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https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/img/b/R29vZ2xl/AVvXsEilyRKb_AjDC-zYsK_uaqgH-E7YS3yS-JPHcQC8NeeQQPSWS6q7-BkFc6rcuDPJMnnp4EaU7AyUx3ZqFHlpJCKNJ6HUkTcrz5eqpoQqxSyIt8dcfW9qvw5M5i7X_iYVObegdcqtJkmMH9uWLfimeLFQB9ghziUkzMfMe5BSCcAxc3Gy-vEWWGLvWr02/s1500/Fur%20Fighters.jpg  https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/img/b/R29vZ2xl/AVvXsEhxd5boUemowa4JcQm7vdRflW9MPVR7EoGZHEMMLZFcZ41Byx7PsIpVh_xkoMQC7e617AeNVM5Mfgidowa7ofS_yND13F7XZgxeEZ-G0jMZqMbZ7doOy3x38KEGcaOVYthN0H4I8XTGVzI_dh4nyYAu9bpmkP2JOeSM8IL8I0GMnNtemTepLByTBNWR/s1500/Fur%20Fighters%20(SDC).jpg  https://blogger.googleusercontent.com/img/b/R29vZ2xl/AVvXsEhco4y2y7piETJ82N9j5Iq2PcMFGFtnpuOi33OrYJZKQYH2f0VibIK8fYlKw5GiHRpGCblcJw-v6ri7wQsVsvaxrcXomFp-WwTVljsJwH46BxyJGg4T2HpsfsZYWpyxLXdnM9TbKO9Idq9GFcQyg8oU1G2A3cmV7NFJcQ4-Stq0yNOTv-UaJcH-P69F/s1500/Fur%20Fighters%20(PS2).jpg
When Nature calls, SHOOT IT!

Introducing Fur Fighters, an elite squad of six animated animal commandos on a quest to rescue their families and save the free world! The malevolent fat-cat, General Viggo, has kidnapped the Fur Fighters' families and mutated their kin. Now it's up to you, playing as all six armed animal liberators, to knock the fluff out of Viggo's army of dimwitted bears to save your families, and the planet, from the claws of evil.
  • A raging romp of feline conspiracies, blazing animal combat and unrelenting beaver shots!
  • Part action/shooter. Part mind-wrecking puzzler. Part awesome adventure. All attitude!
  • Over 20 devastating weapons and 30 challenging levels including 12 exciting, themed multi-player levels.
  • Up to 16 Player "Fluffmatch" over LAN or Internet delivers intense head-to-head action.
  • Play as all six of the Fur Fighters using their individual special skills to solve puzzles and obliterate the bad guys!
~ from the back of the US PC box

I recently saw an interview of Dan Kwan of The Daniels fame discussing his philosophy when writing the script for Everything Everywhere All At Once. He would throw everything in there 'cos it may be the last time he'd be fortunate to write one. It's an approach that absolutely worked for that modern movie masterpiece but it got me thinking; what would that look like in a videogame?

After some thoughts about game creators like Dreams or crossovers like Smash Bros, a little game called Fur Fighters crossed my mind. It's at once a cutesy third-person-shooter where decapitations, dismemberments and death are commonplace. It's a collect-a-thon platformer filled with devious logic and spatial puzzles. A game where baby anthropomorphic animals trigger your cute aggression response while a bespectacled pet human triggers your fight or flight. And to top it off, there's dinosaurs!! AND DRAGONS!!! It's like all my favourite things were smooshed into one package.

The Fur Fighters sure are getting busy!
There are over 100 furry offspring to save, and they're not always in the easiest of places to find.

Beginning life on SEGA's DreamCast, Fur Fighters released with quite a bit of hype. It came from the minds of Bizarre Creations who would create the premiere DreamCast racing game Metropolis Street Racer before developing that format further on the X-Box with the exceptional Project Gotham series. In the millennium's first year, those frowning furry critters with firearms were everywhere in the gaming magazines when it came out in the summer of 2000. Four months later, in November of that year, a PC port was mostly the same with some small tweaks and minor improvements. For its one-year anniversary, we got another port on the PlayStation 2 which saw drastic changes including full voice acting, cell-shaded graphics and a new subtitle that confused consumers into thinking it was a sequel. I did add Viggo's Revenge to my collection many years after its release, but I have the most nostalgia for the original DreamCast version. This review would be the first time I touched the PC port, but I can safely say that with its keyboard and mouse controls, it is now my preferred way to play.

So what of the game? The evil feline Viggo has stolen the many, many children of the titular Fur Fighters to hobble them as he enacts plans for world domination. There are six commando creatures to control, each having their own unique personality and ability.


The de facto leader of the Fur Fighters, Roofus is a tough, old, Scottish hound. As the dynamic music changes to suit his theme, the unique sounds of bagpipes are added to the soundtrack.

His special ability is burrowing. When you see a mound of earth, press the Jump button to tunnel to another arear of the map.

Being the same species as Viggo, Juliette the cat can be just as stubborn, temperamental and selfish but she is ultimately a good person. Hailing from the Parisian streets of France, when playing as her, an accordion is added to the orchestra making for some of my favourite arrangements.

Her special ability is climbing. Some walls will have scratch marks on them. Walk Juliette into them and she will climb up to previously unreachable heights.

The Chinese firefox apparently has an encyclopaedic knowledge of science and strategy but all that comes across is a slightly offensive stereotype. The unmistakable twang of a Chines Zither permeates the soundtrack when playing as Chang.

His special skill is being small. He can squeeze through small holes to reach areas other critters cannot possibly fit.

For some reason, the one character you'll be playing as the most is the Australian kangaroo Bungalow. The slow-witted antipode moves faster than most other fighters but his idiot characteristic can be a little grating. Be prepared to hear a didgeridoo play Waltzing Mathilda in a variety of ways.

His special skill is jumping. He can jump higher than any other Fur Fighter and is therefore the best character to play when approaching tricky platforming sections.

Being part of the huge penguin community of Southern Argentina, Rico grew up idolising the Fur Fighters. His overconfident personality and flights of fancy don't quite convince you of his fighting skills. He is the slowest critter in the team and is needed only when his special ability comes into play. The whistles and rhythms of street music permeate the soundtrack when you take control of him.

His special ability is swimming. While all critters can swim on the surface of water, only Rico can dive beneath it.

The baby of the team, Tweek joined the team by happenstance when his mother and siblings were kidnapped during Viggo's raid of the village. Being only a day old, the dragon is naive and innocent as he unloads thousands of bullets and launches hundreds of missiles in his attempt to get them back. A chanting human vox domineers the soundtrack when playing as him, making for some of the most striking music found in the game.

His special ability is gliding. When in the air, hold the Jump button to glide across great distances.

Every member of the team are required to fully explore each of the fifteen massive levels. To swap them out, you need to walk into the teleportation spots that display their face. They are placed in deliberate locations that allow them to be used in specific puzzle-solving moments and for collecting the correct baby. New-borns can only be brought back to safety by a member of their own kin so clever management and memorisation of the characters and their teleportation spots are a must. In fact, this is the most grating aspect of the game that harks back to the annoying design choices found in Donkey Kong 64. In both cases, it mars an otherwise great game; it's one thing to need a specific ability for a specific location, quite another for collectables to be arbitrarily locked behind them.

It wouldn't be so bad were it not for the fact that they are needed to progress in the game. Levels in a given hub world require a certain number triangular token which can be collected by anyone. Bosses require babies, and the number needed is quite stringent. For example, the first boss requires you to have all but three babies, giving you a leeway of missing 1 in each of the previous three levels. The levels themselves are also huge - far bigger than you might expect - and can often take an hour for each run.

Mini-games such as dancing and basketball are hidden in the levels (left).
Specific items are needed to enter new worlds (right). These are mostly found after defeating bosses.

Beyond this singular fault, the rest of the game is exceptionally fun to play. While they are huge, the levels are imaginative and dense. One level has you rampaging around a skyscraper in the middle of a snowy winter Die Hard style. Another is set in a museum where watching a movie on a cinema screen will give the code to open a safe. From beaver dams to giant house of a family of dinosaurs, the ingeniously creative level design is top notch.

One of the most inventive worlds, however, is locked behind a secret entrance within one of the Beaver Dam levels. In order to explore the oversized middle-class civilisation of Dinotopolis, you have to manipulate a digging machine in the God Machine Valley stage of the Beaver Power Plant water dam. Upstairs, you'll navigate the giant-sized toys of a nursery where three dino eggs lay sleeping. Elsewhere in the bathroom, their mother is relaxing in a massive bath reading a newspaper. Glide Tweek through her ear and tickle her brain to gain access to a baby dragon through her nose before avoiding the soapy sludge in a shower cubicle to rescue one of Juliette's kittens. By the time you fight a sentient vacuum cleaner, you know anything's possible.

Power-ups such as the Meercat Multiple (left) and the Beetle Shield (right)
are found just when you need them.

While I de prefer the PC version, those who opted to play it on the PlayStation 2 got the most content. In a way, Viggo's Revenge is more like a remake. The presentation and visual overhaul is significant with many bug fixes, gameplay tweaks and quality of life improvements, but it also has a motion blur and lower frame rate that makes capturing screenshots a pain in the ass. Included in the package is an entirely new world called the Furry Forest complete with new Panda Bear enemies. There's even an extra character called  The Mighty Flea, though he's criminally underused, being limited to a specific stand-alone area played on the surface of the critter's skin. His lack of fur and cute appearance also puts him at odds with the rest of the gang, but at least we know they can dual wield pistols with aplomb.

If you were to play the original console versions today, the controls would be very hard to adjust to. On the DreamCast, the single analogue stick on the left is look while the face buttons is move and strafe. This is opposite to how such games are played today but was the norm for the aging system. Strangely enough, the left/right flip of the controls carried over to the PlayStation 2's DualShock controller. Thankfully, emulators can easily solve this issue, but this is the one thing that stopped be going back to playing it on original hardware. Even so, I'm glad I have each version of this overlooked gem in my collection. An eclectic, kitchen-sink of a game that comes together perfectly.

To download the Windows version, follow the link below. This custom installer exclusive to The Collection Chamber uses dgVoodoo to run on modern systems. Game must be launched as Administrator. Registry keys must be imported. Read the ChamberNotes.txt for more detailed information. Tested on Windows 10.

File Size: 377 Mb.  Install Size: 644 Mb.  Need help? Consult the Collection Chamber FAQ

Download Windows Version

To download the SEGA DreamCast version, follow the link below. This custom installer exclusive to The Collection Chamber uses Retroarch with the Flycast core to emulate the DreamCast. X-input controllers supported. US and UK manuals included. Read the ChamberNotes.txt for more detailed information. Tested on Windows 10.

File Size: 832 Mb.  Install Size: 970 Mb.  Need help? Consult the Collection Chamber FAQ

Download DreamCast version

To download the game, follow the link below. This custom installer exclusive to The Collection Chamber uses PCSX2 to emulate the PlayStation 2. X-input controllers supported. US manual included. Read the ChamberNotes.txt for more detailed information. Tested on Windows 10.

File Size: 965 Mb.  Install Size: 999 Mb.  Need help? Consult the Collection Chamber FAQ

Download PlayStation 2 version




Fur Fighters is © Bizarre Creations Ltd
Fur Fighters: Viggo's Revenge is © Bizarre Creations Ltd
Review, Cover Design and Installer created by me

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