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Code Shifter: More Than Just A Gaming Crossover

by Neil Bui

The first time you pick up and play Code Shifter, you’ll find a side-scrolling beat ‘em up game that features characters from Arc System Works’ other titles like BlazBlue.

But the game is more than just a gaming crossover with its own meta storyline: you’re a talented programmer at a game studio who has created a virtual avatar to eliminate bugs in the code of the games you work on.

Crush bugs, fix the game!

Crush bugs, fix the game!

The storyline progresses as you continue finding and fighting more bugs in stages throughout Code Shifter. Hopefully, by now the game’s title makes sense to you: your character is shifting into code.

Throughout the game’s stages, you can access the Arc System Works characters as transformations for your avatar, a feature that reminds me of some of the games in the Mega Man Battle Network series.

Overall, the game is easy to pick up and pretty intuitive, with some stages being a bit of a brain teaser at times because that’s one thing no one wants to be too easy.



Here’s the additional fun part of Code Shifter: the game you’re working on as Stella the programmer is called Colorful Fighters, and that’s where the Arc System Works characters come from. As you advance through the main storyline, you’ll unlock characters for the game-in-a-game which you can then use in the fighting game mode, essentially allowing you to play Colorful Fighters. It’s like getting 2 games in 1!

Fight in games, not in real life.

Fight in games, not in real life.

I’ve enjoyed playing this game at night right before bedtime. It’s not too intense, so I can relax and enjoy myself.

25 characters to unlock and use their special powers!

25 characters to unlock and use their special powers!

Storyline: The storyline is interesting at first but loses its appeal once I became invested in completing the game to unlock all the available Colorful Fighters. However, I do like the attempt at creating a contextually meta game like this.

Graphics: Code Shifter is visually appealing with a retro look that’s vibrant and eye-catching.

Music: The music of the game fits perfectly and at no points feels lackluster compared to any of the other outstanding traits. However, I never had that “wow” moment or felt in the zone because of the music.

Gameplay: As I’ve said before, this game is within the classic genre of side-scrolling beat em ‘ups, but does a great job of standing out through its plot, visual elements, and incorporation of existing IP in a game that rewards players with a fighting game within a side-scrolling game. Talk about RPG^squared.

Purchase your copy of Code Shifter today!

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