Like so many others, I nonetheless discover it surreal that Hello-Fi Rush even exists. Launched only some hours after its announcement, Hello-Fi Rush boasts a core idea that appears virtually tailored to cater to my pursuits with its mixture of rhythm-based gameplay and 3D motion fight within the vein of Satan Might Cry or Bayonetta. With a slick, cel-shaded fashion serving because the cherry on prime, Hello-Fi Rush appeared virtually too good to be true in some ways. Regardless, I went in with reserved expectations, not fairly positive if the sport would stay as much as its promise. However what feels most surreal of all is that it completely does. To place it merely, Hello-Fi Rush guidelines, and anybody with even a passing curiosity on this recreation ought to strive it as quickly as they’ll.
Really feel the rhythm of fight
So how does Hello-Fi Rush go about mixing collectively brawler- and rhythm-game parts? For starters, each motion you and the enemies take, whether or not it’s an assault, dodge, or parry, is synced as much as no matter music observe is taking part in within the background. So even when you go right into a combat mashing the assault button, your strikes will come out in a satisfying rhythmic sequence. Because of this even these with out a sense of rhythm can instantly derive some enjoyment from Hello-Fi Rush‘s synesthetic gameplay programs.
This all sounds properly and good, however doesn’t this largely quantity to a mere aesthetic flourish? Whereas it’s true that gamers can progress via Hello-Fi Rush largely nice by treating it as a typical motion recreation, you gained’t have the ability to take advantage of out of the fight system this fashion. The sport encourages you to hit the assault buttons in time to obtain numerous bonuses in battle, akin to greater injury output and highly effective Beat Hit finishers.
It’s the small issues
Simply this concept alone is sufficient to make the fight compelling on a visceral stage, however a number of different good particulars push it that a lot additional. Combo strings are ruled by a constant, intuitive system during which gentle assaults come out one beat after the button press whereas heavy assaults occur two beats after. Not solely does the additional beat of windup earlier than a heavy assault go a great distance towards promoting the facility of the transfer, however it additionally encourages gamers to pay nearer consideration to the rhythm and break free from the behavior of repetitively hitting the assault buttons on each beat. With this easy contact, executing combos in Hello-Fi Rush feels much less such as you’re merely memorizing an inventory of button inputs and extra such as you’re taking part in an precise track.
One other factor that aids the rhythm-based fight is the visuals’ synergy with the soundtrack. Nearly each environmental background asset bounces and bobs to the beat, which suggests gamers have an entire host of visible cues to make sure they keep in rhythm. As if that wasn’t sufficient, your cat companion 808 emits a small ring that pulsates on each beat. And even Chai, the participant character, instances his footsteps to the music and snaps his fingers when left idle. This choice to design the complete recreation world as a makeshift metronome is an ingenious methodology for getting gamers to extra simply internalize the rhythm whereas preventing, even with out the sport’s precise metronome characteristic you’ll be able to optionally activate.
Not simply your common brawler
The rhythm features could function Hello-Fi Rush‘s primary draw, however don’t suppose for a second that the builders prioritized the novelty of its premise over its gameplay complexity. It is a critical motion recreation, full with all kinds of choices for each offense and protection, completely different enemy hit reactions for gamers to benefit from, and complicated setups for superior combo strings. Veterans of motion video games will little question acknowledge a number of tropes of the style included in Hello-Fi Rush. There’s a grappling characteristic harking back to Nero’s Buster and Wire Snatcher from the Satan Might Cry collection, in addition to the combo finishers that echo Bayonetta‘s Depraved Weaves.
Some could find yourself evaluating the sport’s programs to these of different motion titles to see how they stack up by way of depth. However actually, whether or not or not Hello-Fi Rush is as deep as this or that recreation isn’t vital. The truth that it even comes shut is a exceptional achievement in and of itself, particularly contemplating the restrictions that include having to match the pacing of the background music.
An ideal marriage of genres
In some ways, Hello-Fi Rush serves as an efficient entry level into the motion style, and never simply due to its myriad accessibility choices. Apparently sufficient, the rhythm parts of the sport play an enormous half on this. They really add a stage of consistency to the fight that would doubtlessly make it simpler for gamers to know frequent motion recreation parts they could in any other case discover obtuse or tough to develop accustomed to.
Take the remaining combos, for instance. Many motion video games characteristic particular combo strings that gamers can solely carry out by ready for a quick second between sure inputs. It’s a good way to provide the participant extra assault choices with out utilizing any additional buttons, however the period of time you could wait between inputs could also be unclear to some. I do know that I had bother persistently performing relaxation combos in Bayonetta partially for that reason. Nonetheless, due to the rhythm-based nature of Hello-Fi Rush, there’s no ambiguity to the remaining combo timing in any respect. You merely watch for one beat between two inputs, and the remaining combo will set off similar to that. The sport even features a “Relaxation” visible indicator to drive this house.
“Not fairly my tempo”
Dodging and parrying is one other massive one. Very like different motion video games, Hello-Fi Rush incentivizes you to dodge or parry proper when an enemy assault is about to hit you for some added advantages. In different titles, although, it might be straightforward responsible a mistimed parry or dodge on a wonky hitbox or another subject, whether or not that’s truly the case or not.
However since enemies in Hello-Fi Rush at all times assault on the beat, it’s virtually at all times clear why a selected parry or dodge could not have labored. Simply following the rhythm is commonly all you could do to right your self.
It’s not all Weapons n’ Roses
This isn’t to say that preventing enemies is at all times good. Hello-Fi Rush options a number of enemy varieties with shields or different gimmicks that should be neutralized by calling out one in all your companions. On their very own, the sport’s accomplice talents do a improbable job at increasing the participant’s fight choices. However their utilization on this case feels considerably rote, and there’s a little bit of an overreliance on these enemy varieties all through the journey.
Granted, this ended up nowhere close to as groan-worthy because it may have been. The sport allows you to immediately break enemy shields utilizing one of many particular assaults carried out with the Reverb Gauge, utterly eliminating the necessity in your companions. Moreover, the cooldowns for every use of your accomplice are mercifully temporary more often than not. However when you go right into a combat with completely shielded enemies and also you don’t have a reserve battery to refill your Reverb Gauge, the necessity to repeatedly use your companions can nonetheless bathroom down the pacing a bit.
The beat is throughout you
Talking of pacing, Hello-Fi Rush follows within the footsteps of different 3D brawlers by together with platforming and exploration segments to interrupt up the motion. These moments in different motion titles can usually really feel like going via the motions, and whereas Hello-Fi Rush doesn’t fully keep away from this, the rhythm features do assist them stand out much more than they’d in any other case.
Similar to the remainder of the sport, platforms and obstacles match the beat of the music, which ends up in some enjoyable and inventive moments of environmental traversal. Each in and out of doors of fight, Hello-Fi Rush is remarkably efficient at pulling you into its wavelength, a lot in order that I discovered myself usually timing my jumps to the beat though there’s no purpose to take action when not in battle.
Bouts to recollect
The sport is particularly good at doing this throughout the boss encounters. These bouts are expertly staged, boasting infectiously energetic visible designs in addition to good use of licensed tracks that dynamically change throughout phases. It actually helps that the fights themselves function improbable talent challenges, testing gamers’ means to dodge and parry to the music in addition to maximize injury output.
Nearly as good as these fights are, the best way during which they’re unfold all through the sport is a bit unusual. For probably the most half, the bosses are stuffed within the early and latter elements of the marketing campaign, with an enormous stretch within the center being devoid of boss fights fully. Throughout my playthrough, this led to a sense of restlessness as I puzzled when the subsequent massive setpiece battle would lastly occur. So the pacing may have seen some enchancment in that regard. Fortunately, as soon as the boss fights do begin cropping up once more, they’re properly well worth the wait. Particularly, the final two fights are, excuse my French, fucking superior, and so they left me in a fully euphoric state the entire manner via.
These wonderful moments are propped up by a narrative that’s way more entertaining than I anticipated it to be. To be clear, it’s not a deep narrative by any means, and you may see the sport’s main twists coming from a mile away. But it surely has an amazing sense of enjoyable and lands the place it counts, and regardless of the usually self-aware humor, it’s refreshingly honest besides. Topping every little thing off is the general strong voice appearing and insanely expressive animation that oozes fashion in each body.
Some preparation could also be wanted
Earlier than leaping into Hello-Fi Rush, it’s vital to notice that whereas the PC necessities aren’t all that prime, they’re not that low both. And even when your PC meets the minimal necessities for the sport, it nonetheless might not be supreme since a easy, constant framerate is essential for the gameplay of Hello-Fi Rush. My lower-end PC was unable besides up the sport outright, so I needed to persist with a higher-end PC as a substitute, which ran the sport largely flawlessly. There have been a couple of bugs I bumped into, together with one which locked me from the second stage till I booted up the sport once more, however these will probably differ relying on the participant.
In the long run, it’s nonetheless virtually laborious to imagine simply how good Hello-Fi Rush turned out. Not solely does it execute the concept of a rhythm-based brawler virtually completely, however it additionally feels remarkably uncompromising in its imaginative and prescient. The fight may have merely given gamers a handful of combos, some particular assaults, and some different miscellaneous talents, and it nonetheless would have been a reasonably good recreation simply from the rhythm features alone. However its choice to fuse these rhythm parts with fight that arguably rivals one of the best within the motion style pushes it to a brand new stage fully. Briefly, you positively don’t need to miss this one if potential.