Jitsu Squad is a brawler / beat ’em up game with hand-drawn graphics and support for up to four players on the same machine. Or rather, it should be. The project went live on Kickstarter today and has already achieved its goal of SEK 150,899 (at the time of writing, it has reached a full SEK 477,039).
Behind Jitsu Squad stands the Dutch studio Tanuki Creative Studio. This five-man strong group still has blank CVs, but for the skeptical prospective backers of the campaign, there is a demo to download via the developers’ itch.io. The demo contains four playable characters and a couple of levels to try them out.
Tanuki aims to do a beat ’em up with the same level of freedom and accessibility as the genre classics Streets of Rage and Final Fight, but at a pace more like Guilty Gear, Marvel Vs. Capcom and Super Smash. Bros. After a round with the demon, I like to add Castle Crashers and Sacred Citadel to that list.
Jitsu Squad aims for a release for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC and Nintendo Switch. So far, no date is in sight. The development has already continued for just over a year, according to the Kickstarter presentation.
In conjunction with the Kickstarter campaign coming Jitsu Squad also to get physical editions. These are delivered via Strictly Limited Games, which has said that also a collaboration with the established retro publisher ININ Games is on the wallpaper. In other words, Tanuki has secured more capital than they need and the rest of the campaign is, as so often via Kickstarter in recent times, a pure pre-booking campaign.
Fans of the brawler subgenre have every reason to keep an eye on this game (and try the demo!). Jitsu Squad is already a competent game in most units of measurement. The finished product promises more of the good. Now we’re just waiting for a date.