Having never played a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle game or even really seen the cartoon as a kid, I was hesitant to play Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Shredder’s Revenge. My knowledge of the turtles is the live-action movie back in the day but nothing else. There’s a first for everything. Crafted by the same team that brought us Streets of Rage 4, Dotemu teamed up with Tribute Games and Nickelodeon to bring us a shiny but still old-school beat-them-up with our favorite turtles and friends. You choose your favorite turtle (I’m biased with Leonardo) or friend, learn their unique move set through a simple and easy-to-understand tutorial, and defeat all rainbow-colored opponents with wild ninja abilities. You’ll do this while on hoverboards, avoiding cars, or just duking it out on the streets of New York.
You begin the game by seeing notable enemies in the TMNT universe – Bebop and Rocksteady attacking Channel 6 News Station to build a body for the enemy known as Krang. You soon learn that Shredder is part of this whole scheme as well. Who else will stop these two than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles? Shredder’s Revenge is a beat ’em up, so the concept of what you need to do is simple to grasp. After the early tutorial in the character selection stage, the game sets the player up for success to get those bodacious combos out on those in your way and pair up for team combos with friends.
There are a total of 16 stages, and surprisingly you can complete the game in roughly two hours and thirty minutes. One cool feature about the game is that friends can jump into your game at any time, and if they’ve already played it, they can join it at whatever level their character is at. Also, to note, you don’t have to play with friends; you can play this solo and still enjoy and marvel over this stunning game.
Here’s my review for someone who isn’t too well versed in the TMNT universe. The story for Shredder’s Revenge is straightforward, short, and sweet. You are quickly introduced to the issue at hand and immediately ready to throw hands, feet, sword, staff, nunchaku, etc., at said, enemy. That was one of the things I appreciated about how the story was laid out. Straight to the point!
I thought the tutorial at the beginning of Shredder’s Revenge was a nice touch. It was super simple to pick up, even for those who have never played this game. It’s a nice setup, and even as you play, your specific character is leveling up with each stage and unlocking more unique abilities to them, which is another nice touch. Just like the story, the gameplay is straightforward. Fight everything in your way and make your way to the boss of the stage.
Speaking of stages, each of the stages has optional challenges. However, there are some instances where you can complete challenges without really trying, and there are somewhere you need to try harder, such as not being hit by traps on stage or not using your special. Although optional, you do receive more experience points for your character.
Speaking about characters, you can change characters at any time at the Turtle Lair. However, they will be at level one or whatever group you stopped playing them at. Now for the mass beat-em-up games, you need to play multiplayer. I tried. After about ten minutes of linking my Epic and Steam accounts, I could play with friends. As expected, seeing you and your friends team up on an enemy is chaotic and fun. However, it’s important to note that crossplay is available but only limited to Steam and Xbox. Consoles like the Nintendo Switch and PS4 are limited to their respective consoles.
In Shredder’s Revenge is another mode: Arcade Mode with limited lives, no changing out characters, and no saving. This is the ultimate test of your ninja abilities tied together with a leaderboard to compare your scores to others. Finally, the game design is fantastic and gives off that 80s feel. The art style brings the story and gameplay together as the final piece of this already gnarly game. The vibrant colors of the pixel art, the active environments, whether they’re attacking you or working for you, and not to mention the fantastic soundtrack are the icing on the cake.
I found this game unique as a person who isn’t well versed in the TMNT universe. It’s fun, fast-paced, easy to pick up, and easy to join friends to bring mass chaos. Even if turtles aren’t your thing, I HIGHLY recommend picking up Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle: Shredder’s Revenge to play with friends. New fans will enjoy this gem!