Battletoads, Review: “WE’RE BACK!”
The most powerful batrachians in video games are back with a delivery summarized in pure action, colorful and healthy Coop.
1991. The Ninja Turtles hit it, destroy it all over the world, convert it from an underground ultraviolet comic to a children’s animation series, turned into a pure and enduring source of merchandising. Among these, the basic idea in US animation studios is simple: “we need more anthropomorphic and / or sugar warrior animals”. And as the most direct ‘heirs’ of TMNT fever we have a Unique production for the Nintendo NES: Battletoads, some heroic toad that hits ostia like bread and has a 90s view of Poochie from the Simpsons Rash wears sunglasses, then we leave it …
The saga is wonderfully summed up by our ‘voice’ and retro compendium Juan Arenas in this video of Memory Card. But suffice it to say that the Battletoads, of course derived from the rage of the turtle, reached their own personality, became an icon of their own, and that kept them in mind for 26 years despite not they starred in more than a handful of games in the 3rd and 4th Gen and the Arcades –in addition to cameos like Killer Instinct or Shovel Knight.
Outside the ‘copy-paste’
And is that when you start with a game that has a great rhythm of A in terms of mixing different genres and B- THE MOST HATED MOTORCYCLE PHASE IN VIDEO GAME HISTORY -or of the most hated-, you recall yes or no. For this reason, and with the fever reviving them hitting very hard since the last 7th Gen, a group of fans (we) died because these three batsmen returned. And a year ago, Microsoft gave us that pleasure when it released the trailer for this Battletoads, a title that sold as a remake – a reboot that is actually one of those late sequences that we are seeing so much.
The plot? Well, without revealing much, the Toads have been “lost” all these years, and now they have to face the real world, and “restart” their lives. But of course, the Dark Queen is visible again and must be chased away. And in the (applause) sign of the times, it’s her most radical redesign, as it stops being a gothic pin Playboy cover in the 90s to get closer to a mad scientist, but the an artistic (segmented) style that we will talk about later.
The game is divided into 4 actions, and all actions en different levels or stages (25 in total). They are not always the same size, and in fact certain actions last longer than others, although the usual thing is in the first game and in SAPO difficulty – that is, in normal, each action lasts between 90 and 120 minutes, with some levels lasting only 2 minutes and belts that can be stretched over 40 minutes – it depends on your ability to make a pad.
The story is pure to tie steps, it is a very rare madness of the Rare classic that takes advantage of that ‘meta’ concept, but also current shot jokes during gameplay and machine-gunning us with (the too many) jokes in the cutscenes, which English dubbing, but texts in Spanish -in more Latin than Spanish.
26 years later …
True to its name, we have found some peaks of absurd difficulty here and there. If you play Easy or Normal, you have access to a temporary inviolability skill that you can summon and use when planning the game, which happens when you are stuck in a place and often die one after another, so you can use it to pass that part you stand on.
And it’s one thing that makes them difficult for us – because it’s a good burden and we respect it – but it’s another thing to get stuck at a point not because of our lack of ability, but because the game insists on it. In fact, and to testify to this, the study has been implemented immediately repainted system for the user, and just when you die you repaint immediately at the last checkpoint, without loading a game or viewing intermediate scenes. You die, explode or crash and you immediately reappear to continue.
In case you get stuck on a level of difficulty and want to go down to a lower one, the game will not let you. You have to restart a game from the beginning.
One of the best assets of the original NES was its huge variety, since the combat and pure slash platforms were added vertical steps by abseiling, horizontally with the famous flying motorcycles, etc. The Battletoads do this again: Hack slash levels followed by mini-games to give massages, send emails, participate in Olympics, escape levels in ‘sled’ – seemingly inspired by Rayman Legends- or 2D platform, going to Shoot ’em vertical … That’s one of its assets: qyou never know what you will get in the next level, but also a problem, because the overall proposal is not well balanced.
In fact, everyone who comes to you for your Beat Up offer should know that the total sum of these levels is not even half the total stages of the game –18 of those 25 levels are minigames, chase scenes or platforming. And while the idea of hacking and modifying puzzles, including them, may have more variety, it doesn’t make much sense in the steps of the slash, because disrupt your rhythm
But without a doubt the best thing is its magical cooperative with 2-3 users, because of the extra help by hitting enemies – something that can be done uphill alone-, everything is two or three times and it has to be solved by cooperating: the stage of the bike, the hacking puzzles, etc – really There are some Achievements / Trophies that can only be achieved by playing cooperative 3. The only bad thing is that not everyone can call a colleague to come to their house — in these times of Coronavirus even less so — so This title becomes an online multiplayer that we don’t understand why it wasn’t implemented.
Did you doubt it? Peaks of absurd difficulty
Let’s talk about an important part: the combat system: We have the classic hit button, which creates a combination of several hits, then we launch the attack to throw the enemy into the sky, and the transformed attack, which makes our character makes an ideal movement when we are surrounded by enemies -Rash takes out a huge fish to knock around or starts playing an arcade game, Zitz breaks a sound attack; Pimple turns into a mummy or Pimple-Wolf. Each toad is designed for one type of player: Pimple is an ideal ‘tanker’ for enemy groups, albeit slow; Zitz is very good with antenna combos and the fastest – suitable for Final Bosses; and there is a small Rash in the middle.
Keeping Firm B is a Garda Break. your enemies you have to break your guard. RT is the dodge button that will help us move quickly around the stage when it closes for an opponent – if we’re not fighting, RT is up for grabs. LT + x will serve to pull the enemy towards you with your tongue and deflate it minutes to branch it well. It is very useful, there are enemies that try to get away from you at medium to hit you in the distance. With this movement you attract them and prevent them from attacking you, but there is only one at a time, so you have to be careful to use the move quickly and hit it, use it and hit it, etc. You also use the language to collect flies using LT + Y. And just like in the original games, Flies are health goods that prolong your life.
Battletoads can also spit to immediately paralyze the enemy and disrupt their attack – seriously: you’ll use a lot. The bad thing is that you try to put all these actions together in the end and you can’t, so you can resort to punching buttons in the middle of visual chaos. One of the best things is that when we have almost chased them, they become paralyzed waiting for us to finish them. That makes them harmless and we can go and tease those who are still active.
Great thing it isn’t There are RPG elements, no Skill Tree, no progressive characters, but from the beginning their ‘skills’ are unlocked Not wasting time. And the most notable novelty is the option to switch in real time between each of the Battletoads by pushing the cross of the pad to the sides or down.
The best part is that this also gives you different worlds, as if you are in the middle of an impossible wave or against an Ultimate Boss – there are a few, but they are not memorable or difficult when you find their pattern -, and one of the characters loses a full health bar, you automatically switch to another and recover the previous one, but this is limited.