You Already Know What This Is..
*Razor Ramon voice* Hey yo…*taping up knuckles* if you’re here for a Streets of Rage 4 review talking about pixel resolution, frame rate, and game mechanics, get the fuck out my face. I’m not the one to do that for you. I’m not even sorry about it. I’m here to talk about Streets of Rage 4 and punching random goons in the fucking face. That’s the video game Beat’em Up formula I was raised on as a kid. I’ma tell you right the fuck now, Streets of Rage 4 ain’t for the conscious, this is for the mud-made monsters. Arcade-made monsters! Beat’em up bullies, brawlers, and bastards.
Y’all want innovation brought to the 90’s Beat’em Up genre? Not me. Fuck That. Big Beefy Men bumping meat and badass women running the block. This is street shit, my gamer. That’s the shit that I enjoyed as a kid and to this day. TO THIS DAY! I tied a band round my head for this shit. Taped the fucking knuckles up for this. Sat in Timberlands, controller in hand for this shit. Mutha fuckas out her playing for a good time? I’m out here playing for the fucking grind.
Streets of Rage 4 in the Age of Online Quarantine Co-Op
I bought Streets of Rage 4 with the quickness. Soon as that shit was ready to download me and Jordan Calhoun teamed up to go back to the mean streets of “Wood Oak City”. I said, Jordan we doing this on hard. He said hell yeah. we looking at the beautiful roster. My man Axle Stone back at this shit looking like he just got out of a Pearl Jam concert. Big Boy Samoa Floyd Iraia out here meaty and thick as fuck. Yeah, thas the shit I’m talking bout. That’s the shit I’m here for, but not on the first playthrough. For the first take, Jordan went with legs and kicks for days with SOR legend, Blaze Fielding. I chose the electric ax rookie of the year, Cherry Hunter to start out with. Skate was my guy and now I get to play as his niece and Adam Hunter’s daughter?! Let’s fucking go with the Hunter Legacy slot.
We out her ready for war. Soon as I hit Select and walked on screen I got punched in the fucking face. That’s exactly how I wanted to be greeted by the series after all these years. Real shit, I ain’t even goin’ lie, I was mid-way through the stage on the first couple runs and I’m like, “Whoa, am I rusty or am I trash?” Then Jordan gets got on another level. We like, “Yo are we garbage?” That’s how hard Streets of Rage 4 goes on the console. It’ll make you question your own abilities. Jordan and I had to get on the mics, we couldn’t do this shit without communicating. Just like if you’re playing with someone in the same house we had to be like, “Alright you take the apple health, I’ll get the turkey”, or make a game decision on who gets the health if there was one, and the other had to fall back. Once we got our system going we was walking up on folks 89′ Bad Boys Detroit Pistons style.
Up Your Game
Streets of Rage 4 makes you step everything the fuck up, decision making, courage under fire, and your reaction times. I’m out here low on health bobbing, weaving, and finessing through enemies to get to food and weapons. Cherry Hunter is the only character that can run in the game. Cherry Hunter is my favorite cause she got that Kenny Omega V-Trigger Knee as her dash attack, with flames on it so it hurts more! Everybody else got the “cool guys don’t look back at explosions” slow walk. The SOR4 out here hindering you! It’s 2020, not 1989, these muh fuckas ain’t get their cardio up? Can I get a light sprint, at least? Damn. This is real difficulty out here, huh? That’s what the fuck I want and expect from a video game!
Look at the fucking finesse! Look at the goddamn technique! When I tell you that ain’t even me playing, that’s my other. That’s my pure gaming spirit playing right there. Streets of Rage 4 made me transcend my earthly form for this shit right here. Whole barroom brawl of fucking goons coming at me like I’m Eddie Murphy in 48 hours. Cherry Hunter fears no brawl. Cherry Hunter ain’t backing down from a goddamn person rocking the ’92 Arrested Development “take me to another place” Tennesse Marley locs! That other place, by the way, is a goddamn graveyard after stepping to Cherry Hunter.
When you die you feel like you let the team down. I was facing a boss by my lonesome, Jordan in my ear sayin’, “You got this. You doing beautiful work.” I got got when that mutha fucka Shiva showed up, leaving Jordan on his own. It came down to the wire and this dude calling out chi shadow clones to help him fight three on one. I’m shoutin’ at Jordan, “HE CAN’T SEE YOU ONE ON ONE! YOUR LEG DAY TOO STRONG! SHOW’EM WHO YOU ARE! SHOW’EM WHO THE FUCK YOU ARE!” When you get taken out the game you gotta support your mans/womans/non-binaries’ and dem that’s still in the game holding the team down.
A whole ass meal of beatdowns
Oh, plus they got combos in this game now? Once we got the hang of the fucking combos? *Ric Flair Wooooooooo!* It was on. Jordan and I were out her ordering all the fucking meals for these goons, with the biscuit, with the fries and the big fucking drinks. This one Freddy Mercury Enter the Dragon looking ass boss Barbon beat our asses five times in a fucking row. Had us frustrated as fuck. That 6th time Jordan and I ain’t even speak we just ran up on dude shouting JUMP THIS MAN! JUMP THIS MAN! The music gets you in the zone for this game too. These are beats and songs that rappers need to rap over. This shit goes hard. My palms were sweaty (knees weak, arms were heavy) as hell playing this shit whenever my health got low with the beat getting even more intense in the background.
When I tell you we beat that man’s ass down to the fucking white meat?! Down to the fucking Tyson chicken meat. We were not dropping that combo at all. The game had to say, “damn y’all the stage clear let that man rest in peace already” before we dropped that shit. That’s how much hate and disdain these bosses make you have for them, man. Fuck that dude and his Urban Outfitters fit.
Is this the thanks I get?
After 9 grueling hours, repeated stages and run-throughs, repeated boss battles, we finally made it to the final boss. You gotta battle the main boss of the franchise, Mr. X’s children, the Y Twins. We squared up with them one-on-one then had to fight them both together. This fucking battle, man. After it was all said and done. After the goons got carted off to the morgue. After we shut down their whole evil plan in this very, very thinly layered story, we reached the end. My friend Josh asked if there was an actual ending this time… YOU KNOW GOD DAMN WELL THERE’S NO ACTUAL ENDING. We beat that shit and the fucking credits started rolling immediately. No cutscene, fuck that Marvel post-credit shit. You know what you get? These pictures of everyone talking like “yo that shit was crazy right? For real… alright see you next sequel/reboot” That’s it.
This is Streets of Rage, what the fuck did you expect? Streets of Rage franchise is like life, it’s a fucking grueling grind. Oh, you walked forward too far and can’t go back to get that turkey you didn’t take? Too fucking bad bro. Hard is really hard? We suggest getting some lessons at Tiger Schulmann’s Martial Arts Academy cause there ain’t no Game Genie to save your ass this time around, baby. This real rap fucking raw out here. You want a reward? Fine. Here. Take this retro pixelated sprite of Adam Stone from Streets of Rage 1. You’re welcome. The fuck am I supposed to do with this dude? lol. He came on the screen and Jordan looked at him then the 2020 Axel’s guy saying, “Damn, victory defeated him”.
Please understand, this isn’t me complaining either. I fuck with it. That the game was beat was all the satisfaction that I needed. I need to take a minute to recoup before going for the rest of the unlockable retro characters. Honestly, once Zaddy Adam Hunter showed up and became playable, I was beyond content cause that’s the mutha fucka I came here for. Seeing Adam interact with his friends and his daughter? Arghhhh. Yes. This is why the fuck I showed up to show the fuck out in this game! Sure the story coulda been longer and more detailed but fuck all that man, we know why we’re here. Plus the artwork they did in the scenery and these sprites? Top fucking notch. This shit so beautiful we had trouble telling what background items could get broke or not.
Lemme tell you what I came here for. I came to Streets of Rage 4 for a fight, I came here for a challenge, and I came here to see the glow up of these franchise players. I was not disappointed. Big thank you to Lizardcube, Guard Crush Games, and Dotemu for bringing nostalgia back for the 2020s and beyond.