By Eric Chetkauskas / April 16th, 2014
Seeing that many of us at oprainfall are fans of Japanese entertainment and culture, stopping by the Indie Minibooth at PAX East to check out Behold Studios’ Chroma Squad seemed like a no-brainer.
Chroma Squad is a combination of a resource-management game and a tactical RPG. In it, you manage a Super Sentai television studio. If you don’t know what Sentai is, it’s basically just Japanese super heroes—think Power Rangers and you’ll get the idea. You must choose your cast among pool of possible actors based on their skill set and salary cost. You can also assign them to specific roles on the team, such as team leader or scout.
The battles take place on a standard grid-based field, where you can move your characters to any unoccupied space within a certain range. There is a gauge at the top of the screen labelled “audience” As you attack, your audience level increases–meaning more people like the show. Once your audience passes a certain point, you have the option to Chromatize, which has the characters transform into their Sentai suits. Once changed into their suits, your team has access to new abilities.
The boss appeared once all the enemies on the final stage were defeated. This giant plant monster was much stronger than the rest, who were admittedly pretty easy. Special attacks were practically required. After finally dispatching the boss, he does what all good bosses do: change into an ultimate form. But this time, the battle is very different. Your team calls its giant mecha and fights the boss in a turn-based 2D fighter style battle.
The game’s sprite-based graphics and chiptune music blend well with the lighthearted humor and overall campiness of the game to create a really fun experience. It may just be something from the demo, but I seemed to get the impression that this was less Power Rangers and more like the Daitenzin from Excel Saga.
For anyone who’s a fan Sentai shows or weird Japanese games, Chroma Squad is a game you absolutely must check out when it gets released this summer. The folks at Behold Studios admit to being big Sentai fans and they’ve done a great job paying homage to the genre they love.
Behold StudiosChroma SquadPAXPAX EastPAX East 2014