Drop the bass, pick up the pace
Platform games. Ah, the sweet memories of collecting shiny gold coins and squashing turtles, not to mention smashing blocks of solid brick, which are somehow mysteriously levitating in mid-air, with the simple might of one’s ominously white-gloved hands.
But its-a not Super Mario Bros this time. In fact, you won’t be doing any of those somewhat peculiar tasks in this platformer. Gone are the days of plodding plumbers and pretty little princesses. You don’t need to know how a carnivorous plant started growing in that giant green piping, or why cutesy-looking mushrooms have started to talk to you and on occasion fall from the sky and slide along the floor as if only to tease you. Never you mind all that. In the world of Rush Bros, a new game for PC and Mac from Xyla Entertainment, all you need is skill, speed and a really awesome playlist.
As the name of this title would suggest, you play as one of two brothers, both of whom have happened to take up the occupation of DJ. Your aim is to be the fastest of the fast as you quite literally rush through a plethora of 2D musically-inspired levels either on your own against the clock or with a friend in split-screen multiplayer mode. Quite rightly, online multiplayer is also planned to be included, although it was unavailable to take a look at any further in the demo version that’s currently out there.
Probably the most unusual aspect of the game is its theme, with bold 2D graphics consisting of strong cartoon lines and flat color with a futuristic feel, as well as a firm focus on music. Whilst not being a music guru myself, from what I have experienced so far, the game has what I’d call an electronic/light-dubstep sort of feel that is reflected both in the soundtrack and visual style. These brothers are super-cool DJs after all, so what did you expect?
The levels feature your usual obstacles and other platform elements that require you to jump, slide and climb to the finish, but there are also power-ups for variety and even puzzles thrown in there that may require a little more thought in order to continue at top speed. Fail to think on your feet however, and you could run the risk of having to slow down or stop entirely, and in doing so get stomped by your competition. Blaze on regardless, and you’ll be sure to suffer an embarrassing death as you run straight into a wall of spikes or maybe a chainsaw that you didn’t notice whizzing up from the ground. That just happens sometimes.
You also have the handy option to replace the original level soundtracks with your own, using MP3 or OGG audio files (in the demo at least, these are the only file types currently supported). Each level’s environment is supposed to react differently depending on the audio track selected. For example a fast-paced piece of music will cause some objects in the level to move more quickly, whereas slower tracks may cause them to move comparatively slower.
Rush Bros is in open beta right now, and the game is already up on Steam Greenlight where you can check out the screenshots, trailer and demo. Then, if you think this is the mad, musical, competitive platformer you’ve been waiting for you can show your support and give a wholehearted thumbs up towards its distribution through Steam. The complete game is expected to be released in the first quarter of 2013.