There are always those who are shy on the draw when it comes to picking up new Nintendo consoles, which is certainly understandable given the company’s recent history. But, some Nintendo-exclusive games look super cool and are almost enough to make you want to buy it.
One of those games is Super Smash Bros., which can only be played on the Nintendo Wii U. The problem is that the Wii U is Nintendo’s least popular console to date, and most gamers skipped it entirely, meaning those gamers missed out on some of the great games it had to offer.
With that in mind, have you ever wanted to play a Smash Bros game on your PC? Well, that’s never going to happen, as Nintendo has yet to create any sort of synergy between its consoles and the PC market (despite both of its competitors doing so). However, there is a little game out there in Early Access that might scratch that itch: Brawlout.
What is Brawlout? Well, for all intents and purposes, it’s a competitive — highly competitive — platform fighter in the vein of Smash Bros, but without the use of Nintendo characters or maps. Instead, it uses wholly original creations, with each character having their own unique playstyle. It has some of the familiar movement techniques you’ll find in SB, like wavedashing and airdodging, but it also introduces its own mechanics that tweak the formula slightly.
What’s really great about Brawlout is the fact that it does away with shields and blocking entirely, giving players a more aggressive, faster-paced combat system than the game it’s inspired by, and I think that’s what is going to help make it a popular game once it is able to grow its audience. When there’s no blocking or shielding, you still have to be strategic (just in a different way), and it allows matches to be quicker. In fact, the game leans more towards Melee than Super Smash Bros with its speed.
Currently, the game is in a barebones state, and there’s no denying that right now, but what’s there is really great. Gameplay mechanics are solid, animations are fluid, and each character offers something different. There are only six Brawlout characters available right now, most of them animorphic in their design. For example, there’s a grappling four-armed frog named Paco, a flying eagle named Chief Feathers, a jumping rope-slinging monkey named King Apu, a rushdown character by the name of Sephi’ra, a mean-looking hybrid between a hedgehog and Blanka from Street Fighter by the name of Volt, and a brute who packs a punch by the name of Olaf Tyson (appropriately named). Each character feels incredibly unique, and we can’t wait to see the roster expand.
Character models all look great, and each map is visually stunning in their detail and use of color. Seriously, Brawlout‘s art design department deserves a nod, and we can’t wait to see more designs come into fruition.
Its biggest flaw is the fact that there are only six characters, but obviously, the game isn’t going to stay that way. We’re hoping to see Brawlout‘s roster expand to at least 16+, although to our knowledge, developer Angry Mob hasn’t announced a final roster number. I think the joy in finding a few great characters that speak to your playstyle in a fighting game with an expansive roster is one of the best joys gaming has to offer. Would games like Overwatch or League of Legends be as popular as they are with small rosters? No, and that’s because people love choices.
The game also has four player local co-op, a practice mode, ranked matches, and 1v1 casual matches. What’s more, there’s also Brawlout TV which allows you to check your personal fight stats, match history, and replays, as well as live spectating (which is useful when you’re waiting for an online match). Angry Mob promises that there are also more modes on the way, including a single-player challenges mode and a story campaign.
Brawlout is a game that’s heading in the right direction, but at a price of $20 on Early Access, it’s hard to recommend it right now because of its current lack of content. And honestly, that’s its biggest flaw. What’s there is showing a lot of promise, and as more content is added, it’s going to be a game that becomes easier and easier to recommend. The same can, of course, be said for most Early Access game, which is why it exists in the first place.
Brawlout‘s potential for success is probably higher than most other games on Steam’s Early Access right now, and that’s why I’m writing about it at all. It’s a game that would fill a void for PC and Non-Nintendo gamers, so we’re only hoping it can blossom into something great. Angry Mob’s focus right now should be adding as many new characters and maps as possible — even if it messes with the game’s balance at first. Add in, let’s say, at least six more characters with one major update, then start the tweaking to make them all balanced.
On top of that, the game has potential to not only gain a following on PC but also Xbox One and PS4 as well. With Angry Mob noting that those console versions are on the way, it’s just another reason to be excited about its probable success.
For more upcoming indie games to keep an eye on, check out our mega list.
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