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[XBLA/PSN] Clash of Heroes: Puzzle-RPG goodness, imma chargin' my deer
Who: Might & Magic: Clash of Heroes What: A fantastic turn-based puzzle/RPG hybrid that was one of the best DS games of 2009, and now has new life on the 360 and PS3 with online play. Where: XBLA and PSN, for $15 / 1200 spacebucks When: Right now! Why is this a Might & Magic game: I don't really know, but it's such a great puzzle game that it doesn't really matter what the story is.
My love of Capybara and the original DS version of Clash of Heroes knows no bounds, and now it's out on XBLA and PSN with all-new 2D art assets and online play! Even if you don't care one whit about the Might & Magic universe, or the art doesn't really do anything for you, if you have any love for Puzzle Quest, Dungeon Raid or the slew of other puzzle/RPGs that have cropped up recently, you absolutely need to try this game.
I've described the game prior as a blend of the following:
Tetris Attack/Panel de Pon: You've got very classic match-3 gameplay going on here, but there's a large emphasis on chaining moves together into combinations of matches. Clash of Heroes is turn-based, so you have a limited number of moves per turn to methodically line up and knock out combinations. Create vertical sets of units to attack your opponent, and horizontal sets of units to build walls for defense.
Meteos: The game is set up as a series of 1v1 duels, and the goal is to knock out your opponent's HP. You do this by creating attacks, which launch up at your opponent's screen above after a set number of charging turns. Each different unit has different stats (attack, defense, charge time, special qualities, etc.).
Magic the Gathering: In addition to the conceit of the game being 1v1 duels, you can choose from a stable of characters and character factions, each of whom has different types of units. You can customize your "deck" of units to fit your playstyle, in addition to finding and equipping relics in the single-player campaign that give you bonus abilities.
It's an incredibly deep and complex puzzle-battling game with a decently sized single-player campaign, and the fact that there's online play fulfills one of the major wishes I had about the DS original.