ACTION FIST / Teknopants / PC
 
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Though Action Fist is billed as being inspired by Gunstar Heroes, it really feels more like it's halfway between Metal Slug and Mega Man. It mixes the basic run-and-gun shooting of the former (complete with inability to fire diagonally, something Gunstar let you do) with the smaller sprites and platform-jumping of the latter. Don't expect the polish of any of these big-name titles, though; it's a one-man shoestring freeware game that's more like a "game jam" project than something with any kind of budget behind it, and there's a decided Game Maker look / feel to the whole thing. Still, it's pretty fun and well-made.
 

Aside from the shooting and the jumping, the main gimmick here is color-coded enemies and weapons, kinda like Ikaruga of all things. Any color weapon will damage any enemy in this one, but matching the colors gives you a significant damage bonus. You can also only carry two colors at a time; each also gets its own two weapons slots to which you can add standard run-n-gun upgrades like a spread shot, auto-fire and etc.

Boss battles also lean more toward Mega Man, with pattern recognition and a lot of dodging and waiting for retaliation windows being the orders of the day.

Given the shoestring production, expect basic sprites and all that, but there are actually a lot of nice little details in the background and in enemy animations. Also a pretty decent little chiptunes soundtrack to accompany the action.

I was actually enjoying what I was able to play of it, but unfortunately it kept crashing out to Windows every few minutes. It was designed back in the Windows 7 era, so it might be a problem with newer systems. Whatever the case, that's the reason for the "NR" score. If you need a number I was definitely thinking a minimum of 3/5 though, maybe even 4/5 depending on how it went down the stretch.
 
 
 
 
 
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