[Beyond PlayStation] One Strike Review
One Strike from Qubic games is a fighting game in which, as the name suggest, one hit is all it takes. Learn more about it in our One Strike review!
In this fighting game you’ll take on the role of one of six fighters in medieval Japan, participating in one-on-one duels in which landing a single strike is all that is needed. Simple, right? The six available fighters and their weapons are Kenji, the honorable samurai and his katana; Hinode the ninja, striking her Sai weapons at the speed of light; Soujirou, the monk wielding his long-range Nodashi; Hangaku, the fastest girl in the East with her Kusarigama; Bai Long, the Chinese veteran and his proud Kwan dao; and Tomoe, the killer with her sharp Wakizashi.
The game offers four different modes for you to take on. The first one is called One Life and, as the name suggest, you only get one life to go, so a single hit will bring defeat. In Arcade you will get five lives and will get to train with your character of choice. Team Duel allows you to select three warriors from the group to create a team of fighters. The final mode is Tournament in which up to eight players (either all human or with AI filling in the extra slots) fight to the death until one is declared the victor.
Controls are easy to understand. You can move left and right either with the left analog stick or the D-Pad. Your attack is mapped to the A button, and you can defend with the B button. If you want to dash left or right, you can do so with either the L or ZL buttons or the R or ZR buttons. That’s all there is to it, which is great since this control setup will allow you to focus on the action so that you can find the right time to land the one hit that you need to defeat your opponent. The game will offer three difficulty settings, and I suggest that you first play in Easy so that you can get the hang of things.
Each of the game’s stages are only a single screen since characters can’t jump or use special abilities or skills, so one screen is all that is really needed for characters to dash left and right, fake an attack, defend, and counter attack. And since all you need is to land one strike, or for your opponent to land a single hit on you, matches are fast-paced and can be over in a few seconds. If you time things right and learn how to spot the right window of opportunity to unleash an attack without giving your enemy a chance to counter your move, you can finish the game’s One Life mode in a handful of minutes. But since you first need to learn how each character moves and attacks, you’ll definitely be playing this one for much longer.
The game’s art style is very charming, and you will get to visit a beach-side battleground, a snowy temple entrance, a windy plain, a rocky area near the sea or a bridge in a village over which a duel must take place. The game’s music is also great and does a solid job of complementing both the Japanese setting as well as the action.
There is an Accolades menu in the game that will allow you to see which warrior you’ve managed to take to the end of the quest to conquer Japan. The six minimalist character portraits sit in the middle of the screen and you can use the left analog stick or the D-Pad to select each of the four available modes and the three difficulty options to see which character has made it. If you’ve succeeded with one of the six warriors, then his/her portrait will have a green background to make it stand out from those that have a red background, allowing you to see how much you still have to do to 100% the game.
One Strike is a different type of fighter with a clever gameplay hook, a solid pixeltastic art style and a great soundtrack that, when brought together, make it easy for me to recommend this quite unique release. Be sure to check it out on Nintendo Switch!
This One Strike review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by Qubic Games.