TORIDAMA: Brave Challenge asks just how chicken are you? It is a wildly stupid game that straddles somewhere between Bishi Bashi Special and the Kuukiyomi Consider It series. Indeed, Toridama is made by the Kuukiyomi developers and you can see the influence. Here we’ll be playing daft minigames that pit player against player or against a hi score leaderboard for supremacy. The object of the game? Be as brave as possible.
Each of the 19 mini-games ask you to play chicken with something. It could be to stop a car as close to the edge of a cliff, unleash your parachute as you hurtle to the ground or as simple as pouring a drink to fill a glass without spilling. They largely revolve around a single button press but some such as cooking on lava vary this up, but essentially Toridama is a one button game. The crux is working out exactly how late you can leave your button press to score as many points as possible without leaving it too late. Usually this means death or injury and a shocking -9999 points! The winner of the two player game is whomever has the best score from three rounds whereas single player modes have a few longer variations against leaderboards online.
This sounds like it shouldn’t be very engaging but it turns out virtual chicken with stupid minigames is delightfully addictive. This is because each of those 19 minigames have plenty of variants. The drink pouring starts off with a normal glass, then weird shaped ones, then it adds in icecubes afterwards spilling the drink. Diffusing a bomb as close to zero is fine until it hides the timer with 10 seconds to go. Same with the parachute jump as you increase velocity the closer you get to the ground. Stopping a car at the edge of the cliff might be fine but what if its two cars driving towards each other? In a cloudy haze where you lose sight of them? Or what about a ghost that’s going to scare you that’s moving at variable speeds? When are you going to shout boo back? Play it safe and you’ll get tiny point hauls but get close to perfection and the golden over 9,000 crazy scores will give you a commanding lead.
Whilst the gameplay is simple, its extremely addictive. The papercraft graphical style adds to the zany charm too. It is basic but has character and so Toridama pulls it off. Where the game falls down slightly for me is in the audio department. The game is underscored by a booming taiko bass drum constantly and it wears very thin, very quickly. I muted the game in the end and popped on some J-pop instead to enhance the mood.
Deceptively simple and addictive, Toridama: Brave Challenge is like a tiny Japanese game show of silly consequences whilst chasing big points. I’d have liked some more modes to arrange more structured competitions but I recommend this game for organising quickfire head to head local multiplayer battles. Due to its timing based nature, Steam remote play and Parsec are not ideal (although they work). This is one that requires drinks and friends locally to get the best out of it. Joyous fun,
Toridama: Brave Challenge
Quickfire zany minigames to prove whose chicken and whose boss. Perfect for silly local multiplayer evenings.
Excellent irrelevant theming.
Each minigame has lots of variations of increasing difficulty, meaning the more you play, the more you enjoy it.
Local multiplayer drinking game classic in the making.
Online leaderboards for single player challenges.
Music is low sample quality and very repetitive.
The inability to create custom championships/competitions feels like a very odd omission for a party game.
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