DotEmu and Lizardcube are aiming to rekindle some of the old-school, radical retro-ness of the beat-’em-up genre with Streets of Rage 4, but with all of the current day amenities provided by HD animation technology. Instead of going cheap, Lizardcube decided to put in the time and effort to hand-animate the HD characters, which is typically a taxing and very expensive process compared to using the copy and paste method of design afforded by 3D tools, or Flash animations.
The developers released some new gameplay screenshots and a short six second gameplay video to give gamers a short taste of what’s to come for the new-gen HD rendition of Streets of Rage 4. You can check out the mini-gameplay clip with added audio courtesy of Clever Cast Gaming.
The clip is short and sweet, but we get a quick upskirt glimpse from Blaze, while Axel rolls out his uppercut on Big Ben.
We see that air juggles are definitely present, as Blaze blasts Ben out of the middle of the air after he gets popped into the air by Axel’s uppercut launch.
In the new screenshots we get to see some of the environments and more of the character animations.
In the messy Mayor’s office we see a map of the city, broken down doors, and Blaze ready to punch straight into a electric wrist shield by a police officer. Lizardcube showcases their skills for drawing a hot chick by giving Blaze some thick thighs and sexy curves. Her firm body is on full display along with an ample rack and a tight derriere. She’s the complete opposite of the hambeasts and hideous trolls that SJW game designers have been adding to Western games over the last six years.
In another shot we see one of the baddies that Axel is about to face off against. She’s a black chick with a punk haircut and a snake around her arm. Even as an enemy Lizardcube kept her looking fairly sexy with high-heels, tight jeans that highlight her rotund rump, and a low-cut shirt that gives you a view of her ample cleavage.
I’m just amazed that they made a villain a black chick that isn’t ugly. This is a surprising turn of events compared to all the other games out there.
Even more shocking is that Lizardcube is made up of a bunch of Frenchmen, so I would have expected them to wave the white flag of freedom in exchange for being ideological prisoners in the current Culture War, but surprisingly they seem to have found their balls like the Yellow Jackets found the attention of Parliament by spraying up the government buildings with manure.
The last screenshot gives us one more upskirt shot of Blaze as she sweeps a dominatrix and a few other thugs encroaching on her space. Axel is standing back, attempting to avoid falling into the gaping pit below him.
The lighting, the shading, and the overall quality of the character designs is beyond remarkable. I can only imagine how much time and effort the artists and animators had to put into bringing these characters to life. Lizardcube is either working with a very elastic budget, or these guys just really love the art of hand-animation. Then again, I suppose their work on Wonder Boy: The Dragon’s Trip kind of proves that game design is a true passion project for them.
I’m definitely looking forward to Streets of Rage 4. I’ve replayed Streets of Rage Remake so many times now I’m ready for a new king to step in and take its place.
For more info on Streets of Rage 4 feel free to visit the official website.
(Thanks for the news tip ShadowEntity987)