By Alaisdair Leith
Grab your guns, knives and pincers because it’s time to fight like a crab!
The premise of the game is intriguing, Two crabs facing each other for a fight to the death sounds fun and the variety of different crustaceans tips this game over to the educational side as well. Things start to head into whacky territory when the creatures discover deadly items they can hold like guns, chainsaws, knives and even light sabers to gain the advantage in a fight. The graphics are beautiful and coloured and help make this game light and fun to play. There is an incredible level of detail on each creature that combined with intuitive controls make for a single player and multiplayer experience.
Fight Crab is a fighting game in the style of Rocket League, the goal of each fight is to use your claws and whatever items are made available (or dropped by your opponent when you knock it out of their claw!) to tip them over. It is not a simple case of punching and nipping to kill your opponent, you need to twist and plan to flip them over, and this in case brings in the challenge of the gameplay. I played this game on Steam with an Xbox Elite Controller Series 2 and found the control system intuitive. Using the D pad to move the creature and you can also perform a double dash that I found not hugely helpful against your opponent. There is also a special attack and super mode that covers you in electricity and allows your crab to fire missiles and laser beams. In addition you can control the camera which swings and whips around at a rapid pace, sometimes it does get in the way and your hand can bump it around accidentally.
The game offers a variety of different environments and landscapes for fights to take place in. By switching up areas like sand, cities (yes you heard me!) underwater and desert playgrounds each type forces you to re-strategise your playstyle and what moves you need to make to win the battle. The different items on offer do work differently depending on the environment that you are in which does add to the replayability of each level and character. Customising your crustacean is also a huge part of the game (despite the lack of attention given to the menu and UI system) You can increase the strength and speed as well as different colour options. Keeping that in mind, you do need to choose the right environment to fight in to compliment these choices.
The single player campaign offers a variety of different locations that usher in a AI teammate if things get too hairy. I found this really added to the intensity of the experience and while you can’t control your team mate, it was a case of sometimes it was a help, sometimes it was a hindrance kind of thing. I stuck around with this to unlock as many of the different kinds of creatures that I could and found a great way to train and get myself ready for the online battles. You can play multiplayer with local co-op or online. Playing online with voice was a barrel of laughs that are fuelled by the rapid fire rounds that will no doubt see me coming back to this game for many more hours in the future.
A lot of attention has been given to the soundtrack that features a range of thumping bangers to some rock infused synths, all of which seem fitting to the erratic gameplay and action. There is a deluxe edition of the game you can purchase which features a copy of the soundtrack, well worth your dollars.
Developer Calappa Games have crafted a game that is heavy on action while throwing in a fun and addictive single player experience that is perfect for item collectors and will unknowingly open your mind to the many different crabs and creatures that make up the crustacean family. Adding in weapons and lasers throw the gameplay into crazy combat in both single player and multiplayer mode. There have been a ton of comparisons to games like Rocket League which this game does fall into the same category as, The difference is the sheer amount of joy and fun that radiates from it. If you are looking for a fun game to play alone or with friends in local co-op or online, then this is the one for you.
Fight Crab is available on Steam right now, A Nintendo Switch release in planned for the future.