Them's Fightin' Herds Review

Player(s): 1-2 (local or online)
Extra Features: Online Multiplayer (2 players), Leaderboards

Them’s Fightin’ Herds is a 2-D fighter developed by Mane6. The game has a colorful cast of female animals to choose from. Beneath all the cuteness lies a devastating fighter however. These animals mean business and the developers do as well. Them’s Fightin’ Herds is one heck of a good fighting game and I really feel it’s the best indie fighter since Skullgirls.

The art style of the game has the look of the recent “My Little Pony” animated series. Characters are very much full of life and have their own unique personalities. The voice acting in the game is quite good. The game is full of light humor between characters. Animations are very fluid and fighting moves are full of eye candy (such as level 3 supers). Stage backgrounds are colorful and the game has eight to choose from.


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Them’s Fightin’ Herds (TFH) has a total of seven fighters in its default roster. The game offers a Story mode along with the usual online and offline versus. It also has a Training and Tutorial mode among other modes. The game has three attack buttons (A, B, C) and a magic button (D). The magic button is similar to the Trait button from the Injustice series. Each fighter has their own unique magic power that can often be mixed up with a press of a direction. The focus of this game is more on positioning and neutral rather than long combos. It certainly does have some big juggle combos at times, but they don’t go overboard. The game is more of a fighter where patience will pay off.

The roster of fighters is quite varied. Each fighter feels truly unique - no fighter feels similar to another. All fighters have special moves along with three levels of super moves. Advanced moves such as canceling, juggling, parrying, etc. are here as well. The game is easy to pick up but hard to master. Along with the usual damage scaling, the game has a juggle decay that breaks combos nearly automatically after a certain amount of hits is reached. Not all combos are broken at the same number of hits, but it’s enough to keep away from infinites.

As already mentioned, each fighter has their own magic attacks. Some fighters depend more on magic than others. For instance, Pom can call in assists and control them using magic. She has two assists and multiple ways to call in one of them. Once an assist is in the ring, she can control it for a while before the assist is dismissed from the battlefield. Paprika uses her magic to toss random items at her opponent. Arizona can lasso her opponents and bring them to her with her magic.


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This game has a fantastic training mode that goes over all the basics and many advanced techniques. Don’t know how to read or understand frame data? This game has a detailed lesson on frame data that goes over it quite well along with many other sections for advanced players. You are free to pick whichever fighter you want during the tutorial and some lessons are character specific depending on the character chosen – for instance, Arizona’s basic lessons will go over her own basic and magic attacks. The game also has the usual training mode that allows you to pull up several combo challenges for each fighter. Everything you would expect can be done in the training modes – frame data, record moves, pull up hit/hurtboxes, etc.

The game has a Story mode that plays out much like an RPG. It only has one chapter so far (with more coming soon in free updates), but the chapter it has is around four hours in length (and even more if you choose to explore thoroughly). You are free to explore areas with a miniature version of your fighter (Arizona) and you’ll run into environmental enemies much like an RPG. Once an encounter has started, you’ll have to fight it out using the in-game fighting engine. One great part about the story mode is that the game will actually teach you how to deal with situations such as zoning during some of its fights. You’ll explore areas, find secret items (for your avatar), speak to NPCs and deal with a bit of boss fights and platforming here and there. The platforming is overall pretty hard to adjust to (imagine MK Mythologies: Sub-Zero platforming without a run button and that pretty much nails it).

The online play seemed very smooth in the matches I played in. The game has a traditional lobby and spectator mode. The lobby system also includes a “Pixel Lobby” where you can mine salt in order to buy items for your avatar. While wandering around the lobby (basically a story mode area), you can engage in combat with other players that are wandering around the same lobby. The game allows you to simulate lag in its training modes, so you can practice with lag if you expect to get any while playing online.


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Them’s Fightin’ Herds is a great fighting game for players that favor a style of fighting similar to Street Fighter. It’s actually a great game for beginners with all the help you can get from the game’s tutorial mode. It will be interesting to see how this game stacks up with other fighters at major tournaments. I have already seen it showcased at a few tournaments and hope to see more of it. The only thing the game is really lacking is story mode completion and a bigger roster. Other than that, it’s a very solid fighter.

The Good:
+ Unique art style for a fighter
+ A fighting engine similar to Street Fighter (positioning and neutral favored)
+ Fun cast of characters

The Bad:
- Only 7 characters overall so far
- The input-reading AI can be annoyingly hard in Story mode no matter the setting

Final Rating: 85% - Them's Fightin' Herds is a solid fighter that every fighting game fan should check out!

 

Note: A review code for this game was provided by the publisher.