Dec 23, 2015A 2D, two-button rhythm game, this game is long on style and on simplicity. Long ago, someone made a series of gifs depicting a stick-man having epic kung-fu fights with other stick men, and the people who made this game remembered those and put you in control of the stick man. While the fights aren’t quite as epic as the originals, being strictly on-the-ground affairs, the fighting stillA 2D, two-button rhythm game, this game is long on style and on simplicity. Long ago, someone made a series of gifs depicting a stick-man having epic kung-fu fights with other stick men, and the people who made this game remembered those and put you in control of the stick man. While the fights aren’t quite as epic as the originals, being strictly on-the-ground affairs, the fighting still looks quite impressive as you beat your way through hordes and hordes of enemy stickmen, smashing the scenery and visiting gruesome death upon your foes in a very visually satisfying manner.
The central conceit of the game is very simple – your stick-man is in the center of the screen. If you press the left mouse button, you attack left; if you press the right mouse button, you attack right. You have a limited attack range, and enemies come at you from both sides at erratic intervals. If you attack to a side and don’t connect with anyone, you’ll miss your attack. If you fail to attack someone before they reach you, they’ll attack you. If you run out of health, you die. There are no other controls in-game.
The game adds in some complexities on top of this – there are various colored stick figures which require a series of attacks to defeat as they battle you, with one variety requiring a very long series of clicks as you fight them in a temporarily isolated one-on-one duel, the other kind fighting like regular stick figures which dodge or block your attacks until you finally defeat them. There are also various weapons carried by enemies, some of which extend your attack range, others of which are projectiles which will one-hit kill all enemy types. The range-extending weapons can be picked up and thrown if you’re already carrying such a weapon, which causes them to ricochet around the screen, wreaking havoc. And some enemies will throw weapons at you in lieu of attacking themselves.
On top of this, there are various skills you can persistently equip to make the various weapons last longer without breaking, to throw the range-extending weapons more often, or to add special effects which heal you, give you temporary invincibility, slow down the enemies, kill large numbers of enemies at once, or otherwise do something fancy after a certain number of successful kills. These skills are themselves unlocked by defeating especially difficult levels.
There are also special levels which alter the game mechanics – hiding the colors of the multi-attack enemies, speeding up enemies, requiring you to kill a certain number of enemies within a certain time limit, requiring you to defend yourself perfectly from a barrage of projectiles, or killing a horde of enemies with ranged attacks without getting hit once. One of these even takes advantage of the fact that you smash the background scenery sometimes while attacking. There are even a few levels where you wield a lightsaber or pair of nunchakus and cut down hordes of quickly on-rushing enemies, while shown in silhouette with your weapon glowing.
All of this serves to mix up the game’s core gameplay a bit, and it serves is function well enough. Still, after playing this for a while you’re likely to get bored with it – it does a surprising amount with two buttons, but the gameplay is still dead simple. However, the upside is that all of the levels are very short, and it is easy to play the game in short little bursts between other things. In that way, it never gets old and continues to feel fresh for a long time, though even then, you’ll probably be about done with it by the time you beat the game after 10-15 hours of sporadic effort.
All in all, the game is flashy and surprisingly fun in short bursts, but it isn’t the sort of thing you want to sit and play for hours on end. This isn’t some amazingly complicated game, but it is a very decent example of just what can be done with only two buttons.… Expand
Jan 30, 2016So it's frustrating. That's the bottom line.
The long version is that this game is very simple and not very diverse. It tries to diversify itself and sometimes succeed, like with the multi, smash, light sword or nunchaku rounds, which offer a new type of challenge...but the diverse rounds most of the time aren't different enough from the basic mob round to really warrant being played.So it's frustrating. That's the bottom line.
The long version is that this game is very simple and not very diverse. It tries to diversify itself and sometimes succeed, like with the multi, smash, light sword or nunchaku rounds, which offer a new type of challenge...but the diverse rounds most of the time aren't different enough from the basic mob round to really warrant being played.
More than that, as many have said, the campaign is ridiculously long. I'm some 8 hours in, there's 3 levels of difficulty, and I'm not even finished with the first level! And I didn't 100% the level either.
So in short it has a lot of content that's sort of junky. It's nowhere near terrible but the repetitiveness and length really tire you out.
However the 6 isn't because of the length, it's because of a lot of stupid gameplay decisions that I am annoyed at OFDP.
Before I get to that, I have to say that the game's "charm" is totally lost on me. I'm not fond of old martial arts movies, the voice acting and general style sounds plainly stupid to me and I just don't care for any of the music either. The only part of this game I like to hear or see is the quit button after I've tried myself at it for a while.
So that probably counts as a negative too. Maybe this game just isn't meant for me.
But I still think the gameplay had a ton of terrible decisions.
1 - Too much visuals. This is a game where 99% of your actions will depend on your eyes and your fingers. There are no sound cues except when you kill an enemy or miss(and by then it's too late). So why is there so much visual noise? Blood splatters, piece of enemies flying, foreground objects covering my stickman or the enemies coming towards me?! All of this **** needs to go. It makes a game that's very demanding in terms of skill and reactivity really annoying to play sometimes. Especially with Nunchaku or Light Sword rounds, where all is black and blue and when the enemies die, they explode into a giant fountain of blood. I need to see what's coming to me, can it with the over-the-top visual effects!
2 - Miss mechanic sucks. The idea that you can't move left or right changes the gameplay drastically. It makes a "reaction game" of sorts into a pure rhythm game, or something very close to it. Many times I get misses due to outright silly reasons, which go along with the earlier visual problem: let's say I have a powerup that allows me to pick up a sword and throw it. There is a way to check if the powerup is ready, but there's no way I'm having the time to look away from the onslaught of enemies to see the tiny icon in the lower left. So I'll rapidly press left left or right right, the first to pick the weapon, the second to throw it.
If the weapon isn't ready, then when I press the second button, my guy slashes the air instead of throwing, and I miss. Misses accumulate really fast with things that really are pretty much unthinkable to pay attention to because you never have the time.
IMO only the amount of damage you took should define your score. Or misses should be used for something else than the medal you get at the end.
3 - "Cinematic" gameplay. Ok that crap needs to stop. You'd think only AAA games would fall for this, but no, even arcade games do now. What the hell do I need a slowdown for when I killed an enemy? Nothing. Do I need a detailed X-ray? No. Do I want to see that heart punched out that guy? Nope. I just want to play, not watch your cheaply designed stickmen "diversify" the repetitiveness with something that cuts off gameplay in the middle of a fight.
4 - It tries really hard, but repeats itself too much. As I said with the lack of proper diversity, the two-button gameplay tries so hard sometimes to offer a new experience, but fails. Whether basic stickmen, stronger stickmen, brawlers, or daggers come to you, it always ends up being a press fast and at the right time. You can see that the devs tried really hard to offer new gameplay but it fails because the base system is just too simple, and does not offer movement. Bosses are meh, stronger stickmen get annoying rather than challenging in my eyes, and the general system just isn't very strong.
A simple game with a simple gameplay, if you want something challenging but frustrating, it'll easily do the job, even moreso if you're into old martial arts schlock, but for me, I see it more as a thing to do for 20 mins before quitting for a week. I pass my nerves on it and move on.… Expand
Mar 12, 2014This is a game to play when you are waiting around for something, need to quickly blow off some steam, or if you’re a maniacal completionist. The depth behind the simplistic control scheme is impressive up to a point, until it all starts to get a bit samey.