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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 10, 2021 6:40 pm 


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Since Super Punch Patrol was brought up I figured I would dive back into it again. Similar to when I was playing it before I am able to get to the last boss on 1 credit but I always end up dying there as by the time I get to him I am down to my last life. The game gives out a fair amount of extends but I burn through them pretty quickly, especially in stage 5. I really need to get better at recovering when I either get knocked down or lose containment of the crowds. I have had several instances of 1 mistake such as "accidentally picking something up instead of punching" costing me 75-100% of my health from the resulting chain of events. I should use the special attack more before getting knocked down and eat the health drain that comes with it but a lot of the time I instantly get knocked down or grabbed so it wouldn't matter anyway.

I am definitely still enjoying it though. Hopefully I can finish up a 1CC soon.


Unrelated Note: I just saw that the Arc System Works games are on sale on the eShop through 2/25:

Double Dragon/Kunio-kun Bundle - $20 (One of my favorite purchases so far)
River City Melee Mach!! - $4.80
Stay Cool Kobayashi - $5.60 (Not a big fan of this one...)
The 3 Double Dragon NES Games - $3.50 each
Renegade [NES] - $3.50


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Thu Feb 11, 2021 10:03 pm 


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What's the most complex beat 'em up out there? I used to really enjoy this genre, but tbh SoR4 has sat half completed for months now, it just felt like it got repetitive.


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2021 12:05 am 


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...and since we're at it, what's the least complex beat'em up that's still satisfying and challenging? :D
If there's one thing that turns me off from the genre it's too many options as well as obscure combos and inputs.


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2021 3:42 am 



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Sumez wrote:
...and since we're at it, what's the least complex beat'em up that's still satisfying and challenging? :D
If there's one thing that turns me off from the genre it's too many options as well as obscure combos and inputs.

Try King of dragons, not the hardest game but still pretty fun and easy to get into. Dynasty Wars is also simple and solid.
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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2021 11:38 am 



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Check Oriental Legend for the most complex. Time requirements will force you to do with with confidence special attacks which rival KOF's super special moves. Use your special moves only if you can keep the ki bar charged up. Lose your weapon and good luck with your new set of moves. There're like 30 different items to learn which you must keep and use with a real-time icon-based subsystem, an unparalleled number of bosses, many of them optional, unique enemies for every stage, hidden paths and weapons, five characters to master, hidden combination techniques for simultaneous play...

It may not be the most deep (I think something like Alien vs Predator's Kurosawa mode is deeper while not being as complex), but if you want to spend time and time learning new things with every play for a proper clear and don't mind some ugliness here and there, this is the game everybody skips just for these reasons. And then, you can try the subsequent titles from the company, they were the last people making these after all.


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2021 3:46 pm 


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Sengoku Strider wrote:
What's the most complex beat 'em up out there? I used to really enjoy this genre, but tbh SoR4 has sat half completed for months now, it just felt like it got repetitive.


I stuck with SOR4 long enough to clear arcade mode normal, but yeah it did really start to drag on. I had such mixed feelings about this game. There was so much it did well, and it's been a long time since a beat em up of that caliber came out. At the same time something just felt off about it.

Maybe for me it was the art, which again had a lot going for it. But honestly there are just very few 2D games done since the HD era began that I think work really well. With 240p games on CRT you had this softening of the image and artists knew how to create pixel art shading that gave objects a sense of volume and backgrounds a sense of depth within those limitations.

Then here comes the HD era where the perception is that total sharpness and higher pixel counts equal greater fidelity. So what happened is everything looks like a paper cutout. Any good painter knows that total sharpness doesn't look good. Edges have to be selectively softened if you want any sense of depth. Then the other element in art that kills depth and volume is hard outlines. And SOR4 is all about those thick black outlines.

A comparable game that I think handled this surprisingly well is Hollow Knight. They softened background elements to create a sense of depth. The player and enemies are crisp, but they stand out from the backgrounds at all times. The game doesn't look flat, and also it's very legible and playable. This makes the game easy on the eyes during longer sessions as your brain doesn't have to try hard to separate the playable elements from the BGs. Also it's not going to matter much if you were playing the game in 720p, 1080p, 4k whatever bc the art style is not geared towards absolute sharpness at the cost of all else. It looks great even in 720p.

Spoiler: show
Image


Here you can see how the background has a great sense of depth and the boss is clearly in the foreground and easy to distinguish even without having a high color contrast to the BG. Imagine how different this would look if every element was equally sharp. Above all there's just a nice sense of atmosphere.

Spoiler: show
Image


Then look at SOR4. They did apply some nice shadow effects to create a little depth, but the hard outlines and high color saturation and contrast in the BG bring it forward and make it harder to distinguish the characters from the BG even though bright colors are being used to help distinguish them. It's just not easy on the eyes.

Oh and BTW, everybody who likes beat em ups should definitely play Zero Team.


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2021 6:20 pm 


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Bassa-Bassa wrote:
Check Oriental Legend for the most complex. Time requirements will force you to do with with confidence special attacks which rival KOF's super special moves. Use your special moves only if you can keep the ki bar charged up. Lose your weapon and good luck with your new set of moves. There're like 30 different items to learn which you must keep and use with a real-time icon-based subsystem, an unparalleled number of bosses, many of them optional, unique enemies for every stage, hidden paths and weapons, five characters to master, hidden combination techniques for simultaneous play...

It may not be the most deep (I think something like Alien vs Predator's Kurosawa mode is deeper while not being as complex), but if you want to spend time and time learning new things with every play for a proper clear and don't mind some ugliness here and there, this is the game everybody skips just for these reasons. And then, you can try the subsequent titles from the company, they were the last people making these after all.


Thanks, it's never been ported to anything, has it?

Rastan78 wrote:
Sengoku Strider wrote:
What's the most complex beat 'em up out there? I used to really enjoy this genre, but tbh SoR4 has sat half completed for months now, it just felt like it got repetitive.


I stuck with SOR4 long enough to clear arcade mode normal, but yeah it did really start to drag on. I had such mixed feelings about this game. There was so much it did well, and it's been a long time since a beat em up of that caliber came out. At the same time something just felt off about it.

Maybe for me it was the art, which again had a lot going for it. But honestly there are just very few 2D games done since the HD era began that I think work really well. With 240p games on CRT you had this softening of the image and artists knew how to create pixel art shading that gave objects a sense of volume and backgrounds a sense of depth within those limitations.

Then here comes the HD era where the perception is that total sharpness and higher pixel counts equal greater fidelity. So what happened is everything looks like a paper cutout. Any good painter knows that total sharpness doesn't look good. Edges have to be selectively softened if you want any sense of depth. Then the other element in art that kills depth and volume is hard outlines. And SOR4 is all about those thick black outlines.

A comparable game that I think handled this surprisingly well is Hollow Knight. They softened background elements to create a sense of depth. The player and enemies are crisp, but they stand out from the backgrounds at all times. The game doesn't look flat, and also it's very legible and playable. This makes the game easy on the eyes during longer sessions as your brain doesn't have to try hard to separate the playable elements from the BGs. Also it's not going to matter much if you were playing the game in 720p, 1080p, 4k whatever bc the art style is not geared towards absolute sharpness at the cost of all else. It looks great even in 720p.

Spoiler: show
Image


Here you can see how the background has a great sense of depth and the boss is clearly in the foreground and easy to distinguish even without having a high color contrast to the BG. Imagine how different this would look if every element was equally sharp. Above all there's just a nice sense of atmosphere.

Spoiler: show
Image


Then look at SOR4. They did apply some nice shadow effects to create a little depth, but the hard outlines and high color saturation and contrast in the BG bring it forward and make it harder to distinguish the characters from the BG even though bright colors are being used to help distinguish them. It's just not easy on the eyes.

Oh and BTW, everybody who likes beat em ups should definitely play Zero Team.


I 100% agree with the pixel art commentary. I still remember the very first time I saw a PC-Engine emulator on my friend's PC monitor, I didn't understand why but the ship sprite looked like it came off an Atari 5200 or something. I was telling him how cool these games were but the just looked embarrassingly bad on a monitor that sharp. I'm still not sure why it hasn't become a staple for ports to handle pixels with a proper CRT glow rather than just a smear filter.

Probably the best solution I've come across is the XBR scaling in the Sega Genesis Classics collection. Some artwork it doesn't play nice with, but at times it can do an amazing job at making something look like it came out 2 or 3 generations later without messing up the designers' intent at all:

Spoiler: show
Image


As for SoR4 in particular, I didn't feel like the game was doing anything wrong per se, it felt like a clear evolution of its source material. I know some people love it, I know Mark MSX said he put over 100 hours into it. I think it was just that my tastes have changed over the years. I used to love Final Fight to death, which was way simpler.

I should probably just give Guardian Heroes another go. It's never clicked with me because it feels kinda slow, but I've never sat with it for a coupe of hours really trying to drill into it either.


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2021 7:29 pm 


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Yeah it's sad that there's a new generation of gamers that will never know how good 240p games looked on arcade CRTs. The smoothing filters/ scanline approach goes some way towards the right look, but it's really the glowing phosphors of a CRT that defined the look moreso than the scanlines.

This is how SoR should look IMO.

Spoiler: show
Image


I had a similar experience getting ahold of Street Fighter Alpha 3 on Dreamcast and sought out a VGA box to a monitor expecting it to look great. This is after having owned the CPS2 board. I was all excited then as soon as I fired it up, I was like what the fuck? It looks like legos!?

Sonic Mania has some nice filters that at least try to mimic the look of phosphors along with the scanlines.

Zero Team on the ACA version actually looks pretty good. I turn on the scanline filter then just crank my TV backlight a little to compensate for the darkening. Doesnt have the brightness and bloom of a real arcade CRT, but not bad for 7.99.


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2021 9:40 pm 


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I can't stand the look of Fight'n Rage without full scanlines.
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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 12:40 am 



Joined: 12 Mar 2019
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Sengoku Strider wrote:
Bassa-Bassa wrote:
Check Oriental Legend for the most complex. Time requirements will force you to do with with confidence special attacks which rival KOF's super special moves. Use your special moves only if you can keep the ki bar charged up. Lose your weapon and good luck with your new set of moves. There're like 30 different items to learn which you must keep and use with a real-time icon-based subsystem, an unparalleled number of bosses, many of them optional, unique enemies for every stage, hidden paths and weapons, five characters to master, hidden combination techniques for simultaneous play...

It may not be the most deep (I think something like Alien vs Predator's Kurosawa mode is deeper while not being as complex), but if you want to spend time and time learning new things with every play for a proper clear and don't mind some ugliness here and there, this is the game everybody skips just for these reasons. And then, you can try the subsequent titles from the company, they were the last people making these after all.


Thanks, it's never been ported to anything, has it?


Nope. Taiwanese, so it didn't even get the chance. Mame runs it with -maybe- somewhat distorted sound.


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 1:39 am 



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Streets of Rage 4 is the first and only beat 'em up that I ever felt like I understood.

The way enemies telegraph attacks, boss patterns... that game just makes sense to me in ways that other beat 'em ups don't.

It's also super fair. Enemies can't leave the screen, and you can get health back after using a desperation move. It's just sort of perfect.

I feel like a highly skilled player could beat the whole game without taking damage at all. But it's still not an easy game.

Are there any other beat 'em ups that are designed as well as this?
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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Sat Feb 13, 2021 8:23 pm 


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Sengoku Strider wrote:
I should probably just give Guardian Heroes another go. It's never clicked with me because it feels kinda slow, but I've never sat with it for a coupe of hours really trying to drill into it either.


I did this last night.

I had no idea what I was talking about, I was just playing it wrong. Once I figured out Ginjiro I was flying all over the place. I still need to figure out the skeleton guy though. It seems like a competition just to get to anything before he kills it.


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Wed Feb 17, 2021 12:26 am 


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Seems Retro-bit is doing a limited cartridge run for Undercover Cops.
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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2021 8:27 pm 


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BulletMagnet wrote:
Seems Retro-bit is doing a limited cartridge run for Undercover Cops.


Interesting, I always wanted to get more into Undercover Cops but never found the time.

Retro-Bit's page seems to have more info. The only drawback that I see (other than it only being released for the SNES/SFC) is the apparent lack of 2 player co-op. I saw on the game's wiki page that the original SFC version didn't have it and I can't find any confirmation of this new version having it either.


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2021 10:22 pm 



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Doubt they will improve anything. It's single-player only with 3 enemies on screen, still a solid port considering the limitations.
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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Wed Mar 10, 2021 4:54 pm 


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New TMNT Beat 'em Up was just announced with a trailer. Gameplay starts being shown around the 1:05 mark.

Looks like Dot Emu is publishing it while Tribute Games is doing the developing.

Saw in the description that "it will be available on PC and consoles" and they already have the Steam page up.

In the features on the Steam page "Online Co-op" is listed so that's a huge YES from me! :mrgreen:

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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Wed Mar 24, 2021 9:47 pm 


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Been playing a bit of lunchbreak Zero Team this week. What's the difference between the two revisions on the Arcade Archives release?

I do wish it had more fixed health drops, my best runs are definitely coming when I get a couple from the boss explosion - because the bosses can take a fair whack of health off if you slip up. It also suffers a little from enemies getting overly evasive and sometimes launching into a charge/flying kick from offscreen. Other than that, what an excellent title resurrected by Hamster!


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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2021 12:21 am 


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IIRC, desperation attacks cost less HP in the Old version. The ACA manual mentions it, for sure. I think it uses New version for Hi Score mode, so I guess that's the more "official" revision. Great game indeed!
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 Post subject: Re: Beat 'em Ups (Including Switch/PS4 List)
PostPosted: Thu Mar 25, 2021 8:57 pm 


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Ah there's a manual, did not go looking for that!

I've mainly been playing the high score mode, which is based off the "new" version. Going back and playing the "old" version after that makes it fairly clear where the differences lie. It's not just the damage dealt/received by the desperation attack, the balance is very different. Enemies seem to be able to hit you through most of your combo, plus they'll readily be waiting for you to come out of a super combo and hit you. It makes the game feel a bit more Final Fight-esque, where you tend to need desperation attacks and throws as crowd control - only Final Fight has regular health pickups to balance it, whereas they're random here. The "new" version feels more balanced and fair, either i-frames are more generious or enemy AI is just less vindictive.

The stage 3 boss was ruining me... until I realised you can take the bazooka into the fight! Makes such light work of them that I was waiting for the second one to drop in :D


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