River City Girls Review

Introduction

River City Girls is a beat em up, developed by WayForward and published by Arc System Works. It was released on consoles and PC in 2019.

Review

When Misako and Kyoko’s boyfriends are snatched up, they take it upon themselves to skip school, and beat up anyone in their way, to rescue their lovers. Whether it’s fellow students, gangsters, or cops! The residents of River City won’t know what hit them…again.

The story plays out in a silly fashion, where the girls obviously trek across town, as they investigate what has happened to their boyfriends. Once they get a lead, they head to it as fast as they possibly can, to interrogate the “crazy kidnapper”, and find out more clues to their disappearances. The story was a fun twist on the normal “we have to save our girlfriends” shtick. Throughout the game though you meet a plethora of characters. Though they all end up being a bunch of terrible people. Which isn’t very surprising. Or in one case, a creeper who likes to pop out of garbage cans.

There’s even two classmates of the main girls, who are absolutely dreadful to be around. Especially when they like to say the boyfriends of Misako and Kyoko are theirs. But it made for funny dialogue, but I was sad when you never fought them. Or maybe you do in the post game, but I never did do that. I will say I wasn’t expecting the ending though, and it did have me chuckling like a little schoolgirl. That’s right, I made the pun!

The game itself plays like a beat ’em up. So if you’ve ever played something like Turtles In Time, or Scott Pilgrim, you’ll be right at home here! As you work your way through the city, and beat up enemies, you also get money and experience. As you level up, your stats get better, and with your money, you can either buy food to restore your health, and keep it for later if you want, or buy accessories. These accessories are great, as they help with some things. Like extra damage against mobsters. Or being able to slowly recover HP! They were fun to experiment with, even if they were kind of expensive.

When you die, you lose money. I’m not entirely sure the exact percentage when it comes to single player, but in co-op, if you both die, you both lose half your money. This was infuriating for me. Maybe it’s because the partner I had wasn’t exactly great at the game. Though I still had fun, it made me upset when we lost a ton of money. Mostly because the revive mechanics were aggravating to work with. What you had to do was stomp on your friend’s corpse, to push their soul back into their bodies. Except this stomp button was also tied to an attack button. So I’d end up attacking a bunch instead of stomping. Which then made my partner die and lose their money. 

The boss fights on the other hand, were a ball. They were creative, and a thrill ride to figure out the attack pattern of the bosses. Especially when you fight one on what is basically a guitar hero board. That also means the music in the game is top notch. My favourite was in the second last area of the game, when you’re roaming the beaches.

Rating

Rating: 8 out of 10.

Pros:

  • Amazing Music
  • Accessories Are Fun To Mix And Match
  • Fun Spin On The Story Formula

Cons:

  • Revive Mechanics
  • Money Loss Percent

Summary

Even with the issues I had in co-op play, I absolutely loved this game. The music, the silly story, and the gameplay were a treat! I do wish I had a better partner though. But either way, the game was still super fun in solo, for the short bits I played! Don’t skip this.

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Game & Developer Information

Developer Website: WayForward
Developer Socials: Twitter
Publisher Website: Arc System Works
Publisher Socials: Twitter
PSN Store Links: £24.99/€29.99 Europe / $29.99 North America
Trophy Information: 56. 40-platinum 1 / Gold 2 / Silver 5 / Bronze 48

Images – https://www.igdb.com/

River City Girls Official Launch Trailer

Published by oniwalker

Co-owner of NodeGamers(dot)com. Reviewer and Guide Writer. I'll play just about anything as I cry about my backlog!

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