Get ready to immerse yourself in a musical experience like no other with Hi-Fi Rush! Right from the get-go you’ll be swept away on a sensory journey packed with stunning visuals, catchy tunes and a very clever dialogue.
You begin as Chai, a 25 year old aspiring rockstar who has volunteered to be a test bunny at Vandelay Technologies. In a procedure gone wrong, Chai now faces extermination from the company who has deemed his new robot arm “defective”. As he tries to escape the company’s clutches he’s faced with an onslaught of security robots and a number of enraged corporate executives. Luckily, Chai joins forces with a band of renegades keen on bringing down the evil corporation and exposing their mind control AI project, SPECTRA.
Being a rhythm-based beat ’em up, it can sometimes be challenging, but thanks to its well thought out mechanics and gameplay design it’s surprisingly easy to pick up. From the get-go you’ll see that the world is filled with audio and visual cues, helping even those with no rhythm jump at the right moment or take down an enemy. Thankfully however, the developer hasn’t put too much emphasis on precision. Time-based combos automatically sync to the music and if you do manage to hit exactly at the right moment you’ll be rewarded with higher points.
Now, what makes Hi-Fi Rush so enjoyable is of course, its music. Each level is designed to create a fully immersive experience and features original music by former Konami composer ‘Shuichi Kobori’ along with 10 licensed tracks from extremely well known groups The Prodigy, Nine Inch Nails, The Black Keys, Fiona Apple and The Flaming Lips. My favourite track had to be “Invaders Must Die” by The Prodigy because the timing of this song was placed perfectly alongside a hilarious cinematic followed by an epic battle. It was also exciting to hear Wolfgang’s 5th Symphony playout as I fought my way through, keeping in rhythm with the music.
The visuals in Hi-Fi Rush are equally impressive, with a vibrant and dynamic artstyle that give off serious ‘Jet Set Radio’ vibes. Its cartoon aesthetic and Japanese comic inspired visuals, particularly during boss fights, are an absolute treat and something that the small team over at Tango Gameworks should be applauded for. The addition of 2D platform levels also lends well to the game’s design.
The game offers a variety of well thought-out levels from magma filled caverns to museums and construction sites, each playing well into the game’s soundscape. Together with the easy to follow storyline and straightforward character progression, Hi-Fi Rush really does provide a fun and engaging experience for people of all ages. There are 12 levels in total, and the overall game time typically finishes up around 11 hours, depending on the difficulty, which can be adjusted in the menu.
Overall, Hi-Fi Rush is a fantastic game that’s sure to keep you entertained for hours on end. With its unique musical gameplay, beautiful artstyle and well written dialogue, it’s one of those unexpected gems definitely worth checking out.
Thank you Bethesda ANZ for the review code. Hi-Fi Rush is available now through Game Pass on Xbox Series X|S and PC, as well as through the Microsoft Store, Steam, and the Epic Games Store.
Gaming, Pop Culture and Tech Enthusiast who has an obsession with the 90’s. I have a long running background in the IT & Audio Visual Industry, followed by substantial experience in Business Development, Sales & Digital Marketing.