Review by Psycho Penguin

"It's not Hardcore, and it's not a revolution. Oh well."

Introduction

Acclaim is getting on my nerves now. Warzone sucked. It did not have the best of engines, and the lack of charcaters to choose from, plus the complete lack of fast gameplay and game modes led to the creation of a real stinker. Then Attitude came out. And I liked it a lot. But in the end, it did not lead to great replay value after Smackdown and Wrestlemania 2000. Why? Because the game was too much like Warzone.

So, when Acclaim changed federations and jumped from WWF to ECW, Acclaim used the friggin Warzone engine in their first
ever ECW game, ECW Hardcore Revolution. Ugh. I liked Attitude, but I do not feel like playing it again. That said, Acclaim added a little bit of new features to the game. Besides the removal of wwf superstars and the addition of ECW superstars (duh!), they added a barbed wire mode. 40 bucks for Attitude with a barbed wire mode? I don't think so!

Graphics (4.3/10)

Playstation graphics escaped from Acclaim headquarters and jumped over to the Nintendo 64 version! ECW Hardcore Revolution for the Nintendo 64 looks JUST LIKE the Sega Dreamcast and Playstation versions. Sure, there are minor changes, like changes to the ring ropes, but does it really matter? The graphics look too much like the Playstation version for my liking.

Character designs in the game are average, from the persepctive that they are indeed motion captured character designs. Therefore, you would expect the wrestlers to look a lot like their real life counterparts. And, for the most part, they do. Especially guys like Spike Dudley and Mike Awesome, they look a lot like their real life selves. So overall, the character designs are good, which I expected since the game decided to go with the motion capture designs.

Let me talk about the flaws in the graphics. Just like WWF Attitude, there are a few problems with the motion capture graphics of the game. First off, the collision detection in the game is terrible. Moves go right through wrestlers like a knife goes through warm oven baked bread. I remember doing a sitdown piledriver on some wrestler once and my hands went right through him, picked him up, slammed him to the ground, and his head just disappeared. How's that for revolutionary graphics?

Also, there are other problems with the graphics, mainly the fact that there isn't a lot of detail in the graphics. Okay, so maybe there is. The thing is, it just doesn't have that ECW feel. The crowd effects are dead and the ring looks like crap. Also the entrances in the game are pretty bad, as the wrestlers walk to the ring like they just took a crap in their pants or something.

Overall, the graphics in ECW Hardcore Revolution are average. Nothing major here, as the game really doesn't look all that different from its Playstation and Nintendo 64 counterparts. The collision detection and overall ring graphics are crap, which lowers the graphical score significantly. It's a shame too, because the game could have looked a lot better on a powerhouse system like the Nintendo 64.

Music/Sound (5.5/10)

I swear if someone told me to play an ECW game with a universal controller, I would not be able to tell the difference between the Playstation and Nintendo 64 versions. Joey Styles does commentary, and sure it seems quicker than the Playstaion version. But it is really not.. Ugh. That's the biggest problem with the entire game: it's too much like the other versions of the game!

Music in the game is non existant. The biggest disappointment in the game, music wise, is the fact that I can't seem to find any good theme songs to choose on the create a wrestler mode! Maybe I have to be patient and unlock them, I don't know, but there is only like 3 or 4 theme songs to choose from, and they all suck! Maybe it is because ECW uses actual songs from actual artists.. I don't know. Anyways, other than that major flaw, the music in the game is decent, especially the music on the title screen. Overall, the music in the game is decent, besides the flaw I already pointed out.

Sound effects in the game are pretty good. The two major parts of the sound effects are the wrestlers voices and sounds during the match, and of course the commentary. The commentary in the game is solid, featuring the rock solid announcing skills of the ''best in the business'' Joey Styles (move over, JR). I like how Joey Styles announces in this game, as he calls out the name of the move, like ''Head Scissors Takedown into a Chinlock'' or some move like that. I wish he would have had a commentating partner however to provide humor, like ''The Stud Muffin'' Joel Gertner or something. Regardless, the commentary is still solid.

The other sound effects in the game are great as well. From the wrestler voices during the matches to the sound of the referee counting the 1,2,3 in the middle of ''that very ring'', the sound effects are great. Add to that the fact that the commentary is solid, and you have a pretty nice sounding game. Overall, the sound effects in the game are pretty damn good.

Overall, the music and sound effects in the game aren't going to win any awards, but they are decent. I like the commentary in the game but I do feel that there are 2 major flaws present. One, the lack of selectable theme music in the create a wrestler mode. Two, the lack of a commentating partner for Joey Styles. Otherwise, the music and sound effects are good.

Gameplay/Control (7.1/10)

The only thing stopping me from giving this game a 1/10 is that I loved Attitude, so at least Acclaim ripped off of a good engine. ECW Hardcore Revolution is basically WWF Attitude with ECW charcaters and a barbed wire mode. The create a wrestler mode changed a little, but the create a wrestler is important. Why? Because you can just put ECW guys in Attitude using Attitude's CAW mode and save yourself 40 bucks in the process.

Control in the game is pretty terrible. Think of it as the control in WWF Attitude and you're good to go. I have problems with these games because they are not good party games, in my opinion. Why do I think this? Mainly because newbies can't come in and just play this game. The moves in the game are difficult to pull off because you have to do complex button combinations to pull the moves off. Instead of pushing A and a directional button, you have to push several different buttons just to do a suplex. Therefore, it is not a good multiplayer game, and it is not an easy game to pick up and just start playing. Overall, the control is pretty bad until you get the hang of it, then it is merely average.

Character selection in wrestling games is important, because I want to have a wide variety of wrestlers to choose from. ECW Hardcore Revolution has over 40 wrestlers to choose from. But I'm not happy. Why? Because there is no Sandman! Fortunately the game does have Raven, who is another one of my ECW faves. It also features wrestlers like Rob Van Dam, Cyrus, Francine, New Jack, and Tommy Dreamer! When all is said and done, there are over 40 selectable wrestlers to choose from. Not bad, not bad at all. If only it had the Sandman.

Overall, ECW Hardcore Revolution is nothing more than WWF Attitude with a barbed wire mode, Joey Styles, and ECW
wrestlers. Nothing much has relaly improved when it comes to the game modes and create a wrestler mode. So the choice is yours when buying this game. Personally, I would stick with WWF Attitude.

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Other Important Scores
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Replay Value: Medium


ECW Hardcore Revolution... the Nintendo 64 version has decent replay value, but only if you own only a Nintendo 64. Otherwise, the Sega Dreamcast and Playstation versions actually have higher replay value, because it is easier to do moves on those system's controllers. Yes, the Nintendo 64 controller screws up another game. What is that, at least 6 games now?

Challenge: High

Yes, this game is very difficult to sit down and beat, mainly because you really wouldn't want to. There is a season mode, but quite frankly this game is so much like that other wrestling game by Acclaim (WWF Attitude), that you really don't want to sit down and beat it. Add to the fact that you gotta play this game with a Dreamcast controller, and the game suddendly becomes a huge challenge to beat.


GOOD POINTS
-----------------

-It's an ECW game!
-Great commenatary by Joey Styles
-Lots of wrestlers to choose from

BAD POINTS
----------------

-It may have ECW wrestlers, but it really is just WWF Attitude with a barbed wire mode.
-No Sandman, no table matches, no Joel Gertner.....
-The control is a mess thanks to the Nintendo 64 controller.


Overall (7.2/10)

If Anarchy Rulz uses this engine, I'll be very ticked off. ECW Hardcore Revolution is nothing more than WWF Attitude with a barbed wire mode, Joey Styles, and ECW wrestlers. Nothing much has relaly improved when it comes to the game modes and create a wrestler mode. So the choice is yours when buying this game. Personally, I would stick with WWF Attitude.

Not reccomended.


Reviewer's Score: 6/10 | Originally Posted: 07/09/00, Updated 07/16/01


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