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H.E.R.O. by Activision: Tips, Tricks, Hints, and Strategies

The minimum score required in H.E.R.O. by Activision for the Atari 2600 to earn a patch was: 75,000 points. The best advice in H.E.R.O. is to read the manual so that you know all of the nuances of the game. The manual gives some really good tips. Make sure both difficulty switches are set to B. H.E.R.O. was designed by John Van Ryzin. H.E.R.O. is an acronym standing for Helicopter Emergency Rescue Operation.

H.E.R.O is another nicely created game by Activision to challenge your memory and reflexes. The controls are pretty easy to learn. Pressing your controller forward makes you fly upward and or float depending on how long you press forward. Moving your controller left or right makes H.E.R.O run/fly in that direction. You press the fire button to shoot a laser beam to kill your enemies and shoot through walls. Pressing down while standing on land releases a stick of dynamite to explode a wall if you have any dynamite sticks left in your reserve.

You start your game with 3 lives in reserve, but beware of the power meter that decreases as soon as you start each level. If you do lose a life you will reappear right where you lost it. This makes the game much easier, as so many other games make you start from the beginning of the whole level or some other check point.

You have a set number of sticks of dynamite that you can use to blow up obstacles that are in your way, so you can continue your journey through the game. There are also a number of enemies that block your path, which you must shoot, such as bats, snakes, and spiders. As the game progresses, so does the speed of your enemies.

You can also use your sticks of dynamite to blow up walls that block you, but be careful because if you do not move away after you’ve set your dynamite down you will lose a life. Beginning with level five in the game, certain walls won’t be stone any longer. They will be made of glowing magma. Do not touch them as you will lose a life. You can also use a stick of dynamite to blow up the magma. Certain magma walls on the higher levels will open and close, so timing is of great importance when trying to fly between them.

There are specially placed lanterns that illuminate your way down the mineshafts, but do not shoot them or bump into them, as your visibility will go dark and you cannot relight them. In some situations colliding with them is unavoidable.

Your level is completed by saving the lost miners on each level. If you do not do this by the time your power meter runs out, you will lose a life. Every 20,000 points you earn an extra life. You can only have 6 extra lives in reserve so use them wisely. Your game comes to an end once you have depleted all of your lives.

There are five game numbers to choose from in the beginning. Each game number is more difficult than the one before it. At level seven it has the dreaded flow of lava that you never want to fall into or you’ll be burnt to a crisp. The color of the lava will change sometimes, but don’t let that fool you. It’s still lava. There are things that you can utilize to your advantage such as the raft, for floating over the water and lava flow.

***TIPS: In some areas you don’t have to stand right next to a wall to detonate it. By using your dynamite you can be a slight distance away and it will blow up your target. **at level 17 there is a surprise. Enemy tentacles await you in the lava flow just to make your journey a little more difficult. ** After Level 20 your continued levels are registered as PRO. This will be around the 250k point mark. The word PRO does not appear in game selection five, nor do the level numbers, since all levels on this game selection are random. The score on H.E.R.O. by Activision maxes at 1 million points, and is rewarded by six exclamation marks. The game just stops. This happens around an hour or more of game play.

***Hack/Cheat: If you “fry” your startup screen (tap the power button off so it goes static for a fraction of a second, then switch back to on quickly), keep frying until you see the screen with a spider and a miner, but no H.E.R.O. – then let the timer run out. When you begin at level 1, you will have 100 lives! There is one caveat, though…MAKE SURE to lose a few lives before you hit 20,000 points, otherwise it will reset your lives back to zero and it’s game over if you die at that point.

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