The long-awaited fourth entry in the classic Streets of Rage series is finally upon us. Fans have been waiting decades for a follow up to Sega’s beloved beat-‘em-up series, but the wait is well worth it. Our upcoming review of the game is based off the PC version, but the question remains: how does Streets of Rage 4 compare on Switch?
I got some hands-on time with the Switch port, and I have one word for it: beautiful. The fluid, hand-drawn animations look absolutely flawless on the Switch, both in handheld mode and TV mode. No matter how many enemies I saw on screen, I never once saw the framerate drop or stutter. It keeps up with the action in both modes perfectly. The options menu is loaded with a surprising amount of toggles and tweaks you can apply to the video to do things like adjust the bloom, or add a CRT filter over the action. The game sounds incredible, too. The retro-inspired soundtrack sounds great coming from the small speakers of the Switch.
Since I was playing the game before release, I was unable to find anyone for an online session. I am unsure of how the netcode will hold up on the Switch, but I can say that local multiplayer is a blast. The ease of couch multiplayer on the Switch is a perfect fit for an arcadey experience like this one.
One final aspect of the Switch port that I greatly enjoyed is a surprise even to me: the HD rumble. While Nintendo made a big deal about the Switch’s HD rumble before launch, only a handful of games have ever really capitalized on it in a meaningful way. Streets of Rage 4, keeping in line with the rest of the game, lets you customize the amount of rumble you experience, but I recommend playing with it turned all the way up. Every hit you give and take gives a proportionate rumble in the controllers, and it really helps sell the impact of your hits, especially when you land a particularly satisfying combo.
Overall, Streets of Rage 4 runs perfectly on the Switch. If you are looking for a console to get the game on, I highly recommend the Switch, as it loses little to nothing in comparison to the other platforms, but gains the satisfying HD rumble and the ability to take the game on the go. It’s also a perfect handheld game, great for playing in short bursts. So here’s to the revitalization of a beloved Sega franchise on a Nintendo platform, and lets hope to see more in the future.