Beat ‘em up games were a huge thing in the 90’s games like streets of rage, Final Fight, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and more were all on the rise. Anyone going to the arcade was going to play a beat ‘em up game or a fighting game most of the time.
Unfortunately gaming started being brought into homes and graphics started to leave the 16 and 32 bit era in the past. For a long time after 2001, These games were barely able to survive in the growing 3d game era. Sure beat em up games were making a slow come back with Ninja Turtles constantly releasing and Playstation One games like Gekido and the classic multiplayer game Fighting Force, But for the most part Beat ‘em up games were “well, sorta dead”.
Companies like Activision in 2004 with the X-Men Legends series and 2006 Ultimate Alliance series gave beat em ups a new skin so to speak. Adding RPG elements to the Genre was a fantastic idea but at the end of the day this was a shy imitation of the genre it evolved from.Then In the year 2008 a gaming company called The Behemoth released Castle Crashers for the Xbox 360.
Castle Crashers is a 2D beat ’em up video game developed by The Behemoth and Published by the as well on the xbox live arcade. Castle Crashers went viral selling over two million copies on the Xbox 360 Alone.
After years of success the game came back with a remastered version for the Xbox one with a free upgrade for players that already owned the game on the xbox 360. Fast forward to September 2019 and the game is back at it again – this time with a Playstation 4 and Nintendo Switch Release. At the time of writing the game is number 3 on the Nintendo Switch Eshop so it’s easy to say the game has never lost its touch. This review is based on the Nintendo Switch Version of the Game played in 4 player Local co-op mode with fellow Geekly Grind Members.
Starting the game
The game starts off with the knights all having a party in the barracks or one would presume. During this party an evil wizard breaks into the castle and the king’s Magic (at least i think it’s magic) jewel was stolen along with his 4 daughters or wives – we will just say 4 daughters. This party was rudely ended by a grey knight being thrown through the door only to die with his hand raised as if her were asking for help.This is the start of everyone’s journey. Help the king get back his jewel and save his questionable family members from unwanted weddings and kidnapping.
Look and Feel
Castle Crashers is visually pleasing with bright vivid colors that really pop and if you really pay attention to the background you can catch some pretty hilarious things happening .The controls feel tight and responsive which makes pulling off long combos a cinch with enough practice. If you are someone that Likes this genre you will feel right at home.
As you level up in the game you are able to apply your stats to your liking. I personally filled my magic the most, dealing magic damage was always pleasing and a good way to keep a combo going and an easy way to keep my foes at bay. Many times I found myself running away from enemies that were way stronger than me and the best solution was to blast them until they were unable to fight back.It’s even easier if 2 and/- or 4 players were playing keeping an enemy at bay because you can constantly shoot a barrage of magic blasts while your team does all of the hand to hand combat.
At the time of writing the switch version has no prompt to allow friends to join the game using a different switch profiles. The game will not save any data for local player 2-4 if they are not logged into separate switch accounts. Luckily I found out that on the character select screen,, you can push the Y button to choose profiles. Hopefully this issue will be resolved by simply putting a prompt on the screen to inform players to choose profiles.
Players just starting out with beat ‘em up games and people that want to get back into beat’ em up games but don’t know where to start would love this game. It’s easy to pick up, but moderate to master. Every character has a certain amount of strategy and skill that can be applied to them.
This remastered version has plenty to do after beating the game. There’s a Mini game mode called Back Off Barbarian, and the arena. Another fantastic thing about the game is if you want to play through the game again it has around 29 playable characters!
Castle Crashers has a ridiculous amount of humor and delivers it all with visuals and no verbal communication with players or characters within the game. Any that would take offence to bathroom jokes may feel uncomfortable in a specific level in the forest altho it’s comedy gold, in this level every creature in the forest is terrified of some giant monster. You see different animals running away as the loud footsteps can he heard. One scene a deer is projectile pooping so hard that it becomes mobile ( my god was this funny as hell). Later in the stage you and or a party member will be riding this deer to escape the destructive monster. All of the other funny scene I will save for you lovely readers to see for yourself.
An honorable mention is that this game constantly rewards players. While playing the game you will be rewarded with not only playable characters but you also with new weapons and small floating critters to aid you or destroy you, such as the ram. The ram headbuts enimes you are fighting which is nothing but helpful. A little bit of peck damage goes along way. In contrast, The bat will attack anyone with low health including the player.
Castle Crashers is a very fun and fantastic game. All of the humor and colorful characters and stages always give the player something to look forward to may it be a possible future playable character or weapon you can use. This game is constantly rewarding the player, the concept of earning well really anything in a video game is long gone in the world of paid dlc and loot boxes.
Castle crashers stands out in my eyes as a classic in every form. 4 people can play together may it be online or at home on one console and TV ( the way i play it ) everyone can earn weapons and critters. We can vs each other and play minigames along with the game’s campaign. Castle Crashers stands out and hopefully other game devs pay close attention to The Behemoth and learn from how they make games -, perfect length, slow ramping difficulty, things to earn, great humor,100% pollish, and (for me) a bugless experience.
Castle Crashers is extremely fun and definitely delivers on its purpose to make an easily accessible beat em up game. If you are looking for a beat ‘em up game to get into or you just need a new one in your library I highly recommend this game. Being someone that loves beat ‘em up games and plays them on a weekly basis, I believe everyone should give this a try. Castle Crashers is available on, Windows via Steam, Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 And Xbox One.