A surprisingly good Beat-Em-Up RPG-like game where you gain levels & upgrades as you fight your way through the game with added features that make it unique compared to it's arcade original.
-Up to 4 player Online/Offline Co-Op
-Easy Multiplayer where people can jump in/out of games easily
-Several different Characters to play
-Fun Classic Arcade Beat-em'up Style
-2 Games in One
-Repetitive Game Play
-Lack of D-Input Support (Joy2Key Needed)
The game has two games to choose from. TOWER OF DOOM & SHADOW OF MYSTARA. Shadow of Mystara is the game's main campaign with more game play elements & characters to play as while Tower of Doom is the 2nd campaign which is basically an older version of the 1st campaign with slightly less features.
Both campaigns are very similar with the exception of graphical differences. In SoM each character has special abilities unique to them which gives them a unique play style. The Rogue can Double Jump & Throw Rocks with her sling, the Warrior can Block attacks with his shield & so on. ToD doesn't have these features for each character.
You can also swap your special ability for an item that you have in your inventory & is easily switched by simply pressing a button then rotating to the item you want. It can be cumbersome to do so in the middle of a fight since you can't move/attack while doing it. The same cycle mechanic is used in both campaigns for items.
At the end of each level you fight a boss & after the boss you enter a shop menu which lets you buy health potions to heal & weapons that your character can wield. There are also branching paths in each campaign near the end of each chapter. If you are playing a co-op match you choose by majority vote. If the vote is 50/50 I think it's random.
You also gain level ups after each mission. These feel pretty much tacked on but they do serve a purpose. The Fighter gets a stronger sword, the Mage gets more spells, & every class gets more HP every level. If you die you can swap characters mid play through but they start out at the lowest level so it's better to stick with the same character as you play.
The Final Boss in SoM is probably one of the most hilarious things I've seen in an arcade game. It's not how she looks but how she fights. She's just a super killing machine meant to eat quarters & even has a giant instant kill AOE attack that you can't dodge & takes up the entire screen. Luckily, you have infinite continues so you don't have to worry about that nonsense.
The game also has "House Rules" which let you customize each play through with different game play elements. These can make the game easier or much harder depending on what you choose. This adds much more replay value as there are a lot of different settings to choose from. You do need to unlock most of these by completing achievements, though. There's a convenient achievement tracker while you play the game as well.
Overall the game is fun, enjoyable, has a lot of content added compared to the originals & is very well done for an arcade port. The online co-op is simple & easy to use. You make a room, & can either wait for people to join or start playing & have them join mid game or join another game in progress. The Single-Player is also enjoyable but the real fun is in the co-op.
I recommend buying it if you like Classic Arcade Games or just want a good gaming experience.