Mother Russia Bleeds is a 2d side-scrolling beat 'em up that takes place in an alternate 1980s Russia in which a fictional drug named nekro rules the streets. You play as one of four characters who was kidnapped and put under trials with the drug. After 3 weeks of testing, you break out and fight your way through hordes of enemies to get revenge on the ones who put you under the testing. While fighting your way through enemies physically, you also have withdrawals and try to fight against a strange skeleton man mentally.
For the longest time I try to avoid combo fighting games, where you try to combine multiple buttons to make a special attack, because they always confused me on which move I should use at what time, and I would mostly just do a singular attack. Coming from that standpoint, I felt that this would be game I would have to drag myself through because I didn't want to spend my time pausing repeatedly just to look up how to do a certain move and when to use that move effectively. But Mother Russia bleeds made learning combo moves so much fun. during my time, I had a lot of fun trying to learn each and every move and I tried to perfect them. i would look them up and I would try things on my own and write them down. And the endless mode helped me with that even more, as for it would be a testing ground for me to try out new moves. I didn't think that I would ever have fun with any combo games, but Mother Russia Bleeds made me change my perspective on combo games even if that is the only combo game I ever like. Speaking of which, the combos in this game are incredibly fun and is the reason why I enjoyed learning combos. Even now when I look at game play of this game, I see moves that I didn't even know about and that I want to try. the 4 characters mostly do the same moves, but I know of some moves that vary between the four. But anyways, doing moves like throwing them up and slamming them to the ground, back breakers, throwing, sliding, punching, kicking, and the use of weapons made the combat and the combos simple and fun. Also, in the game you can go into a berserk mode, which opens up even more possibilities for a short amount of time.
Some other aspects of this game I liked was the background of the game. I thought that using the USSR before it collapsed was an interesting time piece to use. Of course, since it is a Devolver game, there is a great soundtrack. The music mixed modern techno with what kinda feels like the vibe of communist propaganda music, and it goes great as you punch, kick, shoot, stab, and throw your way though each level. The mission levels, despite being a little repetitive of you just beating on people, were still very unique, and no two places felt the same. The boss fights in each level as well were very unique, as for the bosses and there fighting styles were different from each other. The endless mode was also a big positive to the game. In endless mode, you are put into an arena and you fight until you die. There are multiple arenas, each based off of different story missions and getting through a set amount of waves will unlock you new kinds of nekro, which will boost you in different ways. Not only is the endless mode a great way to spend more time in the game, but is also the way to get new unlocks and a great way to try out new combos.
Every game has its positives and negatives, and this game is no exception. Despite the environment of each level doing different things to you and occasionally having to defend something or someone, the game does get a bit repetitive, as for the missions all follow the same format of killing a whole lot of enemies, and fighting a boss. Despite each level having different kinds of enemies, it doesn't mask the repetitiveness of the missions. In the controls menu, there is a page where you can see some basic combos. What I find frustrating is that the combos page showed console controls, even though I'm on pc. I have no need for xbox controls because I don't have an xbox. But I will say that I do have a ps4 controller and when I was playing with that, the combos page did show ps4 controls. That is something that should be fixed, as for I would like to see if there are any more combos I can learn from that page, but with a keyboard. Finally, this game has no online co-op. I don't expect every game to have an online mode, but I do think that a game like this could really benefit having online co-op features. But don't fear, as for there is local co-op, so if you really want to play with your friends, you can. You can even add bots if you can't play with your friends too.
Here is my verdict: Despite some small flaws, Mother Russia Bleeds is a great game and is one of the best games I have played this year. This game is great for people who are pro at fighting games and also great for people who are new to fighting games or even hate combo fighting games(like myself). With many moves to master, different characters to play as, endless mode to see how far you can get, leader boards to beat the best, and new nekro to unlock, this game is definitely worth picking up at $15, and is a great game to play at home or on the go.