This unexpected new game pass gem feels like crossing a battlefield

Chai looked nervous at something off-screen with the 808 cat on his shoulder looking equally nervous.

Screenshots: Tango game

Have you ever caught yourself going to the beat of a song you’re playing? If so, you’ll probably have a hard time with Hi-Fi Rush. I spent a couple of hours on Tango Gameworks’ rhythm action game, and I was happy to put it together with a game that more or less requires you to dance with your enemies even as you glide through them. While it’s an accessible action game for rhythm challengers, since I come from a musical background, I found it particularly rewarding to immerse myself in its vibrating rhythms. .

Hi-Fi Rush-but you can play today on Xbox Game Pass, by the way—the stars Chai, a cyborg who wants to be a rock star who is mistakenly equipped with a chest-mounted MP3 player that is similar but legally different to an old iPod. Since it wasn’t part of the plan, the company that provided him with a cybernetic upgrade wanted to remove him as a defect, but like Kiki Dee before him, Chai has music in him. and it affects every robot sent to take him apart. Now, he fights with a guitar and swings, slashes, jumps and dashes to the beat of the music in his chest.

As a retired musician, Hi-Fi Rush exploit every rhythm and melody trend I have. Where games are similar to Demons can cry relying on visual cues to time attack and dodge, I can get through some Chai scraps by feeling the rhythm of any Tango Gameworks song that sets the level or boss fight. While you’re actively rewarded for keeping up with the music, no matter when you’re doing light or heavy attacks, Chai is made to land these swings to the beat and his enemies also so. It’s satisfying to feel your movements and attacks in an action game that’s like a freestyle dance where every attack and dodge feels like it’s replenishing. into an orchestra of movement and sound.

An mp3 player is attached to Chai's chest via a mechanical implant.

Music is like the heart of Hi-Fi Rushits design and in the literal center of its hero.
Screenshots: Tango game

Some of my favorite moments in Hi-Fi Rush until I absorbed the music in action, such as when Peppermint, Chai’s gun-wielding companion, timed her shots to fire perfectly in the trio no matter when. I summoned her to a fight. The rhythm of the music is rocking through each action and animation in the game, and seeing the design of an action game intersect with the sounds of the songs makes the game playful and emotional. touching in a way that I think resonates especially with musicians.

Along with some bopping originals in its soundtrack, Hi-Fi Rush also has a select licensed tracks which Chai fights, quite unique in their genre. There are some great options here; Nine Inch Nails appeared twice with “1,000,000” and “The Perfect Drug.” The Black Keys song “Lonely Boy” is heard at the beginning, but doesn’t appear in the game as I know it, and I love that song, so I hope it reappears later. Terrible, and other names are featured, and all the songs are great, I think I’ll be interested to see more variety of genres that match the tone.

Chai is said to be lowering his guitar when he jumps up to attack a giant cyborg.

Every enemy, from ground forces to giant bosses, fights to the beat of the music.
Screenshots: Tango game

While I think musicians will get the most out of it, Hi-Fi Rush still quite suitable for players who might consider themselves musically challenged. All battles take place to the rhythm of the music, but the player is not required to actively press the buttons to its rhythm. Chai and his enemies’ animations both run to the beat, but those who feel like they have two left feet can still rely on visual cues to keep up and excel in teamfights. The game doesn’t punish you for playing out of rhythm, but actively rewards you for doing so. Each battle and overall level is scored based on your time and if you want to score higher you will have to swing your guitar to the beat of the music. Thankfully, Tango Gameworks has implemented visual elements like metronome to help. It may not be enough for everyone, but the game at least has the perception that some people will dance like your uncle at the wedding and may need some extra accommodation.

I’m still pretty early HI-Fi Rush, but there’s something magical about each battle feeling as if it could be staged on a piece of music. It excels in style and humour, has some great music choices, and despite being a rhythm game, it doesn’t lose the depth and skill you need to play an action game. I’m excited to move on and see where Chai’s goofy story takes me.


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