Estimated reading time: 4 minutes
When Streets of Rage 4 first came out, I spent the following handful of days playing through it repeatedly. It was a fantastic continuation of a legendary franchise. Now we get some fresh DLC, and if you were a fan of the base game? You need to give Streets of Rage 4: Mr. X Nightmare a go, because it adds to the already great base game.
When you are getting DLC, the developers are banking on you enjoying the base game so much that you’ll happily toss a few bucks or so down on some additional content of the same vein. Sometimes that works, sometimes it doesn’t – often times because the DLC is releasing well after the base game initially has. Thankfully, Streets of Rage 4 was an easy title to pick up, so if like me you had a bit of a long layoff since playing the core title? The DLC is a great reason to pick things back up again.
Here, Mr. X Nightmare brings the goods, and is anything but a nightmare. The highlight of course, is that you get three more playable characters. My favorite is Shiva, the one-time boss enemy from earlier titles. I’ve just always enjoyed his character design, and getting to use him and his incredibly fast style of play is satisfying. We get a nice middle-ground kind of character in Estele (a one-time boss from Streets of Rage 4) – who has always felt like she was waiting to be added to the roster given her character had just a bit more depth than most of the other bosses in the base Streets of Rage 4 title. She isn’t the bulkiest of the characters on the roster (you can unlock other characters through playing the base game. That progression system is one of my favorite aspects of Streets of Rage 4), but the third combatant – Max- will no doubt make maulers happy. I’ve never really gravitated towards the bigger, slower characters in brawlers like this, but the style has its fans and Max should make them quite happy.
Streets of Rage 4: Mr. X Nightmare also comes with a new mode: Survival. The idea of course is nothing new. One or two players get dropped into stages and have to hold off waves of enemies that become increasingly more difficult over time. Still, while this had the possibility of being a thin, quickly stale mode, I have to give the devs credit for mixing things up a bit here. The variety of stages is appreciated, there’s leaderboards and weekly challenges to keep the goals a bit fresh, and there is a neat lightweight progression system where you get to pick between one of two perks every stage. It also provides yet another way of unlocking some new goodies permanently too, including further customizing your fighters that can be carried over into the story mode as well. I really appreciated this feature. I really did not expect much from this mode, but I came away pleasantly surprised.
Achievement hunters get a few new objectives here as well, taking some more possible points onto the base game’s 1,000 possible as well. Not all DLC provides new achievements, but I like to chase trophies / achievements, so it’s appreciated when this is added.
Streets of Rage 4: Mr. X Nightmare is a fairly priced bit of DLC that is the perfect reason for people who played this title a year ago to pick the game back up again. All three new characters play differently from one another, providing a satisfying variety as you pound your way through hapless bad guys once again. The Survival mode also exceeded my expectations and has that addictive ‘one more time’ feel to it.Score: 8 / 10