Furi is a game of intensity formed into peaks and valleys. It’s a boss rush title, taking tons of inspiration from Japanese action games. There are no lesser enemies or levels beyond boss segments. It’s pure boss madness with breaks in between for story development.
I spent around 30 minutes chatting with developers The Game Bakers and playing the game. I beat the first boss on my first try, much to my surprise, despite how intense the encounter was.
Furi is mechanically pretty straight forward. You can shoot, slash, parry and dodge. Shots and slashes can be charged into strong attacks. Parries need to be timed against enemy attacks to work. There are no combos, no weapon progression and no extra life earned.
In the story department, Furi as about the player’s character trying to escape imprisonment. The beings standing in his way? The wardens. Each warden is a boss, and he’ll have to make his way to and through each one if he wants to leave. A strange being in a rabbit mask accompanies him along his journeys, and as the boss battles are the peaks in intensity, the valleys are trips to the next boss filled with exposition built by this rabbit.
The Game Bakers actually tossed up an unedited clip of the first boss in the game, and that’s the same one I went up against in my demo. You can see that in action below for a great representation of what I’m describing.
Every single boss is different, complete with their own design, weapons and attack patterns. The bosses are never massive or towering like you’d see in, say God of War. Instead, The Game Bakers are delivering battles where the bosses scale one-to-one with our hero.
The boss battles move, as you see, in phases. You’ll chew through each warden’s life bar by landing attacks and staying alive. Below that life bar, you see a few blocks. Those represent how many phases the warden has left. Beat the warden that many times and you’ll move on.
I enjoyed the challenge of Furi. I also respect that, while this is only the first boss in the game, I didn’t find myself frustrated with the tools I had. When I got hit, I felt like it was on me, not the game. In Furi, your life is restored with every phase you beat, so there’s that level of fairness as well.
There’s a tougher difficulty, too. This is actually pretty neat. Rather than simply pumping up the bosses’ HP and damage numbers, The Game Bakers used the extra difficulty to create entirely new and tougher attack patterns for each boss.
On top of the obvious great look, Furi also features a great soundtrack with original tunes. It’s mostly of the electronic variety, and one of the bigger artists with music in the game is Carpenter Brut.
Furi is set to release in early July for the PlayStation 4 and PC platforms. It will cost $25.