It’s official, I’ve written my first coffee table book about gaming. Go Straight: The Ultimate Guide to Side-Scrolling Beat ’em Ups is a 450-page hardback book that follows the classic genre from its birth in 1984 with Irem’s Kung-Fu Master, right through the glory days of the 1990s and ending with Streets of Rage 4 in 2020.
I started writing Go Straight in October 2019, after mulling the idea over for a while. The announcement of Streets of Rage 4 felt like the right time to get started, as its reveal marked something of a grand resurgence for the side-scrolling genre – something we’re thankfully still enjoying well into 2021.
The book will go through over 200 games in the genre in chronological order. Each write-up features a blend of making-of facts, gameplay impressions, tips and tricks, cheats, trivia and much more. As this is a Bitmap Books release, you can also expect a ton of lavish pixel art pages and colourful double spreads that celebrate the artistry of the genre.