Published on July 3rd, 2014 | by Craig Forshey1
Big Action Mega Fight! Relaunch Review
When indie developer Double Stallions launched its ultra campy arcade brawler Big Action Mega Fight! late last year it was well received, but fans still felt like it was missing something. Although Big Action Mega Fight! came packed with awesome old school action gameplay and vibrant high fidelity graphics it had also fallen prey to the scourge of F2P design which some fans felt diluted the games classic beat ’em up approach. With this in mind Double Stallions went back under the hood of Big Action Mega Fight! in order to rework it as a traditional paid game while fine tuning the gameplay for the ultimate mobile mustaches ‘n muscles beatdown, re-releasing it using the same pricing scheme as the games that inspired it like Streets Of Rage. In addition to the welcome price tag update and revamped gameplay the release of this brand new edition is now also available for the first time on micro consoles like the OUYA and Amazon Fire TV, complete with a reworked control scheme optimized for play on the big screen. So has Double Stallions succeeded in breathing new life into this eccentric old school brawler? Let’s find out!
A side scrolling fighting game that takes inspiration from greats like Double Dragon, Big Action Mega Fight! is an absurdly entertaining blast from the past that feels more like a classic arcade game remade for Xbox 360 rather than an Android release due to its vibrant HD graphics and engaging design. Like Final Fight or X-Men Arcade before it, Big Action Mega Fight! doesn’t bore you with long cutscenes or snooze inducing puzzles but instead focuses on simple yet deeply addicting action gameplay that while straightforward, can also be beautifully strategic depending on the way players decide to handle each situation. As you dance about the level smashing criminals in the face and blowing stuff up you’ll need to think quickly about which baddie needs pummeling next in order to dodge the hail of fists flying your way, making Big Action Mega Fight! one of the first beat ’em ups on mobile to do the genre justice.
All of this would fall apart of course if the controls were unresponsive or if the action wasn’t smooth but thankfully whether you’re playing the touchscreen optimized mobile version or the brand spanking new controller based micro console edition the gameplay in Big Action Mega Fight! is intuitive, fast paced, and just plain fun. Gamers who grew up playing beat ’em ups like Double Dragon will find alot to love here as Big Action Mega Fight! plays very similar to those side scrolling fighting games of yore while still throwing in some unique spins that give it a style completely its own. Case in point: To my knowledge this is the first fighting game to ever let you lob reality defying chicken-bomb hybrids at enemies in a bout of ferocious feathery fury.
There are two distinctly different control schemes available depending on whether you’re playing on a touch screen Android device or one of the newer Android based micro consoles like the OUYA, either way though you’re getting an awesome experience that naturally integrates the strengths of each platforms user interface. On mobile, players move their character about the screen by tapping to move and swiping in different directions to perform corresponding attacks. This takes some getting used to at first especially if you’re not used to playing a brawler on a touch screen but after a few levels it begins to feel natural and develop a clear rhythm. On micro console the game plays slightly differently as it uses a traditional physical controller scheme to replicate the experience of playing a classic 16-bit era brawler, a goal it achieves with great success.
Regardless of which platform you choose to play it on, Big Action Mega Fight! is a nostalgically gorgeous game with a slick animation style that fits naturally into the gameplay. Character models, environments, and special effects are all highly detailed in order to give off a console quality feel. There are even tongue-in-cheek references scattered throughout Big Action Mega Fight! that poke fun at classic gaming conventions like swapping enemy color palettes to indicate when a new kind of baddie arrives on the scene. The soundtrack is catchy and fits the atmosphere as well with its classic fighting game themes.
Summary: It took me about 8-10 hours to beat Big Action Mega Fight!'s 35 levels and I loved every minute of it. If you like old school brawlers at all you owe it to yourself to get this game.