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Preview: Coffee Crisis (PC)

The Smurglian alien race has come to Earth and they’re looking for heavy metal, free Wi-Fi, and coffee. It’s up to you and/or a friend to stop them in the best way a throwback can provide: By beating the crap out of groups of them as you get to the end of each level!

If you have heard about Coffee Crisis on TICGN before, you may recall my interviews with the folks at Mega Cat Studios from last year and the year before that. This is a beat ’em up game not only inspired by the 90’s titles that thrive in the genre, but is also now available on a console from the era. You can pick up a copy of Coffee Crisis for the SEGA Genesis/Mega Drive, among other titles Mega Cat created for old school systems. However, if this article is of any indication, they have been broadening their horizons regarding game releases. Coffee Crisis‘s PC release has been delayed a few times – it is now scheduled for May – but this is because the developers are adding in extra features not present in the SEGA Genesis version.

I was given the golden opportunity to try the newfangled Steam version for myself, and I have to say: It definitely feels the part. Although I haven’t played the original I could already see that the presentation is reminiscent of how Genesis games of old made the leap to SEGA/Mega CD hardware. The CD quality soundtrack replaces the relatively primitive Genesis soundfont and the samples of sound effects and voice grunts are much clearer. Oddly, there is still a password system as of this writing. I imagine battery saves costed extra for cartridges but this is a digital download; it simply doesn’t make sense to still have this feature now that it’s no longer on a Genesis cart. Hopefully the final version gets a proper save function.

Fortunately, the fun resulting from clocking baddies in the face isn’t obsolete. If you’ve played classic beat ’em ups like Konami’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles titles or the Final Fight series, you’ll have an idea of what to expect from Coffee Crisis. Moving around feels snappy, punching and kicking thugs is satisfying, and the levels don’t overstay their welcome. Jumping feels slightly delayed compared to the fluid nature of jumping in other games in the genre but the game otherwise balances out these three elements better than many games that see releases on modern consoles. It’s a positively retro game at heart and it shows – especially through its well-detailed spritework and backgrounds.

If you’re a fan of beat ’em ups or games of old, you may want to put Coffee Crisis on your radar. The game is looking to be a pretty rad brawler and any good game on Steam needs all the word of mouth it can get to shine bright among the continuous sea of oversaturation and shovelware on the platform.

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