50 Best Games of 2016: #50 – Furi

Our 50 best games of the year countdown isn’t in any order, we’re just going through fifty of the finest the year has given us. Find out more here.

As easy as it may be to sometimes criticise PlayStation Plus, it’s even easier to defend it when it throws gems your way that you might have never otherwise been aware of. Rocket League is probably the pinnacle of free PlayStation Plus games, but for my money, Furi isn’t far behind.

A game that I somehow didn’t get around to reviewing, Furi doesn’t hold back from making you feel like an idiot in the best possible way. It’s argued that too many games lead the player by the hand until the credits roll, but Furi is more likely to chop your hand off and play hacky sack with it instead. It’s gruellingly difficult to the point of screaming-into-your-pillow, which just makes it all the more satisfying when you finally progress.

The Game Bakers have created something that they know won’t be appealing to everyone, thanks to Furi’s insanely high difficulty level. Once you get past the tears of self-hatred and understand that it’s, at its heart, a rhythm game with combat, Furi seriously shines. It’s all about timing: knowing where to go to avoid the many dangerous bosses’ often overpowered attacks and how to counteract them. After a few hours with it, you’ll be tempted to buy a set of drums or even blow the dust off of your bongo drums for a round of Donkey Konga.

Those who long for the days of old where every boss battle felt like a real battle should be enamoured by this game. Furi is all about taking on boss after boss, each with their own weaknesses and multiple health bars – the dream for those of us who grew up on arcade gaming. Armed with a pistol and a sword, the way you fight is up to you with there being plenty of paths to victory, but unless you come into each battle with a clear plan in mind, you may as well not even bother. Furi demands that you somehow forget the intensity of each fight and approach it with a cool head, not easy when you miss windows of opportunities by a fraction of a second and have to try to squeak by with little health.

Mechanically, Furi does take a little bit of getting used to. You are able to charge dash attacks, fire weapons, attack with a sword and press a QTE to counter, which isn’t ideal for the less than dextrous of people at the best of times, but when you combine that with the high tempo and the beads of sweat dripping into your eyes, it’s murder. Master the controls and everything else, however, and you feel like a boss yourself. There aren’t many games I’ve played this year that make me feel “invincible” or like I am having a serious challenge. Furi is certainly one of them and a game I can’t recommend highly enough.

It may not be free anymore, but if you have some money burning in your pocket, put it to good use and pick up what must be one of the most underrated games of 2016.

50 Best Games of 2016: #49 – Inside

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