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Code Shifter - Arc System Works 2D side-scrolling crossover game (PS4/XB1/Switch/PC)

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Coming to all platforms January 30th for about £15...

 

Below are some notes from the MS Store page:

 

Quote

Our adventure starts at the video game company, Awesome Rainbow Corp.

 

Your aim as a staff member is to deliver a complete, bug-free game. However, as your game nears completion, strange software bugs have started appearing. Use the Code Shifter program in this side-scrolling action-platformer to defeat all the in-game bugs. Once you've exterminated the bugs that have sprung forth in the programming world, you'll return to the real world where your story continues to develop, leading you to the root of the outbreak.

■Original visual style
From watercolors and flat colorful art to retro style pixel art, the graphics are a delightful mix of titles past and present.

■Game system
In this exhilarating side-scrolling action-platformer you must transform your character to overcome the challanges and defeat the various enemies in each stage. All 30 characters have the ability to transform and use a variety of actions for a unique experience.

■Drama
Our protagonist is a programmer named Stella who is joined by game designer Mozzie, graphics designer Rudy, Veteran programmer Hudson, and project director Greig. Their antics in this entertaining comedy drama are sure to bring a smile to your face.

■Contains an overwhelming volume of collaboration
This game is jam-packed with Arc System Works characters from various titles. Not only are there 30 playable characters that have different attacks and actions but there's another 70 assist characters with various special attacks. The 8-bit soundtrack is a remix sampled from the original theme songs of each respective series! Characters from popular titles such as Guilty Gear, Blaz Blue, Double Dragon, Kuniokun and many more show up to lend a hand to the fight.

■Don't miss the VS Mode
Up to 4 players can battle locally using the collab characters you have collected during the main game. You and your friends will no doubt get swept up in all the excitement!

 

https://www.arcsystemworks.jp/codeshifter/

 

I adore crossover stuff when it's done well, and this is looking like Arc's own Street Fighter X Mega Man. With the story premise of Wario Ware. But maybe even better than all of that. The trailer didn't show a whole lot of action-packed gameplay, and I can see that the clashing styles might not be everyone's bag, but I'm interested in finding out more about this...

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Hmm. The four-player mini game with full NGPC aesthetic looks great, but I can't say the rest appealed to me (aesthetically or in terms of what was shown of the gameplay). Not hugely hyped up for this. 

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A lil' update on release info: there's an MS Store page for this now, and the price there is converted to £14.24. Although that could be a placeholder as a result of a straight conversion... ;) 

 

https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/p/code-shifter/9pm56jkh4ljf?rtc=1&activetab=pivot:overviewtab

 

There's also an English-language description, so I'll edit that into the OP in a moment...

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This is up on Steam now for about £15.49 - https://store.steampowered.com/app/976570/CODE_SHIFTER/

 

I’ll probably take a look this afternoon and report back, so if you’re on the fence I can take the hit ;)  There’s already gameplay footage online and the opening bits look a little simplistic, but lately I could probably go for some simplistic. Colourful Fighters looks ace in comparison, but you have to open up characters by playing the main game!

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I've played this for a little bit now. At the moment I think it's a fun little thing, but I'm not sure if it's £15.49 fun! The gameplay generally consists of sidescrolling combat with a bit of light puzzling - there are a few "locked door" type scenarios where you have to find switches and things, or sometimes there are bits where you have to use one character's fire attack to melt a wall of ice (for example). As with the trailer footage, you can change into a predetermined character at specific locations (although they often cycle through several characters for you to select) - however, what I didn't know is that you can store a second character to switch to - so if you want to change but don't want to lose the Sol Badguy you already have in one slot, this is fine.

 

Every time you change into another character, you get an appropriate chiptune playing as the BGM, and some of them are really good. The unfortunate thing is that when you have to use default character Stella (there are many situations where she's the only one who can open up pathways) you have a pretty uninteresting theme tune! Since you have to use these predetermined locations to change characters, I'm starting to think that it's a little bit Kirby-esque as well as Mega Man-esque. I mean, you're not inhaling enemies to absorb their power, but you get the same feeling of finding an ability which will be conveniently useful for the next few minutes of gameplay.

 

As well as the puzzling, there are a lot of what I would call "battle rooms" - the game seals you in and spawns in multiple enemies, and you can't proceed until they've all been defeated. Some of them can only be attacked from one side, or you have to attack them in a certain way to guard-break them, and it can get a little overwhelming, but nothing too bad. And there are bosses of course, but often the boss battles aren't so much about finding the right opportunity to chip away - there are a few moments where one or two well placed hits took big chunks away from a few lifebars.

 

As the game progresses you can open up buffs by speaking to your colleagues, and you can stick these into slots so that you're a little more prepared for the next level. I'll admit that I went through a bunch of levels without bothering to speak to anyone between levels, so I've probably been making things hard on myself! :P 

 

I'm quite happy with what I've seen so far, but it's hard to recommend at that price tag. I love discovering new characters to transform to and pretty much all of the chiptunes are ace, but there's a lot of filler in the stages, it can feel a bit slow-paced (not just because of the locked 30 FPS) and sometimes platforming feels kind of floaty with the default character. "Colourful Fighters" (the versus minigame) is somewhat more fun, but even then you'd probably be better off playing Fight'n Rage (which has a decent vs. mode with an ace single-player campaign as well!)

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And done. Sort of. Credits roll after around 6-7 hours of play, although there are a lot of unlocks and extra levels and things to go back to. A lot of the final boss' attacks went forward, so crossup divekicks are the way to go. Towards the end the boss does some stuff with vertical beams, which is funny because I had been dealing with those a lot a couple of months back with the final boss of Super Castlevania IV :P 

 

I don't know if I'll go back for the unlocks, but I'll probably return to it now and again for the better stages and those tunes. And Colourful Fighters. :) 

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