Growing up I used to go to the arcade and there would be games like The Simpsons, Power Rangers or the X-men where I’d get to choose a character from a show I’d see on tv and beat the stuffing out of anyone that got in the way. Sometimes my friends would pop in a quarter and we’d both be on the game taking down the baddies. It was fun times, but I had no idea that those games were called beat up games. I also had no idea that just like the arcade, that genre of games would slowly disappear. However, thankfully though with the surge of indie games that genre is making a comeback. The latest example is the game Last Beat Enhanced. So how does this game stack up with others in its genre?
Let’s dive into it.
Last Beat Enhanced plays like your traditional beat em up game. You select a character and beat down anyone and everyone that gets in your way. The game allows you to play it as a single player campaign or as a couch co-op experience.
The controls are relatively simple. You have an attack button, a jump button, a special moves button, a counter button and the directional buttons. The simple controls allow for a pick up and play factor.
In this game you have a fair selection of character to chose from all of which have their own move sets and fighting styles. You start off with four characters to choose from, but you can unlock the other playable characters as you progress in the campaign.
Artstyle and Soundtrack:
The artstyle of the game is very reminiscent of the games that you played back in the day at the arcade. There is quite a bit of detail in each character and in each of the level designs. While the game isn’t gorgeous, it does a superb job in illustrating the different areas where you fight.
The Soundtrack is fine, but not memorable. It does a good job adding to the setting as a whole, but lacks any killer tracks that other games in the genre posses.
One of the aspects that is vastly lacking in this game is the narrative. The game does have a few readable templates at the beginning of the game and at the beginning of each level, but it doesn’t really explain the story or the motivations of the protagonist. You know that you play as the good guys who are trying to take down the baddies. What did the bad guys do? Unfortunately we don’t know. They could be trying to take over the world or they could have stolen somebody draws. The game doesn’t tell us.
This game does a terrible job at explaining its gameplay mechanics and systems. There aren’t any tutorials or help screens to tell you wants going on. You are simply thrown into the level and expected to figure it out. They don’t even explain the controls at the beginning of the campaign.
Another flaw is that the games difficulty and the tightness of the gameplay. Many players will struggle in this game. That maybe due to the odd hit boxes that they game possess. There are times when an opponent breaks out of the combo that you’re hitting them with hits you while you’re still doing the combo motions. There are also other times when the game makes you pick up a nearby weapon instead of punching the bad guys. It’s an error that occurs often and one that can get you killed.
Overall/Should You play Last Beat Enhanced:
If you are a fan of beat em games then the answer is a yes. This is a solid indie game that has taken some of the gameplay elements of classics like Streets of Rage and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Shredders Revenge and made it work in their universe. The game isn’t perfect. It can use some refining when it comes to the hit boxes, the tutorial aspect. However despite all of it’s flaws, the overall game is a fun smaller experience that is well worth a look at for fans of the genre.
Disclaimer: Review code provided by PR/publisher.
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