There’s no doubt that making a game that’s meant to compete with the likes of a juggernaut title from Nintendo is always going to be tough, and the likely results aren’t going to live up against the massive team and budget the Big N put together. That’s always been true for anyone taking on Mario Kart and, though there are less contenders for the crazy fighting game crown, it has been true for Smash as well. Conceptually, Bounty Battle sounds like a dream for me, especially when you consider it’s intention was to bring together characters from a wide swath of indie titles, many of which I absolutely love. You can assume that it wouldn’t likely live up to Smash, but the real problem is that it doesn’t just come up short, it’s sadly a hot mess. Visually, making characters from so many franchises make sense together would have been a challenge, but there’s a really weird quality to combatants you’ll play with and against where they somehow feel lacking in substance somehow, and though they look true to their characters there’s almost a flash game quality to their animations and movements. Similarly, the controls don’t feel tight and responsive, typically the bare minimum for a high-quality fighter or even just a fun one, and that makes everything happening on-screen muddled at best. While the roster alone would normally be enough to make me want to recommend a true indie community fighter Bounty Battle just doesn’t honestly feel done, and if you’re looking for an indie fighter fix I’d unfortunately recommend looking elsewhere.
Justin Nation, Score: