In Treachery in Beatdown City, pacifism is not a privilege you can afford

March 31, 2020 1 min read

Treachery in Beatdown City looks like a new take on Double Dragon for the NES, but it actually plays a lot more like Bravely Default II or another high-level strategy turn-based RPG.

That's what's going on under the hood. In terms of the body, it's a story of underdogs who aspire to upturn the system. That's just one of the ways it reminds me of Undertale, another game that looks like one thing but is something else entirely, that boldly wore its outsider status on its sleeve. Treachery ticks all the same boxes while delivering an entirely different message: sometimes, violence is good. 

The opening of the game shows shinobi terrorists wearing both turbans and traditional ninja face-masks kidnapping then-president Blake Orama, an unreal version of Barack Obama. The reason? His repeated bombing of Middle East, something that was a very real part of Obama's presidency, which has been more than carried forward by his successor

From there, mayor Mike Moneybags, a parody of former New York City mayor Mike Bloomberg, uses the kidnapping as an opportunity to install his own police force into the city, and in the process, make a few "racially insensitive" statements about the Latinx community. This doesn't surprise Lisa Santiago, the protagonist, but it does piss her off. She's at the gym watching TV when she hears the news, trying to burn her rage off on a treadmill. About a minute later, she finds a new way to let off some steam. 

In Treachery in Beatdown City, pacifism is not a privilege you can afford screenshot