to jump. A double swipe results in a double jump. After you jump you can continuously attack while in the air. Attacking in such a manner will keep you floating until the attack has completed. This is a helpful trick as enemies can come at you from both sides, while you can only attack one side at a time.
Throughout the game you collect crystals that can be used to purchase power ups in the in game’s store on Ethernia, He-Man’s home world. These power ups vary in strength and cost. When it comes to the combat upgrades for He-Man in particular, there is the overhead combo, the tornado spin, arial smash, thunder punch, axe throw and power slice. Each one of these special skills can be used to help defeat He-Man’s enemies on various levels throughout the game.
Chasing Skeletor throughout seven areas of Eternia, He-Man faces several different foes from the cartoon series on each of the 27 different levels. There are huge boss fights that are more challenging to fight than the common foes you face along your journey. The levels themselves get more challenging and puzzle-like as well. Fireballs come crashing down upon you, traps try to crush you and lava pits try to drown you. Getting your timing right and figuring out when to attack becomes a key element in gameplay — so much so that saving up 20,000 crystals in order to purchase the Strength of Eternia is well worth it. Do you suffer an attack or risk getting killed by the trap? The Strength of Eternia will give you an extra heart container and raise the combo multiplier to five times. It is the most well-rounded upgrade available in the store.
Once you feel like you are the master of this game’s universe, you can switch characters and start the game all over again as She-Ra, He-Man’s twin sister. One thing you will notice right away is that She-Ra can jump much higher than He-Man in the earlier levels, to the extent that hidden passages and extra gems are much easier to obtain when playing as She-Ra. The controls respond a little differently as she is a bit quicker and more responsive. She-Ra also has a different collection of power up skills that she can use: a glitter wave, honor dodge, air dance, power thrust and stiletto stomp atr her combat upgrades. Her style of fighting can affect the way you approach certain levels.
When you do happen to die you will be introduced to Orko’s Game of Chance. Orko is a magical character that helps out He-Man and She-Ra from time to time. The most common way Orko helps out is by bringing you back to life at the very spot you ended up dying. If you are lucky, you will be granted Battle Armor or a Gem Pack that you can utilize more effectively in the game.
Knowledge of the cartoon series is not required to enjoy this game, but does add a better understanding to the characters’ interactions with one another. It is interesting how the two main characters, He-Man and She-Ra, really do change how you play the game based on their unique set of power ups and abilities. This is a great game if you are looking for a platform-based, arcade-style game and, of course, 1980s cartoon heroes.