Just for kicks.
Media hour at PAX East is for many things. It’s for early appointments to see games before the chaos of a convention begins and it’s a chance to play games without lines. I didn’t have a lot of time before my first appointment of the day so, with the little time I did have, I decided to finally check out Anger Foot. At the time of writing, you can also check it out via the demo on Steam.
Published by Devolver Digital and developed by Free Lives (the team behind games like Broforce and Genital Jousting) Anger Foot is a first-person, action arcade-style title that has you kicking your way through the city’s constant onslaught of gangsters. Kicking is a means of fighting and traversal but there are guns too so you’ll often find yourself kicking with the left foot and shooting with your right hand.
The art direction exudes edgy cartoon meets 90s/early 2000s rock with its graffitied walls and outlandish posters. The enemy design includes an alligator in a tracksuit wielding a metal pipe. All of it feels fitting in a game where your single kick can kill and, since it’s first person, all you see when it’s happening is a swole leg that looks like She-Hulk has on a pair of Chuck Taylor’s. Anger Foot has old-school, beat 'em-up energy but it’s all coming directly at you.
Anger Foot has a satisfying crunch to its combat; you really feel it when you make contact with enemies. But actually making contact can be a bit of a pain. I found myself struggling with depth perception often. There were times when I felt like I kicked an enemy but clearly they got to me first because there I was, dead on the floor since you’re always one hit away from death in Anger Foot. This combination made some of my deaths feel hollow and frustrating. Though glancing at the settings there are some sliders that can make things a bit easier.
Dying constantly in Anger Foot is by design. Similar to games like Sifu, Anger Foot wants you to memorize its rooms and enemy placement. But unlike Sifu, Anger Foot’s room design lacked intrigue and its mechanics were surface level. Sure it’s fun to kick in a door and have the panel fly directly into an enemy but that was it as far as personal highlights.
On the bright side, Anger Foot seems pretty cheese-strat friendly. In my short time with it I was already luring enemies into previously empty rooms to pick them off more easily. In defense of the one-hit death, these grunts are just as easy to take down.
Anger Foot was alright but ultimately I found it a bit underwhelming. Perhaps I can get my footing but, for now, this one didn’t grab me.
Anger Foot has a 2023 release window and will launch on PC.