Brawlout (PC) Preview

By Ofisil 05.02.2017

Review for Brawlout on PC

Say what you will about them, but competitive platform fighters like Nintendo's high-selling Super Smash Bros. series are here to stay. They will never reach the same depth of "pure" fighters, but they were never meant to, since these are more into the couch play experience - sit down with a couple of friends, grab some beers (and a couple of gamepads, if possible), and just have fun. Does Angry Mob Games' Brawlout manage to recapture the magic of this simple recipe, and even add its own unique ingredients? Cubed3 goes hands-on with an early version to see how it is developing…

Brawlout, just like any arcade-y and couch play-friendly title, doesn't have a complex menu or anything. It's just, pick a mode, pick a fighter… and fight; therefore, it's kind of annoying that this is actually the most buggy part of this game, with keybindings that don't… bind, characters that can't be selected, and several hiccoughs here and there. Generally, a thing that many developers tend to forget is that Early Access is meant to test a, for the most part, stable piece of software.

Fortunately, there are little to no problems once the fighters step into the arena, and that's certainly a good thing. Now, besides the obvious "Is this fun?," the real question, unavoidably, becomes this: what does this have that the Super Smash Bros. franchise doesn't? The answer is, at least for the time being, not much, with this feeling nothing more than a "clone," with the same small and simple stages, the easy-to-learn controls, and a fast pacing that makes this perfect for having some good ol' brawling fun with a couple of friends.

Screenshot for Brawlout on PC

Currently there are only two modes available: practice and versus, and since there is no way to battle against the CPU, it's impossible to comment on that aspect for now. However, is the human-vs.-human element enjoyable, at least? Actually, and despite the overall simplicity, it's very enjoyable. As mentioned before, the gameplay is quite fast and the controls are very responsive, with the only flaw being that the characters don't build momentum and move on full speed whenever the direction pad is touched.

In terms of move sets, apart from the basic attack, most moves revolve around the use of the 'special' key, along with a direction to pull off some more specialised hits or manoeuvres, with each character following a certain "theme," like, for example, the toad who is a wrestler/grappler or the walrus who is the ice-wielding Sub-Zero of the game. Moreover, as players fight, they gain Rage, which can then be used for even stronger attacks.

This is nice and all but it has a serious challenge to face - it must stand out somehow. More characters, modes, as well as eight-player fights, will soon be implemented, yet, for the most part, the developer has made no risky, creative moves, with the perfect analogy being the look of it all. From the generic action music to the forgettable cartoony animal cast, through to the nice-looking, colourful, and devoid of texture stages, Brawlout lacks a distinctive identity…

Screenshot for Brawlout on PC

Final Thoughts

Even at this incomplete state, Brawlout turns out to be everything that a platform fighter needs to be: it's fast, easy to grasp, and has a varied cast of characters. However, and while the genre doesn't really have any competition on the PC platform, it has to face the challenge of becoming more than a decent imitator of the genre's current King of the Hill.

Developer

Angry Mob Games

Publisher

Angry Mob Games

Genre

Action

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  n/a

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date None   North America release date None   Japan release date None   Australian release date None   

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