Creepy Brawlers – Review
Follow Genre: Arcade
Developer: Mega Cat Studios
Publisher: Mega Cat Studios
Platform: NES, Switch
Tested on: Switch

Creepy Brawlers – Review

Site Score
7.1
Good: Artwork, Concept
Bad: A bit hard for casual players
User Score
5.0
(1 votes)
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Rating: 5.0/10 (1 vote cast)

We’ve already seen some of the homebrew NES releases Mega Cat Studios provided us with in the past. We had the chance to play with the legendary Medusa to petrify our opponents with its fun puzzles, or we found ourselves in a monstrous tournament, hurling axes at our opponents in Log Jammers. This time Mega Cat Studios has decided to port one of their original NES games to the Nintendo Switch. Creepy Brawlers is a proper homage to the Punch-Out!! game that was developed by Nintendo in 1983. Creepy Brawlers throws us in the ring as well, albeit against ghastly and ghoulish opponents known from the silver screen. We put on our boxing gloves and did our best to combat a scary zombie, Dracula and even the wolfman himself.

Story

You are seemingly an actor that is drawn into the big screen. You find yourself fighting odd and ghastly opponents and that’s pretty much about it. Before every opponent, you get a small snippet of text, but the story isn’t really important for a game such as this. It’s nice that there is something tangible, but you can easily play the game without any context.

Graphics

Graphically Creepy Brawlers was made to run on the Nintendo Entertainment System that was released in the eighties. Nonetheless, we have noticed that many homebrew developers are finally able to draw out the full potential of the console, allowing colors to be vibrant, backdrops to be detailed and so on. For some, this game will immediately resemble Punch-Out!! with a horror-themed skin thrown on top of it. While some aspects are certainly quite similar, the character design is great and the movement patterns of enemy monsters are a lot more than your opponent taking jabs at you. The design has been handled in a great fashion and we don’t notice any screen flickering which was quite common for NES games. The aspect ratio is that of old CRT television sets, but the borders have been filled with a good-looking backdrop. It would have been nice if the frames could have alternating backdrops depending on the levels, but now we’re just nitpicking.

Sound

The sound design isn’t bad, but it isn’t stellar either. For a game with a horror theme, the theme playing at the main menu is somewhat too cheerful to fit in with the vibe the game is aiming for. Nonetheless, the music is decent enough but it won’t get stuck in your head for days. Each character seemingly has its own backdrop and there are also free soundbites embedded in some of the tracks. Don’t be surprised if you hear ‘Ode to Joy’ with a heavy bassline. The sound effects are simple but they suffice in providing the proper feedback.

Gameplay

Creepy Brawlers is an arcade fighting game that is dressed as a horror boxing title. You won’t have that many options in the game, as you’ll be able to play different championships and go through some training. The game is straightforward, and the commands aren’t that complex either. Your character can dodge, give low jabs and high punches. Both different types of punches can be dealt from the left or the right. Other than that you can also block, which reduces incoming damage. You’ll have to anticipate your opponent’s attacks and don’t spam your attack buttons like crazy, as you’ll lose rather easily when doing so. The game’s difficulty is rather high if you don’t dodge or block properly.

The game offers you different opponents to beat, but you’ll have to unlock them in sequence by completing championships. Each championship has different ghoulish opponents, and all of them have different attack patterns (or attack animations) forcing you to keep focused. It’s pretty much a case of trial and error, and trying out new strategies for different opponents. Some deal way too much damage when you slip up, but once again, practice makes perfect.

Conclusion

Creepy Brawlers is an interesting homage to Punch-Out!! but with enough quirks and design changes to make it a unique experience. The game will only set you back a few Dollars/Euros if you wish to purchase the Switch version, which plays rather smoothly. If you’re into retro experiences, or have fond memories of the Punch-Out!! series, then this game will certainly be a lot of fun. Don’t underestimate the game’s difficulty though, as you might be knocked out sooner as you think.

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Creepy Brawlers - Review, 5.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating
Ibuki
Ibuki


Aspiring ninja.

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