Rivals of Aether wavedashes to a full launch

The Smash Bros.-y platform fighter Rivals of Aether [official site] has hopped and bopped out of early access to launch in full. Rivals of Aether sees eight elemental anthropomorphic animals (who look like cute Pokémon) duffing each other up in 1v1 and 2v2 fights, trying to knock each other out of the arena and out cold. It’s a Smashlike, yeah? And a pretty good one, from what I’ve heard.

I do like how Pokémon-y some of those monsters look. Rivals is still cheerier than the brutal dog fights that Pokémon hides behind its turn-based attacks but it’s nice to see.

Early access took a year longer than originally planned but so it goes. The launch update bringing Rivals of Aether to version 1.0.0 has added a story mode, Abyss mode (a wave survival mode), leaderboards, new music, and other odds and ends. Future patch plans include improving keyboard controls and adding online play for Abyss Versus mode.

Rivals of Aether is out on Steam for £10.99/14,99€/$14.99. It’s created by Dan Fornace, who you might also know from his small Smashlikes and demakes such as Super Smash Land.

Elsewhere in Smashville, Brawlout is still slated to launch in “early 2017”, and the Smashfans at Wavedash Games are still revealing characters for the platform fighter they’ve not quite announced yet.


  1. Sian says:

    Steam says that it’s not only 1v1 and 2v2, but also free-for-all which makes me happy cause that kind of chaos is what I liked about playing Smash. I might have a look at this one, but just in case: Are there any other smashlikes for PC that are worth a look or two? I’ll be visiting my brothers soon, and that would be a wonderful way to get into a fight.

    • Noxen says:

      My personnal top3:
      -Brawlhalla a true f2p, yeah true, just free. With free4all, you can also team up local vs online team which is pretty neat. Personal favourite around 900h
      -Towerfall: only local but hell of a fun, may be limited with 2 players tho.
      -Samurai Gunn: ultra fast stylish one shot sword fight, nice one !

      • Sian says:

        Thanks for the tips. Samurai Gunn and Towerfall aren’t exactly what I’m looking for, though, due to their one hit kill nature and especially towerfall’s focus on ranged combat.

        I’d forgotten about Brawlhalla and I never knew it was free, so that’s definitely going on the list of games for the occasion.

    • Syrion says:

      The only game to really try to be a “Smashlike” I know is the terriffic Megabyte Punch!
      It starts out a bit slow and can seem monotonous, but actually gets quite varied and really fun!

  2. otakucore says:

    Really amazing. Those cutscenes? intros? draw from anime of the 1960s.

    • Voxel_Music_Man says:

      1960s? Surely you mean 1990s?

      Iconic animation from the 1960s are things like The Jetsons and The Flintstones.

      • ColonelFlanders says:

        Pretty sure he means 1960s, since it looks a lot like the (japanese) anime from that period.

  3. InfiniteSubset says:

    They look more like Digimon to me, for instance, the video features Leomon first, followed by MegaKabuterimon.

  4. theWillennium says:

    A friend of mine, the developer’s sister, wrote the story and posted this about it today: “The Story Mode has little bits of homage to Robin Hobb, Top Gun, Caesar’s Gallic Wars, and worker’s rights. So there is something for everyone really.”

  5. Syrion says:

    This looks fun and definitely very much like Smash Bros., which is cool in this case. Only, while I’m very much into retro gaming and also like well done pixel art even nowadays, somehow I’m not very fond of the graphics style here. I suppose it’s because when I think about Smash Bros. I only think of smoothly animated, flashy 3D graphics even in the N64 original.

    Nevertheless, it looks very polished and well designed, and as someone who was all over Smash Bros. until the Wii was released I’m really hoping for a demo.

    • Throwback says:

      I have this game and if you like smash and have someone to play with, don’t bother waiting for a demo. It’s fantastic. Better than smash imho.

      It is a very fast game, though not quite as fast as melee.

      Differences: You can only parry, there is no shield to hold down. No ledge-grabs – you make it back on or you die.

  6. Viral Frog says:

    Been playing this game since about November of last year. So glad to finally have a proper Smashlike on PC, but that is different enough to feel like it was completely cut and pasted. I wasn’t too big on Brawlhalla, and couldn’t find anything else that fit the bill.

    These “platform fighters” are the only fighting games I can tend to get into. I’m no good at memorizing combos. I like that the game has a limited and clearly defined set of attacks. That way I can focus on the gameplay mechanics, instead of stressing about landing every key press in the combo perfectly.

    I’ll have to head back for a few rounds and to check out the story mode!