Review by LavaLord
"Looking back, it is as good today as it was then."
It has been noted in recent years that few games age gracefully. Even fewer age into a better condition.
Punch Out is the rare exception and nowhere near the norm.
As far as the NES goes, there are no games I can think of that have better gameplay than Punch Out!! It's fun, fast paced, and never lets you down for excitement. It plays around with you with the different styles of opponents, showcasing an early variety of methods to get around your opponents tremendous advantages. It showed subtle hints within the game, allowing for even a novice to eventually figure out the patterns and defeat the enemies. For an NES game it was truly ahead of its time and to this day still maintains fun addictive gameplay.
I give it a 9/10
Let's face it, this game is pure story without a story. You're playing the role you were dealt with no variety in your choices, only in your degrees of determination. But that's all the game needs to be truly a masterpiece, as you follow your journey from Glass Joe to the master Mike Tyson. You fight all sorts of racial stereotypes along the way, following through poor edits with some of them, all the way through the ranks up to the Grand Championship.
That's about all there is to the story. I give it a 6/10
For the day it was one of the best control schemes around, given its very simple nature. It had only a handful of different technical schemes to work with, one of which was often overlooked. You had the punch and three kinds of dodges. Let's face it that's all some of us needed for most of the battles. The other part to the control scheme was the uppercut which you used with start after gathering a star from countering a hit.
With that Controls get a 10/10
Back when the game was released, it was one of the most beautiful games around, featuring a variety of shades and tones to be barely rivaled until the SNES generation. It featured a variety of colors for every important thing in the game from the background to all of the highly detailed fighters, up to and including a guest shot from Mario as the referee. The graphics to this day stand tantamount of the NES greatest achievements.
A humbly scored 10/10
The games sound and music was a wonderful thing for its time as well. It was clearly ahead with the sounds of the ring, the sounds of the comments even being animated to us by a subtle noise. I daresay the strangest feature of the sounds of the game was the Easter egg that if you plugged the Nintendo helpline into the password slot, you got a busy signal.
I would place Punch Out at a 9/10 for the sounds exhibited.
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 03/18/08
Game Release: Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! (US, 10/31/87)
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