Double Dragon Gaiden: Rise of the Dragons Review – GameTopic

Double Dragon Gaiden: Rise of the Dragons Review - GameTopic

Double Dragon Gaiden: Rise of the Dragons – Where Strange Mayors and Roguelike Beat ’Em Ups Collide!

So, picture this: a mysterious dude barges into your office, dragging your pal along, claiming to be the new mayor and begging for your help to restore peace to your city. Let me tell ya, folks, don’t believe a word! But you know what? This wacky scenario is just the beginning of the rollercoaster ride that is Double Dragon Gaiden: Rise of the Dragons (DDG). It takes the retro side-scrolling beat ’em up formula, tosses in some roguelike goodness, and provides a solid foundation for a fun and slightly bonkers gaming experience. Now, don’t get too excited, it’s not groundbreaking or perfect, but it’ll still give you a good time if you’re into this kind of game.

Let’s talk about the combat, shall we? DDG keeps things simple and accessible. You don’t need to be a pro platform fighter to master the single-button combos and special moves. It’s like those games we love, Marvel vs Capcom, where you can unleash flashy moves with ease. Trust me, canceling your normal attacks into big special moves feels oh-so-satisfying. The best part? You’re given some generous juggle windows, allowing you to keep those enemies airborne, showing ’em who’s boss. But wait, there’s more! The real spice lies in the tag system. Yup, you get to pick two fighters instead of one to pummel those baddies. And let me tell ya, the variety of fighters available is top-notch. Each one brings unique skills and moves to the table. Some can even use enemy weapons or perform jaw-dropping aerial combos. Who doesn’t love launching bad guys into oblivion?

Now, if you’re in the mood for some strategic thinking, DDG delivers with its mission structure. It’s like Mega Man, baby! You get to choose which zone boss you want to face first. And as you beat them one by one, the remaining missions become longer and the enemies stronger. Yikes! It’s a race against time, my friends. But truth be told, after countless runs and hours sunk into this game, there’s not much real strategy to it. It’s more like deciding which boss annoys you the least when they’re at full strength. And let me save you the trouble: it’s Okada. Just trust me on that one.

Aesthetically, DDG offers some creative backdrops in its four locations, but it’s a hit-and-miss affair. You might find yourself duking it out on a flashy casino floor, surrounded by slot machines, one minute. Next thing you know, you’re stuck in a lifeless back office. Bummer. I gotta mention those gimmicky levels too, like the one covered in darkness with only a little spotlight following you around. Sure, it sets a mood, but man, it feels like a headache trying to keep track of enemies chasing your tail.

Let’s address the elephant in the room: platforming. It’s not DDG’s strongest suit, my friends. Jumping between foreground and background feels clunky, and enemies can spawn in places you’ve already passed. Talk about frustrating! But fear not, my fellow gamers, I’ve got a nifty trick for you. Tackle the worst levels, like Killer’s Fortress and Okada Clan HQ, early on to minimize the pain. You’re welcome.

When you finish a stage, it’s time to splash that hard-earned cash. Feel like a roguelike aficionado as you spend dough on buffs to enhance your performance. Do you need more health? Stronger special moves? It’s all there for the taking. Though I must admit, the decision-making process doesn’t delve as deep as the roguelikes we know and love. Most of the time, I go for the quick and obvious benefits or skip buffs altogether to hoard that sweet cash.

Now, let’s talk opponents. Brace yourself, my friends, because these baddies swarm you relentlessly, especially on regular difficulty. As you progress, their numbers and strength multiply faster than rabbits on roller skates. You do have some control, though. You can tweak settings before starting a run, adjusting health and aggressiveness. But be warned, the long-term impact isn’t always clear, and you’re stuck with your choices. Here’s the kicker: enemy variety doesn’t expand much beyond each mission’s unique mob. So, you’ll get a taste of the whole enemy buffet by the final stages. On the plus side, playing co-op with a friend can alleviate the repetitive bad guy syndrome. Except, there’s no online co-op, so calling up your buddy for couch-comfort gaming is the way to go!

Boss battles, my fellow warriors, are where things get really spicy. Besides the hectic waves of goons trying to keep you on your toes, the bosses themselves will give you a run for your money. They’ll mix you up with their tight ability chains, leaving you scrambling to dodge their attacks. They’re fast and evasive, making it challenging to even land a hit. And if you manage to hit them, brace yourself, my friends, ’cause they recover faster than a squirrel on caffeine. It can feel like all your effort was for naught.

What happens when your run comes to an end? Well, excess cash turns into tokens, which you can spend at the token shop. Unlock new characters, art, music, and tips! Just a word of advice, spending tokens on tips that tell you common sense stuff feels a bit silly. I mean, who wants to pay to be told that you can cancel specials into other specials? Come on now! But hey, if you’ve got everything else unlocked, why not splurge?

So, there you have it, Double Dragon Gaiden: Rise of the Dragons, where strange mayors, tag-team mayhem, and old-school beat ’em up vibes collide in a quirky way. Is it perfect? Nah. But does it deliver an entertaining gaming experience with a side of frustration? You betcha! Grab a buddy, cozy up on the couch, and unleash your inner Dragon warrior. It’s time to save the city, one beatdown at a time. But seriously, don’t trust strange mayors, folks.