Mad Rat Dead is a 2D rhythm-platformer developed and published by Nippon Ichi Software for the Playstation 4 and Nintendo Switch on October 30, 2020.
The game follows the story of the titular "Mad Rat", who is being experimented on by a nameless, faceless scientist. As a result of the experimentation, Mad Rat dies, but is suddenly approached by a seemingly benevolent deity known as the "Rat God", who bestows upon Mad Rat the ability to rewind time. Utilizing this power, Mad Rat sets off on a quest for revenge against the scientist who killed him.
The game consists of individual levels, each with a bit of narrative progression followed by a 2D platforming section where all your actions must be performed on the beat of the song playing during the level. There is a visual indicator always present at the bottom of the screen that displays the beats of the current song, similar to Crypt of the Necrodancer.
Mad Rat has a few actions at his disposal:
- Jumping, which does have a bit of air control
- By hitting the jump button again in mid-air, Mad Rat can do a homing dash attack on enemies, very similar to Sonic in various games he has starred in.
- A dash forward or backward, which will be your primary locomotion through the levels. The dash can be modified by the position of the control stick. If it is neutral, you will get a short dash in the direction Mad Rat is currently facing; if held left or right, you will get a longer dash in the corresponding direction.
- A charge move, which when performed on the beat preceding a dash, will modify it and make it go much farther than usual
- A "drop" move, which causes Mad Rat to quickly hit the ground out of midair.
Using the aforementioned abilities, the goal is to get to the end of each stage before a timer runs out.