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Arcade Archives Zero Team
  opened by paleface at 20:14:43 09/21/22  
  last modified by paleface at 22:09:13 09/21/22  
  paleface [sys=PS4; cat=Beat_em_up; loc=NA]

Through the Options, then single-player through the "Later Version" of a 1993 Seibu Kaihatsu arcade beat-em-up in Arcade Archives Zero Team on PS4, as Big-O!
The characters are kinda tiny but there's loads of delicious pixel art detail in this well-paced beat-em-up. Seems a little overly complicated mechanically at first but in practice doing the throws and "Super Move" and other multi-input commands is reasonably intuitive.
Some quirky enemy characters, like the bird-man boss and the guys with gigantic jaws, help keep things interesting; ooh and the twin samurai bosses whose giant spears you can pick up and use to impale them--heck you can even throw their helmets at them! Tons of stuff to pick up and throw, for that matter--your characters pick objects up automatically!--and the bad guys do it as well, leading to lots of hilarious friendly fire carnage. Oh and the RPG vs RPG battles! Tons of treasure items popping out of things to pick up for points, too. The bosses mostly aren't TOO frustrating; I'd even say the end-boss is rather fun, even though he attacks up, down, and diagonally!!
At the end you get your cumulative score, including an end bonus for deaths and wounds (I had too many of both--24 and 176--so I got zero for those ; ). I'm not too keen on the other three playable characters (regular beat 'em up hero guy, blond hero in ninja suit guy, girl with embarrassing slaps in embarrassing thong) so I'm thinking for playing this again I can work on improving my play-through score with Big-O! His slow speed makes it challenging to avoid getting surrounded, so I have to be more heads-up there and get better at the various techniques you can use--like his lighting-fast back-elbow if you quickly reverse direction during a combo--to outmaneuver the fast opponents!
Oh and I should probably play the "Early Version" instead, since in that one the "Thunder Strike" special move (press both buttons together) uses less of your character's health; I only need it as a last-resort AOE knock-down to get out of being surrounded, so it doesn't matter too much that it would also be doing less damage to the enemies.
That Hardcore Gaming 101 article on the game:

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