A good Beat'em UP

Hey guys,

I’m curious to know your opinion.

What do you think makes a great beat’em up game, or what do you enjoy the most in those games?

Thx for your feedback!

Sound and hitboxes are the two essentials. If you have strange delays between the animations and the hitboxes working, you have a bad beat-em-up.

For example, an enemy might be getting up. If they’re standing up, but just stand still afterwards for half a second before they can actually hit or be hit, it makes for a cumbersome and crappy game.

Sound is also key. Streets of Rage and Golden Axe might not exactly be new, and they certainly don’t have particularly high quality sound effects by modern standards, but every hit you land, every enemy yell, it’s LOUD and has a real punch to it. Fading isn’t necessary-- when you punch something, there’s a real cracking sound behind it, and it makes it that much better. There’s also the old trope of some kind of death yell as they flash and despawn, who doesn’t love that?

Really, all you have to do is take a game like Streets of Rage 2 and put it up against that new Power Rangers game-- comparing the overall flow and action, it’ll very quickly bceome apparent as to what one did while the other didn’t try.


Hitboxes and sound effects are well and good, however, I have always felt that a very necessary factor to consider as a developer is the types of unique systems/elements you can add to enable the player to have access to, examples being unlockable combos or new skills/magic, to ensure that the game’s constant punches, kicks, and grabs stop being fun and instead begin to feel weak, boring, and tedious all around.


100% agree with you CptMold,

gameplay, gameplay, gameplay! Tight controls and good visual / audio feedback.

And Narrows bring a good point, once the “beat’em up” part is done well, adding other systems and game mechanics will make your game stand out!

thx guys!

I like when the game does not have one right style of fighting. Developing your own fighting method makes the experience much more fun and personal.

Good quality… assets.

Of course it also has to control well and “feel good to play”, which mostly comes down to good visual and audio based feedback. The enemies have to be varied and fun to take down too instead of being frustrating CC-monsters or something equally annoying. Having complex character customization doesn’t hurt either.


i’m i the only weird guy for loving the hat?


[details=Off-topic]Giant wizard hats are the best. Not the most practical, but still the best.


what…? which hat? I don’t see a hat, WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOOOOBS… cough sorry, this is part of the reason why I suck at beat’em ups :smiley:

BTT: When I was a kid I loved watching my brothers beat each other up at the old Killer Instinct on SNES. they got nothing better to do at that time and perfected it so well, that if either of them missed only a single block he got punished immediately by a ultra combo and the fight was over a few seconds later. Unfortunately I didn’t inherit that talent but still played a lot of those games during my gaming life. I think I enjoyed Mortal Kombat (the one before MK X) the most.

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The only thing I have to mention here that hasn’t been mentioned before is enemy variety. I hate playing a game where all of the enemies are exactly the same.