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Slime Heroes Hands-On Preview: A Goo-reat Time

Slime Heroes art of two slime buddies surrounded by helpful spirits and corrupted slimy beasts

Slime Heroes was revealed in June 2021 with an adorable trailer, showcasing both the novelty of a slime protagonist and the dang cute aesthetic overall. At the time, developer Pancake Games did not have a publisher lined up, but that changed earlier this year when indie game publisher Whitethorn Games signed on to publish the title sometime in 2024. Hilary and I got to sit down in Whitethorn’s especially cozy booth — seriously, I could write a paragraph just about the fluffy carpet — and play about 30 minutes of the game. Is it as adorable in motion as it seems?


Oh, but also, it’s pretty fun and shaping up nicely. In the world of Slime Heroes, corruption has overtaken the land, and your slime is one of the few that has not succumbed to it, so it falls to them to save everyone across five major areas, including rescuing the six gods of the realm who will aid you on your journey. These corrupted slimy beasts are creepy and feel right out of an animated movie — scary, but not the stuff to invoke nightmares in little ones.

Two slime friends surrounded by corrupted enemies
Green slime friend has the proper reaction to this situation.

Let’s Get Goo-ing

By now, you’ve probably figured out that you play a slime in Slime Heroes. Believe it or not, the game has a character creator! You can select from several facial expressions and two layers of colors to craft your ideal slime. I made a cool magenta-lime slime that made me think of dragonfruit, but then I threw caution to the wind and used the Randomize button, and we jumped into the game with an icy white little blobby hero.

The straightforward controls made Slime Heroes easy to jump into, with two levels of attacks and a dash. We got to use a shiny and slimy sword, but we’ve also seen a spear and other weapons that appear to have their own attack styles. There’s also a lil’ bit of Kirby influence at work with some moves, like a strong downward attack in the air turning your slime into shapes like anvils or boots. But if you’re going to have a malleable protagonist, how can you not have them stretch and squish into fun — and helpful — forms?

A vital component of combat appeared once we got our first ability, a projectile move. We mapped this onto one of the shoulder buttons, and it instantly expanded our battle options. We soon picked up a whirlwind ability, and this is where things got interesting. Each mappable button has two ability slots and a supplementary one (for elemental modifiers, buffs, and debuffs, for example), opening up a vast array of combinations. In fact, I find this system so interesting that it was my biggest takeaway from the demo, so let’s get into it a little more.

A slime using a projectile ability to hit distant enemies.
I suppose you COULD jump over there, but shooting from here makes more sense.

Mix and Match

The act of slotting and mixing abilities on its own sounded fun, but experimenting with the system made me realize it’s more customizable than I initially realized. First, there is a hierarchy for each grouping, so slotting in the projectile move followed by the whirlwind will give you a different combined result than if you reverse that order. You will also be able to pick up multiple copies of abilities as you progress, and yes, you can slot in two of the same ability to get a super-charged version of it. We only briefly got to add a lightning element to our abilities, but this modified it in another way.

Of course, adding to each ability increases its MP cost — a double-strength projectile was powerful, but consumed so much MP we couldn’t use it much before needing a refill. Depending on the area you’re in, like one of the puzzle-solving dungeons, it may be prudent to give yourself the option of a light-MP move as well, as tempting as the extra oomph is. Though, slight sidebar there: The one puzzle-based dungeon we did was generous with MP-restoring, uh, slime towers, so the game doesn’t want to punish you for experimenting with abilities.

There looks to be around 18 abilities to discover in Slime Heroes, but this could always change before release. With that many abilities, plus modifiers, there will be a world of combinations to discover and experiment with to adapt to many different play styles, and doubly so if you’re playing co-op. I look forward to seeing what other abilities the full game will have.

I wonder how much more room I have for Dragon Quest-esque slime puns before I–


It’s easy to look at a game like Slime Heroes and imagine it’s aimed at kids, but this IS an action RPG with characters to talk to, abilities to unlock and combine, and more, so it isn’t quite as simple as you may imagine. That said, I can imagine it as a family-friendly game. Between the storybook-style intro and presentation, full support for drop-in co-op for two players, and Whitethorn’s intense commitment to accessible games that anyone can play, I’m confident Slime Heroes can be for anyone.

Slime Heroes does not yet have a release date, but we’re hoping we will hear about that soon. Likewise, Whitethorn Games has not published an accessibility page yet (see Mythwrecked‘s page for an example) since the game and its accessibility features are still in development. But we will keep you updated when we know more! In the meantime, you can wishlist Slime Heroes on Steam. It will also be coming to Xbox Series X|S.

Our thanks go out to Lisa and the team at Whitethorn Games for taking us on a tour of Slime Heroes — and for some much-needed hydration at PAX East — that allowed this preview to happen.

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Mike Salbato

Mike Salbato

Mike has been with RPGFan nearly since its inception, and in that time has worn a surprising number of hats for someone who doesn't own a hatstand. Today he attempts to balance his Creative Director role with his Editor-in-Chief status. Despite the amount of coffee in his veins, he bleeds emerald green.

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