OK K.O.! Let’s Play Heroes makes me wonder how Cartoon Network games are not a lot more popular.
I seriously don’t know how Cartoon Network games aren’t a lot more popular. Their shows have massive followings, and the games are amazing extensions of the shows. The two Cartoon Network games I played at E3, are like the Spider-Man 2 Game to the Spider-Man movies. The capturing of the franchise’s essence is so prevalent and enjoyable that it should almost be a requirement to play the game to be considered a true fan. In OK K.O.! Let’s Play Heroes case, I can understand because the show doesn’t release until August. So, consider this your chance to get in on the fandom early.
OK K.O.! Let’s Play Heroes is a beat-em-up brawler that plays by the rules of the cartoon. It has some RPG elements and focuses on deep combat mechanics that are the perfect combination of being easy to learn and difficult to master. As you progress you’ll unlock new abilities and super moves, as well as build your collection POW cards which will grant you some awesome assists in battle.
After playing the game, I decided I had to watch the show. Luckily, CartoonNetwork.com has the first two episodes online to stream. The cartoony look of the game perfectly captures and enhances the immersion into Lakewood Plaza Turbo (the world of OK K.O.! Let’s be Heroes) and Gar’s Supply & Bodega. At first glance it appears 2-dimensional and basic, but it is fully realized and explorable world-erm plaza. On top of the art style, the transitions between areas really captures the spirit of the show. Inside Gar’s, you can enter the store, and travel down the middle isle which has your character get larger as you walk towards the camera then subtly shifts direction to have you walk down the rest of the isle. I’m pretty sure I didn’t explain it right, but if you saw it, it comes off as if you’re watching the show rather than playing the game. It’s very subtle, but it really helps enhance the fun factor of roaming around to complete menial tasks. The dialog is equally as impressive, and objectively funny. It captures the shows parody/homage of fandom of super heroes and Anime, in particular. Instead of having dialog options, you choose a style in which K.O. responds. He can respond with three different styles; which I believe changes depending on the situation, but usually you have a cool response, joyful response, and a distasteful one. Your responses also determine the relationships with the characters which also dictates where the story goes. Capy Games, the developer, did an amazing job of bringing the world of OK K.O.! Let’s be Heroes to life.
OK K.O.! Let’s Play Heroes’ gameplay has two distinct parts, the questing/RPG and the figthing. The questing part of the game, has K.O. running around exploring the plaza, interacting with characters, and completing quests. Standard, but thanks to great dialogue and implementation, very engaging and rewarding. A large part of the game, is collecting POW cards. POW cards allows for K.O. to summon in the character on the POW card to assist him in battle. The best part of the POW cards are looking over your collection in the POW cards menu, which is stylized to look like a sheet of 3×3 plastic card holders in a binder. It’s a nice touch of nostalgia that really captures to fandom of K.O. and is child-like innocence. POW cards also level up based on K.O.’s relationship to the character on the card. The more powerful the relationship, the more powerful the card is. Relationships are built by completing quests for the characters.
The battle system to the game is combo/directional based. There’s a single attack button that combos after repeated pressing, and also changes depending on the direction you push the thumb stick. Kind of like a single button Smash Bros. On top of the K.O. brawling it out, you are able to take two POW cards with you to summon assists from other characters throughout the game. The power of the assists depend on the card’s level, which is determined by your relationship to the character on the card, and the card’s rarity.
OK K.O.! Let’s Play Heroes is a fun and hilarious game that makes me even more excited for the show. The story and presence of the game is a great homage and parody of what it’s like to be a dedicated fan of super powered individuals, especially if you’re an Anime fan. It does poke a little fun at the fandom, but also really understands and honors it. Add in the easy to learn, hard to master, fast, action-packed game play, and you have a fun, hilariously awesome game that is great for fans of action-adventure in any genre.
OK K.O.! Let’s Play Heroes is set to release this fall (2017), published by Cartoon Network and developed by Capy Games, on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Steam. It has an ESRB of E10+.
- Game Features
- Play as K.O.! Unlock tons of sweet abilities, including righteous “Super Moves”
- Collect POW cards and level them up for powerful battle assists.
- Build relationships to establish &strengthen character storylines through side-quests
- Development closely partnered with OK K.O.! Show creator Ian Jones-Quartey
- Coincide with major show launch, “OK K.O.! Let’s Be Heroes!”