"A nice try at a fighting game with disastrous results"

Fighting Force is a game that begins as an interesting concept, but quickly makes you cry from annoyance. Choppy animations, poor control, and a difficulty level that quickly rises to a level of frustration are the game's greatest flaws.
The characters lack imagination. They are the common stereotypes: an All-American martial artist with a stylish haircut is the leader of the group, followed by the incredibly original (yawn) foxy lady, the bad-girl type, and the huge brainless brute, who, by the way, moves like a constipated elephant after having suffered a lobotomy.
The animation is poor, very poor indeed. Being this a 3D game, it should have had a higher fluidity in the characters' motions and the camera changes. Also, the game suffers from slow-down in its two-player mode, making this option a no-option.
The enemies, on the other hand, are very fun. Who wouldn´t like to grab a jock in a tuxedo and smash his face in the pavement? Or maybe put a bullet in a back-alley bully's head? Or better yet: to destroy a police car with a rocket launcher? OH YEAH BABY! The fact is that the enemies are a little too good at putting up a fight, and there are times when you have a bunch of thugs bashing your skull with you being unable to do anything about it, AND A SHOTGUN IN YOUR HANDS! The difficulty level raises up to the point that any attempt to play it becomes a ludicrous illusion. Your only option left: cheat codes. Thankfully there is a hidden ''god mode'' in the game, so you still have hopes of seeing the boring, stupid, unimaginative, crappy ending.
In all, the game started out good, but ended up really, really bad. But, it could be worse: at least there aren't puzzles involving blocks, which is a signature feature in Eidos games. (This is video games, not Sesame Street, dorks!) Now to the numbers.

GRAPHICS 8/10
This is where the game scores reasonably high. The graphics, while not spectacular, are OK. At least you can tell the characters apart. The backgrounds are nicely done, giving you the feeling that you are really out in the city slums breaking havok. A good job I'd say.

SOUND 5/10
Tsk tsk. Awful, boring, almost inaudible background music which sounds like coming straight out of the A-Team and those mediocre action TV series from the 80's (McGyver was the worse, by the way). Also, I think there should have been in-game speech and dialogues to add some life and coherency to the storyline. Believe me, just hearing ''Ughs!'' during fights can get under your skin after a while.

CONTROLS 6/10
Sluggish, although you can get used to them after a little practice. The moves are quite easy to pull off and master with some patience. But be warned: I strongly advice against selecting the big mofo as your character. He is just a sorry Mike Haggar wannabe. And he is very, VERY slow.

CHALLENGE 4/10
Like I said, just frustrating on later stages. Sometimes you empty a pistol clip (only five shots-how miserable)on a guy, only to see him get up again! This is not The Terminator! Also, too many enemies jumping on you as you TRY to pick up a weapon (you'll give up after the tenth attempt, most likely) add to the tragedy.

REPLAY VALUE 5/10
Not enough. After I struggled against this loser, I went back to Castlevania. There is almost no fun factor and certainly there is no reason for you to play the game again after you've beaten it. A major disappointment for beat'em up fans.

OVERALL 6/10
Rent it. Don't make my mistake. I regret having spent my money on this game. Anyway, if you like beat'em up games, give it a shot; maybe you'll find in it the fun I missed. But if you bought it and hated it, don't say I did'n warn you.


Reviewer's Score: 6/10 | Originally Posted: 11/16/01, Updated 11/16/01


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