Support Rowan, click to buy via us...
Well, this game gets a prize unbeknownst to gamers preceding its release, it is the only game I have ever played to give me chronic cramp in my arm, and after only about ten minutes of playing it! I have never button-mashed so much in my life.
I must be honest and say that I think this game missed the mark. It was so close! So very close! Yet just disappointing.
Everyone seems to be up in arms about the very simple control system in this game, there are only three buttons which do any fighting, a high punch, a low punch, and a block. I don't think this is necessarily a bad thing, though, it's certainly different. It's all about timing and judgement, you see, timing the block to your opponent's punch and then delivering a decent thwack to him. They can also be held down to charge up punches, but obviously at the risk of taking one on the chin. On top of that, you've got the option of throwing your opponent with another button and landing a powerful Breaker punch with the fourth. Left stick, meanwhile, handles movement, with the added option to dash by flicking left or right at the appropriate moment. Altogether an incredibly in-complex system.
And it's rubbish.
From looking at this game I did quite like it, and for the first few minutes it was great, the graphics are snazzy
From looking at this game I did quite like it, and for the first few minutes it was great, the graphics are snazzy, the characters are nicely varied, and you can even slap a photo of yourself onto the face of one of them, if you desire to know what you'd look like if a 20 tonne truck fell on top of you (as at the end of each round the winner tends to deliver a … well … a face breaking blow to the other), then yay! This feature is for you! Actually, this is great fun, and the whole game looks lovely, and the big face-creaking end moves all look the bees knees. Just make sure you don't actually play the game, and the experience is great.
Then we start a match against a friend. We press buttons lots. We press buttons lots some more. We press different buttons in the hope that they might do something more fun. We press the original buttons again, realising these were the only buttons. One of us wins, eventually. We try more people, hoping that the experience will be better. We press the same buttons again and again and again, we realise that the characters are ridiculously unfairly stacked, and it's just a case of pitting the right people against the other and it's a walkover. We get very very bored very very quickly.
I have a feeling this game could be very audience specific. If you can play rock, paper, scissors for hours on end, or are incredibly high on sugar and are at an age where it is still socially acceptable to have the best conversations you've ever had with an imaginary friend then this game could be awesome! Unfortunately it is also just a tad bit violent, so you mayn't want to let a six year old high on Sprite play this game too ferociously. Not to mention he could, like me, do himself an injury by falling into the popular thinking that if you hit the buttons way harder and way faster than the other person it makes a blind bit of difference. No. It just means you hurt lots.
You get into a rhythm, and you win lots and lots.
It's just so planar, is the problem. You button mash, you realise that every player can be beaten easily in one specific manner, then you do it. You get into a rhythm, and you win lots and lots. Yay. There's just no depth, no real skill, and no sense of accomplishment.
As a result of this, there's really not much to review. There's not much to actually do in the game. The AI are suspiciously good at knowing what your character's gonna do before he does it, but even then sometimes can't stop it. On multiplayer it does get a little better, but even then it's simply … well … dull!
My advice? Just play Dead or Alive instead, don't waste your money.
With so many different perspectives it can be hard to know where to start - a little like walking into a crowded pub. Sorry about that.
But so far we've not found a way to streamline our review output - there's basically too much of it. So, rather than dilute things for newcomers we have decided to live with the hubbub while helping new readers find the columnists they will enjoy.
Our columnists each focus on a particular perspective and fall into one of the following types of gamers: