Streets of Rage 4
From Sega Retro
|Streets of Rage 4|
|System(s): PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Steam, Windows PC|
|Publisher: Dotemu (Europe, US, Japan) Yooreka Studio (China) Limited Run Games (US) 3goo (Japan) H2 Interactive (Asia) Merge Games (Europe, US)|
|Developer: Lizardcube, Dotemu, Guard Crush Games|
|Genre: Action, Adventure|
|Number of players: 1-2 online, 1-4 offline|
Streets of Rage 4, known as Bare Knuckle IV (ベア・ナックルIV) in Japan and Asia, is a sequel to Streets of Rage 3 developed by Lizardcube, Dotemu and Guard Crush Games with the approval of Sega. It is the first official sequel of the series since 1994, with a gap of 26 years between episodes 3 and 4, and has been released on all the consoles of the 8th generation (Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch) and on PC.
- 1 Story
- 2 Gameplay
- 3 History
- 4 Production credits
- 5 Magazine articles
- 6 Artwork
- 7 Physical scans
- 8 External links
- 9 References
|“||Ten years have passed since the fall of Mr. X and his Syndicate. The city has been at peace... until now.
A new crime empire has arisen, corrupting everything good in the city. It is rumoured to be led by Mr. X's own children: the Y Twins.
Former detectives Axel Stone and Blaze Fielding join forces with their old friend's daughter, Cherry Hunter, along with Floyd Iraia, an apprentice of the brilliant Dr. Zan.
Together these four vigilantes stand against the Y Syndicate on the...
Streets of Rage
— Opening sequence
- Main article: Streets of Rage 4/Systems.
Streets of Rage 4 gameplay is based on the mechanics developped for Streets of Rage 2 and adds various tweaks to refresh the formula. The basics are still composed of:
- Standing attack moves, simple punches and kicks that can be stringed together,
- Jumping attack moves, to hit enemies or to recover after being thrown away by an enemy,
- Weapon attack moves, using objects laying on the floor like knives, drinking bottles or lead pipes,
- Item manipulating moves, to pick items up from the floor, catch them in mid-air, drop them, or throw them at enemies,
- Grabbing moves, including vaults over enemies for most characters.
In SoR2, all those moves were assigned to a single action button but, in SoR4, the attack moves and the item manipulating moves are assigned to two different action buttons.
This basic move set is completed by more powerful moves:
- Blitz moves, special moves that don't incur any penalties and only work with bare hands,
- Special moves, draining user's health,
- Star moves, super special moves exclusive to SoR4.
Contrary to SoR3, each character only has a single blitz move but all of them can now perform 3 different special moves, including a new air special move. Floyd can also perform a grabbing special move. Those special moves still drain user's health but health lost this way can now be entirely recovered by hitting enemies as long as no enemies hit the user back in the meantime. The move set is completed by new star moves that can only be performed as long as a player still has stars displayed below his/her health bar. A player always begins with a single star. Stars can be cumulated by picking up star items on the floor.
Moreover, a new combo system makes its apparition:
- Combo hit counting goes on as long as enemies are hit before a given delay.
- Combo contribution to the score is strictly based on the amount of enemy health removed by hitting them.
As such, it is quite easier to perform very long combos in co-op or online modes by alterning hits between players. Hitting continuously already dead enemies does increase the combo hit count but doesn't contribute to the score at all.
As the story is a 3-party narrative actively involving the police and the Y Syndicate, some sections can be easier to get through by letting cops and thugs fight each others.
The gameplay with SoR4 versions of the characters are pretty much based on SoR2 mechanism of limited motions. In every situation, you must place yourself at certain locations beforehand to anticipate dangerous actions from enemies. This is in contrast to SoR3 gameplay where every character can move very quickly to any locations, focusing the gameplay on instincts and reflexes instead of strategies and planifications. The only exceptions to this limited motion rule are Cherry who can dash and SoR4 Adam who can perform small forward dashes.
The game also lets you play the previous incarnations of most characters by retrofitting their old gameplay to the systems in SoR4 where it makes sense, including SoR3 incarnations that still all get their evasive moves, dash and dodge moves.
At the beginning of the game, only the SoR4 incarnations of Axel, Blaze, Cherry and Floyd can be selected. Adam Hunter SoR4 is available after defeating the boss of the fourth level, policewoman Estel Aguirre, the first time in story mode. All the previous incarnations of the classic characters can also be unlocked by increasing the score over several runs, except for Victy/Roo and Ash from SoR3.
* Information in this section is directly taken from the in-game Extra section. In particular, the move names are also taken from the in-game Extra section when available, then completed with information from the manuals of the previous games, with move names from SoR4 always having precedence over possibly conflicting names from previous games. When no names can be found from official sources for a given move, a simple description in italic is given.
Move names available in the poster coming with 3goo's Japanese physical release are also given whenever these come in conflict with in-game information.
* It's to be noted that, in other languages, the move names are simply the English names for languages using Latin characters, or direct transliterations in the languages' writing systems as in Russian and Korean. The only exceptions are in Italian, using translations for Blaze's Vertical Slice and most Cherry's move names, and both Traditional and Simplified Chinese, also using translations or loose adaptations as transliterations in Chinese are not possible without sounding very clumsy in most cases.
Fighting Style: Martial arts
Hobby: Video games
Defensive Special: Dragon Wing
Offensive Special: Dragon Smash
Air Special: Dragon Wing variant (the in-game Extra section lists "Grand Hook": this is actually the name of SoR3 Axel's Blitz 2 Stars)
Star Move: Dragon Burst
However, despite his love for this simpler life, a call from Blaze was all it took for him to return to the city once more.
|Occupation: Dance instructor
Fighting Style: Judo
Defensive Special: Embukyaku 円舞脚
Offensive Special: Kikou Shou 気功掌
Air Special: Vertical Slash (if it hits, it can be performed a second time)
Star Move: Tamashi Age 魂上げ
These days she works as a dance instructor and choreographer for local musicals.
She still has a bad habit of getting into street brawls. With her ear ever to the ground, she picked up on rumblings of a new crime syndicate and immediately started calling in old favors.
Fighting Style: Pogo
Hobby: Repairing motorbikes
Defensive Special: Sound Check (in-game) / Elec Shock (3goo poster)
Offensive / Air Special: Townshend Smash (in-game) / Guitar Strike (3goo poster)
Star Move: Stage Entrance (in-game, English) / Entrance (in-game, Japanese)
While Cherry inherited his brawling talents, she didn't inherit his desire for law and order. Choosing to devote her life to music, she spends most of her nights playing electro progressive rock in some of the most dangerous dives in the city.
Fighting Style: Rakushin Fist
Defensive Special: Thunder Sphere (in-game) / Shock Wave (3goo poster)
Offensive Special: Magnetic Grab (in-game) / Rocket Arm (3goo poster)
Air Special: Thunder Pounce (in-game, English) / Thunder Pound (in-game, Japanese)
Grabbing Special: Power Spark (3goo poster)
Star Move: Rakushin Cannon (Extra section in-game) / Cyber Nova (voice digitisation in-game)
The management at the construction company decided to invest in lawyers rather than helping him with the massive medical bills.
In the end, help came from Dr. Zan, with whom Floyd spent years learning how to build, and use, his new cybernetic arms which Zan had developed.
When Blaze called on Dr. Zan for help, Floyd was the one who answered.
|Occupation: S.I.F. Agent
Fighting Style: Boxing
Hobby: Bonsai trees
Defensive / Air Special: Chopper
Offensive Special: Howl Fang
Star Move: Sword Strike
But he was called on to join the special forces and infiltrate the new organisations gaining control of the city.
Having been in the shadows for too long, he finally decided to finish the fight he started.
|Occupation: Dojo master
Fighting Style: Kempo
Defensive Special: Flaming Circular Kick (English) / Dai Enkyaku 大炎脚 (Japanese)
Offensive Special: Final Crash
Star Move: Rising Kick (English) / Shouten Shuugeki 昇天蹴撃 (Japanese)
The non-playable SoR4 boss can also create Shadow Clones (Kage Bunshin 影分身) of himself.
Unfortunately, many of his disciples left to join the new crime syndicate. What finally made up his mind, however, were the reports of animal cruelty at Y's secret labs.
Now he's just waiting for the moment to strike. And when he does, he'll strike hard.
|Eddie "Skate" Hunter (English) / Sammy Hunter (Japanese)|
Fighting Style: Street
Blitz: Super Dash (English) / Dynamite Head Butt (Japanese)
Defensive Special: Double Spin Kick
Offensive Special: Corkscrew Kick (SoR2) ; Nakijyakuri Punch 泣きじゃくりパンチ (SoR3)
Star Move: Double Spin Kick variant (SoR2) ; Rolling Head Butt variant (SoR3)
|Occupation: Pro wrestler
Fighting Style: Wrestling
Blitz: Power Slide (English) / Sliding Scissors (Japanese)
Defensive Special: Spinning Knuckle Bomb (English, it's simply named "Knuckle Bomb" in SoR2) / Bomber Knuckle (Japanese)
Offensive Special: Thunder Tackle
Star Move: Spinning Knuckle Bomb variant
|Dr. Gilbert Zan|
Fighting Style: Science
Blitz: Mach Dash (English) / Vernier Tackle (Japanese)
Defensive Special: Electric Body (English) / Power Spike (Japanese)
Offensive Special: Electric Reach (English) / Thunder Bolt (Japanese)
Star Move: a combo of Electric Body and Mach Booster
* All the English names of Zan's moves are creation of SoR4 as both the North American and European manuals of SoR3 didn't name any moves.
After the Syndicate betrayed him, he was forced to become a cyborg. He then contacted Blaze Fielding to get payback.
Now he helps people and tries to undo what he did while in the Syndicate's employ. In particular, he built Floyd's arms.
By default, the 2 health items are set to roasted chickens and apples but they can be separately changed to any other equivalent food items.
|Health items, Streets of Rage style|
|Roasted Chicken: full health refill, +1000 Points at full health.|
Apple: small health refill, +300 Points at full health.
|Health items, Japanese style|
|Big bowl of Ramen: full health refill, +1000 Points at full health.|
Onigiri: small health refill, +300 Points at full health.
|Health items, French style|
|Roast Beef (Rosbif in French): full health refill, +1000 Points at full health.|
Croissant: small health refill, +300 Points at full health.
|Health items, Quebec style|
|Poutine: full health refill, +1000 Points at full health.|
Montreal Bagels: small health refill, +300 Points at full health.
|Health items, Fast-food style|
|Burger & French Fries: full health refill, +1000 Points at full health.|
Pizza Slice: small health refill, +300 Points at full health.
|Health items, Vegeterian style|
|Big bowl of Salad: full health refill, +1000 Points at full health.|
Tofu: small health refill, +300 Points at full health.
|+1 run of the Star move|
The 30 kinds of weapons in SoR4 are classified following 4 different types (melee, non-lethal, less-lethal and projectile) associated with 3 different ranges (short, mid-range and long):
- Projectile weapons always get automatically thrown at enemies, with long-range projectiles going through the whole screen,
- The 3 other kinds of weapons remain in hands when attacking but have different effects when trying to perform a Blitz:
- SoR4 incarnations can perform 2 types of thrusts with melee weapons, depending on their ranges,
- SoR3 incarnations can perform 2 types of bladed Blitzes with melee and less-lethal weapons, again depending on their ranges.
|Barbon's Bike Frame||Melee||Long|
|Golden Chicken Sculpture||Projectile||Long|
As any beat'em up, SoR4 lore contains several basic types of enemies then declined over several variations.
|Galsia is a common street punk, one of the few recurring enemies from the first SoR. Pretty harmless alone, he excels in groups or with short-range weapons like knives.
The variants B.T., Joseph, Jonathan, Garam and Brash behave the same way.
|Donovan is a skinhead wearing sunglasses, recurring since SoR2. He has a powerful anti-air uppercut and specialises in long-range weapons like pipes.
The variants Altet, Gudden and Z behave the same way.
|Another recurring enemy since the first Streets of Rage. His patterns didn't change since: this mohawk punk always tries to slide attack or throw players in the air. Y. Signal stands for Yellow Signal after his coat colour.
The variants G. Signal (green), R. Signal (red) and D. Signal (cyan? This should be C. instead of D.) behave the same way.
|Koobo is a cyborg with mechanic legs wearing a skull mask. With his kinetic abilities, he can throw all the weapons on stage at you and strike by slamming the floor after high jumps.
The variants Baabo behaves the same way.
|Dylan is a shirtless hoodlum, specialised in straight kicks and headbutt. He keeps his hands in his pockets all the time.
The variants Kevin, Francis and Brandon behave the same way but they can also perform a series of three kicks reaching you from far away.
|Feroccio is the common police officer that usually slugs you to the gut.
The variants Dick and Lou behave the same way but they will also try to hold you, waiting for other colleagues to come finish you.
The variant Barney always shows with a taser to stun you. When unarmed, getting his taser back comes first.
|Murphy is a riot officer, equipped with an energy shield and a nightstick. Taking down his shield is mandatory before being able to beat him down.
The variants Dunphy and Sand behave the same way whereas Shadow only uses shurikens to strike you.
|Big Ben is this annoying capped fatty guy, coming after you with a grin and by breathing fire since SoR2 or even SoR if we consider him being a demoted Bongo, the boss from SoR round 4.
The variant Gourmand comes at you by performing a body press.
The variants Anry and Heart come at you with rolling attacks.
|Garnet is a female punk wearing a bra and jean shorts, around since SoR3 and hassling you with high jumps and drop kicks.
The variants Ruby, Diamond, Pyrop and Saphyr behave the same way.
|Sugar is a large female biker that can headbutt you from afar and grab you ending with a piledriver from up close.
The variants Honey, Caramel and Candy have a longer reach.
|Raven is a Muay Thai fighter, back from SoR2, that only uses large kicks and his knees to attack. He only uses his arms to guard against your attacks.
The variants Condor, Pheasant and Sparrow behave pretty much the same way.
|Goro is a bold karateka that prepares most of his dashing punches with specific stances, letting you know when he will attack. During those stances, only powerful or grappling moves can stop him from full execution.
The variant Dokuja can also strike you with a flurry of punches.
|Victoria is a female punk wearing a spiked leather jacket and sunglasses. She throws beakers at you containing chemicals making fire after the beaker gets broken.
The variant Elizabeth throws beakers containing acid, Margaret throws grenades instead, and Anne throws beakers with electric effects.
|Gold is a bold hitman wearing a two piece suit and sunglasses. He fires at you with his gun from afar but can still punch or grapple you from up close.
The variants Silver, Bronze and Iron behave the same way.
|Queen wears a dominatrix leather suit and hits you with her whip. She's a variant of Nora, the boss of round 3.
The variants Belle and Stiletto behave the same way.
Levels & Soundtrack
SoR4 is composed of 12 rounds instead of the usual 8 rounds of the original MD trilogy.
Four hidden retro stages can only be accessed by hitting arcade cabinets with tasers. This mechanism to electrocute a machine to get unexpected effects is inspired by various fictions from the 90's that often used power surges applied to a machine as a plot device e.g. the manga Video Girl Ai, the TV series Weird Science or Jackie Chan's movie City Hunter.
The backgrounds are filled with nods to the popular culture, to the previous games in the series or to the game's development team:
- The Pine Pot café in round 1 is the same café found in round 1 of the first SoR,
- A poster of Ash, the controversial mini-boss in Bare Knuckle III, can be found hanging inside the ship's main cabin at the end of round 3.
- The ball Wilson from the movie Cast Away starring Tom Hanks can be found in the rubble at the end of round 4.
- In the sewers of round 5, there are several tags representing:
- The 4 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Splinter before their transformation,
- One of the dragons from the logo of the videogame Double Dragon,
- Marvel comics' Hydra logo,
- Toad as a simple mushroom and some Super Mario Bros pipes,
- The names from people of the development studios appear like 2RIVIERE for Olivier Derivière, C.LAG for Cyrille Lagarigue, C.IMBERT for Cyrille Imbert,
- Some rings from Sonic the Hedgehog with Sonic himself performing his signature rolling attack,
- Joe Musashi from Shinobi III.
- At the bar of round 5, Victy / Roo is standing there cleaning a glass,
- In the art gallery of round 8, there are several art pieces referencing:
- The crimson beherit from the manga Berserk,
- A purple sculpture referencing a real piece of art, McCarthy's green giant butt plug erected in 2014 in Paris, France, meant to be an abstract Christmas tree,
- A portrait of Victy / Roo in Picasso style.
- The mural right before the lift leading to Max in round 9 is a stylised rendition of the intro in SoR2,
- Some members of the public around the battle ring at the end of round 9 are recognisable:
- Julian Nguyen You from LizardCube on the left of the ring,
- From left to right, Alban Ligouzat, Cyrille Imbert, Pierre-Olivier Petillot and Christian Cortez, people at Dotemu, on the left of the Y twins,
- Laura Peitavi and Florian Harry, other people at Dotemu, on the right of the Y twins,
- The singer Childish Gambino further on the right,
- From top to bottom, Beausoleil Samson-Guillemette, Cyrille Lagarigue and Jordi Asensio, people of Guard Crush Games, on the right of the ring.
- The stained glass in the castle of round 12 represents the androids P-Robot and Particle of SoR3, and Mr X as he was at the end of SoR2, sitting before the final fight.
- The very last fight against the Y twins happens on a place in the style of ancient Rome architecture, with a central panel depicting Mr X holding his Tommy gun, a Thompson M1928 submachine gun fed by a drum magazine.
*The tracks given below are directly taken from the game credits available in-game, excepts for those with a reference next to them.
"Main Theme", "Character Select Theme" by Yuzo Koshiro
"Staff Roll Theme", "It's Extra" by Motohiro Kawashima
|Stage 1: The Streets|
|Back to the streets of Wood Oak City, the vigilantes make their way until bumping onto Diva, the boss of Round 1, The Streets.
"The Streets", "Chill or Don't" by Olivier Derivière
"Overflow" by Groundislava
|Stage 2: Police Precinct|
|Diva hinted at somebody in Chinatown that can help you. But the cops arrested everybody. It's time to break out from jail but the commissioner, the boss of Round 2, Police Precinct, won't let you out without resistence. It's a matter of police pride.
"Call The Cops", "Funky HQ" by Olivier Derivière
"The Commissioner" by XL Middleton
|Stage 3: Cargo Ship|
|The events at the police station didn't go unnoticed. Mr Y made a proposition that you promptly refused. He thus simply expedited the problem by retaliating with heavy guns. You escaped by diving into the bay. Now, you must go back to dry land using a cargo. Nora returns from SoR and gets promoted as the boss of Round 3, Cargo Ship.
"The Storm Boat" by Olivier Derivière
"Nora" by Keiji Yamagishi
|Stage 4: Old Pier|
|The cargo crashed into an old pier. You still try to reach Chinatown but officer Estel Aguirre is the boss of Round 4, Old Pier, and will make you understand why you don't go against the police without a lawyer...
"Estel Round 1" by Harumi Fujita
|Stage 5: Underground|
|Estel didn't listen to your claims so she called more backups. The situation seemed desperate until an agent from the Special Investigation Forces, Adam Hunter, came to delay the police forces enough so that you could escape through the sewers. Your footsteps will get you to a bar, managed by an old acquaintance: Barbon returns from SoR2 and is the boss of Round 5, Underground. This time, his physical appearence is a throwback to the famous singer of the musical group Queens, Freddy Mercury.
"On Fire" by Olivier Derivière
"Barbon" by Motohiro Kawashima
|Stage 6: Chinatown|
|You kindly thanked Barbon's welcome party by borrowing one of his motorbike and finally reached Chinatown. Diva's hint will make you come accross Shiva again after the events of SoR2 and SoR3, the boss of Round 6, Chinatown.
"Shiva" by Yoko Shimomura
|Stage 7: Skytrain|
|Shiva didn't associate with the Y twins but he laid down their plans to control people's minds through sound waves, hence the huge loudspeakers. The vigilantes now obviously want to halt those plans and are on their way to the Y tower. However, Estel and the commissioner both challenge the vigilantes again and are the bosses of Round 7, Skytrain. Defeating Estel is enough to win the round.
"Aphex Train" by Olivier Derivière
"Estel: Round 2" by Harumi Fujita
|Stage 8: Art Gallery|
|This time, Estel understood what's brewing within the city directly from Mr Y: he personally fired a bazooka towards the train to finish the vigilantes off despite the commuters and the cops. The ensuing explosion let them around the corner of an art gallery controlled by the Syndicate. Beyo and Riha, the bosses of Round 8, Art Gallery, are probably the sisters of Diva. While Diva attacks you with an electrified snake, Beyo can create toxic puddles and Riha hits you with a flamethrower snake. Beyo and Riha are named after the singers Beyoncé and Rihanna.
"An Exhibition" by Olivier Derivière
"Double Divas" by Motohiro Kawashima
|Stage 9: Y Tower|
|This art gallery was next to the Y Tower. Going the tower up will lead you to Max from SoR2 as the unexpected boss of Round 9, Y Tower. He's controlled by the Syndicate through mind-controlling music. Snap him out of it by taking him down.
"Maximum" by Scattle
|Stage 10: To The Concert|
|After freeing Max from the Syndicate control, the Y twins tried to subdue all the heroes with the mind-controlling devices at hand. This plan failed thanks to the help of Estel. The twins hence fled to the concert hall, probably to use tonight's DJ K-Washi concert as a mean to broadcast their music. DJ K-Washi is the boss of Round 10, To The Concert. K-Washi is a throwback to Motohiro Kawashima.
"25 Years Ago" by Olivier Derivière
"DJ Kwashi" by Motohiro Kawashima
|Stage 11: Airplane|
|The concert has been successfully cancelled. Now, it's time to definitely stop the Y twins. The pursuit goes on at the airport. Mr Y is the boss of Round 11, Airplane.
"Mr. Y" by Yuzo Koshiro
|Stage 12: Y Island|
|The plane was a mean for the twins to get back to their home: Round 12, Y Island. You must first fight Ms Y alone. Then the twins will team up to finish you off with a giant mech.
"Ti Un Fou" by Olivier Derivière
"Mrs. Y" by Yuzo Koshiro
"Next Of Kin Showdown" by Das Mörtal
- Main article: Streets of Rage 4/Development.
After the critical success of the remake of Wonder Boy III: The Dragon's Trap by Lizardcube in 2017, Lizardcube and Dotemu asked Sega Japan to trust them with another IP from the Mega Drive era, in particularly the revival of Streets of Rage. The deal concluded successfully with the production starting early 2018 for two years and half. As they didn't have any experience in doing beat-em-up games, Lizardcube on art direction joined forces again with Dotemu (Windjammers 2), this time for game design and production and not just digital publication, and with Guard Crush Games to provide an improved version of their engine used in their 2009 game, Streets of Fury, and its extended edition in 2015.
It looks like Jordi Asensio, co-founder of Guard Crush Games, was instrumental into the actual inception of this project. Before getting involved with Dotemu, he tried to contact Yuzo Koshiro 古代 祐三 to kickstart the project and then talked about this idea to people at Lizardcube at an indie event. With those contacts, he realised that the desire to produce the game was there from both parties. After a while, he got engaged at Dotemu to work on Windjammers 2 and got the word from Omar Cornut, co-founder of Lizardcube, that the negociations with Sega on a new Streets of Rage were ongoing and about to be settled. Asensio then involved his old teammates at Guard Crush Games to present a proof of concept based on their beat'em up engine, which obviously got the approval from Lizardcube and Dotemu. The deal finally got settled with Sega Japan after workshops based on demonstrations using the Guard Crush Engine.
Artistic direction was once again led by Ben Fiquet, CEO of Lizardcube, along with Julian Nguyen You as the background artist. They decided to set the story of the new game 10 years after the last episode because the fans have grown up since and the whole thing with young, fiery kids in the streets wasn't working any longer with the way the fans are now. This also gave more leeways to re-imagining the old characters, which have all been hand-drawn frame per frame as 2D art, a very time-consuming process requiring about 1,000 frames for each playable character and 300 to 400 frames for each enemy. One of the new characters, policewoman Estel, has been inspired by a real policewoman that did a strong impression on Ben Fiquet when she broke into his building once for an operation she was in charge, along 2 ripped male partners. Some backgrounds are inspired by real places:
- The encounter with the first boss Diva is set at a place looking like the Viaduc des Arts, in the 12th arrondissement of Paris, France.
- The backyard where we meet the fifth boss Barbon seems to be set next to the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, USA.
- The stage map displays a Manhattan look-alike island.
For the sound aspects, the studios contracted early with Olivier Derivière, who quickly convinced the development teams to integrate an adaptive soundtrack, similarly to his work on several other video games (A Plague Tale : Innocence, Assassin's Creed IV : Black Flag, Dying Light 2). He mostly tried to do a continuation of the musical trend impulsed by the original SoR trilogy by incorporating the 25 years of club music between 1995 and 2020 into Streets of Rage 4, which also meant giving some dubstep colouring to the game soundtrack due to its strong popularity during the 2000's and early 2010's despite being largely out of fashion by 2020. It could also be because the sound work of Yuzo Koshiro on the original SoR trilogy heavily influenced some artists at the origin of the dubstep musical trend. The cinematic tracks were in the hands of another French composer, Henri-Pierre Pellegrin a.k.a. H-Pi (TrackMania, Pro Cycling Manager 2014, Styx: Master of Shadows). The studios first reached out and met Yuzo Koshiro and Motohiro Kawashima 川島 基宏 the day after their concert Diggin' In The Carts in Paris on 27 September 2018, and successfully contracted for their participation in the game soundtrack through the company Brave Wave Productions after they both could try a demo of the game in June 2019 at BitSummit in Kyoto, an indie game showcase in Japan. Brave Wave Productions also gave the opportunity to have other legendary Japanese guests like Yoko Shimomura 下村 陽子 from Street Fighter II, Kingdom Hearts or Final Fantasy XV fame, Keiji Yamagishi 山岸 継司, well known for Ninja Gaiden, Tecmo Bowl, and Captain Tsubasa Vol. I & II, and Harumi Fujita 藤田 晴美 who worked on Ghosts 'n Goblins, Strider and Final Fight. This all-star sound team is completed by other guests from North America, contracted through the company Mutant Ninja Records: David Scatliffe a.k.a. Scattle (Hotline Miami 1 & 2, Furi, Super Meat Boy - console versions), Matthew T. Hudgins a.k.a. XL Middleton, Cristóbal Cortes a.k.a. Das Mörtal (Hotline Miami 2) and Jasper Patterson a.k.a. Groundislava (several VGM remixes).
With this many artists contributing to the game score, specific assignments were decided early to avoid having musical tracks completely out of tune with each others. So, Derivière was the main composer creating tracks for the different levels with each guest composing the track for a particular boss, giving to bosses different personalities and unique moments. But Koshiro's creations remain the link between all the parts:
- Players are welcomed in the game with a musical introduction and menu tracks by Koshiro,
- The first level starts with a track by Koshiro, leading to the first track by Derivière,
- Each level ends with a track by Koshiro,
- The game ends with compositions by Koshiro.
In a more subtle way, Kawashima's tunes also pervade the whole game.
The game also offers an option to use the classic soundtrack to replace the modern adaptative soundtrack. However, the 3 studios only got the rights on the soundtracks of Mega Drive SoR2 and Game Gear SoR, leading to a bit erratic experience.
Several ideas have been scrapped during the development process:
- They tried to include cooperation moves like in SoR and SoR3 but they ended removing them because it was causing too many problems, especially when playing in co-op with 3 or 4 players.
- They wanted to include a level riding a motorcycle between the levels Underground and Chinatown but doing such a stage would have required to develop specific features and spend several weeks / months of development for a very short experience in the game. So, they decided to concentrate on the truly important aspects of the game.
- They didn't bring Skate back into the story because an adult Skate would be too close to Adam in terms of gameplay. As Adam was an obvious must-have in the game, they left Skate out, and more so with Cherry to balance the roaster.
- They had planned a cameo for Skate but they didn't want to commit to a character design without thinking of his gameplay potential as they knew that people would want to play him. So, this is the second reason for leaving him out this time.
- They didn't make 4 player online co-op because it would have delayed the game too much, especially as it was a simultaneous multi-platform release. Also, this would have made matchmaking more complex. But on PC, 4 player online co-op is still possible by using Steam's Remote Play.
The first announcement of the game was made on Dotemu and Lizardcube's Twitter accounts on 27 August 2018, along with a trailer already showing some sequences of the game at its early stage. The reception from the retro gaming public was quite lukewarm at the time, negatively comparing the artistic direction to popular Flash games during the 2000's. The uncertainty at the time of whether Yuzo Koshiro and Motohiro Kawashima would return as composers on the game was also quite unappealing to long time fans of the franchise. But various fan communities sent a lot of encouragements and suggestions instead of simply criticising severely the initiative.
With trailers being regularly released and groundbreaking announcements like the 4-player co-op mode or the possibility to play the game using old incarnations of the classic characters, the public and critics alike welcomed the game quite warmly after its digital release on 30 April 2020, making it quite a surprising success by hitting more than 1.5m downloads by 7 September 2020. This has been followed by a worldwide physical release between 24 and 30 July 2020, published by 3goo in Japan, H2 Interactive in Asia, and Merge Games in Europe and the USA. Limited Run Games also released their own regular and classic editions of the game late August 2020. Their limited edition with a figure of both Axel and Blaze, including the brawler bundle with a triple vinyl soundtrack, will be made available during the last quarter of 2020.
The huge success of Limited Run Games' physical editions pre-ordering campaign between 20 March and 10 May 2020, the first announced in the wild, probably sealed the publication rights to other physical publishers worldwide. Most physical releases came with some goodies:
- Merge Games regular editions all have at least a reversible cover, a keyring and an art booklet,
- Merge Games' Signature edition also comes with 5 enamel pins, a numbered collector’s certificate, Axel's blue bandana and a double CD OST,
- 3goo special edition comes with a reversible cover, a single CD soundtrack and a poster having its back side showing the complete command list for the 4 characters available during the first run of the game à la Bare Knuckle III,
- H2 Interactive published physical editions at least in Korea, Hong Kong and Taiwan with a reversible cover and a single CD soundtrack,
- Limited Run Games' regular edition has a reversible cover and an instruction manual,
- Limited Run Games' classic edition also comes with a SteelBook case and a Genesis clam shell case,
- Limited Run Games' limited edition adds to these a CD soundtrack, a chicken stress ball, a 7" figure of Axel and Blaze, a commemorative Genesis metal cartridge, an artbook and a 18 x 24 inches poster.
As non-US customers weren't made aware during Limited Run Games pre-order campaign that other publishers would make local physical releases, a big wave of unhappy fans made their voice heard. Dotemu quickly apologised for the mishandling of the situation and offered a free Steam key for people who purchased the limited edition and all LRG orders came with an additional soundtrack CD including an exclusive remix from Tee Lopes (Sonic Mania, Team Sonic Racing).
Moreover, as the limited edition of LRG hasn't been officially announced until 29 April 2020, LRG exceptionally bent their usual policy by allowing the cancellation of previous SoR4 pre-orders for those who secured a copy of the limited edition. Although not officially announced, they also accepted pre-order cancellations for some non-US residents, most likely within the usual leniency of their preorder non-cancellation rule.
- Executive Producer: Cyrille Imbert (Dotemu)
- Ben Fiquet: Art Director, Original Concepts, Character Art and Animation, Narrative Director, Story, Cinematics, Creative Designer
- Jordi Asensio: Lead Game Designer, Level Design
- Cyrille Lagarigue: Technical Director, Main Programmer, Game Design, Level Design
- Beausoleil Samson-Guillemette: Programmer, UI Integration, Background Effects, Additional Writing
- Julian You: Background Supervisor, Art Designer, Cutscenes
- Head of Production: Christian Cortez (Dotemu)
- Associate Producers: Ben Fiquet (Lizardcube), Cyrille Lagarigue (Guard Crush Games), Alban Ligouzat (Dotemu)
- Assistant Animators: Bruno Cohen (Lizardcube), Brice Maleo (Lizardcube)
- Additional Level Design: Florian Harry (Dotemu)
- Additional Programming: Olivier Veneri (Moshing Cat Studio)
- Music Supervisor: Cyrille Imbert (Dotemu)
- AMEO Production: Olivier Derivière (Composer and Producer), Marion Derivière (Agent)
- Japanese Composer Tracks - Produced by Brave Wave Productions: Yuzo Koshiro (Ancient Corp.), Motohiro Kawashima, Harumi Fujita, Yoko Shimomura (Midiplex), Keiji Yamashigi (Kajiya Music)
- Brave Wave Sound Producer & Coordinator: Alexander Aniel
- Brave Wave Executive Producer: Mohammed Taher
- West Composer Tracks - Produced by Mutant Ninja: Das Mörtal, Groundislava, Scattle, XL Middleton
- Mutant Ninja Music Advisors & West Artist Coordinators: Tarafa Sahloul, Rémy Dahi
- Music Editor Assistant: Maxime Gautier
- Tenor Saxophone: Jordi Asensio
- Guitares: Francois Masciopinto
- Cinematic Tracks: Henri-Pierre Pellegrin (Composer/Producer)
- Sound Designer: Swann Menage
- Production: Philippe Catrice (Voxmade), Camille Oesch
- Axel: Joe Bianco, Olivier Raynal
- Blaze: Hitomi Farrel, Barbara Weber-Boustani
- Cherry: Quinn Lafontaine
- Floyd: Bruce Sherfield
- Adam: Avant Strangel
- Shiva: Olivier Raynal
- Estel: Barbara Weber-Boustani
- Diva: Célia Asensio
- Barbon: Diego Asensio
- Enemies: Célia Asensio, Diego Asensio, Jordi Asensio, Diane Quenet, Thomas Hajdukowicz, Xavier Eutrope, Camille Jacques, Swann Menage, Alice Noiret, Léa Grenet, Pierre Bertinet, Elodie De Mesquita, Caroline Zhang
- Story By: Ben Fiquet
- Additional Storywriter: Matthew Ritter
- Cinematics: Ben Fiquet (Lizardcube), Swann Menage (SFX), Henri-Pierre Pellegrin (Music), Julian You (Lizardcube)
- Original Teaser Trailer: Boddy Prod
- Head of QA: Pierre-Olivier Petillot
- Lead Tester: Laura Peitavi
- Testers: Manon Botineau, Catherine Dorojko-Mojaisky, Florian Harry, Grégoire Imbert, Grégory Le Bris, Corentin "Deity" Pauvrasseau
- External QA Company: Huwiz Solutions
- Testers - Huwiz: Alexander Kofira, Alexandre Hayeur, Bastien-Jay Ouellet, Carolljo Maher, Christopher Sauvé, David Ringuet, Éliane Dumesnil, Frédérik Dupras, Gabriel Levac, Guillaume Alarie, Guillaume Delmé, Guillaume Laneel, Jason Smith Murk, Jeremie Desjardins, Jimmy-Lee Daneault, Laura Cousillas, Léandre Lavoie-Henry, Louis St-Denis, Marc-Antoine Crépeau, Marc-Olivier Bélisle, Maryse Melançon, Maude Touchette, Maxime Lecompte, Maxime Sauvé, Melissa Dagenais, Michaël Coulombe, Mylène Roffi, Nicolas Lefebvre, Nicolas Parr, Normand Chartier-Prévost, Olivier Gauthier Landry, Philippe Bernier, Samuel Legris, Samuel Sirard-Robert, Simon Jobin Richer
- Localisation Manager: Alban Ligouzat
- European Localisation: LevelUp Translation
- General Manager: Damien Yoccoz
- English: John Marston
- French: Johann Audouin
- Italian: Federica Masante
- German: Tilman Löffler
- Spanish: Julia Gara Lecuona Allende
- Russian: Dmitriy Usov
- Brazilian Portuguese: Ana Cristofaro
- Japanese Localization: Ryu Ito (Kakehashi Games)
- Localisation QA: MoGi Group
- Blitzworks: Tony Cabello, Jorge Cabezas, Miguel Angel Horna, Javier Moya, Javier Campo, Mario Gonzalez
- Lollipop Robot: Óscar Navalón, Francesc Sánchez, Alejandro Romero, David Arona, Vicent Ortells, Daniel Segarra, Iván de Rosa, Laura Chordà
- Seaven Studio: Pascal Feard, Olivier Penot, Hervé Denoyelle, Romain Soual, Sylvain Dupont
- CEO: Cyrille Imbert
- Office Manager: Thibaut Camus
- Business Development: Jules Hirtzig
- Head of Marketing: Arnaud de Sousa
- Communication Manager: Jessica Richard
- Community Manager: Leslie Rugard
- Creative Director: Stephane Perez
- Product Manager: Loïc Hao Yin Tam
- North America - Tinsley PR: Stephanie Tinsley Williams, Thomas Schulenberg
- Europe - Cosmocover: Salima Bessahraoui, Pierre Louis Barbier, John Tyrrell, Nyssa Woznicki, Maxence Jacquier, Matej Samide, Carlos Gurpegui, Fabian Doehla, Frimousse
- United Kingdom - Indogo Pearl: Robbie Paterson, Anita Wong, Luke Bennett
- Japan - Kakehashi Games: Zach Huntley
- Brazil - Masamune: Renato Almeida, Rodrigo Brasiliense, Sandra Akemi Tsukamoto, Luciano Andrade
- Omar Cornut, Ibrahim Bhatti, Hugo Ferretto, Mike Futter, Francis Imbert, Joëlle Imbert, Natalie Laudon, Camille Oesch, Jean-Pierre Pasche, Danny Russell, Clelia Santi, Alexander Sliwinski, Seaven Studio, Blitworks
- Special Consulting Fans: Shamsiddin Muhammad Jr [Mr. Din], Anthopants
- Production Babies: Anoul Asensio, Robin Fiquet Oesch
- SEGA Development Team: Daisuke Sato, Yukinobu Arikawa, Daiki Tsuchimoto, Kouta Satoh, Sumito Nakai, Yosuke Okunari
- Licensing: Lai Tse Kin
- Guard Crush Engine by Guard Crush Games Inc.
- WWise by Audiokinetic
- Dear ImGui library by Omar Cornut (MIT License)
- MonoGame framework by Tom Spilman and Steve Williams (Ms-PL License)
- FNA by Ethan Lee (MS-PL License)
- Protocol Buffers .NET technology by Marc Gravell (Apache 2.0 License)
- Core RT (MIT License)
- Facepunch Steamworks API by Facepunch Studios LTD (MIT License)
- HarfBuzz (Old MIT License)
- FreeType (FreeType License)
- Fonts: Noto Sans (SIL 1.1 License), Oswald (SIL 1.1 License)
- Main article: Streets of Rage 4/Magazine articles.
PlayStation 4 version
|PlayStation 4, JP (Special Edition)|
|PlayStation 4, US|
|PlayStation 4, US (Classic Edition)|
|PlayStation 4, US (Limited Edition)|
|PlayStation 4, US (Brawler Bundle)|
|PlayStation 4, UK|
|PlayStation 4, UK (Signature Edition)|
|PlayStation 4, FR|
|PlayStation 4, FR (Signature Edition)|
Nintendo Switch version
|Switch, JP (Special Edition)|
|Switch, US (Classic Edition)|
|Switch, US (Limited Edition)|
|Switch, US (Brawler Bundle)|
|Switch, UK (Signature Edition)|
|Switch, FR (Signature Edition)|
Xbox One version
|Xbox One, UK|
|Xbox One, UK (Signature Edition)|
|Xbox One, FR|
|Xbox One, FR (Signature Edition)|
- Official website
- Streets of Rage 4 on LimitedRunGames.com
- Streets of Rage 4 on 3goo.co.jp
- Streets of Rage 4 on H2Interactive.co.kr
- Streets of Rage 4 on MergeGames.com
- Streets of Rage 4 on Steam
- Streets of Rage 4 on PlayStation.com: JP, US
- Streets of Rage 4 on PlayStation Store: US, UK, AU
- Streets of Rage 4 on Xbox Store: JP, US, UK, AU, KR
- Nintendo catalogue pages: JP, US, UK, AU, HK
- Streets of Rage 4 on GOG.com
- Streets of Rage 4 on HumbleBundle.com
- Streets of Rage 4 on H2 DirectG.net KR
- https://www.playstation.com/en-us/games/streets-of-rage-4-ps4/ (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 18:56)
- PlayStation Store (en-us; UP1482-CUSA16237_00-00STREETSOFRAGE4) (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 18:59)
- PlayStation Store (en-gb; EP1470-CUSA16221_00-00STREETSOFRAGE4) (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 19:02)
- PlayStation Store (fr-fr; EP1470-CUSA16221_00-00STREETSOFRAGE4) (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 19:03)
- PlayStation Store (en-au; EP1470-CUSA16221_00-00STREETSOFRAGE4) (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 19:05)
- http://www.3goo.co.jp/bareknuckle4/ (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-02 15:48)
- https://signatureeditiongames.com/products/northgard-standard-edition-ps4?variant=14879014027299 (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-07 16:09)
- https://signatureeditiongames.com/products/streets-of-rage-4-signature-edition-ps4?variant=31682138177600 (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-07 16:13)
- https://www.shop-justforgames.com/streets-of-rage-c112x792863 (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-07 18:50)
- https://limitedrungames.com/collections/streets-of-rage-4/products/limited-run-332-streets-of-rage-4-ps4 (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-14 18:11)
- https://limitedrungames.com/collections/streets-of-rage-4/products/limited-run-332-streets-of-rage-4-classic-edition-ps4 (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-14 18:25)
- https://limitedrungames.com/collections/streets-of-rage-4/products/limited-run-332-streets-of-rage-4-limited-edition-ps4 (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-01 17:49)
- https://limitedrungames.com/collections/streets-of-rage-4/products/streets-of-rage-brawler-bundle-ps4 (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-01 17:50)
- https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/p/streets-of-rage-4/9n7h54kncb9n?rtc=1&activetab=pivot:overviewtab (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 19:43)
- https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/p/streets-of-rage-4/9n7h54kncb9n?rtc=1&activetab=pivot:overviewtab (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 19:41)
- https://www.microsoft.com/en-au/p/streets-of-rage-4/9n7h54kncb9n?rtc=1&activetab=pivot:overviewtab (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 19:44)
- https://www.microsoft.com/fr-fr/p/streets-of-rage-4/9n7h54kncb9n?rtc=1&activetab=pivot:overviewtab (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 19:45)
- https://www.microsoft.com/ko-kr/p/streets-of-rage-4/9n7h54kncb9n?rtc=2&activetab=pivot:overviewtab (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 19:46)
- https://www.microsoft.com/ja-jp/p/streets-of-rage-4/9n7h54kncb9n?rtc=2&activetab=pivot:overviewtab (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 19:48)
- https://signatureeditiongames.com/products/streets-of-rage-4-standard-edition-xbox-one?variant=31682193653824 (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-07 16:16)
- https://signatureeditiongames.com/products/streets-of-rage-4-signature-edition-xbox-one?variant=31682148728896 (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-07 16:19)
- https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/streets-of-rage-4-switch/ (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 20:01)
- https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/streets-of-rage-4-switch/ (archive.today)
- https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Games/Nintendo-Switch-download-software/Streets-of-Rage-4-1695263.html (archive.today)
- https://www.nintendo.fr/Jeux/Jeux-a-telecharger-sur-Nintendo-Switch/Streets-of-Rage-4-1695263.html (archive.today)
- https://www.nintendo.de/Spiele/Nintendo-Switch-Download-Software/Streets-of-Rage-4-1695263.html (archive.today)
- https://ec.nintendo.com/AU/en/titles/70010000026149 (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 20:19)
- https://ec.nintendo.com/AU/en/titles/70010000026149 (archive.today)
- https://ec.nintendo.com/JP/ja/titles/70010000029104 (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 20:26)
- https://ec.nintendo.com/JP/ja/titles/70010000029104 (archive.today)
- https://store.nintendo.com.hk/70010000028293 (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 20:32)
- https://signatureeditiongames.com/products/streets-of-rage-4-standard-edition-switch?variant=31682156167232 (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-07 16:22)
- https://signatureeditiongames.com/products/streets-of-rage-4-signature-edition-switch?variant=31682145419328 (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-07 16:25)
- https://limitedrungames.com/collections/streets-of-rage-4/products/switch-limited-run-65-streets-of-rage-4 (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-14 18:49)
- https://limitedrungames.com/collections/streets-of-rage-4/products/switch-limited-run-65-streets-of-rage-4-classic-edition (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-14 19:05)
- https://limitedrungames.com/collections/streets-of-rage-4/products/switch-limited-run-65-streets-of-rage-4-limited-edition (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-01 17:45)
- https://limitedrungames.com/collections/streets-of-rage-4/products/streets-of-rage-brawler-bundle-switch (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-01 17:46)
- https://store.steampowered.com/app/985890/Streets_of_Rage_4/ (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 19:37)
- https://store.steampowered.com/app/985890/Streets_of_Rage_4/?cc=uk (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 21:09)
- https://store.steampowered.com/app/985890/Streets_of_Rage_4/?cc=fr (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 21:16)
- https://store.steampowered.com/app/985890/Streets_of_Rage_4/?cc=au (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 21:22)
- https://www.gog.com/index.php/game/streets_of_rage_4%2520 (Wayback Machine: 2020-04-30 23:07)
- https://signatureeditiongames.com/products/streets-of-rage-4-standard-edition-pc?variant=31728901947456 (Wayback Machine: 2020-05-07 16:32)
|Streets of Rage 4|
|Games in the Streets of Rage Series|
|Streets of Rage (3D) (1991) | Streets of Rage 2 (3D) (1992) | Streets of Rage 3 (1994) | Streets of Rage 4 (2020)|
|Streets of Rage (LCD) (1993) | Bare Knuckle Mobile (2010) | Sega Vintage Collection: Streets of Rage (2012)|
|Streets Of Kamurocho (2020) | Fighting Force (unreleased) | Streets of Rage 4 (Dreamcast) (unreleased)|
|Bare Knuckle (1991) | Streets of Rage 2 Original Soundtrack (1993/2000) | Bare Knuckle III (1994) | Bare Knuckle Original Soundtrack (2012) | Streets of Rage (2015) | Streets of Rage 2 (2016) | Streets of Rage 3 (2018)|
|Streets of Rage: Bad City Fighters (1994)|
|Other||List of Streets of Rage merchandise|