Mixed or average reviews - based on 32 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 32
  2. Negative: 4 out of 32
Buy On
  1. Play Magazine
    Heroes will go down as the game that got me into real-time strategy. [Aug 2007, p.72]
  2. A fun new experience in the Mana series but sadly, bad AI and path finding really drags down the gameplay. [JPN Import]
  3. 80
    The presentation is great, the fully-animated sequences are simply beautiful, the music is captivating (not as much as something like Final Fantasy, but still pretty impressive), and for the most part the gameplay is intuitive and downright fun.
  4. Games Master UK
    A great effort, only let down by some confusing battles and some clunky controls. [Oct 2007, p.70]
  5. Only try it if you are a hardcore fan, or if you are willing to master an inefficient and frustrating control system.
  6. Nintendo Gamer
    A frustratingly slow pace and the sad realisation that a humdinger of a plot is zooming over our heads are the only problems here. Otherwise one of the best RTS games on DS. [JPN Import; June 2007, p.54]
  7. 75
    Hardcore RTS fans probably won't enjoy Heroes of Mana's simplified design. And fans of more traditional RPGs probably won't appreciate its chaotic, large-scale engagements, either. Taken for what it is, though, Heroes is an enjoyable little excursion.
  8. A surprisingly deep RTS experience in a portable format, with easy to learn controls and lovely visuals. I can’t help wishing it had been turned-based, though.
  9. To have this style of game on a handheld like the DS is unexplored territory and is quite remarkable. However, those looking for an RPG are left out in the dark.
  10. The game has an excellent storyline, spanning a lengthy quest set in the Mana realm, and up to 40 bonus maps can be unlocked.
  11. Heroes of Mana shows that it is possible to have an RTS game work on the Nintendo DS and remain fun. The main problem with this game is the dumb AI and very slow-paced gameplay.
  12. 70
    Heroes of Mana could conceivably have the best RTS controls yet on a non-PC RTS game.
  13. Official Nintendo Magazine UK
    Too convoluted and generally annoying to be any real fun - it's a competent effort, but there are genuinely better attempts at the genre on the way if you can wait. [Nov 2007, p.89]
  14. There are a lot of good things to like here, for instance the story, and the overall design behind battle, but there are some nagging issues like the character pathing and balance that keep this from being a winning title.
  15. Nintendo Power
    Shimomura, and a lengthy story campaign make Heroes seem like a home run, and it would be if not for one flaw: Shoddy AI. [Sep 2007, p.87]
  16. If you’re a hardcore Mana fan, desperate for an SRPG on the DS, or want to try something new, Heroes of Mana is a fun game. If you aren’t one of those, you won’t like this.
  17. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    Geez, how many disappointing "Mana" titles will we have to suffer though before Square Enix puts this once-proud franchise out of its misery? [Sept 2007, p.100]
  18. 60
    Overall, Heroes of Mana is a nice enough diversion, but it's hard to see what Square Enix was trying to do with this title. [Sep 2007, p.84]
  19. Another title that's pretty much what we expect from Mana these days - an average game (irrespective of the genre change) that's nothing compared to series' heyday.
  20. 60
    As is common with games from Square Enix, the story of Heroes of Mana (while maybe not terribly original) is surprisingly deep and emotionally engaging. While that doesn't completely make up for the tragic pacing of the game or the substandard AI, it at least provides something to motivate the long-suffering Mana fan.
  21. Edge Magazine
    Watching your carefully directed army walk into each other and painfully slowly correct themselves by walking one square left, two squares up, one square right, while an army approaches is frustrating to say the least. [Oct 2007, p.97]
  22. Simultaneously brilliant yet deeply flawed, Heroes of Mana brings novelty to DS strategy gaming. If only the path-finding was up to the standard of the rest of the game, this would be essential.
  23. Heroes of Mana does have its moments, but they are few are far between.
  24. Heroes of Mana is an ambitious and sloppy game that will both entertain and infuriate you.
  25. Even if you consider yourself a fan of the series, don’t waste your time here. There was a time when the Mana name meant something, but this is a disappointing entry that drags the franchise through the mud.
  26. 50
    In the end, Heroes of Mana does a fair amount of things right, but the core elements that would make the game playable are simply sloppily issued and broken.
  27. A very average game. Square Enix should take the quality interface and build off that to produce a much more enjoyable experience.
  28. Despite all of the positives, the game underneath, for all its features and ideas, remains a broken one, thus continuing the Mana series legacy of being a series that tries its hand at new things to get noticed but fails to match up to the brilliance of its forefather.
  29. 46
    Let this game serve as a warning to Square Enix: we don't want an RTS for the Mana series. And even if we did, we would only want it if the game wasn't broken from start to finish.
  30. 40
    As mentioned before, the grid-based battlefield is a big part of the problem.
  31. The quality of this game’s interface proves that RTS gameplay can be every bit as compelling on the DS as it is on the PC. Unfortunately, the severe lack of quality in the gameplay itself makes this completely broken RTS a waste of your time and money.
  32. Heroes of Mana feels like Dawn of Mana, take two. It's gorgeous and somewhat interesting, but undermined by basic flaws in its ability to let players see what's going on. Here's hoping there's no take three in the works.

Awards & Rankings

#64 Most Shared DS Game of 2007
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 4 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. DrewF.
    Sep 4, 2007
    Not sure why this game is getting so trashed. It's actually a pretty good attempt at an RTS on the DS. Yes there is a minor pathfinding Not sure why this game is getting so trashed. It's actually a pretty good attempt at an RTS on the DS. Yes there is a minor pathfinding issue (two units cannot occupy the same space at the same time, so sometimes this forces the odd unit to take a RIDICULOUS path to get from one point to the other, and more often then not results in that unit dying), but once you adjust to it it's not that troublesome. If you're an RTS fan, you may want to bump this rating up to an 8. I've been having alot of fun with the game, and it takes ALOT for me to stick with a game all the way thru to the end, lately. Full Review »