Review by MrDurp
"If you'd rather play your mind-numbing RPG's, frustrating sims, and nerve-racking strategies, then FOR GOD'S SAKE, GAMES LIKE THIS AREN'T FOR YOU!"
Let's face it, folks. You're not giving this game a chance.
So, this game is...how you say...repetitive and unoriginal. Well, what did you expect? This is a beat-em-up. And actually one of the better ones.
Repetitive, you say. My definition of repetitive would be if every part of a level looked the same and you fought the same guys over and over (See also: The Tick). Unfortunately, people, you don't get that in this game. The levels are never too long, and actually have some change every couple screens. Not to mention there's plenty of variety in the enemies, new ones approaching in later areas.
Unoriginal, you say! Well, it may be the umpteenth Final Fight rip-off, but how many others have you played that offer 'angry mode'? If you don't know what that is, it's a period of invincibility and super-charge when you take a certain amount of damage. Always useful. But that's only if you want it on, since you can toggle it in the options.
What else is there to like, or should I say, what else should you be thankful for? Okay...the play control. Responsive as ever. The two characters that you can use do what the buttons tell them to, when they tell them. Then again, it works better for that Flak guy.
Something else, is that you're playing this with someone else (2 players, people!! Best of all!), you can both use the same guy without the use of a cheat. Strange but interesting.
Then there's the audio. Some of the music is quite appropriate, albeit often using organ, bass guitar, synth, and clicky percussion. Some of my favorites are the soft-rock Level 1 theme, the gloomy one for level 4, and the really upbeat one for the final level. Even I can agree that the one for level 5 isn't the best, though, since it is SHORT (15 seconds. I counted.). But they must have liked the first stage theme so much...well, listen for it in Brawl Brothers!
Most of the sound effects are okay too, but a little staticy. When you kill some enemies, you hear a 'wauggghh!' or an unusual 'unhh!'. And breaking things like trash cans and wooden crates (!) sound like tin cans dropping.
Most of all, the game play is forgiveable. The plot, which I'm very sure we've all seen before, is that two cops (I think they're cops...it said so in the manual), one American and one Mexican, have to wipe out a gang stationed in California and the partway across the world in Brazil, three levels each, making six total. Not the best, but you have to remember, this isn't the type of game you've been vege-ing out on for every waking moment of your life...*hint hint* Oh, and whoever commented on the game mysteriously going to a forest in one level, I'll clear it up. That's the start of the Brazil half.
On top of all this, all said aspects are what save this game from being as bad as you say. With all this said, you should have a good idea what it's really like. And come on. Most, if not all games today need walkthroughs, have a bazillion endings or just have things you'll never be able to unlock without cheating. I mean, hey, look at Contra. It's got none of these, but it's still got critical acclaim today. Deep down you know you like the occasional mindless beat-em-up, shooter, or platformer. Admit it. They're just SO hard to come by nowadays!
And if you do like this game, there's the equally solid (I emphasize equal) Brawl Brothers, Peace Keepers, and 64th Street, all by Jaleco. The last is an arcade game, the rest are on Super NES just like Rival Turf.
On a final thought, I just want to say that I myself do not regard this as the best game, but it is not nearly the underachiever that you're making it out to be. It's not that this game isn't good enough for you, you're just too good for it. Wake up, my fellow gamers. I stand to make Rival Turf the poster child for unappreciated, understated, and forgotten games.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.5 - Good
Originally Posted: 01/20/03, Updated 01/20/03
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