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streets of rage is a classic side scrolling beat-em-up game for the sega megadrive/genesis. Which involved three young police officers making a stand for justice and peace. The evil mr.X has turned the city into a once thriving peaceful city into a dangerous corrupted place to live. Three young police officers decided to make a stand and confront the evil mr.x and restore the city back to peace, the three officers are Axel Stone, Blaze fielding and Adam Hunter. The gameplay is like most side scrolling beat-em-up games progress from left to right whilst defeating anyone wondering in your general direction. But unlike other beat-em-ups streets of rage has character to it the various different moves each character can perform, the stages you fight in are all different none of them feel the same, and the special move you can perform involves a police car and a bazooka! Your objective is to progress to the next level defeating mr.x's henchmen as you go. At the end of every level you will have to defeat a boss in order to proceed to the next level, until you recah the headquaters of mr.x and put him out of commission once and for all. Each character has their own moves they can perform so no character feels identical to each other. Even though all of this sounds quite simple and boring it isn't streets of rage is the best series for beat-em-up games, the way each levels look, the way the characters can grab and throw enemies into each other, and the music which is composed by top DJ Yuzo Koshiro. Streets of rage is a classic for beat em-up fans and playing with two players is even better. This title may lack graphics but it makes up for in gameplay.
Streets of Rage is a cracking sice-scrolling beat-em-up that sees you taking on an American crime empire, fighting with hoodlums through the city streets. You can choose to play as one of three cops, Axel, a good all-rounder who moves at a medium speed and is of medium strength, black character Adam, who is very slow but packs a real punch, or Blaze, an acrobatic female who is lacking in the strenght department but makes up for this by being light and swift. All characters are well animated with their own unique sets of moves, although I always found it rather frustrating playing as Adam as me moves so damn slowly! Your enemies come in the form of punks, thugs, oriental martial artists and bizarre unicycle-riding jugglers who throw lighted torches at you, and there are some interesting bosses, including a huge guy with a giant metal boomerang, fire-breathing fat men who collapse on top of you due to their excessive weight if you try to throw them around, Freddy-Kruger style opponents with huge metallic claws and finally the generic, suited crime boss Mr Big himself who sprays bullets at you as you fight him in his office, wounding you and his hired good alike. The leves are quite varied, ranging from city streets with bright neon lights and smashed up cars, run-down slums, a beach, Mr Big's corporate headquarters and even an elevator level in which you can hurl your opponents off the side of the lift to their death each time they charge in from the door to each floor. Each character has some great animation and moves, including headlocks, wrestling throws and karate moves, and you can also attack enemies using knives and drainpipes, as well as glass bottles with can be smashed satisfyingly over opponent's heads before being used as a stabbing weapon. You also have special attacks akin to the magic attacks in Golden Axe, except here instead of calling down lightning strikes and the like you radio for backup, at which point a futuristic cop car rolls up a few hundred metres behind you and an officer appears from the sunroof and fires a bazooka at your foes, wiping them out instantly. The gameplay hasn't dated at all and its still great fun fighting your way through the various levels, whilst the graphics still look good considering their age. Streets of Rage is a true classic that would spawn hundreds of imitators, not least of which a sequel which managed to be even better both graphically and gameplay-wise. The original is still hugely fun though, and well worth playing.
I have just recently bought the Sega Mega Drive Ultimate Collection thingy on Xbox 360 (it was known as something else in the states) and started playing the games that made my early years (well most of them, some like Road Rash and James Pond are abcent from the disk, but most of the games I loved as a little kid are in the collection). Of course I was a huge Streets of Rage fan as a child, which Mega Drive/Genesis player wasn't? I'd always regretted the fact I'd never played SoR3 though, it was the one Mega Drive game I always wish I'd played (much like Silicon Valley on the N64), and here was a disk promising me the chance to make up for the years I missed out on the final game of the trilogy. However I made myself a promise, I was to complete the previous game before I could move on. So I'm starting with the games which were the firsts, so theres this and Golden Axe mainly (i'm not doing it for Sonic as the sequels were imo far better), then moving on to the second and then the third...at last. The game was (from memory) on a cartridge (on the mega drive) with a Shinobi game that was always impossible, I think I once managed to get onto the third level as a child and a Golden Axe game (think it was the original) that I could get to the final level on with relative ease, but only finished it once. Though SoR was by far my favourite back then despite the similarites between all three games (2-d side scrolling fighting based games). The genre was at it's peak around then with games like Double Dragon and Final Fight to add the the Golden Axe/Shinobi/SoR/Altered Beast (all on the 360 disk) out at the early 90's late 80's. Now a days the nearest to it would be Viewtiful Joe (merely on bases thats it's "2-d" and side scrolling, though with a lot of modern additions). The genre of my childhood has seemingly died, alas, long live collection disks and ROMs. So onto the actual game which was released in 1991 for the Mega Drive, as "Streets of Rage" in Europe and the USA and as "Bare Knuckle" in Japan. The game was a huge smash (as far as games were back then, before the Playstation took gaming to the mainstream level), and was a hugely enjoyable game of good V evil. It was to be Sega's rival to Capcoms huge Final Fight which had been taken to the home console market under an exclusive deal with Nintendo (for the Super Ninetendo Entertain System/Snes console). The story is based on the good old idea that a city has been over run by criminals who have bad intentions for the place. HThe criminals have bought the governming bodies and the crime provention forces allowing them to run amock across the city with their own free reign. This is where you step in as one of the three characters need to kick ass and save the city and dethrone the all powerful Mr X. The game see's you (and a friend if you wish) controlling either Adam (a boxing specialist), Axel (a bit of a tough guy) or Blaze (a hot judo chick...) who each have their own strengths and weaknesses. Such as Blaze's erm...blazing speed which couples with her relative lack of power, whilst Axels inability to jump more than 2 feet off the ground limits his flying knee move he has more power, whilst Adam has by far the longest reach and hits harder than Blaze. All three are former officers who broke away to fight the good fight and save the city. See good old fashioned Good V Evil, what more could we ask for? The vigilantes have the help of back up (in the form of a police car as the "special"). The car fires either napalm or grenades depending on who called for the back up (player 1 or player 2) which kills all the "normal" opponent on the screen (typically thug types, with the Denim jackets that were popular at the time, people who look like turtles and women with whips...I know what your thinking...and yes...yes it was to a poor innocent little boy like I was back then). The badguys (staying on the theme) do get tougher as you get further on in the game. The first level's baddies usually take a good combo to die, whilst the latter one stake several (the White women from the last level take a damn good whooping to be honest), and they become clever as well. Though through out the game they approach you from both sides of the screen which can make the game relatively problematic it's self, with 5 or 6 enemies all attacking you at once. As well as the typical baddies, you also come across end of level bosses who like your players have their own personalised life bars (something the baddies in the sequels would all have) and often some obvious trait to show they are the boss. Ranging from the Boomer-ranging boss of the first level, to green ninja twins at the end of the 5th level (they are palette swaps of Blaze, but niegh on untouchable). Several of these become mid level bosses, with the Fire Breathing boss of Level 4 becoming an annoyance in level 6 and the wrestler from level three turning up part way through level 5. They all show up in the final level (8) in a tougher form (with out life bars) with the ninja twins being the ultimately a game killing opponent. The levels them selves start off in the city streets with the first two based there, then heads to the beach where the bad guys must have been trying to to top up there tan to impress the boss. The following level is a broken bridge whish is sadly the worst level in the game. The level just seems relatively pointless in all honesty, though could be used in a narative way to show the players are heading onto the boat of level 5 (it made sense in someones head...). The 6th level is based in a factory with some level hazards include a "squishing thing" and a moving floor which can take you into pains way. A good if difficult level that leads you closer to Mr X's hide out, that just happens to be up the top of a giant elevator. The 7th level (which is on the elevator) makes several changes to the rest of the game as theres no real side scrolling, your on the elevator and baddies join you on it. Theres no boss as such, just a matter of fighting your way to the top before you enter the headquarters of level 8. The final level is (even to seasoned gamers) an incredible chellenge as the game again changes slight (with you now scrolling left to right) and with no police back up. The level see's you taking on all the normal bosses through out the level before coming up against the powerful (and gun totting) Mr X in the final battle. Despite the relative lack of levels the game was based on an arcade theme, and back in the days of the Mega Drive battery back up was either non-exsistant or incredibly exspensive (not sure which, but it wasn't until much later with things like Sonic 3 that games fully incoprtated battery back up to full potential on the console). The controls (can't believe I've not mentioned them yet, are simple, with the D-Pad of the old control moving (left to the left stick on the 360) your characters, with the A,B,C button all doing one of "attack", "jump" and "special" (I can't remember them off hand sadly). Making the game simple to control. The characters were also able to pick up items through out the levels, ranging from the point rewards (gold bars and bags of money), the health replenishing (chicken and apple) to the weapons. Now if the game was first released now you'd have seen a certificate of at least 15 because of the the useage of the weapons which made the game so much fun. You could pick up the likes of a baseball bat or lead pipe, a pot of pepper (used to make the opponents sneeze...). But (this is where the 15 rating would have come in) you can also pick up bottles and knives (after the first hit with a bottle, it shashes leaving you with a sharp ended bottle). In this knife concious society, this would have been deemed almost glorification of knife crime. The games music and sound effects are simple but yet when the game was released, no one expected the audio collection of true music of a Rock Band, or the Orchestrial bluster of a newer Final Fantasy. The games simple sounds still appear as relatively solid reminders of where the game comes from, the simple sounds remiscent of many of the games of the console (which seemed to jump hugely in quality for the release of Sonic 3 some 5 years later). The graphics, like the sounds are looking like the (almost) 20 year old game that it is. The characters are relatively blocky and with lots of the graphics looking realtively in need of a polish, however this again gives the game the feeling that your still playing a damned good game where graphics play second fiddle to fun. Something many of the newer games seem to forget is that games are there to be fun, not to be visually admired like a picture. The games that followed in the series did tidy up the graphics significantly but the technology of the day would never have allowed a game that would have shone in todays world. Though this again adds to the charm, the game shows it's age, yet is still as playable as ever, theres betting looking games on the market which are bigger, but even now, very few are better. The game has aged much better than it's "partner in crime" in Golden Axe which looks terrible in comparision, despite still being as playable as ever. The games of my childhood, don't need rose tinted glasses to be enjoyed, as they are still truely top tier games, that could well interest the newer gamers who look beyond how shiney the water looks. Though SoR II is a much improved game (still not played 3...) this is where it started for the series and for me, and so it will always have a piece of my heart, much like your first love. Now if anyone can remember how you beat those annoying twins with out using 3 lives at a time, can you share it with me?
Streets of Rage was one of my favourite games growing up, this game was played on the Segamega Drive consoles, in 1991, amost 20 years later, its still one of the best games I have played, I am not sure if this is because it was fun to play, or because it just reminds me of being a child. The storyline of this game is that you were working for the police, trying to hunt down a bad guy who was causing trouble on the streets, and buying his way to the top of the town so no one could stop him, but firstly to get to him, you needed to get through his men, levels full of them, there is a boss at the end of every level just to make it harder to play as well, the bosses are interesting in this game, one spat fire, another had claws like wolferine on his knuckles etc. This game was quit hard to play and complete, the bad guys that you are constently beating up get harder to kill as the game goes on and the bosses have more health as each level progreses. You have one special move, which is the police throwing flames through a rocket launcher per level which basically wipes out whatever has been hit, so this helps when you are finding the game too hard. The 3 characters you can play with in the game are are ex policemen/women they are: Adam: Has the best boxing moves, does the most damage to bad guys by punching Axel: Mostly good at martial arts, the most popular character as he is in all the Streets of Rage games Blaze: Has juedo moves, doesnt do as much damage as the others The graphics and game concept are quite good in this game for to be made in 1991, there are loads of remakes and demos online, or you could buy it on ebay, or through emulators. I recommend giving it a go if your a fan of retro games though, it truely is a classic.
Console: Mega Drive Genre: Fighting Released: 1991 Now this is a great game for its time and was one of my favourite games for the mega drive. This was the first of three in the series of games and was massive hit for the console. I used to play solely as axel as he had the kickboxing kicks which could knockout any opponent. The aim of this game was to stop the evil leader from ruling the streets. You are able to play as many characters in the game (Adam, Axel, and blaze) which all of them are ex cops. There are two different endings which is divided into good and bad. The bad ending is actually harder to get as you need to get to the final boss with two players intact. I would also recommend the sequels as they too are just as great as this game. The first game was released in 1991 for Sega Mega drive and had higher frame rates. The plots for each streets of rage game had originally been taken from the comics and the soundtrack was also another great addition to this game which is composed by Yuzo Koshiro. The ability to perform different types of combos on enemies and also grapple them and pull them wherever you liked. I used to love the ability to smash phone boxes and also the use of back up which used heavy artillery to help you out from time to time. In my opinion I would rate this as one of the best games of all time.
The definitive beat-em-up, Streets of Rage is best enjoyed on the Sega Mega Drive. The player gets to choose from three players -- Adam - The bruiser, Axel - the all-rounder and Blaze - the agile gymnast. All are police vigilantes set out to investigate and ultimately destroy the evil crime syndicate masterminded by the aptly named and cliche villain - Mr. X. Every time I play this game on the two-player co-operative mode, there is always a huge argument over who gets to be Axel! The gameplay is simplistic, and in keeping with standard beat-em-up theme - Hordes of enemies coming at you from both sides of the screen, - but there are, at the same time many diverse ways to dispatch the gang members and bosses who come after you with knives, baseball bats, fists and smoke grenades! (All of which can also be utilized by the player.) There is also a combo move in which one character jumps off the other's shoulders and delivers a shoulder-slam to the enemy's unsuspecting face, and enemies can be thrown into one another in either direction. There is also a special move which can only be used once or twice per round(There are eight rounds) in which the player 'calls for backup' so to speak, and a cop car pulls up and fires a heavy-duty industrial rocket-launcher, doing tremendous damage to all enemies on-screen. Although it is easy to accidentally use this ability, due to it only requiring the push of one button. Like its sequels however, the co-op mode is arguably much more difficult than the single-player, as the amount of enemies on the screen is doubled, but both players still need to avoid accidentally punching each other in the chops! Whilst Streets of Rage or "Bare Knuckle" in Japan, is only a 16-bit game, unlike its sequels, its minimalist graphics and more realistic environments make it feel a lot more realistic, if a little less visceral than SOR I and II. If you own an Amiga or a Sega, you simply MUST own this title. It is a classic not to be sniffed at!
If you are an original Megadrive owner and played or owned Streets of Rage at the time, only then can you appreciate its greatness. Released in the early 90s as a rival to Capcom's Final Fight, it is simply sublime. Whilst Capcom ported a substandard version of Final Fight to the SNES (the later Mega CD release was virtually perfect, but hardly anyone owned the damn thing!), Streets of Rage sought to take the scrolling beat 'em up genre to new heights. In the early 90s, arcades and consoles were awash with scrolling beat 'em ups of varying quality. The likes of Turtles, Simpsons and Avengers offered four player action with a famous license, whilst Final Fight offered bigger sprites than ever before, with plenty of enemies to smash. Sadly this genre is almost defunct now as it seemed to reach exhaustion as developers ran out of ideas and decent licenses, which is a tragedy. Luckily, thanks to the marvels of emulation and online game purchases, the lkes of Streets of Rage lives on. Considering the hardware differences between the Megadrive and Capcom's CPS1 technology, Streets of Rage is still gorgeous when compared to Final Fight. Whilst Final Fight features large, cartoony graphics, Streets of Rage takes on a much darker tone and atmosphere. From the iconic introduction scenes to the opening few frames where you walk onto the streets, the animation is smooth, the characters well drawn and the sound is sublime. You are one of the few honest cops left in the city. Your colleagues are corrupt and the system has failed. Mr X controls the gangs, the police and the streets. You have to fight your way through hordes of enemies and ensure that justice prevails! Either on your own, or with a friend, you select one of three characters; Axel, Blaze and Adam. In a tried and tested formula, each character has different attributes; Axel is the all rounder, Adam is slow but strong, Blaze is speedy but weak. In two player mode, you cannot select the same character, and any real hero wants to pick Axel, so be prepared to have a row before you even start! You take to the streets and must battle your way over eight levels before confronting Mr X. These stages are your stereotypical beat em up levels; streets, bar, factory, boat, beach, lift, boss' hideout. Each level is lovingly rendered with a stunning soundtrack. One particular moment of sheer beauty is the obligatory lift level where you rise high above the streets, seeing the city glisten and glimmer in the background as the lift takes you higher and higher, closer and closer to your destiny! Each level has its fair share of enemies as well as the odd mid level boss and mandatory end boss. The enemies are nicely varied and generally play fair (except for those girls with the whips) and you never feel cheated when you die. Each boss is different and requires a tactic to defeat, some of these are a bit more frustrating, but that is to be expected! You can fight your opponents in a variety of ways. You can use a standard flurry of blows, jumping attacks, grabs and throws as well as reverse attacks and team attacks. Each character has a slightly different moveset, such as Axel's jump attack is a knee which is less effective than the jump moves of other characters. You need to know your character and understand how to get the best out of them. Most beat em ups feature a special attack which will hurt opponents and drain a small portion of health. Streets of Rage ramps this up and features a superb special attack. Pressing the 'A' button calls up one of your loyal policce friends who arrive in a police car and launch a barrage of flames at your enemies, maiming them badly. You only get one per level (unless you find a power up) and so they are best saved for the bosses. Defeating enemies obviously earns you points, as does completing levels within a timelimit, not using your special attack and the like. It is always good fun to criticise your partners performance when their score is pitiful compared to yours. Extra lives are also awarded for hitting certain hi-scores. A minor complaint is that it would make the game even more competitive if it recorded how many enemies you had each killed, but this is a minor quibble. There are several difficulty levels to complete, and on higher levels, it really is a struggle to complete, which is how things should be. Enemies get faster, more aggressive, tougher and smarter- you will die! There is no 'Mania' mode in the original, but it is not necessary after hard. One of the most interesting features is the final showdown. I will not spoil it for those who have not played, but the game features two endings, one a bit less obvious than the other. This inclusion is a complete shock when you consider how the narrative of these games usually plays out. The first time I saw it, I was freaking out in amazement. It is the most badass ending of any game EVER!!! I still get goosebumps thinking about it. The co-op mode is where the real fun is. As with many beat em ups, you can inflict damage on your buddy, either deliberately or accidently by throwing someone their way). This makes for an intense rivalry as tempers flare and words get exchanged. It is possible to get this game on its own or as part of the Mega Games series (which has two other games on the cartridge). Either option was a bargain at its full price in the early 90s. They can now be picked up for pittance, and this game is a bonafide classic. If you have never experienced the beauty and intensity of this game, then my soul weeps for you. It is essential playing for any gamer.
Streets of Rage was argueably one of the best games to ever be released on the Sega Mega Drive system. It is a platform based beat-em-up with a mean storyline to boot. I remember playing this as a child and thinking how innovative and awesome it really was. There weren't many other games like it, and it drew some controversy as a result. The plot sees the city taken over by an evil crime syndicate, headed by a very nasty man who goes by the name of Mr X. The police are struggling to maintain control of a crime ridden city, and a number of police officers are getting tired of seeing their good city go to ruins at the hand of this syndicate. In a fit of rage at the lack of action by the police, three police offcers decide to quit the force and take matters into their own hands. This is where you come in. You assume the role of one of three characters, each with their own unique hand to hand abilities, both in terms of power and speed. You can play this game by yourself in 1 player mode, or for maximum fun, team up with a friend to fight crime for some multiplayer fun! It's alot more fun with a friend. First we have Axel. Axel is the most average of the 3 characters. His power and speed fall somewhere in the middle of the scale which makes him a good all rounder, and a good character for players who are new to the game. His style specialises in martial arts and his strikes and moves reflect this. The second character at your disposal is Adam. Adam specialises in boxing, which gives him alot of power. As a result Adam hits the hardest out of the three characters. The price he pays for this power, is in his speed. Adam's agility lacks, this makes Adam the slowest out of the three playable characters. The last and by no means least character available, is Blaze. The only female of the group, Blaze boasts good Judo capabilities. Her style is based around this, so she what she lacks in power she makes up in her speed. Blaze won't hit enemies for very much, but she is fast and can deliver good hit combos and move around very speedily too. Blaze is the fastest of the three characters. Because the characters all have their own unique styles, when you are playing them their moves differ slightly. For example, both Axel and Adam will throw a punch when you hit a certain button on the Mega Drive game pad, but hit that same button with blaze and she will deliver a Judo-style palm attack for exammple. It still classes as a punch, but it's very unique and individual to each character. All of the characters have these differences due to their unique fighting backrounds. There are normal hit combos, achieved by mashing the same button a few times, or you can use the D-pad in combination with buttons to achieve ground attacks. Axel's "Chris-to-pher" move is now famous, with everyone having their own version of exactly what he says as he sweeps his fist along the ground. Aswell as the normal hit combos, every character has a special attack. These come in the form of backup from your loyal friends at the police force. At the press of a button they can drive up behind you and fire rocket launchers/flame throwing attacks which wipe out everything fighting you at that specific time. Think of them as the get out of jail card, but you can only use it once per level (with a few exceptions near the end of the game). So, you have to be clever about when you decide to use this ability. Each character has a health bar at the top of the screen, aswell as an indicator showing how many lives you have left. When you die, your body will disappear and you will fall from the sky (or heaven as we used to joke), to start again on full health at the point you left off. Be careful though, unless you're using cheats, lives aren't infinite! You will eventually reach a game over screen, and we don't want that at all! The game is setup in a level based system. So you run along the levels from left to right, fighting as you go. When you reach the end of level 1, level 2 will begin and so on. Although you assume the role of one character personally, in multiplayer you can team up to do some special attacks. One human player can throw another human player for example, launching them into enemies in a kind of ball like attack. This element of teamplay really opens the game up for multiple players, as you can co-ordinate some devastating attacks against the thugs. Be careful though, as this is a beat-em-up, you can also damage your partner. There has been many a time playing when my friends and I would get side tracked in a little fight because some "accidently" let loose with a punch on the other. Of course, our intrepid fighters will need bad guys to beat up, and boy are there bad guys. In fact at times, it seems like they will never end! When you progress through the levels of the game, bad guys come in waves. At first they start off light and easy and they gradually progress to a harder level. Bad guys range from hand to hand fighers, who will simply run up and hit you with basic attacks, while others are "ground attackers". These are a variety of enemy that will run right close to you, and slide along the ground in an attempt to knock you off your feet. Very sneaky indeed! The game somewhat lacks in the generic bad guy skins, as you often see the same skins used, but just recoloured on different levels. As well as the change in clothes colours, these enemies will have their health and abilities adjusted to make them harder or easier. This seems like it would detract from the gameplay, but it really doesn't. You just get used to enemies flying at you and then fighting them back. The forumla is really fun. At the end of every level you will encounter a boss. On one player mode just one boss will spawn, but if you play with a friend a second, identical boss will spawn just to even things up a bit. These guys are special enemies, with more health, special abilities and just generally not very nice. As the levels progess, they get gradually harder and more difficult to beat. By the final level, you eventually have to come face to face with the big boss himself. For those of you who haven't played this game yet though (I can't fathom a reason as to WHY this might be the case, the game is a classic!), I won't spoil the ending. To help you along the way, there are various pieces of food/weapons/money to pick up and use at your will. There are apples and turkeys to eat, these will replenish your health if you are too low. You can also pick up crow bars, and knives to assit you in your attacks. If you get bored of these, feel free to throw them at an enemy in a final attack. There is also money to grab along the way in the form of sacks of money with dollar signs on (American made game). The money has no real application other than adding to your final score at the end of the game. The game was immensely popular in it's time and as a result spawned a successful sequel. The sequel was even more well received but divided the Streets of Rage fan community somewhat, with some prefering the original and others worshiping the sequel. The second Streets of Rage installment went for a slightly different graphical interface, and play style but retained the basic elements that made Streets of Rage a classic. It also offered us more baddies and different playable characters. It was another instant hit for the series. I actually prefer the sequel to the original. A further sequel was made, Streets of Rage 3. The less said about that the better. This game lost all the elements that made Streets of Rage fun, and kind of ruined the series for me a bit. I guess this was inevitable, as it had both alot to live up to and was trying to capitalise on an already very successful genre. All in all, streets of rage came along at a time when the Mega Drive needed a good, beat-em-up platformer. The ability to play alongside friends and fight for the good of an entire city had a really good message behind it. Although press at the time critised it for it's violent content, no one could deny the message behind it and lets face it fun-factor of the game. I wasted many hours as a child playing this with friends, and then many more hours on the sequel. Streets of Rage is a classic in it's own right and if you haven't played it already, you've missed out on a piece of gaming History. Go buy a Mega Drive, search on ebay for an original Streets of Rage cartridge, and prepare to be amazed.