This game is difficult in a fun way. This game is not for those who like having "the victory" given to them. And is a bit nostalgic, it reminds me of the arcade machines you'd find in some laundromats. A gamepad is highly recommended.
Each enemy requires a bit of studying (both bosses and normal enemies).
Each level has a unique set up, so the game never feels stale.
Animations are well done. The staff wielding enemies are a prime example.
Attacking an enemy is very satisfying because of the way they react to it.
There are power-ups, abilities, chi attacks and items that you can unlock with points. One unlockable ability is air guard.
The game has local co op (the entire campaign) that supports both Xinput and Direct Input gamepads (you have to configure Direct Input gamepads through the buggy config.exe. Xinput works by default). The game is difficult enough for you to "take turns" with 2 or more friends around.
The combat is not broken as some say and the game does not break its own rules; the only attacks that are unblockable are ones with exclamation marks, it does not depend on the enemy turning red(I do not recall the game ever saying that red attacks are unblockable) there can be a combination of red and exclamation. You have to use common sense when fighting some enemies. You can generally tell if an attack will cause you to stagger ishould you attempt to guard against it. Some enemies will try to land successive hits. Your first block requires less precision while any block(s) performed too soon will require greater precision. Your character's block animation will be different from the first block you perform, which is a visual que that your in what I call "precision block mode". You can also dodge roll out of combos etc and block out of combos even if you fail to block the first hit, but this is hard to pull off.
The game's graphics remind me of the newer Street Fighter games and another game called Power Stone 2 (I'd love to see that on Steam some day).
All in all the game is fun if you like difficult games, you'll have fun retrying over and over again by yourself or with friends, if you know how to laugh at yourself .