Black and White Bushido is a one-hit-kill platform fighter akin to TowerFall or Duck Game. On top of the standard mix of fast-paced combat and platforming, Black and White Bushido spices up its take on the genre with a camouflage mechanic–the background of each stage is constantly shifting between black and white, and characters are black or white as well. If you hold still, you can blend in completely with a background that matches your avatar. Use this to your advantage, and you can ambush enemies or even disappear in the middle of a battle. This is the driving gimmick behind Black and White Bushido, and luckily, it adds some entertaining scenarios to what would otherwise be a boring game.
To complement several multiplayer maps, Black and White Bushido has two modes: Deathmatch and Capture the Flag. There is no single player beyond a weak challenge mode and the ability to play against some rather incapable bots. That leaves it all up to multiplayer, which does deliver to an extent. The ability to blend in with parts of the map makes for a unique experience. Try and take advantage of the chaos to hide near the flag in CTF, wait for someone to approach, and then swiftly lob their head off. If two of your friends team up on you, you can try to dash into friendly territory where you’ll be harder to find. The actual combat is nothing to write home about; kills feel a bit too easy, and the power-ups like caltrops and throwing stars do not make much of an impact. Blending in saves the game by adding a fun layer of strategy to an otherwise unremarkable platform fighter.
This game is multiplayer or bust. The very poor AI options make sure of that. There is no way to have an AI teammate–instead, you can face off against a CPU team of one, two, or three bots. This may seem egregious, but it does not make all that much difference because the AI is awful. It took me about two matches until no AI enemy could stand a chance against me.
Black and White Bushido does not have a lot going on. The two multiplayer modes are fun, but…there are only two. Single player does not offer much at all. There is no meaningful customization, and easy kills leave matches feeling half-baked after a while. But use those tricky backgrounds to your advantage, and the game will open up a lot more. While it is unlikely that Black and White Bushido will ever compel you to turn away from TowerFall for very long, it’s great for a quick match every now and then. Just don’t pick this up expecting to be blown away.
Reviews Editor at Nintendo Enthusiast. I am a major fan of all consoles and eras. Follow me on Twitter @habitablestorm3 to watch me tweet about the many old games I love to spend time with.