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[Review] Streets of Rage 4 - A Rejuvenated Classic

Streets of Rage 4 Logo We know Gamers

Streets of Rage is back with an updated style, a killer sound track but the streets still roam with these punks.. Can Streets of Rage 4 bring the series to a new generation in a cool way?

It took only 25 years, but Sega have finally released a new addition to their popular Streets of Rage series. For veterans it will be familiar and for newbies its easy enough to pick up and play, but how is Streets of Rage 4 overall?

To begin with we have four characters to choose from, Axel, Blaze, Cherry and Floyd. The cool thing is that each character is quite distinct and depending on how you wish to play the game, one of these will suit you. For example, Axel looks to be the all rounder and has a good mix of power and speed in comparison to Floyd who deals a lot more damage, but moves slower.

Cherry is definitely my favourite and is the character I actually managed to beat the story with. There is this one particular move she can do where she dashes and this just completely opened up the game for me and changed the way I approached enemies on any particular level

The story here takes place ten years after the events of Streets of Rage 3, in which the criminal mastermind Mr. X was finally defeated. Initially thought to be in peace, Wood Oak City falls under the control of a new crime syndicate led by Mr. X's children, the Y Twins, who are planning on brainwashing the city by using hypnotic music. Learning about this corruption, Blaze Fielding teams up with some old friends to rid the city of these punks.

SR4 Screenshot 1 We Know Gamers

Difficulty can be chosen right from the beginning and maybe its my skills but even on Normal I was getting my behind handed to me. I appreciate that you can jump in straight away at the level you want instead of having this becoming unlockable after you have played through the story once.

The difficulty you select will also affect the number of lives you start with, however this can be increased once you earn a certain number of points, so make sure you are building up your combos to be really hitting those high numbers.

SR4 Screenshot 2 We Know Gamers

If it does come down to you getting wrecked and getting a game over, you do have the option to use assists the next time you jump in. This includes extra lives and more, but come at the cost of a reduced score.

For veterans of the series, the gameplay will feel familiar and you will be able to jump in without much issue. For those new to this, the game is a side scrolling beat em up where you go from end to end avoiding hazards and taking down enemies.using not only your own skills, but also disposable weapons you can pick up along the way.

You have access to basic attacks in addition to specials which deal more damage on either an offensive or defensive basis. The only down side to this is that it drains your HP and can leave you more vulnerable if not managed correctly. but this can be replenished with your follow up attacks, so long that you do not get hit.

SR4 Screenshot 3 We Know Gamers

Each character also has a unique "Star Move", which can be performed by collecting Stars in each level. This is essentially a special attack that deals lots of damage to the enemies around you, so always best to use this when things are looking dire, or if you are surrounded.

Overall this will be split up into stages varying from the mean streets, to the police station and even an art gallery giving you a variety of environments to go through and explore. This in addition to its striking comic book style art and rocking sound track makes each stage a joy to run through.

Once this is completed you can go back and select stages to replay at whatever difficulty you choose which is handy for this looking to get that 100%.

We also get Arcade Mode for the real classic experience where its just one credit to try and finish the story in one go. Boss Rush where you take on all bosses in the game one after the other and Battle where you and another player can duke it out.

SR4  Screenshot 4 We Know Gamers

The game can also be played in Multiplayer either couch or online co-op. Both experiences seemed to work pretty well. but as a bit of an old school gamer, I much preferred playing with the person being right next to me.

It is pretty clear that the legacy of the Streets of Rage franchise has been done justice and I expect nothing less to see a follow up in the future. The team have perfectly captured what made the previous titles so great, but updated them just enough to bring it in line with our expectations of today.

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