A few weeks ago, I published an article in which I saw a bunch of games being shown as demos at Summer’s Steam Next Fest. As part of this endeavor, I first came across Midnight Fight Express, an action fighting game with a John Wick-style single-player aesthetic. Needless to say, after about ten minutes of punching and kicking through hooligans and admirers, I was hooked. Unfortunately, since this was a demo, my time in the game ended up being fleeting. Skip to now, Midnight Fight Express is almost here, in which case I get unrestricted access to the title and spend more time clashing with villains.
Before I delve into the gameplay and mechanics, it’s worth briefly talking about the storyline. Basically, the sleeping agent you play is brought back, or rather awakened to their criminal life by a drone that carries the accompanying information until sunrise, and you can stop the criminal underworld from taking over what you call it home city. From here, you embark on a journey to single-handedly stop the move and eventually cross the city boundaries, defeating countless thugs and bosses along the way.
As I mentioned before, the core of this game is the John Wick vibe, I mean the game requires you to use your advanced martial arts talents, firearms skills, and turn any object in the environment into a weapon that can be used with To deal with the kind of enemy that stands between you and your target – usually the gang boss. So you need to use fighter type moves to hit, kick, block, parry, throw, shoot, slice, grapple, etc. to defeat any enemy you come across and not take too much damage from being knocked out on your own .
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Midnight Fight Express is played from an isometric camera angle, which means you can see each level clearly. Combat and actual action are smooth and fluid, and it really makes you feel like Baba Yaga, like a real badass. It’s not without its drawbacks, however, as the still camera angle often means walls and parts of the level aren’t visible from behind, and you’ll have to use a bit of intuition to survive in visually blurred areas. Still, the combat flow does work. You can go from blocking and parrying attacks, to kicking other enemies, to throwing propane tanks at a group of attackers, then grab your rifle and dispatch the rest. This is a very attractive system.
While I have a lot of positive things to say about combat, I’m hesitant to say that about this story, as it’s conveyed through level descriptions and encounters with rare NPCs, in addition to the occasional message from your drone friends. This makes it difficult to understand the story in any sense, and in fact it turns Midnight Fighter Express into a game that makes you feel like an unconscious person who knows nothing but violence. As far as the action goes, it’s generally cool – but if you’re looking for a more well-rounded experience, it’s not that impressive.
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It’s a shame because the gaming experience is so deep. Each level has a challenge and a score to beat (it depends on how fast you pass the level and how uniquely you complete it), and almost every level (of which there are 40) adds a new type of enemy. Of course, the enemies aren’t all that different, but one level might bring in corrupt cops, while another adds a different gang to deal with. It is a good variety. While I don’t think customization kits are essential at all, having the option to change a character’s appearance (be it skin tone, clothing, tattoos, etc.) is a welcome way to only enhance the overall gameplay experience.
But overall, I found myself impressed with Midnight Fight Express.It’s not a perfect action game by any means, but it’s certainly a good example of how fun fighting games can be, and if done the same way, we can make a fast-paced John Wick game that lets player real Feels like Baba Yaga.