Let’s be honest with ourselves, fighting games have gotten far too flashy in recent years. Gone are the days of the simple punch-kick-jump attack, replaced with combos and special moves that require as much memorization as a microbiology exam. One True Game Studios have set out to change all of that with the release of DiveKick for PS3, PS Vita and PC. This two button fighter will seem overly simplistic at first but it starts to reveal layers of strategy and depth once the going gets tough.
As with a lot of old-school fighting games, the controls for DiveKick are easy to learn but tough to master. You are given two buttons to be your Dive (Jump) and Kick (Attack) and select from the 13 available characters who range from a hobo with boot hands to a morbidly obese man with a neck pillow. This probably sounds incredibly ridiculous and believe me, it is, but with the right opponent it can be a lot of fun as well. As with most fighters, the amount of fun you have comes down to who you fight against; play against a spammer who constantly does the same move and you’ll have the worst time, play against someone who actually uses strategy and respects the game and you’ll have a blast.
That said, DiveKick finds a great balance between the old and the new when it comes to 2D fighting games. There aren’t any combos or finishing moves to memorize, but the action is still fast-paced and more importantly, fun. This is a game that’s only as entertaining as you want it to be and as long as you can enjoy a goofy good time, you’re in for a treat. Each round is a one-hit kill affair and lasts only 20 seconds but those twenty seconds can be some of the most intense, laugh inducing of your entire day.
A high point is the aforementioned character design, where the developer saw a chance to be weird and went with it. The sprites recall Street Fighter 2 with their animation while also bringing to mind the over the top design of Mortal Kombat 2 or 3. Dr. Shoals for example looks like a Silent Hill nurse with a day job and
Redacted (the cross through text is actually in his name), a mutated, cigar smoking, pregnant wolverine looks like something out of a Rob Liefeld comic and those are just two of the weirder characters on display here. Each character has a different quirk in their playstyle that offers variety where most other fighting games seem to offer the same few archetypes in different costumes.
Story mode, while entertaining, is the weakest part of DiveKick. As with most arcade games of the past, the game has some crazy difficulty spikes during the later matches and the final boss is so cheap he forces you to be the same in order to win. The comic style art is well done but as with most games in the genre, the single player story takes a backseat to the intense online matches. Matchmaking is a breeze on both the PS3 and Vita, it rarely took more than a few seconds to find my next opponent and the matches were, for the most part, completely lag-free, even with the weak wifi signal my Vita tends to have.
DiveKick is a throwback to the fighting games of yore and with the right mindset can be a lot of fun. It’s a complex game with a character all its own that’s also easy to Dive into and lose yourself for a while.[easyreview title=”DiveKick Review 7.5/10” cat1title=”Presentaion 7/10” cat1detail=”DiveKick finds a great balance between the old and the new when it comes to 2D fighting games” cat1rating=”7/10″ cat2title=”Gameplay 8/10” cat2detail=”This two button fighter will seem overly simplistic at first but it starts to reveal layers of strategy and depth once the going gets tough” cat2rating=”8/10″ cat3title=”DiveKickness 10/10” cat3detail=”Great Multiplayer, Rad Characters, Lots of DiveKicking” cat3rating=”10/10″ summary=”ignore“]