Review by DarkShieldwham
"From humble beginnings"
It's time to clean the streets with Flak and Nelson! Well, two cops out to take out thugs, that sort of thing. Rival Turf is a mere beat'em up game developed by Jaleco. Who? An obscure company founded in the 70's who have now changed their name and are currently involved with finance and real estate. However, enough of today's current situation, let's talk more about why you might or might not want to play this relic of a game.
Gameplay - We know the story, so how does the fun work? Well, you move up and down side to side lining yourself up and beating people who keep coming back for more beatings. Well, that sounds pretty boring? Although most people who have played this game refer to it as a generic Final Fight clone it has some rather nice subtleties which make the repetitive gameplay much better than Final Fight even if its characters aren't memorable whatsoever.
A common part of playing beat'em ups is managing the bad guys. You want to string weaker hits so that they won't fall down thus killing them faster but stop more of them coming at you so you have to knock them down somehow such as throwing them into others while picking off the weaker ones. In most if not all beat'em ups you are also provided with a "special" attack to get bad guys off you at the cost of some health. Jaleco nailed some of these issues by providing a few options. In the options you can turn off "2Play Hit" which basically means friendly fire. An enormous bane in beat'em ups like Final Fight had albeit more realistic. Nobody wants to suddenly grab and hug the ally while becoming a sitting duck. The options also features "angry mode" which lets you enjoy a small moment of invincibility. It also enhances your throw attacks to give them more oomph. Very nice touch to say the least. And that's just the icing on the cake. Remember those special moves that use up health? They only use health when you make contact and do damage to another enemy or enemies. What a great idea! That's as nice as adding back throws for variety and damage! Wait, that's in the game too!
Sound/music - Tolerable, and a bit dry. The first tune is fairly catchy and would become the main theme of the "Rushing Beat" (Japanese name) series. You'll have to accept that at the time of its release technology wasn't as advanced so always let yourself be immersed in the time period.
Replayability - It's definitely one of those pick up and drop game. The only real maximum enjoyment that can be gleaned from this game is playing with another friend who loves beat'em ups. Otherwise, playing itself requires a lot of appreciation to enjoy the game.
If not for the repetitive enemies and bland graphics with today's standard this game's gameplay would be better than Final Fight . The lack of impressionable characters also hurts the score a notch since these are the characters you'll be using for the entire game. A decent 5/10 to general gamers but 6/10 for its gameplay mechanics. Be sure to check out the review of the sequel "Brawl Brothers" and its vast improvements.
Reviewer's Score: 5/10 | Originally Posted: 10/01/12
Game Release: Rival Turf! (US, April 1992)
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