Hey gang, Valkor here. I'll admit, I'm a beat 'em up, loyalist! Any opportunity I can lay my hands on one, kick back and chill while bashing through some baddies, then I'm all over it. Streets of Rage 2 is my all-time favorite, and I'm looking forward to seeing what part 4 has in store. Until then, I'm gonna bide my time with “Coffee Crisis”, which mixes metal, coffee, and hardcore beat 'em up action. Sadly, because of a few quirks, it won't rank high as one of my favorites. But it was still a lot of fun to play!
Coffee Crisis puts you in the role of coffee baristas Nick and Ashley, who must protect the earth's precious assets of metal (music) and WIFI against evil Smurglians. And they're not only going to knock alien heads but possessed old peeps, young peeps, aliens in wheelchairs who look similar to Professor Xavier, and other dastardly fiends. Gameplay is simple as you can play either barista in single-player action or bring in a buddy for local co-op. For this review, I'm checking out the Nintendo Switch version; with the controls, you have the B-button for your basic attack, but you can hold that down for a more powerful charged attack. Then there's the A-button, which is your special move, the Y-button is the jump, and the X-button is for grabbing either weapons that are on the ground or smaller bad guys that you can either wail on or toss at other baddies. And speaking of which, the enemies in this game are relentless; they'll come at you in waves in some of the longer levels. And if you don't wail on them first, they'll most certainly attack you with the quickness (watch out for those old dudes with the canes)! If there's too many, they'll definitely crowd you, so make sure you save up enough energy for that special move or you're toast!
You're only given three lives at the jump, but you can accumulate more as you play along. If you lose all of your lives then it's game over. Thankfully, Coffee Crisis uses a password system that will take you to the start of the level that just busted your ass! Finally, Coffee Crisis uses a 16-bit look but with a serious heavy metal soundtrack that rocks hard from beginning to end!
While Coffee Crisis won't rank high as one of my favorite beat 'em ups, it does have its own appeal that makes the trek worth taking. As far as 2D, side-scroller, beat em ups go, this one has everything that would make any fan of the genre proud. Plus, there are little nods to other titles such as Streets of Rage, Double Dragon, and Golden Axe that's sprinkled throughout. The controls were hit and miss, but that doesn't make the game unplayable (more on the controls in the next section), and you're given an insane metal soundtrack that'll have you wishing the volume could go louder! OK, maybe that was extreme – EXTREME TO THE MAX! But I think the soundtrack is worthy of blasting at high volumes if you're about that metal life. With some decent controls, sweet old school graphics, and metal soundtrack for the ages, Coffee Crisis is one beat 'em up worth checking out.
My main issue with Coffee Crisis is the controls – mainly the jumping, which has a delay from when you press the button to when the action is performed on screen. It's a real annoyance, especially when you're surrounded by bad guys but you keep getting knocked back because the character won't jump in time. So, it's best to try and keep your distance when surrounded by large packs.
My fingers after button mashing in the coffee drinking mini game. Ouch!
Coffee Crisis is available now on all platforms including a Sega Genesis cart! How about that? No matter how you're serving it up, you're in for a good time. You get a sweet blend of graphics, controls, and a high caffeinated mix of metal that makes this one title worth checking out at least once. So, out of TOV 5 stars, I'm giving Coffee Crisis a 3.5.