The Best Beat-em-up Games

Update : Astor: Blade Of The Monolith added at rank #48.
1

The friends of Ringo Ishikawa (2018)

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100
Review score
Logo of The friends of Ringo Ishikawa Screenshot of The friends of Ringo Ishikawa Screenshot of The friends of Ringo Ishikawa Screenshot of The friends of Ringo Ishikawa

Xbox One Mac OS Nintendo Switch PC Windows

The Friends of Ringo Ishikawa is a unique and inscrutable narrative-brawler that explores the lives of high school seniors contemplating their future after graduation. You play as Ringo and take part in 2D brawler-style combat, buy food and books to replenish your health and stamina, attend classes, study, work part-time jobs and train at the gym.


What we like:
  • Unique experience full of freedom
  • Cool pixelated graphical style
  • Atmospheric soundtrack
  • Discover routines in the town
  • Follow them and learn different actions you can take
What could be improved:
  • No tutorials or hints provided
  • No world map or quest markers given
  • Combat could feel more responsive

  • beat-em-up
  • brawler
  • 1980s
  • martial
  • arts
  • rpg
  • open-world
  • pixel
  • scroller
  • atmospheric
  • drama
  • sandbox
  • anime
  • brawler-type
  • 2d

2

River City Girls (2019)

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100
Review score
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Xbox One PC Windows

Step into the shoes of Kyoko or Misako in River City Girls, a beat 'em up extravaganza! With its vibrant pixel-art, riveting manga story panels, and catchy synth-pop soundtrack, you'll enjoy every punch, kick, and combo you unleash on the bad guys. This wild, action-packed adventure is a nostalgic trip filled with humor, stunning art, and epic gameplay.


What we like:
  • Excellent quality OST and pixel graphics
  • Hilarious writing with matching voice acting
  • Fun co-op mode
  • Beautiful hand-drawn animated cutscenes
  • Engaging gameplay and music atmosphere
What could be improved:
  • Poor AI leading to repetitive combat
  • Slow recovery of downed enemies disrupts combo flow
  • Limited DPS through aerial combos
  • Lack of control customization

  • brawler
  • cooperative
  • anime
  • beat-em-up
  • fight
  • boss
  • pixel
  • boss-fight
  • rpg
  • local
  • retro
  • couch
  • combat
  • side-scrolling
  • classic

3

Troublemaker: Raise Your Gang (2023)

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100
Review score
Logo of Troublemaker: Raise Your Gang Screenshot of Troublemaker: Raise Your Gang Screenshot of Troublemaker: Raise Your Gang Screenshot of Troublemaker: Raise Your Gang

PC Windows Xbox One

Grab a backpack, boxing tape, and focus on what high school is all about: Beating the ever loving crap out of one another! Troublemaker blends favorite action-adventure-beat-'em-up elements from the strongest traditions in the genre.

Buy

  • japanese
  • action-adventure-beat-em-up
  • arts
  • beat-em-up
  • 3d
  • rpg
  • martial
  • fight
  • education
  • hack-and-slash
  • jrpg
  • multiple-endings
  • romance
  • third-person
  • action-adventure

4

Memory Lost: Chapter One (2022)

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98
Review score
Logo of Memory Lost: Chapter One Screenshot of Memory Lost: Chapter One Screenshot of Memory Lost: Chapter One Screenshot of Memory Lost: Chapter One

PC Windows Linux

First chapter of Memory Lost. It is a story-driven action shooter, the battles in which are built around the mechanics of mind capturing and moving into the enemy's body. First-aid kits were not delivered, there is only one magazine in the weapon - change the bodies to survive!

Buy

  • top-down
  • shoot-em-up
  • beat-em-up
  • isometric
  • shooter
  • gore
  • violent

5

Grandpa's Cheese (2022)

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97
Review score
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PC Windows

Grandpa has gone mad! collect the cheese and give them to Reeze so he can feed his mouse to get the hell out of the house!

Buy

  • 3d
  • beat-em-up
  • pve
  • shoot-em-up
  • werewolves
  • fps
  • shooter
  • surreal
  • vampire
  • thriller
  • abstract
  • first-person
  • arcade
  • fight
  • zombies

6

Reloader: test subject (2022)

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95
Review score
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PC Windows

Reloader: test_subject is an experimental "Bullet Counting Reload Action" game. Experience being a Reloader: having legendary shooting skills and engaging in Close-Quarters Combat(CQC). You just have to remember how to use the gun you’re holding.

Buy

  • voxel
  • noir
  • beat-em-up
  • 2.5d
  • scroller
  • shoot-em-up
  • cyberpunk
  • 2d
  • tactical
  • hack-and-slash
  • real-time
  • pixel
  • shooter
  • simulation

7

Tonight We Riot (2020)

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93
Review score
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Linux Mac OS PC Windows Nintendo Switch

The game follows a player-controlled crowd of workers rather than a single character,[4] each member with their own weapons, to fight against Pinkertons, militias, and police as they move their way through a level. Players can inspire more workers to join the crowd by liberating factories and encouraging more workers to join the fight. The game's difficulty is dynamic as it is tied in part due to the size of the mob, from being extremely difficult as a single worker to challenging or easy as the mob grows in size.[5] The levels end in boss fights ranging from large vehicles operated by the police to the President of the fictional country the game takes place in.[6][7]


  • political
  • beat-em-up
  • crowd
  • politics
  • cooperative

8

OK K.O.! Lets Play Heroes (2018)

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93
Review score
Logo of OK K.O.! Lets Play Heroes Screenshot of OK K.O.! Lets Play Heroes Screenshot of OK K.O.! Lets Play Heroes Screenshot of OK K.O.! Lets Play Heroes

Playstation 4 Xbox One PC Windows

Based on Cartoon Network's hit show, this game stars pint-sized K.O. as he fights Lord Boxman's evil bots to save Lakewood Plaza Turbo. In this story-driven adventure meets cartoon-brawler, you'll complete quests, unlock moves & collect cards of your Plaza pals as you fight to become a true hero.

Buy

  • beat-em-up
  • cartoony
  • brawler
  • card
  • story
  • robots
  • funny
  • boss-specific
  • combo
  • fight
  • adventure
  • exploration

9

One Finger Death Punch (2013)

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93
Review score
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PC Windows Xbox One IOS iPhone Xbox 360 Android

Experience cinematic kung-fu battles in the fastest, most intense brawler the indie world has ever seen! With the unique 1:1 response system of One Finger Death Punch, players will feel the immediate feedback of every bone-crunching hit. Pay tribute to the masters using five classic kung-fu styles mixed with additional weapons.


  • beat-em-up
  • fight
  • rhythm
  • 2d
  • martial
  • arts
  • brawler
  • fast-paced
  • addictive
  • survival
  • action
  • skill
  • endless
  • classic

10

FIGHT KNIGHT (2021)

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92
Review score
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PC Windows Playstation 4

The mysterious Tower has risen again, shrouding the land in darkness. Do you have what it takes to climb through its twisted halls and reach the top, where great treasure awaits? FIGHT KNIGHT is a unique mix of first-person dungeon crawler and high-speed action game, with thrilling real-time combat and challenging puzzles to solve. Equip your character with powerful moves and gauntlets, and fight your way past clever enemies that work together to defeat you. Conquer the Tower and be the hero who saves the land!

Buy

What we like:
  • Unique and engaging combat system
  • Charm and style in visuals, music, and dialogue
  • Linear gameplay with light puzzles and boss battles
  • Plenty of replayability with potential new game+ run
  • Non-roguelite dungeon crawler
What could be improved:
  • Some puzzles can be a pain to get through
  • Frantic combat can get too difficult
  • Restocking on potions is monotonous
  • Linear gameplay

  • movement
  • beat-em-up
  • dungeon-crawler
  • fantasy
  • grid
  • dark
  • souls
  • comedy
  • rpg
  • pixel
  • first-person
  • hack-and-slash
  • rhythm
  • retro
  • cartoony

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