21st Jan2019

‘Fight of Gods’ Review (Nintendo Switch)

by Britt Roberts

fight-gods-screen

What could have been a fun, tongue-in-cheek fighting game is instead a generic and repetitive title with few joys to be found beyond the actual concept itself.

I like the idea, getting a roster of Gods and key religious figures from around the world and thrusting them, through some tenuous circumstance, into a situation where they have to battle each other to gain victory over some unseen uber-foe. This is precisely what Fight of Gods does but the approach to all aspects of the game is as generic and literal as the title of the game itself, whist it does move smoothly and the backgrounds of the stages are quite pretty in some cases, the game mechanics and options just don’t have enough to offer.

There are currently thirteen characters to choose from, ranging from Jesus to Buddha to….Santa. Don’t let the inclusion of St. Nick make you think that this is a game full of laughs, beyond his appearance the game is decidedly straight, which is part of the problem. Controls are handled by weak/medium/hard attack buttons as well as a throw. Each character also has their own special attacks which seem to randomly happen during battles, I played primarily as Jesus, mainly because he is the character I’m most familiar with, and, upon starting the stage, it amused me how his intro is to jump down off the cross, ripping the wooden arms off to use as weapon as he does so.

The fights themselves are a two-round affair and the modes on offer are arcade, versus and a ‘Biography’ section where you can read a couple of lines about each character. Considering that the developers went to the trouble of adding a disclaimer at the start-up screen stating that they didn’t wish to cause offence and treated the religious figures involved with the utmost respect (I did question this as I stared at Athena’s bouncing, ample and almost-exposed breasts) it seems strange that the background of each one is so scant, I would have quite liked to read through a few pages, learning more about their histories and cultural connections, it’s also an easy way to add depth to the game.

I’ll sum up my experience of working through the game below, complete with *ENDING SPOLERS* which I’ll mark in italics so, if you do get the game, you don’t ruin the…*ahem*..’ending sequence’

As I said, I chose Jesus (as many have) and started making my way through the game. Fighting against Moses (who wields the ten stone commandments on a chain as a weapon and whose stage is a massive, parted sea, natch) and found my character to be, seemingly randomly, doing special moves. I paused the game to look at the move list and I’m pretty sure that what I was doing wasn’t correlating with the button presses and yet I was casting Holy Light and power-punching all over the shop. It wasn’t too long before I realised that I could just tap light punch for ages and, if the enemy blocked it…throw them. I used this approach to defeat the mightiest that the universe had to cast at me, Odin, Zeus, Anubis, they all fell before the Jabs of Jesus (I also tried this on the hardest difficulty mode and although you take far more hits, it still works successfully as a spam attack) There is no narrative between fights and the sound effects quickly get repetitive with each character having one intro and winning sequence and a couple of ‘injured’ sound bites. After defeating all of the other characters, I was up against the final antagonist, who could possibly have the power to gather such mighty forces together and cause them to do battle unto each other? Surely this person or entity must be truly almighty?

*SPOILERS BELOW*

Well, it turns out that the puppeteer behind the whole shebang is a being made of coloured lights called, ‘Boss’. I know what you’re thinking and yes, He too fell to the patented Jabs of Jesus as did those before him .After beating him for the prerequisite two rounds, I was treated to a single screen of Him saying, ‘I can’t believe you beat me’ and then…credits. Every character’s ending sequence is the same, with the only difference being that you unlock different colours of clothing for replays….yay?

*SPOILERS OVER*

In summary, Fight of Gods feels like a budget PS2 game. Whilst some of the backgrounds are nice and the concept sound, here it just falls flat. With most of the attacks feeling unsatisfying and the action and audio quickly becoming repetitive, combined with the overall approach to the gimmick being too toothless and bland, there’s not much here to keep players coming back. Not a game I’d recommend, even to genre fans, I mean, Santa doesn’t even do three Ho-Ho-Ho’s, they clearly didn’t do their research.

Fight of Gods is available on the Nintendo eShop now.

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