Remember: the music is but a vehicle – you are the driver. Add your energy. Listen. Practice. Refine. Trust yourself. Trust your skills. Godspeed, young dance warrior. Spread the funk.

Rhythm games have a history of wacky or outlandish premises, largely due to their fun and catchy tracks. Elite Beat Agents has you take on the titular role of an “Elite Beat Agent” who saves the day with music. Rhythm Heaven covers a wide range of topics, from a luchadore interview to animals playing tennis in their planes.

Floor Kids continues that trend by putting you in the role of a “Floor Kid”: a hip-hop warrior of the streets and a cardboard artist. With its funky beats, charming visuals, and open-ended gameplay, Floor Kids puts the “fun” back into “funky”.

Keep It Fresh

In Floor Kids, breaking isn’t simply a way to dance. It’s a philosophy, an art form, and a way of life. Floor Kids aren’t born, they’re molded. They’re products of their environments, the culmination of a long journey into the heart of a concrete jungle. Floor Kids come from all walks of life, but the differences they bring are what make them unique.

If there’s one thing that makes the game stand out, it’s how it can render the utterly mundane grandiose and magical. Floor Kids, at its core, is about city kids breakdancing around their favorite haunts. You choose from a roster of eight kids with unique dance moves and travel to eight different locations around an unnamed city.

Suddenly it clicks. The vibe, the energy, whatever you want to call it. It moves through you, empowers and drives you, from Floor Kid to Floor Kid. One moment you’re Scribbles, flipping and flowing from one pose to another. The next you’re Ruckus, hurling your body with impossible precision. Your moves are as free as you make them.

Once you look past the explicit, however, you can see life and color flowing through the game. You aren’t just breaking anymore, you’re tapping into the heart and soul of hip-hop that beats with life and rhythm. The neighborhood grocery store and arcade are more than just buildings. They’re sacred domains of inspiration, experimentation, and passion.

Keep It Fly

Where other rhythm games would punish you, Floor Kids encourages you. The core gameplay loop consists of traveling to various locations and breakdancing to different sets of tracks. However, unlike other rhythm games like DDR or Osu!Floor Kids doesn’t require you to perform well to keep playing. While it does keep a track of your score, the game does its best to keep you actively invested. It emphasizes experimentation and expression over “getting it right”.

The game lets you play as one of eight unique characters that you can unlock as you progress. Each one specializes in different aspects of breakdancing: Toprock, Downrock, Power, and Freeze. Each of those elements are further broken down into four unique moves that you can activate through different input combinations.

It’s easy enough to do a single move; the game’s true fun and challenge come from how you chain them together. In addition to unique movesets, every character also comes with various combos. Beyond those combos, however, you have even more tools to make your dancing your own, like poses and flips.

Floor Kids is a game that’s easy to learn, but hard to master. Your ultimate goal is to score as many points as possible, and Floor Kids gives you a wide variety of tools to do so. The game’s straightforward simplicity belies its hidden depth. There’s no one right way to “win”, but that’s the beauty of it.

“It’s like Journey but for bboys,” the game’s animator explained in an interview, “There are no rules, just like what the art is inspired by.” Floor Kids is all about personal expression and creating a set of moves that feels unique to the player. The Floor Kids are your brush and the Switch is your canvas. Lose yourself to the beat and let your moves come naturally.

Keep It Funky

Rough, scratchy lines and deep colors intermingle in a flurry of motion. Your head nods to the beat. One and two and one and two and one and two. Over and over, a mantra to keep you centered, keep you focused. The universe is in a constant state of flux. But you, the Floor Kid, maestro of music and breaker of beats, you thrive on that chaos. Out of the chaos comes a tenuous order.

Floor Kids has no shortage of style. From the expressive animation to the flowery prose that greets you with every new stage, the game oozes artistry. Most refreshing of all is the simple sincerity it presents itself with.

A chorus childlike voices cheers you on as you hop between moves. The crowd moves to your rhythm; an old granny, a baby in a stroller, they all feel your funk. In the world of Floor Kids, the music and the moves are everything.

Floor Kids comes to life with its charmingly simple animation and funky hip-hop beats, done by JonJon and Kid Koala respectively. The characters and tracks move in broad, yet fluid strokes, encompassing a wide range of styles and motions. Slow and steady, fast and pointed, it’s up to you.


Pros:

  • Adaptive gameplay that is as challenging as you make it
  • Easy to learn controls with a lot of room for personal creativity
  • With 24 different tracks and 8 different Floor Kids to play, there’s a large amount of variety and replayability
  • Great original animation and music
  • Wonderful flavor, both in the visuals and the world-building

Cons:

  • The tracks are great hip-hop beats, but unlike other rhythm games none in particular stand out on their own
  • While the game teaches you enough to get by, there’s a lot of depth to it that you can really only get if you dig deeper into the mechanics on your own

Conclusion:

Between the slick visuals and hip-hop beats, free-form gameplay, and charming simplicity, Floor Kids is a refreshing take on a stale genre. If you’re feeling burnt out on rhythm games where you just tap the right button at the right time, it does a great job of breaking that mold.

Kyle Rogacion
Kyle grew up with a controller in one hand and a book in the other. He would've put something else in a third hand, but science isn't quite there yet. In the meantime, he makes do with watching things like television, film, and anime.
Kyle Rogacion

@LikeTheRogue

On an eternal quest to make everything relevant to weebtrash. | Editor @GoombaSt0mp | Occasional indie dev | Profile pic by @punkojunko
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Kyle Rogacion