Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

Review: The Warriors: Street Brawl

6:00 PM on 10.04.2009 // Conrad Zimmerman
  @ConradZimmerman

The Warriors is the sort of film which should lend itself almost perfectly to a gaming experience. Its simplistic plot centered around eight gang members trying to cross New York City with every gang in the city looking for them practically begs to be made into a 2D brawler once you take out all of the running they do. It's practically a no-brainer.

Not that this has stopped anyone from screwing up a licensed game in the past. Still, the prospects when you're working with a license that already has a following, a distinctive visual style and a tale which is hard to do injustice to are decent. All that's needed is a strong follow-through.

Can The Warriors: Street Brawl make it all the way home? Read on.

Warriors Street Brawl

The Warriors: Street Brawl [XBLA]
Developed by: CTXM
Published by: Paramount Digital Entertainment
Released: September 23rd, 2009
MSRP: 800 MS Points

If there's one thing that The Warriors: Street Brawl nails, it's in the presentation. While it may not be the most visually appealing game, even amongst downloadable titles, it looks and feels like its source material. Character designs ring true with the gangs featured in the film and while environments are occasionally a bit sparse in the details department, they still manage to be decent representations of familiar locations.

Of particular note where the visuals are concerned is the manner in which the game's story is told. Taking yet another page directly from the movie, the plot is progressed through a series of comic-style panels which capture the film's art style impressively. While the movie would only use this art for transitions, however, the bulk of the story is given in dialogue here as well.

The interesting thing about the story is that, while it is not intrusive and can be skipped without any real consequence (especially if you've watched the movie), it's really boring and throws the pacing of the game off. Dialogue moves slowly and there's a surprising quantity of it for a tale which should be spending the bulk of its time either running from things or fighting them. The pace of the text can be sped up with a button press, but even that seems to take far longer than necessary much of the time, as there's just so much text.

One nice little story-related touch I feel compelled to point out is in the game's opening level. It takes place in the aftermath of the Conclave which sets off the city's gangs. With police raiding the meet-up, gang members are fleeing left and right. These gang members actually appear in the level, running away, both in the foreground and background. They can optionally be attacked if they cross your path, and will retaliate in combat instead of running away. It's a little thing, but rather cool in that it helps convey the chaotic circumstances in which we find our heroes.

Warriors Street Brawl

In your quest to reach Coney Island, you can choose between six of the Warriors. Swan, Rembrandt, Vermin and Cochise are all available from the start, with Ajax and Mercy available for unlocking. Apart from physical appearance, they supposedly vary in their health, attack power and speed but I've not really been able to tell a significant difference in anything except for health.

Combat is organized simply enough. The controller's four face buttons perform punches, kicks, jumps and grabs, while shoulder buttons serve functions such as blocking and running. You can combo up attacks in chains (though there does not seem to be a whole lot of variety to them) and successfully running up a chain will build your character's "Rage" meter. Rage can be used to activate crowd-clearing special attacks or give you a temporary boost to the damage you inflict.

It takes a good bit of getting used to just in finding the rhythm of play. Combos, once started, can not be interrupted, leaving you open to attack from enemies other than the one you're pummeling if you don't pace yourself properly. In addition, prone enemies can perform the same sort of crowd-clearing special attack as you, and they will. A lot. If you're standing anywhere near a downed enemy, you have to be prepared for the inevitable hit to come and, if unblocked, you're going right to the ground.

Another issue comes from the ability to swing your fists a full 360 degrees. The game offers no sort of targeting assistance, even when your attack would only miss by a couple of pixels. It's particularly frustrating with prone opponents when you can't manage to land a blow on a stationary target. After becoming more skilled, it's less of a problem but it does persist and can be quite frustrating at times.

Warriors Street Brawl

Blocking attacks is of paramount importance. The Warriors, regardless of what their stats may say, do not have a lot of health and it will get drained down pretty quickly if you aren't careful. Unfortunately, there seems to be no way to break an enemy combo, as all of their attacks seem to come one after another and your character reels back a bit after each blow, rendering them completely impotent. So, the only way to survive is to anticipate when you're about to take a hit, not be attacking when that happens and hope you can get your block up quickly enough. It feels unfair at times but so do a lot of 2D brawlers and this doesn't stand out as being worse than most from the perspective of cheap attacks.

The campaign can be played with up to four players, either locally or online, and you're probably going to want to bring a friend along for the ride. Even at the medium difficulty setting, Street Brawl is a challenging game and having a partner or more to team up with makes things a whole lot easier... up to a point. Playing a full game of four players tends to be a bit on the confusing side and there usually aren't enough enemies to keep everyone busy and having fun. Alternately, if you have no friends, you can include up to three AI-controlled teammates who are astonishingly competent fighters, if a little slow in the "walking towards the objective" department.

A few other features of the campaign are interesting touches. Tons of objects in the environment can be destroyed and will often have score items or health restoration, but it's left to the player in most cases to figure out what can be destroyed and what can't (hint: most things can) as they often are not very obvious. It gives a little sense of discovery which is appealing. In addition, there are multiple optional paths that act as diversions which may shorten or lengthen a level and provide power-ups or weapons.

Warriors Street Brawl

In addition to the story mode, there is an "Arcade" mode featuring more difficult enemies, no continues and no checkpoints to load from. It is strictly for hardcore fans of brawlers, as it is very challenging to play and you'll probably get raped. Additional modes include "Boss Rush" and "Versus". Boss Rush gives you one life to clear as many of the game's bosses as you can, while Versus is a local-only brawl between players. Neither the Boss Rush or Versus are particularly fun, though the former is more due to how difficult it is to beat any of the game's bosses on your own with only one life.

All told, if you really enjoy either The Warriors or 2D brawlers, this would not be the worst possible way to spend your money but it's still difficult to recommend due to the problems it has. There are some great elements but they can't make up for its problems. Outside of a love for one or both of those things, there's very little reason to pick this game up. It can be fun, but the pacing is annoying and the difficulty will frustrate all but the devoted.

Score: 4.0 -- Below Average (4s have some high points, but they soon give way to glaring faults. Not the worst games, but are difficult to recommend.)

Delete it



Conrad Zimmerman, Moustache
 Follow Blog + disclosure ConradZimmerman Tips
An avid player of tabletop and video games throughout his life, Conrad has a passion for unique design mechanics and is a nut for gaming history. He can be heard on the comedy podcast () and str... more   |   staff directory



 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

El Dango avatarEl Dango
What if the 'OOSE' thing in the new Bourne poster is deliberate? What if it's like the bad guy or something?
drmcscott avatardrmcscott
No more night Xcom. Cant sleep. No more night Xcom. Cant sleep. WOrk perofmence bad. No moe night Xconm. Nad. Cmat sleep. Hep me! HJkelp me!
Nekrosys avatarNekrosys
SMT demons, huh? There's really only one choice.
Malthor avatarMalthor
One of my favourite demons from SMT is Samael, his death magic and Megido spell are always a great help( Megido especially made him the bane of golden hands in my last P4 playthrough). Plus he looks pretty badass.
FakePlasticTree avatarFakePlasticTree
Favorite demon in Shin Megami Tensei, eh? Oh, I got many but so I'll just pick one for now whom is a beast in the Persona series. Yoshitsune--Hassou Tobi, Heat Riser = Don't fear the REAPER!
Flegma avatarFlegma
Played half an hour of Last Story. Yay, British voices! But the absence of colours makes me want to play other games instead, especially in this greyscale season.
HeyItsDad avatarHeyItsDad
There's not even enough reviews out to give Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth a rating on Metacritic...what's up with this?
ooktar avatarooktar
Dat Booty.
ooktar avatarooktar
LinkSlayer64 avatarLinkSlayer64
Just came across someone who tried to debate that people don't hate change - They hate BAD change - Ahahahahahahah!
Agent9 avatarAgent9
I miss Crash and Spyro. They had a fantastic trilogy on the ps1 and I loved every minute of it. Here's one of my favorite Spyro tracks, why not post one of your favorite tracks from wither of these great games.
Larxinostic avatarLarxinostic
Many thanks to a pal from time immemorial for his sneaky late birthday present to me of a digital Amazon gift card, which I promptly redeemed for this alluring beaut. Cheers! Viva la PS Vita~ [img]http://i.imgur.com/Cx3fPPb.png[/img]
Parismio avatarParismio
So I played xcom eu last night to get that xcom hype back. Half hour ago I already lost my brother, my best friends and my dog. Its been a stressful evening.
Nick R P Green avatarNick R P Green
Asides from a last proof read and any final edits, the script for my final 2015 reflection video is now complete. I will see this through to its conclusion. There'll be a blog version as always and once it's done and over with, I'll finally update my bio!
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Gore Magala set complete! That only took like 15 or 16 tries!
Gamemaniac3434 avatarGamemaniac3434
AT LAST, THE FOUL SEEDS OF RAGE BORN FROM THE WITHERED PLANT OF LOVE BREAK THROUGH THE EARTHS CRUST TO GIVE RISE TO A HARVEST OF RAGE. A NEW BLOG WILL BE THE GRAIN AND THE BREAD, TO FEED THE GNAWING HUNGER OF HATRED ALL VITA LOVERS HARBOR.
KnickKnackMyWack avatarKnickKnackMyWack
I'm glad that the Amiibo stock situation got much better. Because Hasbro sure as hell didn't get the memo with their Marvel Legends figures. These two seem more elusive than a western Lucina Amiibo!
taterchimp avatartaterchimp
Yay, finally beat the Necrodancer!
Jinx 01 avatarJinx 01
The next time you're getting riled up about game news, politics, drama, etc. just step back and be like The Dude.
The Dyslexic Laywer avatarThe Dyslexic Laywer
So #TeamCap or #TeamIronMan ?
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -