Shing! is a side scrolling, beat’em up, arcade-style video game published and developed by Mass Creation. You can see they have taken huge inspiration from old school classic games like Streets of Rage. Shing! is the story of four ninjas trying to save the world from invading demons.
You can play as the four different characters. Along the way you can unlock different customization for how they look, which is a nice touch.
When you begin you can choose from two different control schemes: default or alternative. In default you will perform attacks with just the right stick, whereas with alternative you will aim with the left stick and use buttons to attack. I actually found myself enjoying the game a hell of a lot more using the alternative scheme as it fits my playstyle better and is what I am used to when playing these types of games.
Shing! can be played on your own or in couch co-op of up to four players. The true unique design is that if you do play with less than four you can switch characters in and out with the d-pad. It helps when you are low on health as you can switch to another character and start using them. Each character has a unique playstyle and different combos which is great if you’re playing alone because you can switch in and out depending on your preference.
The combat scheme is really easy to pick up and pulling off the combos becomes fun and easy to master. You can play on four different difficulties from easy to expert depending on what level of challenge you want.
You have various different types of enemy to fight. Some are harder to take down than others, plus some need to have a special sort of requirement. For example, you will come across an enemy that brings up a force field that you first need to break before attacking them. To do this you will either need to deflect the orbs he throws at you or obtain power ups that drop from fighting other enemies.
The gameplay is pretty solid and you can’t really fault it. You have to learn your combos and what each orb you can collect does, but once you’ve got your head around it and when best to switch characters in and out you will have a great time.
A huge sad point, however, is the lack of online co-op on the Xbox version. Especially in current times it’s a massive shame that I can’t play with friends. I did force my wife to play it with me instead and it made it much easier as the same number of enemies will show up whether it’s solo or co-op.
It is a nice that they have added voice acting to the title. It’s been a while since I have played a similar small title and have not had to forever read what was going on. When fighting each character will have their own unique voice lines to try to stand out. They’re definitely going with the comedy element as they each try to crack jokes whilst playing/defeating bosses. The dialogue is all jokes and after a while it can get annoying.
Some levels have some environment puzzles you have to solve. Along the way you can also unlock challenge rooms which have a unique requirement to complete or what they call a “Lore Room”, where all four characters will have an in-depth conversation and banter.
This is your classic side scrolling, left-to-right, fighting all the enemies title. It’s a nice length for the genre and you can complete it in a few hours. You have about seven levels, each with a boss encounter at the end, and there are two different endings to pick from as well.
Shing! is a great title. I would love if this had an online co-op option but playing through with the missus was fun. It’s long enough that it doesn’t get boring too quickly and each stage feels the right length. It’s meant to be played with friends but I still had fun playing solo switching in and out of characters.Become a Patron!
This game was tested and reviewed on Xbox. All of the opinions and insights here are subject to that version. Game provided by publisher.Want to keep up to date with the latest Xt reviews, Xt opinions and Xt content? Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.