I’m a big fan of games with a twist. By that, I mean games that are of one genre but add something new you wouldn’t normally see. These are typically seen a lot with indie games because they’re not afraid to try something new and different, whether it works or not. Coconut Island Games and developer Echo Games have such a game with Rhythm Fighter. Billed as a roguelike action beat’em up, the twist comes from its music-based fighting style in which you must time your attacks with the beat of the music to be effective.
In Rhythm Fighter, players are on a quest to stop Commander Chaos. After Commander Chaos uses dark Beat Energy to turn Earth’s vegetables into evil minions, it’s up to the planet’s heroes to save the world. Choose from a variety of characters, each with their own weapons, skills, and style, and move, roll and attack in time to the music. With hundreds of cards to choose from, including items from a collaboration with the indie rhythm game MUSYNX. And on top of all that, you’ve only got one life and this isn’t a cakewalk.
The gameplay for the most part seems simple at first, but keeping a good rhythm is harder than it looks. Everything you do must be to the rhythm of the music. You must move to the rhythm and attack with the rhythm. A perfectly executed punch or attach deals more damage than one that is done offbeat. And it’s not only you that moves to the beat but the enemies as well. Different enemies have different attacks, but each has a rhythm they follow. Part of the challenge here is knowing each enemy’s special attacks and how to deal with them when more than one type of enemy is present.
Luckily, you can find upgrades as you play, whether it be in loot safes or at the items store. These can do things like increase damage, allow you to shoot projectiles, etc. Every little thing helps when you’re dealing with a roguelike because once you die, you die and you’ll have to start from the beginning again.
While Rhythm Fighter can get a bit repetitive, since most of the game is really just rinse and repeat each time you beat a level, there is an incentive to keep playing. Basically, you’ll be able to unlock trophies and achievements and as you do, those will open up other features like new characters and music, as well as access to new areas like the Laboratory, Automat, and Daily Challenges.
Aide from the gameplay, the art in the game is pretty good. It’s very Saturday Morning cartoonish filled with vibrant colors and life. Almost everything on the screen is in constant motion and the animations and character designs are top-notch. This is definitely a game the entire family can enjoy.
So with that said, Rhythm Fighter is an interesting take on the rougelike action beat’em up genre. It’s familiar in some respects but is different enough where it brings something new to the table and doesn’t feel like just another forgettable game. Rhythm Fighter has a lot to offer with its unique beat-based gameplay and you’ll probably spend a majority of the time unlocking all the neat extras.
Received game from developer and/or publisher for coverage purposes.
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