DescriptionVertical Drop Heroes HD is a vertically oriented platform game. It borrows some design elements from the earlier browser title Vertical Drop Heroes, but is wholly different. It consists of ten levels, randomly generated, but each with a specific theme. At the start the player chooses one of the three randomly generated characters. They differ in health, damage output, primary weapon and two special abilities. Two additional perks are provided after some have been unlocked in the game. In exchange for five coins characters can be re-rolled.
The game starts at the Temple of Knowledge, the main hub. It provides a portal to start the next level and there are NPCs that provide upgrades. Each level starts at the top and the character needs to travel down a platform environment to defeat a boss at the bottom, completing the level. Alternatively you can use five keys to unlock the portal, bypassing the boss. Platform elements include water to swim, bombs, spikes, crumbling tiles, mushroom jump pads, slippery ice etc. Based on the chosen character a melee weapon such as a stick or an axe, or a ranged weapon such as a bow is used. A bow only has a limited amount of arrows and they need to be retrieved after shooting them. Damage can also be done by jumping on to of enemies. While going down coins can be collected. There are also treasure chests that provide coins, keys, gems or health. Keys are used to open up better chests, but they can also free trapped characters. Once freed they fight along with you. There are mages that shoot fireballs, paladins, and thieves that leave behind coins.
By defeating enemies, experience is gained to level up, improving the main statistics for health and damage output. Coins can be exchanged at merchants to acquire new special abilities that are then added to the character creations process. Examples are a mega jump, fire blast, creating clone allies, a shield, daggers, a polymorph to change enemies, a death puppet ally, stomp, ice attacks, a fire trap and more. There are various shrines that offers bonuses such as invisibility, flight, full recovery of all abilities, maximum damage, a special attack etc. These usually require coins to activate. Other NPCs offer short quests to retrieve a number of items or to defeat a certain enemy. There are portals to warp back to the start of the level to collect what was missed. Levels have alarm posts that spawn more enemies when triggered and optional challenges where enemies appear in exchange for an item.
Next to the regular gameplay the pacifist route can be chosen. When not engaging in combat, peace orbs appear that provide experience or gold. As soon as a single enemy is attacked, all orbs disappear from the level. At the main hub, coins can be spent on permanent upgrades. There is a blacksmith who improves weapons, the apothecary with health upgrades, and the pacific monk who raises the peace orbs rewards. Each time a new level is reached the player can buy a green gem during the new level to unlock a portal to start at that level right away in exchange for coins. After completing the entire game once, a red crystal shard is activated to start New Game+.
The game supports cooperative multiplayer games for up to two players, in split-screen or through a local network.
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