According to ESRB, this game contains: Language, Mild Fantasy Violence

Heroes of Mana ScreenshotHeroes of Mana Screenshot

Parents shouldn't be too concerned about letting older children play Heroes of Mana. The "fantasy violence" is just that-swordplay and mushrooms whacking each other, without any blood to be seen-and the bad language is the kind of fare you'd find in a PG-rated movie. That said, there's a fair amount of reading involved. Most importantly, the game's roshambo-like strategy isn't as intuitive as in something like Pokémon or even Mega Man.

Real-time strategy fans have much better games to play. Heroes of Mana is difficult without being very deep-a frustrating combination if ever there was one. The "challenge" is mostly due to uncertainty about who does what to whom. It's hard to know which of the opponents are "ground units," heavy units," etc.

Secret of Mana/Seiken Densetsu fans should know that this game is real-time strategy, unlike other games in the series. It's also not very good real-time strategy, either.

Deaf and Hard of Hearing gamers should have few problems playing this game. All dialogue, tutorials and mission objectives are written in text. However, the whack! sounds of fighters hitting each other can alert players to when units offscreen are in danger. I did manage to play several missions without sound-no problems.

Tera Kirk

Tera Kirk

Tera Kirk grew up in a small Nebraska town called Papillion. Although she has a nonverbal learning disability that affects her visual-spatial skills (among other things), she's always loved video games. Her first game system was a Commodore Vic-20, which her mom bought at a garage sale for $20. With this little computer Tera learned to write Mad Libs in BASIC, to play chess and to steal gold from Fort Knox.

But then a friend introduced her to the seedy underworld of the Mario brothers and she spent her saved-up birthday and Christmas money to buy a Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). Her mom didn't like the Nintendo at first, but The Legend of Zelda changed her mind. (When Tera got Zelda II: The Adventure of Link one Christmas, she suspected it was as much for her mother as for her).

Though she graduated from Agnes Scott College in 2002 and recently learned how to find the movie theater restroom by herself, Tera still loves video games. Far from being a brain-rotting waste of time, they've helped her practice spatial skills and discover new passions. Her love of games like Kid Icarus and The Battle of Olympus led to a degree in Classical Languages and Literatures. She thinks games have a place in discussions on disability and other cultural issues, and is excited to work with the like-minded staff at GameCritics.com.
Tera Kirk

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