Odysseus was an epic hero who used his superhuman thinking, leadership, and cunning abilities to navigate his adventure and return home. In the story, Odysseus is seen as an epic hero for his role as Ithaca’s King, his involvement in the war, and his voyage back home to his wife and people.
Another reason Odysseus is seen as an epic hero is because of his one flaw: hubris. This caused him to be arrogant and overconfident in his godlike abilities. This particular flaw was exemplified when he defeated the cyclops, Polyphemus, and instead of leaving, he stayed back to gloat.
This was a grave mistake that caused Poseidon, the father of Polyphemos, to punish him and make it impossible for him to return home. Odysseus and his crewmen were besieged with many trials on their way back, and many of them died.
It was Athena who finally pleaded Odysseus’ cause.