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Glory of Heracles (series)

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Glory of Heracles (series)

Glory of Heracles (ヘラクレスの栄光 Herakuresu no Eikō) is a Japanese role-playing video game series originally developed and published by Data East. The series began in 1987 with Tōjin Makyō Den: Heracles no Eikō, and three sequels were released until 1994 in addition to a portable spinoff game released in 1992.

After Data East's bankruptcy in 2003, Nintendo and Paon acquired the rights to the series, and release the latest installment in the series, Heracles no Eikō: Tamashii no Shōmei for the Nintendo DS in 2008.[1] None of the games have been officially released outside of Japan until E3 2009, at which the latest game was announced by Nintendo simply as Glory of Heracles.

The series is based in the world of Greek mythology, with the Greek hero Heracles as the title character of each game. However, Heracles only serves as the main character in the original game and the Game Boy spinoff, and plays a support role in all subsequent games.

Games

Title Details
Tōjin Makyō Den: Heracles no Eikō

Original release date(s):
  • JP June 12, 1987 (1987-06-12)
Release years by system:
Famicom
Notes:

Tōjin Makyō Den: Heracles no Eikō (闘人魔境伝 ヘラクレスの栄光, "Legend of the Fighting Demon's Lair: Glory of Heracles"[2]) is the first game of the series. The player takes the role of a young Heracles who seeks to rescue Venus from captivity in Hades. The game's events are loosely based around The Twelve Labors of Heracles, and the game's bosses are designed in accordance with the content of each labor.


Heracles no Eikō II: Titan no Metsubō

Original release date(s):
  • JP December 23, 1989 (1989-12-23)
Release years by system:
Famicom
Notes:

Heracles no Eikō II: Titan no Metsubō (ヘラクレスの栄光II タイタンの滅亡, "Glory of Heracles II: Titan's Downfall"[2]) is the second game of the series. Unlike the first game in the series, Heracles is no longer the player-controlled character. Instead, the player takes the role of a young boy living in an age where Heracles is already recognized as a legendary hero. The boy learns that the last-remaining offspring of the Titans has crowned himself the king of darkness, causing chaos across the world, and sets off on a journey to defeat the evil king.

Though the game is set to take place directly after the events of the original Heracles no Eikō, the game's plot creates several inconsistencies in the series timeline. The portable spinoff, Heracles no Eikō: Ugokidashita Kamigami, was released in 1992 to fill the gap between the two games.

The party system is newly introduced into the series, along with time-flow, where the game passes between daytime and nighttime. Most of the characteristics from the original Heracles no Eikō were scrapped, and a basic game system used for many RPGs of the time period was employed in their stead. Though no longer containing a particularly unique game system, Heracles no Eikō II is characterized by its tragic, dramatic storyline, which employs various motifs from Greek mythology. All subsequent releases in the series follow the basic format established in this game.

The game's scenario was written by Kazushige Nojima.[3]


Heracles no Eikō III: Kamigami no Chinmoku

Original release date(s):
Super Famicom
  • JP April 24, 1992 (1992-04-24)

Virtual Console
  • JP April 6, 2007 (2007-04-06)

Mobile Phones
  • JP July 14, 2008 (2008-07-14)
Release years by system:
Super Famicom, Virtual Console, Mobile Phones
Notes:

Heracles no Eikō III: Kamigami no Chinmoku (ヘラクレスの栄光III 神々の沈黙, "Glory of Heracles III: Silence of the Gods") is the third installment of the series. Originally released for the Super Famicom, it was released on the Japanese Virtual Console in 2007 and a mobile phone in 2008 by G-Mode.[4]

The game's plot and setting are loosely based around various episodes included in Greek mythology. The hero begins the game in a state of total memory-loss, but discovers that he has somehow acquired a mysterious power that shields him from all bodily harm, essentially making him immortal. The only clue the hero has in discovering his own identity is a mysterious dream that he sees every night, and he begins his journey in search of the location shown in the dream.

The gameplay borrows various motifs from ancient mythology, particularly the concept of immortality. An immortal character can execute certain actions that other characters cannot, like jumping off high cliffs without being injured. The game's writer, Kazushige Nojima, composed a storyline where the hero encounters the Greek gods while trying to discover his own true identity. Like the game's predecessor, Heracles no Eikō II: Titan no Metsubō, the game focuses on its rich storyline rather than the game system, which does not differ significantly from other role-playing video games of the period.


Heracles no Eikō: Ugokidashita Kamigami

Original release date(s):
Game Boy
  • JP December 27, 1992 (1992-12-27)

3DS Virtual Console
  • JP August 24, 2011 (2011-08-24)
Release years by system:
Game Boy, 3DS Virtual Console
Notes:

Heracles no Eikō: Ugokidashita Kamigami - The Snap-Story (ヘラクレスの栄光 動き出した神々 The Snap-Story, "Glory of Heracles: The Gods Began to Move - The Snap-Story") is the fourth game of the series and is the only spinoff of the series. It is the only other game in the series that features Heracles as the main playable character. The story is set shortly after the events of the first game, where Heracles is summoned by Zeus to prevent the resurrection of Cronus by Bloodlord and his minions.

The battle system is like that of the first game, where Heracles is limited to simply attacking, defending and using items, but during a fight the player can be assisted by a God which they have chosen to accompany Heracles. Gods do not level up, but they usually have high stats and powerful magic. As the player levels up, they can gain another God they can bring with them from Olympus, but they are only allowed to take one at a time.


Heracles no Eikō IV: Kamigami kara no Okurimono

Original release date(s):
Super Famicom
  • JP October 21, 1994 (1994-10-21)

Virtual Console
  • JP April 22, 2008 (2008-04-22)
Release years by system:
Super Famicom, Virtual Console
Notes:

Heracles no Eikō IV: Kamigami kara no Okurimono (ヘラクレスの栄光IV 神々からの贈り物, "Glory of Heracles IV: Gift from the Gods") is the fifth installment of the series (fourth game in the main series), released after the portable spinoff Heracles no Eikō: Ugokidashita Kamigami. The game was made available for the Virtual Console in 2008.[4] The player takes the role of a young man whose spirit was separated from his body. The player must progress by having the spirit enter and take control over the bodies of various humans and animals encountered along the way.

The game's plot and setting are very loosely based around various episodes from Greek mythology, with a particular focus on Atlantis and the tale of Pandora's box. In addition to writing the scenario, Kazushige Nojima was also the director for this game.



Original release date(s):
  • JP May 22, 2008 (2008-05-22)
  • NA January 18, 2010 (2010-01-18)
Release years by system:
Nintendo DS
Notes:

Glory of Heracles, known as Heracles no Eikō: Tamashii no Shōmei (ヘラクレスの栄光 魂の証明, "Glory of Heracles: Proof of the Soul") in Japan, was developed by Paon and published by Nintendo in 2008 for the Nintendo DS, which makes it the first and only game in the series that Data East was not involved with, although former Data East employee and writer of Heracles no Eikō II, III and IV again wrote the scenario.[2] Revealed at E3 2009, the fifth game would be the first in the series to make an international release in 2010.


References

  1. ^ ヘラクレスの栄光 ~魂の証明~ (in Japanese).  
  2. ^ a b c "Nintendo". Retrieved 13 October 2014. 
  3. ^ "Interview with Kazushige Nojima at Gpara (Japanese)" (in Japanese). gpara.com. Retrieved 2009-03-11. 
  4. ^ a b "ジー・モード、iモード「ヘラクレスの栄光III 神々の沈黙」人気を博した「ヘラクレスの栄光III」が携帯アプリに!" (in Japanese). watch.impress.co.jp. Retrieved 2008-08-03. 

External links

  • Nintendo E3 2009: Glory of Heracles
  • (Nintendo DS) official websiteGlory of Heracles
  • official websiteHeracles no Eikō: Tamashii no Shōmei (Japanese)
  • official G-Mode websiteGlory of Heracles III (Japanese)


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