Super Comboman
Gameplay 6
Graphics 6
Sound 6

Super Comboman contains some great ideas, but is let down by less than stellar gameplay. Games such as Guacamelee! and Aces Wild have already demonstrated how great titles in the platform brawling genre can be, but Super Comboman doesn’t quite live up to expectations. The controls are the biggest source of frustration and the steep difficulty curve also feels more like a punishment than a challenge.

Gameplay: Lots of potential, but let down by frustrating controls and a steep difficulty curve.
Graphics: The sticker style visuals is an interesting and unique choice.
Sound: Not bad, but a little repetitive

Summary 6.0 Above Average
Gameplay 0
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Accept
Summary 0.0 Terrible

Super Comboman

Developer: Interabang Entertainment | Publisher: Adult Swim Entertainment |Release Date: 2014 | Genre: Indie / Platform / Fighting |Website: Official Website | Format: Digital Download

A severely overdue mortgage payment prompts Struggles, the hero of Super Comboman, to apply for a job at a construction company. Quite why the construction company would pay someone to beat up their own workers is never really explained, but it does give Struggles the excuse he needs to emulate his favorite comic book hero, Super Comboman. Struggles might be slight overweight and a walking fashion crime, but he does know how to use his fists.

There are few things more disappointing than a game that fails to live up to its promise and unfortunately this is the case with Super Comboman. When I first laid eyes on the game I was very impressed with the visual direction, which featured sticker style characters instead of the usual retro pixel style that is so in vogue these days.

Struggles, sporting a pink shirt and fanny pack, is not your typical action hero, but fits in well with the cartoonish nature of the visuals. Enemies consist mostly of construction workers of all shapes and sizes and the levels are pretty colorful. All the characters and most of the objects on each level have a thick white border which fits in with the whole sticker theme, but not everyone will appreciate this style.

Visuals

I quite enjoyed the visual direction of the game, although it never influences the gameplay in the same manner as something like Stick it to The man, which employed a similar style. The animations are quite nice for the most part, but I did encounter a few instances where Struggles would be stuck in a certain pose and unable to move. Upon release the game was pretty bare bones when it came to graphical settings, but a recent patch added the ability to select your resolution as well as quality setting.

Gameplay

As much as I enjoyed the visuals, the gameplay was a bit of a letdown. This is mostly due to the controls which never feel responsive enough, even when played with a controller, and the steep learning curve. Struggles can jump and double jump as well as wall jump, but the latter is tricky to pull off. As you have probably guessed from the name though, most of your time in the game is spent beating up a procession of enemies using combo attacks.

Struggles can pull of a quick, light attack or bust out a smash attack which takes time to recharge. If you want to stay alive though you are going to have to learn how to block and parry effectively as enemies can make short work of you. To parry you have to tap the direction button towards your opponent just as they launch their attack which requires timing and usually ends badly for Struggles if you do it wrong. Hammering the attack buttons randomly won’t get you very far, so it is advisable to spend some time learning the controls. While I like the idea of being able to purchase special moves and perks using coins collected during levels, I found that using cheap hit and run tactics was often way more effectively than risking combos. The developers patched a few things such as enemy attack priorities, internal stun meters and enemy armor based on player feedback, but the controls still felt a bit iffy. Maybe with more practice it would feel more intuitive, but I fear most players will simply give up in frustration after a few hours.

For some reason the game uses a lives system, which means you only have three tries to complete a level or it is back to the start. The checkpoints were adjusted by a recent patch which improved things a bit, but it is still frustrating to lose your last life due to some cheap enemy attack or trap and then having to redo the entire level. What frustrated me even more was the game crashing to the desktop without warning quite a few times in the middle of a level and upon restarting I not only had to redo the level, but the previous one as well for some bizarre reason. These factors, along with the wearisome difficulty spikes in later levels really sapped my enjoyment of the game.

Audio

The audio is decent, but although fitting, some of the tunes quickly become repetitive. This is mostly due to the tunes being so short that they quickly loop as well has having to redo levels multiple times. Super Comboman also features an announcer that shouts out weird phrases based on how many hits you achieve in a combo, which gets old rather quickly. The game only has sixteen levels, but due to the lives system and difficulty spikes it takes a while to get through all of them. Collecting stickers hidden throughout the levels adds some replay value, but don’t expect any exploration as the game is very linear.

Conclusion

Although the game frustrated me immensely, I would be lying if I said that I didn’t have fun at times. Pulling off huge combos is quite satisfying and smacking enemies into buttons or traps is a blast. I also really liked the characters and the setting of the game. The good news is that Interabang Entertainment really cares about their game and has already released two patches to address some of the bugs and issues. If the developers can polish things a bit more, and tighten up the controls, the game will certainly be worth a second look. As it stands though, this is probably only for hardcore fans of the genre that won’t mind the old school difficulty.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows XP SP2 or higher
  • Processor: 1.80GHz Processor
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Video card with 512MB of VRAM
  • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space
  • Processor: 1.80GHz Processor
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Video card with 512MB of VRAM
  • Hard Drive: 3 GB available space

Related posts

Hitman: Codename 47

Hitman: Codename 47

While Hitman: Codename 47 was a good game in its time it requires a lot of patience to get the most out of it. The lack of checkpoints or save spots means that one mistake can take you all the way back to the start of a mission. I also encountered quite a few bugs and crashes during my time with the game which is a pity. Check it out to see where it all started, but don't expect it to blow you away. Gameplay: Entertaining but expect lots of trial-and-error as well as needless repetition. Graphics: Looking very dated at this point. Sound: Flat voice acting, but the sound effects are good.

Letter Quest: Grimm’s Journey

Letter Quest: Grimm's Journey

Its addictive gameplay, charming visuals and catchy soundtrack ensures that Letter Quest is an entertaining and relaxing title. It has plenty of challenges to keep you busy and while there is a bit of grind involved the RPG elements keeps things interesting. If you are looking for a game to pass some time without worrying too much about a story then Letter Quest is a great option. Gameplay: Polished, addictive and packed to the brim with content. Graphics: Nice visuals, but the animations are very limited. Sound: The soundtrack is quite nice, but could have benefited from a few more tunes.

Rage Runner

Rage Runner

Rage Runner is quite a challenging title and, as the name implies, it can be frustrating at times. Having to weave your way through obstacles at high speeds while changing the orientation of your craft takes some practice and completing all nine of the levels is quite an achievement. If you are looking for a 3D runner that will really test your skills you should try Rage Runner. Gameplay: Quick reflexes and some trial-and-error is required, but overall this is an addictive and challenging title. Graphics: Good, but not too distracting. Sound: Depends on whether you like dubstep or not.

Dragon Age: Origins – Leliana’s Song

Dragon Age: Origins - Leliana's Song

Leliana's Song is a pretty short standalone campaign, which is a must download for fans of the sneaky bard and Dragon Age completionists. As for the rest, well if you are not tired of Dragon Age yet and don't mind shelling out for a very short adventure then you can do far worse than this. Gameplay: Pretty short, but action packed and polished. Graphics: Same old Dragon Age, nothing new. Sound: Some nice voice acting throughout.

BioShock Infinite

BioShock Infinite

While it might not have a multi-player mode and doesn't stray as far from the familiar Bioshock experience as you might think, Infinite is an outstanding game with a lot to offer. With intense combat, an eye opening storyline and unwillingness to back away from sensitive topics, Infinite is a game that should not be missed. Gameplay: Familiar yet fresh, Infinite is a worthy successor to the Bioshock franchise. Graphics: Looks great even on moderate hardware. Sound: Excellent voice acting and a great musical score.

SteamWorld Heist

SteamWorld Heist

SteamWorld Heist is set in the same universe as its predecessor, SteamWorld Dig, but opted for a completely different genre and play style. Despite the switch, the game retains the charming visual style and addictiveness that is becoming a hallmark of Image & Form titles. If you are a fan of turn-based strategy games you really owe it to yourself to add this one to your collection. Gameplay: Despite being turn-based, the game feels fast and action packed. Graphics: Detailed, vibrant and well animated. Sound: Great sound effects and the soundtrack is brilliant.

Leave a comment

6 + three =