Having fallen from being first in the succession line to the throne to the 18th, things aren’t going so well for our would have been monarch. Figuring his way back into Grace is through defeating an evil dark lord so that people can see just how amazing he is, our young price Elric heads out to do just that. Unfortunately for him, he didn’t read the fine print of this amusement park attraction and unfortunately for you, the new part timer tour guide, it’s up to you to make his stay a good one even if he thinks it’s all real.
Heroland is definitely an interesting simulator. Within it lies everything you could ever need for an epic dungeon crawling RPG with plenty of monsters, leveling up and loot. Where things take the twist is that none of it is real. Instead, our adventure takes place in a theme park designed to give the experience of dungeon crawling to any who would pay for it and your job as a part time tour guide, is to make sure the customers that you are escorting are happy. With your handicap already raised from a spoiled scion of royalty? Your work is already cut out for you!
Once introductions are made and a near priceless vase has been broken no longer allowing you to quit this increasingly horrible job of escorting the prince around, you settle into your new daily routine. Starting at the beginning of every day, you can explore the island to talk to your coworkers or view scenes from visitors to the park before heading over to the item shop to buy potions and the blacksmith to make or repair better weapons. Once this is done, you can escort your guests into the dungeons for the real reason that they are here. To feel like actual adventurers!
The dungeon setups are kind of neat. Set in a selectable list, you can either immediately explore the story dungeon, OR, you can plow through any dungeon floor that had been previously conquered to grind for some experience, cash, loot, and satisfaction points to your tour guide status. While none of it is real within the actual amusement park, your guests still level up mechanically to move through the floors, hence grinding the experience. For money and loot though, those you’re going to need in order to buy new potions and equipment for those that you are guiding as it comes out of your pay. Not their admittance.
For actual dungeon layout, you’ll be guiding your party through almost board game spaces on a line that after the first couple outings will start to have branches for choices in what you want to do. Each space contains either a fight against monsters, a story event or an encounter with a merchant before facing off against the boss and then gaining the treasure. You can always clearly see what your going to be doing next so there’s at least no surprises in that sense.
Now when your deep in the dungeon you’ve got to ask yourself one question: ‘Do I feel lucky?’ Well, do ya, punk? And you’ll be asking yourself that often as the weapons that you give your guests can be broken and they can break at the worst of times. When you’re broke because you just spent allllll of your money on the dungeon trip prior to that one and have to buy more potions because things didn’t quite go according to plan. This is really all dependant on your luck really so someone like Richard? Oh boy… he would constantly be broke because none of his weapons would survive more than a single dungeon crawl.
Unlike the movement through the dungeon that is one step at a time, the combat is real time in either normal or three times speed. Keeping in line with your position as a guide, you are literally there to guide the party as they act on their own instincts for what they think is best for the good of the party. Now because just sitting around for the park’s guests to either win or lose would be boring, you personally have a meter that fills out allowing you to either rally the the party, give an actual order, or use items to heal those that are following you.