What I love most about gaming is when a game comes out and it’s so much of what I wanted – and I just didn’t know it yet. I have had the privilege of having that experience again while playing Furi over the past weekend and I’m hooked! I have a backlog I had planned on starting and its going further into the backseat because all I want to do now is play Furi. Because I haven’t had enough time to beat Furi (and I’m too stubborn to lower the difficulty in order to hurry up the process), I have been only able to fight 5 bosses so far, along with some quality time in the practice mode to understand the ins and outs of these bosses even further. I wanted to go ahead and give my first impressions based on my experience thus far and in a nutshell, Furi is a total sleeper hit.
So, what is Furi? Furi is a boss rush game that combines twin stick shooting and intense combat with a sword. Each boss in Furi is uniquely designed, and they become more difficult as you progress. There are a simple set of controls: shoot, slash, parry and dodge, along with a charge. The game is designed to challenge and test your skills by applying each of your powers against these bosses and their varied attacks. This can call for some really outstanding combat that is so precise and detailed, it constantly keeps you on your toes. You have to be ready to execute the right move at a quick pace and this really tests your reaction skills. I found myself fumbling at times, panicking and pulling the wrong move and being heavily punished for it; teaching me a great lesson every time. I learn by every mistake and get better with every death.
The story in Furi is basically this: you, the hero, are imprisoned and now you are fighting your way to regain freedom. Trial by combat! (Any Game of Thrones fans out there?) The game starts out with you fighting The Jailer, the tutorial boss. He sets the tone early as he constantly mocks that you will never be free and get out of this place. This makes it even sweeter to defeat him. However, that feeling can be short lived as a mentor rabbit face (as I like to call him) reminds you that the fighting never really ends and we may never be free. Rabbit face talks to you as you walk to the next boss and feeds a puzzle of information into your mind as you are trying to put the pieces together.
Each boss has a number of phases which are essentially lives. Each phase gets more difficult than the last. You have 3 lives. If a boss kills you, you lose a life and they regain their health as the phase restarts. If you make it past a phase and take one of their lives, you are rewarded with regaining your HP as well as a life back. With each boss, they have two shades of their health bar. Once you deplete the first bar of health, it will trigger close-quarter combat. During this time, you cannot use your gun and have to rely on your sword as well as your dodging and parrying skills. Once this second bar of health is depleted, the boss losses a life/phase and moves on to the next. This can be such an adrenaline filled experience because you don’t know what will happen next and how much more difficult it is about to become. I also think of each phase as having phases within itself because so much is going on and each boss is creating a routine of such various moves for you to adjust to.
Also, this has to be mentioned. Furi has an electro soundtrack and it is amazing! I am looking forward to getting my hands on it so I can listen to it when I’m not playing. The soundtrack consists of original creations by Carpenter Brut, Danger, The Toxic Avenger, Lorn, Scattle, Waveshaper and Kn1ght and it is available now for anyone interested.
Furi is definitely a game that takes inspirations from other games and makes it its own. It has already been compared to the likes of Devil May Cry, Ninja Gaiden, Dark Souls, and Bayonetta. It definitely feels familiar yet completely fresh at the same time and that is what makes it so special. I am definitely enjoying this game and the difficulty has a lot to do with it. This isn’t some push over game that allows you to make a mistake. It will punish you and force you to be better. That is probably why it’s so attractive to me and I can’t put it down once I start. I’m playing on Furi mode and once I beat it, the game will unlock Furier mode which I hear is extremely hard. There is also a mode called Promenade which is much easier but it comes at a cost because it does not unlock trophies, Furier mode, and the Speed Run mode. And speaking of speed runs and personal challenges, I have really enjoyed practice mode where it keeps track of hits I take as well as how long it takes me to complete each boss fight. This allows me to try and beat my previous scores and I could spend hours on this alone.
Furi is a one of a kind game and in my opinion, a must play! It’s definitely my sleeper hit of the year so far and I encourage everyone to try this game. As of now, Furi is $25 on Steam and PS4 but if you have Playstation Plus, it is FREE! Definitely take advantage of this amazing offer. Spend some time with this game and come back to tell us what you think!