Before eventually going out of business, Data East released numerous arcade games across a variety of genres. While many of their games are lesser known, various collections, re-releases, and remakes continue to trickle out. Joe & Mac, for instance, has already seen a remake in the form of New Joe & Mac: Caveman Ninja from Microids. Now Forever Entertainment (makers of The House of the Dead: Remake) is throwing their hat into the ring with Night Slashers: Remake, an HD version of Data East's cult classic beat 'em up.
Night Slashers is a horror-themed beat 'em up in which three heroes must battle hordes of monsters, mutants, and the walking dead in order to save the remains of humanity. The original arcade game came in 2-player and 3-player variations, though the modern home releases only support 2 players. Night Slashers is fondly remembered by those in the know for its cool horror theme, excellent graphics, and the large movesets of the protagonists.
The remake is being developed by Storm Trident S.A. It will feature:
- Expanded hero roster: Choose from a unique roster of heroes to assemble your team. Battle hordes of zombies as a team of up to four players.
- Enhanced Controls and Combat Mechanics: Take full control of your character with improved controls and combat mechanics. Execute combos, aerial attacks, and special moves, making the gameplay engaging and satisfying.
- Upgraded Visual Effects: From blood splatters to dynamic lighting, witness the horror unfold with updated visual effects that heighten the intensity of the gameplay.
- Sound and Music Perfection: Enjoy a high-quality haunting soundtrack. Choose between the classic OST to feed your nostalgia or the newly-arranged music for a modern-day experience.
- Character Selection Screen Overhaul: Try the revamped character selection screen showcasing the heroes in a more engaging and visually striking way.
The promise of 4-player co-op and a new playable character (not shown in the teaser trailer) are certainly exciting! The actual visual style seems to follow the same style as that of Capcom's Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix. Character sprites have been redrawn, but the number of animation frames, apparently, remains the same. The resulting art style won't be everybody's cup of tea, but it's really not bad according to my artist's eyes.
Forever Entertainment won't confirm platforms for Night Slashers: Remix, which makes it a little hard to get excited about the game just yet. Their games usually follow a staggered release approach in which they launch on Switch first (argh) and then come to other systems over time. The game itself is promised for 2024. We'll be on the lookout for further announcements!
If you want to try the original game, Night Slashers is available on Switch and Steam, though the Steam version has very poor reviews. The game was also released on the now defunct iiRcade platform. Of the three, the Switch game supports 3-player local co-op, and the others support only two players. Night Slashers is also playable via Antstream Arcade, the classic game streaming software for Xbox, PC, and mobile.