It's hard not to wonder how good a hero you are if your empire is annihilated. Yet there's more amiss in GSC Game World's strategy/role-playing hybrid than its awkward title. Heroes of Annihilated Empires is pleasant but inelegant, clumsily cobbling together a mishmash of ideas in a congenial wrapper that's too friendly to hate and too half-baked to love. Every good idea is hobbled by poor execution, yet Heroes exudes an undeniable charm that tries hard to make up for a myriad of shortcomings. But in the end, it's just not enough to overcome broken features and a nagging suspicion that the game simply wasn't ready to be shipped.