The Black Heart is a macabre and dark beat 'em up. Created over 7 years by one developer, it has almost all the options you'll find in a commercial beat 'em up, presented in a completely unique style.
Like any beat 'em up, The Black Heart features different characters, with different sets of fighting moves. Each character has their own back story, and it unfolds in single player modes as you fight the other five opponents. There are a variety of play modes, like versus, team, and survival modes. In terms of organization, it's so far so Street Fighter and Tekken.
It's the graphics and general feel of The Black Heart that set it apart. The characters are very unusual, and may put some players off. But if you can accept the strange cartoon fighters, there's a lot of depth here. Playing through the stories is interesting, as they are really weird!
The actual fighting isn't too bad - the animation is quite simple, and it takes a while to get used to the odd reach of some of the characters. Not learning moves will leave you in trouble, as computer controlled opponents are great at pulling off combos and special moves that will leave you bleeding, and probably randomly stabbing the keyboard! With some skill, the gameplay opens up, although specials are a bit too special, and there is probably too much focus on combo attacks.
The Black Heart looks unlike any other beat 'em up you'll play, and you get a ton of game for your money (it's free!)