Door Kickers: Action Squad | PS4 Review

Door Kickers: Action Squad

Door Kickers: Action Squad is a followup to the highly successful game by KillHouse Games, Door Kickers. The game however is not a direct sequel and instead is a spinoff based in the same universe. The play style is also completely different and instead of being a real-time, top-down tactical shooter, it’s now a retro themed, side-scroller action game. In Door Kickers: Action Squad, you play as a S.W.A.T. team member as you try to take down the bad guys the only way you know how – with good old fashioned butt kicking!

Door Kickers: Action Squad

Presentation

Door Kickers: Action Squad is a huge departure from the previous game. Where as Door Kickers had slightly more realistic graphics, Action Squad has a more retro theme and look. It features 2D pixel art, but updated for the modern world. Animations are fluid and fast and really make for an exciting experience.

The look of Door Kickers: Action Squad however isn’t unique and there hae been other games in the past with similar styles. Examples being Broforce, Mercenary Kings, and My Night Job. That’s not to say it’s a bad thing, because it’s not. This game really shows off the fact that you don’t need realistic graphics to make a game good looking or fun.

Gameplay

Players looking for the same type of gameplay seen in the original game are not going to find it here. While there is strategy and some amount of planning involved, Door Kickers: Action Squad is a pure action game where you mostly go in, guns blazing.

There are some RPG elements where you can upgrade your specific stats to make yourself stronger as well as being able to upgrade gear, weapons and load outs. That’s pretty much the extent of it as the rest is really just a side-scroller shooter.

Controls are fairly easy enough to learn as you move with the left stick and shoot with the right trigger. Left trigger switches to an alternate firing mode while left shoulder allows you to access the special skills you unlock. Think of these as like perks you get as you kill the baddies and rescue hostages. It’s very similar to the kill streaks you would get in Call of Duty. Pressing up on the control stick lets you kick down doors while the “Cross” button lets you jump. Pressing down + Cross lets you jump down to a lower level if you can. These are pretty simple controls and you’ll be able to pretty much hop right into the action after your first try.

While not the same as the original Door Kickers, I found Action Squad to be very fun. There is a great deal of challenge to it and you’ll probably find yourself dying quite a bit. The key is to upgrade when you can as well as choosing the right S.W.A.T. team member for specific levels. Bringing a friend along can also be quite useful, but be sure to communicate because that’s key to beating some of these. On that note, playing with a friend can make the game that much more fun, especially with one as hectic as this one can be.

Door Kickers: Action Squad

Game Modes

There are three game modes.

There’s the Classic Mode in which you play on a variety of pre-made levels with the goal of trying to get three stars on each. Although if you complete the objectives, you still pass, just not with all three stars unless you meet all the criteria.

There’s a Zombie Invasion Mode which is just like Classic Mode, but they throw in some zombies into each level that you’ll have to also deal with. What’s neat here is that the enemies must also deal with the zombies.

Lastly, there’s a mode called Infinity Tower which is randomly generated. This is probably the hardest mode as you never really know which enemies they’re going to throw at you. Plus this mode never really ends until you die. The goal I think is to make it up the tower, but I can’t even get past the second floor. That’s how hard it is. Your best bet is to play the other two modes and level up your characters as much as you can before tackling this.

Each of these can be played via local multiplayer (2-players) or via online multiplayer.

Door Kickers: Action Squad

Final Thoughts

To make this short, I’m really enjoying Door Kickers: Action Squad. While the previous game was more tactical, this one I think is more accessible. It’s basically a good old fashioned action side-scroller with modern elements thrown in. I”m really digging the graphics, the sounds, the challenges, and the fun I’m having while playing with others. It’s another one of those games where one of my family members can join in locally and that’s always a plus in my book.


Received game from developer and/or publisher for coverage purposes.

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