If you’ve always wanted to play Final Fight like it was Mortal Kombat, Mother Russia Bleeds should be on your radar.

Set in an alternate timeline U.S.S.R, you and your crew of imprisoned street fighters are out to overpower a dangerous criminal underworld, having survived some strange drug related experiments. It’s blood soaked carnage as you use whatever you can get your hands on, from shotguns to chainsaws, to you fight your way through numerous bad guys out for even more blood. It isn’t for the feint of heart, definitely not your mother’s Streets of Rage, but a good old fashioned beat ’em up is always a fun ride especially with four players working together.

If the basic story mode doesn’t match your challenge tastes, the Survival mode should. You’ll face off against wave after wave of progressively harder enemies, which should test your resolve and your trigger finger. Button mashing is a bit of a lost art these days, what with most fighting games going with more tactical button inputs to pull of complex moves.

It certainly looks the part, slick 16-bit visuals that hark back to the days of the classic arcade side-scrollers and SNES epics. There’s a lick of modernisation to it all too, plenty of little details that sets it apart from its brethren. It’s not entirely colourful but it certainly fits its material, down and dirty character designs amongst gritty and blood stained levels. Hopefully Mother Russia Bleeds nails that feeling of just going hell for leather, without becoming too engrossed in just shedding human remains everywhere.

We will know for sure when French developers Le Cartel Studio and publishers Devolver Digital release the brawler on September 5th for PC, Mac and Linux, with a release expected later in the year for PS4.


Mark Isaacson is the editor of PN2. Go say hi @Mark_D_Isaacson

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