Beat em ups are awesome, let me just say that right there. I love beat em ups and when a game comes out that pays tribute to the best of the best of the genre. 99Vidas – The Game is both an homage and affectionate parody of the games we all grew up loving, made by fans of those games. But is the final product any good?
I cannot explain it, but 99Vidas – The Game has that charm that so few indie games have. It doesn’t try to recreate the classic games, but rather it takes the best ideas and does something new with them. You have four choices of characters and can play solo or in co-op. All the characters play differently and have their own unique elements and abilities. I had a lot of fun playing through the game and seeing what the various characters can do. There are references to classic series like Final Fight, Streets of Rage and Double Dragon and stages designed to play homage to those games. The game makes great use of shops by having them be end of stage events. This works well with a linear sider scrolling game and feels natural.
If I had any complaints, it is that the multiplayer can be a little chaotic at times, and the enemies have that classic beat em up annoyance, where they can attack through your attacks and trap you for multiple hits. It can be extremely annoying but it isn’t impossible to deal with.
The visuals are excellent. Thing The Scott Pilgrim video games but better animation and more fluid action. The humor is spot on and helps draw you into the action along with the loose story. The music is great as well and that is a must for any beat em up game. There is just so much love put into this game and it shows. This is a game for fans, by fans. I recommend it.