Have You Played… Action Doom 2: Urban Brawl?

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.

With an army of palleteswapped streetpunks, health-restoring food hidden in trash cans, fragile melee weapons, rare firearms, and cheery electronic music, Action Doom 2: Urban Brawl [official site] is the finest Streets of Rage homage beat ’em up I’ve played in years. Even more impressive is that the free game does this from a first-person perspective in a modified version of the Doom engine.

The combat’s simple, but that’s Streets of Rage for you. Punch, side-step, backpedal, and grab whatever weapons you can find, including the usual selection of knives, pipes, broken bottles, and boards with a nail driven through. Everything works as you’d expect, and at first it’s simply delightful to discover that. Even the way enemies bounce when dying is right. Zeno Clash a few years later would do first-person beating with advanced moves like counter-attacks, but this is straight-up arcade action.

It also has a branching story with different endings. Oh, the story’s some generic thing about a drunk, disgraced, slur-spitting ex-cop out to rescue his daughter, but I cheated my way around a bit after finishing it and was surprised to discover bits I’d never seen. That’s nice, that.

Action Doom 2 is a free standalone download. And no, it’s no relation to Action Quake 2 and whatnot.

4 Comments

  1. Vicho says:

    How did I know this would be an Alice game.

  2. fuggles says:

    This looks great, thanks! Although surely streets of rage remake has to be a greater homage? Also streets of rage combat has a surprising amount of depth.

  3. Psycold says:

    Definitely came here thinking this might have something to do with AQ2.

  4. ansionnach says:

    Took a look. It’s got a nice art style but the combat is a lot more simplistic than the likes of Streets of Rage or my favourite beat ’em up, Golden Axe (yes, the first one!). The engine is definitely better suited to shooting. Only played as far as the fight with the Village People, mind.