April 16, 2014 3:30 PM | Anthony Swinnich
NuChallenger was hanging out in the Kickstarter room during PAX East showing off the latest build of Treachery In Beatdown City. This unique mashup of the brawler and RPG genres took my preconceived notions of how these conventions normally combine and savagely beat them into the ground.
Most times, a brawler with RPG elements is a fast-paced action title. Think River City Ransom or Castle Crashers. Treachery In Beatdown City is probably more of an RPG with brawler elements in the way it plays. Sure, you walk around on the map and engage enemies, but the turn-based nature of the battles gives it that old-school Final Fantasy feeling.
You choose your attacks from a list that use FP, or fight points, much like magic points. A regular punch costs 6FP, for example, but a special one may cost 12FP. Once you choose a combination of strikes you like, you can accept and let things play out. If you're too far from your enemy you might miss, so it's important to be close enough to hit them. Once your turn is over, you're free to wander around until your opponent engages you, at which point you'll need to figure out if you want to block or not, which also costs FP.
Combat is a pretty complex beast. There are several different styles of play, and they all have their importance. For example, if an enemy blinds you temporarily, your strikes have a high chance of missing. But grapple maneuvers are unaffected by this status effect. The truth is you'll have to do a lot more thinking during fights than you would in your normal brawler.
Treachery In Beatdown City is planned for release on Windows and Mac in February 2015, though NuChallenger is in talks with Sony about potentially releasing on Playstation 4 and Vita. The game is also up on Kickstarter now.