Game Reviews

Second Chance Heroes

Star onStar onStar onStar onStar off
Second Chance Heroes

A house divided against itself cannot stand, especially if Honest Abe Lincoln has gone and wrecked that house with his trusty chainsaw.

Second Chance Heroes by Rocket City Studios is a twin-stick shooter with an odd premise, to say the least. It's also full of disco-dancing werewolves and arcade-loving zombies.

Despite some minor problems, there's enough weird content here to make anyone smile - even jaded monster-hunters that swore off all things undead ages ago.

The heroes we need

Second Chance Heroes opens with a zombie apocalypse. The critters quickly overrun humanity, and one history teacher assumes (correctly, as it turns out) that people today lack the strength and conviction to fight monsters.

Luckily, he has a solution. It just so happens this teacher has been cloning history's greatest heroes in basement vats, and their time has come. Abraham Lincoln, Cleopatra, Tesla, Marie Curie, and Joan of Arc are back, and they're ready to fry some zombie flesh.

Clean up in all the aisles

Second Chance Heroes's action takes place in locales typical of monster siege movies, including a mall and a government bunker. It revels in the cliché, however, and mixes things up by getting you to distract the undead in interesting ways.

It is determined, for example, that zombies gorge on brains because they're bored, and therefore resort to 'stress eating'. Therefore, your mall-based missions revolve around finding ways to keep the monsters happy and stimulated, including re-activating a defunct disco and attempting to put on a magic show.

Obviously, not all your problems with the undead are negotiated peacefully in Second Chance Heroes. There's a lot of zombie murder going on here, too. The left on-screen stick moves your hero, while the right stick allows them to attack in whichever direction you push.

Some heroes are melee attackers (Abe and his chainsaw), while others attack from a distance (Cleopatra and her magic).

Aside from a trademark weapon, each hero also has command over a special attack. These are powered by skill points that regenerate on their own, and can really save your ancient bacon when the enemies really start pouring onto the screen.

Tsunami of the undead

And make no mistake: there's no shortage of enemies in Second Chance Heroes. They come at you in relentless waves, even early in the game. These moving walls of bad guys make things frankly aggravating at times, because it's easy to lose sight of your hero under all that undulating putrid flesh.

The game also boasts ultra-detailed backgrounds that can make it hard to see what you're doing and where you're going at times. Important objects and switches are highlighted, so you never remain lost for long.

Keep in mind that Second Chance Heroes has a multiplayer option that lets you cut things up with a stranger or a friend. Don't be afraid to use it (though be prepared for occasional lag).

Heck, even when the action gets stupidly intense in the single-player campaign, you're probably still going to have a good time. Doing away with zombies is intensely satisfying thanks to all the gory gargling and belching.

If you're into dual-stick shooters, you should definitely go for some hands-on history lessons with the cast of Second Chance Heroes. Just don't expect to ace any tests with the knowledge you earn.

Second Chance Heroes

Despite a hiccup here and there, Second Chance Heroes is full of gut-splattering historical hysteria