If you like stories but find musicals irritating and books long, you might enjoy Arm Joe, an indie Street Fighter-style game based on Les Miserables. Arm Joe is a homophonic translation of the phrase “Ah, mujou!”, a phrase recognizing the impermanence of the world—which humans struggle to grasp, leading to their suffering.
In Arm Joe, you can play as the classic Victor Hugo characters—Jean Valjean, Javert, Cosette, Eponine, Marius, Enjolras, and a generic cop—as well as three, well, weirder characters. Gamers can play as Judgment, a large and mysterious man; PonPon, a stuffed rabbit; and Robojean, a robotic Jean Valjean. Talk about an ambitious crossover event: blending the Les Miserables universe with the Les Miserables Robots universe. The characters have special moves that fit with their personalities, like Valjean’s “Cross of Guilt,” Cosette’s “Kiss that stops time,” and Robojean’s . . . “Ultra high power laser beam.”
According to a review on SomethingAwful, Judgment is “far and away the strongest character”; apparently, if you play as Judgment, you can win by just pressing the attack button. But doesn’t that mirror the world of Les Miserables, where the law’s judgment follows you even after you’ve served your disproportionately long sentence? Ah, mujou!
Download the game here, or take a look at the gameplay below: