Night Slashers (Switch, PS4, Xbox One)

Back in the 90’s, side scrolling beat ‘em ups were a dime a dozen.  Most of them had a modern day street gang theme, but some strayed from the norm with sci-fi or fantasy tropes.  But I don’t remember too many horror themed beat ‘em ups.  But here comes Night Slashers, which is just that.  It’s from the now defunct Data East, but I don’t remember it in arcades back then.  I would say it was Japan only, but there is English text.  So I guess the arcades around me just didn’t carry it.  Anyway, now you can download it on the Switch (and later other consoles).

Actually the full title of this game is Johnny Turbo’s Arcade Presents Night Slashers.  I just have one question:  Who the heck is Johnny Turbo?  Who’s Johnny?  Oh great, now I’ve got a song stuck in my head, and now you will, too.  Anyway, in Night Slashers you can pick from one of three fighters, and three people can play at the same time.  You can be an American cyborg guy, a European monster hunter, or an Asian ninja lady.  Play control is pretty simple.  You have one button for punches and kicks, one button for jumping, and one button to execute a screen clearing attack, but it’ll take off a big chunk of your energy so use it wisely.

You travel through spooky locations like a hospital, haunted forest, castle, and more.  All the way you’ll be fighting zombies, werewolves, a mad scientist and his Frankenstein like monster, an evil puppet master, vampires, mummies, and more.  So it’s like Final Fight meets Splatterhouse.  Like many of these arcade to home offerings, you can adjust the controls, screen display, and give yourself endless credits.

As a beat ‘em up, this one’s about average.  I wish they would’ve done more with weapon pickups.  You can sometimes nab briefcases, knives, and swords, but they’re a one-time use only thing.  And there’s not much in the way of special moves.  A couple of bonus stages every few rounds adds some variety, like Whack-A-Zombie and Undead Bowling.  Otherwise I’d say Capcom’s beat ‘em ups fare better.  But if you want a horror themed one, you can’t go wrong with Night Slashers.

Kid Factor:

Night Slashers is rated E-10 with an ESRB descriptor of Fantasy Violence.  Normally I’m pretty lenient when it comes to these ratings, but for this game I’d give it a T for Teen rating.  Like Splatterhouse, when you defeat enemies in this game, they die in gruesome ways.  Blood splatters everywhere, skin melts into bones, stuff like that.  Granted, since it’s all in 16-bit pixel graphics, it looks very cheesy and cartoony, but I’d still only let older kids play this.  If I wanted to play a beat ‘em up with a younger kid, I’d pick an alternative like a TMNT game or even a LEGO title.

One Response to “Night Slashers (Switch, PS4, Xbox One)”

  1. Neato. Retro play-o. I’d play it.

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