Rumble Fighter Review
By, Cody ‘Neramaar’ Hargreaves
When you play as many MMORPGs as I do, you occasionally need to take a break and try something a little different. That’s where games like Rumble Fighter come in, offering players an online multiplayer experience that differs greatly from the MMORPG coined ’16-hour a day experience’. Rumble Fighter offers players a more bite-sized experience, and is one best taken is smaller doses.
Like many a room-based MMO before it (Bots, Audition), Rumble Fighter plays out much like an online FPS game the likes of Counter Strike, abandoning PvE content entirely and instead focusing solely on the PvP experience. The concept behind Rumble Fighter is simple – join a room filled with eight or more other like minded players, and beat each other silly until only one is left standing. Included to spice up the mix are a number of different fighting options, modes, super powers, and clothing items – things that we’ll take a look at in closer detail a little later in the review.
Matching your style.
As with almost any game, you begin playing Rumble Fighter by choosing your character. Due to the nature of the game there aren’t any customization options to begin with, but players are given the choice between one of four unique classes, each with their own set of strengths and weaknesses. The Striker specializes in close-quarters combat, The Soul Fighter in Speed, opting for a hit and run playstyle, The Elementalist in long range power attacks, the Alchemist in Defense and the Shaman a jack-of-all trades.
Picking the class that best suits your playstyle is paramount to success in Rumble Fighter, and is a choice that should be made wisely. Having chosen your class you will undoubtedly notice that your character looks nothing like the class you’ve chosen. This is because every class in Rumble Fighters looks exactly the same at the beginning, with one for male, and one for female. Personally, I considered this element to be a little weak, as although players are later given the ability to dress up their character in hundreds of different ways, having every character look identical at the beginning is both boring, and in many ways, misleading.
You see, by forcing every class to share the same plain avatar at the beginning of the game it is impossible to tell each player’s class apart from the next. This draws greatly from the tactics of the game in its early stages, and in all honesty, seems quite silly. Knowing your opponent is as important as knowing yourself in all forms of combat, and it’s sad to see such a simple mistake in an otherwise good game.
Putting aside the look-alike contest, the gameplay in Rumble Fighter is actually quite fun, if perhaps a little too simple. For most of the standard game types the object is simple – stay alive until the end and eliminate the other players. There are standard free-for-all modes in both the small and rumble-sized varieties, team modes, and a few of the old favorites like king of the hill and arena, adding up points for each kill and starting players with half their health. Some newer additions, like caged and potion matches, have also been included to spice up the mix, but are seldom used, with most games consisting of the smaller free-for-all and team matches due to the small player base.
During a battle player will have access to a combination of different skills and combos, and can purchase Scrolls in the item shop giving them access to more. The initial skills are block (Z), punch, (X), and kick (C), and like most fighting style games, can be chained to together to unleash combos, or pushed simultaneously to active special moves. Movement is controlled with the arrow keys, and (A) and (S) are used to active your classes super mode. Whilst in super mode players’ gain access to the (V) and (B) keys that unleash powerful super moves dependent on their class choice. Due to the nature of the game players are encouraged to play using a gamepad if they have one, as the layout of the keys can often be frustrating and hard to operate.
During the lower levels of the game this system usually turns into a blocking game, with each player waiting for the opportune moment to strike, and in most cases can be quite boring. Level up your characters a little with a few wins and purchase a couple of items from the shop though, and things take a much more interesting turn.
Shopping in Paris
The item shop in Rumble Fighters can be easily summed up in a single word – fantastic. There are literally hundreds of different items available for purchase, ranging from different face and hair styles, to shoes, gloves, tops pants, accessories and skill scrolls. Some of these can be purchased using Carats collected from battle, whereas others require Astros which can only be purchased with real-life money. As with all free-to-play games, those that choose to invest in a few Astros will ultimately have the upper hand in any given battle, but the balance issues are few and far between, and have little impact on a veteran players.
Aside from earning Carats in battle, players will also have the chance to earn EXP and Rewards, which both have their part to play. EXP, as one might imagine, increases your level, allowing you to access higher game rooms, unlock new abilities, and equip new items. Rewards are given both at the end of each match, and according to your player rank. Match Rewards, like ‘Most Damage’ and ‘Best Combo’, are given to players accordingly at the end of a given match, and help to increase your EXP and Carat funds. Rank Rewards are given depending on how well you rank against all other players, and range everywhere from Stone (the lowest rank) to Immortal Being (the highest). This adds an additional layer to the competition, and gives players an ultimate goal to achieve.
Icing on the cake
There is little else to mention as far as gameplay elements go, as while the game can be an incredible amount of fun at times, the core elements are really quite simple. The graphics are crisp and enjoyable (drawing heavily from the cell-shaded anime style), there are plenty of maps thrown in the mix to change things up and offer some variety, and there are a number of different temporary power-ups strewn throughout these maps that help to offer a slight advantage for those willing to make the journey to grab them. There’s nothing here that hasn’t been done before, but every element has been combined together perfectly, and as such offers a completely unique (and fun) gaming experience.
Final Verdict: Good
While Rumble Fighters offers little in the way of a long-term gaming experience, it’s in the short term that it really has a chance to shine. It has enough items, maps, skills and features to be considered a leader of the pack in its style, and offers a fast-paced gaming experience that can be enjoyed by all ages, and all types.