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No Mercy was a huge hit when it came out in 2000. The graphics are pretty sharp for the time, and the gameplay is good - easy to control, but hard to master, as there are moves like block, or reverse which may take a bit of time to master. You can play the game for hours and hours since there are so many things to complete on it. The wrestlers' faces are briliantly made, with each looking like the real guy! There arms are a bit blocky though...
There are a huge amount of moves that you can use to punish your victims. These are all easy to pick up, as main moves are used with A, B and the D-pad. The D-pad will determine what move you do by inputting a certain sequence of directions. You can also do a strong grapple or weaker grapple. There are moves for all different situations, whether your opponent is standing, on the floor (face up and down), on the turnbuckle, or even sitting up. As I said, the moves are easy to carry out. If you do enough damage, your attitude bar will get bigger, and you can get it up more by using the joystick to 'taunt'. You can then do your special move once the bar says SPECIAL, by grappling and using the joystick.
Another great feature is the weapons! Ranging from a steel chair, to a microphone, from a fire extinguisher to a 4x2...even from a massive cheese slice to a trash can! There are more of these, which will cause your opponent to bleed (important in those nasty 'First Blood' matches!
You can customise the rules for exhibition matches. The time, if rope break is on or not, if a count out is on or off, even interferences from the computer! There is also first blood match, or a ladder match, or even a cage match.
You can fight in about 8 different arenas, not to mention all the other rooms back stage that you can fling people into. These include a coridoor, a pool room, a changing room, and a boiler room. When fighting, you can use different button combinations to do different moves. Sometimes you can even do double moves with a partner on another guy!
Another mode of the game is survival. This is where you start in the ring with 3 other competitors. The aim is to punch/throw people out, or pin them, and therefore eliminating them. There over 90 people that come in the ring, and if you win, it will take about an hour! This requires focus and determination! If you personally get a new character out, then you will win them, and be able to play with them in future games. I recommend Shane for this, he has a great punch!
The other game mode is Championship, where you go through a career like pathway, where you can make decisions and reason with other wrestlers using money earned from fights. You can buy yourself protection, and fight other people in fair and unfair matches.
The create a wrestler feature is brilliant, where you have hundreds of options of attire and moves, to make your perfect wrestler. You can also choose their theme music and their attributes. This does take a long, long time if you do it properly though.
Also, when you get money for fights, you can spend it in the 'Smackdown Mall'. This is a great feature, as you can buy moves, attire, weapons and even people!
A massive downside to the game was the memory reliability - or the lack of it. I would spend ages winning things, and making great wrestlers, and then one day, I would turn on the N64, and everything would be wiped off forever. This got too frustrating, so I stopped playing it.
I would say that the game is a better single player game, as you can do more on it, but mulitplayer should not be over looked.
Overall, this is the best wrestling game I've ever played. With so much to do on it, you can play for hours and hours, but the memory thing is an issue.
Up until the Smackdown games really started getting their momentum, the N64's No Mercy game was regarded as the best wrestling game ever made. Looking back, it's not so hot, but it's still a great game with many outstanding visuals.
One of them is not the graphics, though; the arenas look great and some of the objects do too, but the actual wrestler models are diabolical. Due to the N64's poor capacity, each wrestler has one silly looking expression, and it's very low-res (and was even for its time), which doesn't mesh well with the considerably better-rendered bodies of each wrestler. The collision detection is also pretty poor (as is true of most all wrestling games), meaning that wrestlers will often pass right through each other. Aurally, the game is decent although quite minimal, and that menu song will get irritating quite fast ("Dig dig diggity, dig diggity dawg!").
Control-wise, it's as easy to use as the previous game, WrestleMania 2000; it's a lot more arcade-like than Acclaim's ridiculously contrived games like WWF Attitude, and here it just takes one button press to do a move most of the time. It's easy to pick up which is great for the casual player, and the AI isn't too difficult once you get used to the controls, and before you know it you'll be steamrolling your opponents in Career Mode. It would have been nice for there to be some more game modes, but the Royal Rumble mode is extremely fun and well worth getting the game for in itself.
There are some annoyances in this game; the visuals are inconsistent and there are glitches, but the huge roster and intuitive gameplay makes it still one of the best wrestling games ever, and probably the best of its generation until the Smackdown games abounded.
It's been a while since there was a really good wrestling game, but lets not forget the time when there was some great games in the genre. For those than can remember the early THQ published wrestling games on the N64 they will be able to remember a time when wrestling games we're fun to play, limited but fun. Starting with the original WCW game (WCW v NWO: World Tour) based on the then huge World Champion Wrestling and it's major faction of the time the New World Order. The game created by AKI was over hauled by the same developers when the sequel WCW n now: Revenge was released in 1998, a game that was effectively the bench mark of wrestling games at the time.
With Acclaim's license of the WWF license running out THQ took over the reigns (whilst Acclaim went and purchased the ill fated ECW one) and in 1999 released WWF Wrestlemania 2000. The game took much of what had made the WCW games brilliant and extended them, making them better and adding a create a player made and a proper single player mode. The king of wrestling game makers had finally been given the chance to create a WWF game they had done it brilliantly, though it was still lacking some things it was by far the best wrestling game up to that point.
Then No Mercy arrived (like Wrestlemania it was named after a WWF PPV) and re-wrote the book on how wrestling games were made. Keeping the same engine as the earlier games was a given, why change with what was a brilliant game engine, though it's what they did with the rest of it that showed just how to take wrestling games. The single player "career" mode was a complete overhaul on what had come before it, this time with multiple routes through each title, and despite each story being "short" the replay came in doing every possible route (unlocking new things along the way). The different routes we're unlocked depending up on outcomes of the matches the player had which was totally revolutionary, and although the idea was tried in Smackdown: Just Bring It! It was only No Mercy that seemed to do it correctly and the idea which showed genius was to be almost dropped afterwards. During career mode they player would earn money to spend in game to unlock more stuff mainly for the excellent create a wrestler (CAW) mode that the game had which improved on the previous games in every single dimension.
However what really set it apart from the previous games in both the THQ/AKI series and the WWF (N64) games series was what was added. Following on from the EA developed WCW Thunder it allowed players to go "backstage" and fight away from the front of the arena and the ring. This in turn leant it's self well to falls count any where matches and a sort of back room brawl theme could be had for the hardcore matches. The final big addition was ladder matches which themselves had been absent from previous games almost unbelievably so, and although not one of the most fun match modes on the game, the addition to use them is one of the best things. Seeing some created giant sumo wrestling flying off the top of a ladder is one of gamings best experiences.
With a huge roster of characters from the WWF at the time (well over 40) from the rather obscure like The Cat and Ho to the world title levels fighters like HHH, The Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin, The Undertaker and Mandkind. The game however did omit The Big Show and replaced him with Stevie Richards, funnily at the time of the games release The Big Show was rather well known but dropped to a training camp to help him become a bit less big.
The game in single player made had set the bar higher than ever before in a wrestling game, showing exactly how to do it, and it could be argued has been unequalled to date (though Smackdown fans will likely disagree with that). It was also the multiplayer mode of the game that helped the game impress as up to 4 players did battle in one of the most fun experience enjoyable on the console, with simple controls it was easy for anyone to pick up and play though the better players we're almost always going to win.
Graphically the game was a large step up but also kept the trademarks of the AKI games, they we're blocky and solid rather chunky looking but yet realistic. The looks of course don't hold up to today's standards, and the fans of the Smackdown games on the Playstation will feel it's all a bit slow and deliberate as opposed to the fast and stick like games on the Playstation, they we're excellent for the time and the limited console they we're on.
The game remains a favourite with myself and proof that amazing wrestling games can come about, even though now a days they do just seem to be cash cows with no differences from game to game. Sadly it would seem that SmackDown 3:Just Bring It! Which was the most experimental game in the wrestling genre in recent times, hurt the genre more than anything as it seemed so half assed and poor. THQ need to try something new or they will fall into the EA trap of releasing the same old thing ever year, though with the WWE (as it's now known) having a strong and loyal fan base, THQ seem like they won't need to worry about fans getting fed up.
When THQ developed their engine for WCW/n.W.o. World Tour, we knew they were on to something. A wrestling game without an energy bar…like it should be. Finally, a game where the player couldn’t be whittled down to unconsciousness and pinfall by moves that should never pin a wrestler. Like in Wrestlefest, when a backdrop would take a quarter of your energy. Instead, we run on spirit. If your wrestler was down to almost no life, he could reverse a move and make a comeback, delivering his finisher, and ending the match. But the finisher wasn’t always the end-all, be-all. You could kick out of it!!! Now, THQ delivers No Mercy, the fourth installment (second WWF) in the series of games using World Tour engine. Following up on the enormous success of Wrestlemania 2000, the best selling wrestling game ever, No Mercy tries to deliver much of the same with just enough of a new spin to make the sixty bucks less painful. The Pros First and foremost, the season feature on No Mercy is probably the best I’ve seen. The goal in every match isn’t just win win win. Yes, there is winning involved, obviously, but it’s the way you win. In one section, your character challenges Chyna and makes a Taz-like guarantee of victory in under three minutes. In another, your character must make his (or her, as we’ll discuss) opponent bleed. In yet another, he must hit his opponent with a weapon a certain number of times. But like I said, winning isn’t everything. In some instances, your character must make a run-in to ensure someone else loses and further a feud. In others, the story will advance even if you lose. The best part? When you win the belt, the season isn’t over. In fact, the season is only about 20% complete. You continue along, sometimes turning heel, turning on partners, getting turned on, and getting attacked during interviews. Also, it doesn’t have the Wrestlemania 2000 nonsense wher
e your character holds every title. Each belt has it’s own independent storyline. When you win the belt, it’s released in the game, and you can defend it against anyone, including friends. But, when you return to your season, whoever won the belt is still the champion and you have to win it back. A new feature in No Mercy is the Smackdown Mall. As you progress in your seasons, your wrestler earns a salary, paid at the end of every match. The Smackdown Mall gives you incentive to keep playing after you’ve unlocked the belts. To release secret characters, more outfits, more moves, more arenas, and more weapons, you have to buy them. Shawn Michaels, for example, costs $50,000….good to see that being out of wrestling hasn’t affected him. Guess how much the Rock’s $800 shirt costs to release. Nope…Actually, you don’t want to know. The money you make depends on the importance of the match. A title match earns you $2000, while a run-in might earn you a couple hundred. The money from all the storylines combine together as a lump sum. You also release some characters in your seasons, along with the ones you buy. So far, I’ve managed to release Andre the Giant and Cactus Jack. I’ve also seen Linda, Vince, Shane, and Michael Cole. Another great new feature is the women wrestlers. Lita, Ivory, Trish, and the others are all in the game and they can hang with the male wrestlers. Reaching out to the extensive female video game/wrestling fan (eh, if only), THQ has made it actually feasible to wrestle with some of the women of the WWF. In fact, Lita has already been my world champion, taking the belt from none other than HHH. Next, the weapons. So far I’ve seen the “unforgiving” steel steps, which begin every match in position. The announce table also sits innocently at ringside, just begging to have someone Pedigreed or Rock Bottomed through it. Random wea
pons include a sledgehammer, Head, a kendo stick, a title belt, a water bottle, a steel chair, and a fire extinguisher. The weapons, when dropped, don’t mysteriously vanish like they do in the game’s predecessors, but remain in the ring and can also be thrown at your opponent or out of the ring if you’re a by-the-book type. Speaking of weapons, we move on to the ladder match. This is probably the most fun you can have with No Mercy. The ladder, as it should be, starts in the entryway. At some point in the match, one of the wrestlers has to bring the ladder in the ring, and then the fun begins. The ladder can act as a weapon, a springboard, or something to slam someone on. If you slam someone on it, it makes a satisfying, you-just-got-slammed-on-a-ladder noise. If your opponent is climbing, you can jump off the turnbuckle and dropkick it down, charge into it, or try to rip the other guy off. If you climb up the other side, the two of you can duke it out at the top. Pretty much the only way to win this is to knock your opponent out with your finisher or two, and then climb while he’s in danger. Anything else, he will likely get up before you can get to the belt (or the briefcase, if no belt is on the line). A three-way ladder match, you may as well forget about, especially if you’re playing two people who are good at the game. You are looking at knocking them both out with your finisher and then trying to get to the top before the first one gets up. Our first three way ladder match clocked in at 49 minutes. So, unless you have incredible patience, save it for one on one title matches. The backstage areas that I’ve seen are pretty impressive as well. The Acolytes Bar, the Parking Garage, the Locker Room, the top of the stage, and the hallway are the only ones I’ve seen, but each of these come with ready to break tables (of the pool variety in the bar) and ready to use weapons (trash cans in the parking garag
e). They are a terrific addition for hardcore matches. It also includes a Booking Room and Boiler Room. Finally, the animation of the characters is incredible. Like in WM2K, the Rock does “Rock Punches” where he twitches first. Austin does the same. Every character’s mannerisms have been pinned down to a tee. All the way to Tazz (for anyone who remembers when Tazz used to wrestle and occasionally win) lifting a guy up a little, setting him down, and then suplexing him. The Worm has been included as a special taunt, with the crowd “whoo, whoo, whoo-ing” along with Scotty. They must have taken some extra time here, and it really shows. The characters, as has been the trend, look a little more “real” this game, with the faces being a little more realistic than the last game, as the faces in WM2K were a little more realistic than the ones in Revenge, and etc. The Cons While one of the pros of No Mercy is the game engine, it’s also one of the cons. This engine was revolutionary when it was created, but is now becoming dated. In fact, the only new feature is the running grapple. As before, where you could only run at your opponent and do a “B” punching move to him, now you can run at him and hit him with an “A” button grapple. While I assume there is a counter for it, probably as simple as timing the “L” button to counter a regular grapple, I have yet to find the timing. Another thing the engine suffers from is horrific slowdown. When four wrestlers are in the ring or in an area, the game does not handle it well. I don’t know if the N64 Expansion Pack does anything to counter this, but if you don’t have one, definitely expect some form of slowdown in every Royal Rumble or Four Way Dance you try. Next gripe, THQ still hasn’t done anything about the engine’s AI. You can still, pretty much, taunt your way special and pin a guy in
under two minutes. Then, if you do it enough, the AI jacks itself up to the point where you can’t touch the opponent with anything and you have to deal with trying to win with everything you throw at him being reversed. Also, in three way dances, the third opponent will not break up the pin most of the time, even though to do so would be in his best interest. Tag Partners don’t break up pins as consistently as in WM2K and I have yet to be knocked off a ladder, or even see an opponent attempt to climb it. As the season feature gets more complex, it would be better if THQ do something about making the computer a touch smarter, without getting it to a point where you want to throw the controller across the room. Every game needs to have some form of “throw the controller” toughness, but not while in the midst of a side feud with Crash Holly. A personal gripe I have is with the guest referee feature that was carried over from the first Smackdown game. The guest referee is a fun idea. You and one of your friends wrestle, while a third friend controls the guest referee. These matches are fun about the first forty-two seconds, until whoever’s playing the ref decides which side he’s on. The rest of the match usually consists of both guys wrestling, with the ref occasionally interjecting himself and knocking someone down, getting special and delivering his finisher to one guy or the other, and then not counting the pinfall for whoever covers. Both of the special guest ref matches I’ve been in ended up with the referee and the opponent getting the Stunner and Austin leaving the ring to get counted out. Personally, I think it’s pointless. Another small problem I have is the cutback on the entrances. Instead of the full entrance from WM2K, you only get the guy stepping out under the Titantron, walking partially down the aisle, and then you cut to the next guy. I think they would have been better served just el
iminating the Titantron’s all together, as they haven’t been improved on any. They’re still choppy and stop-motion like. They would have been better served leaving the entrances intact. Although in this version, they have seven scores of original music (two of which are really good) so you don’t have to have a wrestler’s music. What it basically comes down to, though, is if you liked World Tour, Revenge, and WM2K, then you will like this game. You can pick up a controller and get started like it’s the same thing. Personally, they can keep this engine forever and I will never get bored, but somewhere along the line, they’re going to have to vary this theme more than they’re doing. They’ve released four of the same game, with different faces, giving a little improvement each time. If the following games hadn’t been released, I would still be playing World Tour, because the Attitude engine just doesn’t do it for me and the Mayhem engine is god-awful. I won’t criticize Backstage Assault just yet, because I haven’t played it, but I’m sure it’s forthcoming. They definitely have improved on everything in No Mercy, with the exception of the slowdown. There are more options. The sound is a lot better, with the entrance music of each wrestler included again and sounding clearer. The graphics have improved, the faces of the wrestler actually, you know, looking like them this time around. They even managed to improve on the Create a Wrestler mode which, if you’re a fan of WM2K, you know was the best one ever. I created myself, down to the glasses and the goatee, and it was impressive how much the character looked like me. I haven’t found my face in No Mercy yet, but I’m working on it. The gameplay, well, see the gripes about the AI and the slowdown. But the lastability, if you have friends that are into wrestling and video games, is incredible. You all
can spend many a Friday or Saturday tossing a few (sodas) back and playing this game till four in the morning. Is it worth it? If you’re the type to play by yourself, looking for a great season mode, and have already beaten WM2K with every wrestler, including Terri Runnels, then hell yes, pick it up and go to town. If you and a bunch of friends just like to get together and play and £35 or whatever is a tad much for you, then keep playing Wrestlemania 2000 and you won’t be missing all that much. Overall, I think Wrestlemania 2000 was a much better improvement over Revenge than No Mercy is over Wrestlemania 2000. But, if you’re a WWF fan, then it’s definitely worth a look.
It's obvious, even before No Mercy was released, that AKI dominates the wrestling computer games market, not only in terms of sales but in terms of quality. Acclaim and others have tried and failed, WWF Attitude was appalling, and nothing on the excellent WWF Wrestlemania 2000. Therefore, even though this is a new game and some fans might like to see a total change from the prequels (WCW/NWO World Tour, WCW/NWO Revenge, WWF Wrestlemania), it's actually much to my glee that they chose to stick with the tried-and-tested formula used in aforementioned games. Basically, No Mercy uses the same control system, except with a few little tweaks here and there, and all for the better. Now you can execute front grapple moves by pressing L from a back grapple, you can perform back grapple moves on the turnbuckles (including a nasty-looking backdrop and frankensteiner) and you can put your opponents through the "spanish announce table" (a long-running wrestling joke/gimmick). Also, you can now battle in backstage areas, but unfortunately this is probabaly one of the few downsides of the game - there simply isn't enough goign on in these backstage areas, and in fact i personally prefer the ringside. Fans of the "hardcore" style of wrestling might be disappointed with this, but it is a start and hopefully later versions of this series (please THQ/AKI!) will expand on this so that we can see people being powerbombed through 3 tables from a balcony (oh how i miss ECW!) However there are plenty of upsides I haven't mentioned yet, like the much-improved "career" section, which now takes the form of championship challenges for any of the sacred WWF titles (as well as the Hardcore, Tag Team, European, Light-Heavyweight and Intercontinental ones). Compared to WM2K, well it doesn't compare - THQ/AKI did this bit just right, and I still haven't managed to find all of the storyline paths in this mode. Another
big change is the idea of earning credits which can unlock new weapons, moves, clothes and even wrestlers in the "Smackdown Mall" - this really does add to the addictiveness factor as you stay up all night just to get enough for the Armageddon arena. Of course, wrestling is all about the moves though (oh it's not? well i think it is anyway....) and in No Mercy there are yet more tasty moves to execute upon your poor unsuspecting opponent. However, there are some problems in my opinion - first of all, most of the WWF wrestlers who have pre-programmed, non-editable moves have too many similarities. Maybe, on the upside, this stimulates the creative part of your brain to create some kickass wrestlers to destroy those WWF jobbers in Championship mode, the create-a-wrestler bit of the game is very user-friendly. The other problems with the moves is that some seem to have unrealistic damage points -piledrivers can be done from a weak grapple and only give D damage at best (surely wrong!) This really needs to be sorted out in future releases, because I like a realistic bout! The damage ratings themselves though have improved somewhat, now going all the way down from A to G (G being weakest moves) with an S for some Special moves, as opposed to WM2K's A-E. The inclusion of ladder matches is welcome although again it'd be nice if ladders could be used backstage for some ECW style action. Maybe the weapons in the game could be used more effectively, rather than just being used to hit the opponent or thrown at them. It'd be nice to see an Air-Sabu (see Hardyz' Poetry in Motion) or the beautiful Van Daminator (and please the Van Terminator too:)) All in all, No Mercy is really addictive, has a good range of options, but the main problem is that most fun will come with it from your own ingenuity with creating wrestlers. That said however, it's still the game I play most of the time on my N64, even after 14 months. If
you like wrestling, buy it.
Wrestling there isn’t really much to say about it , a bunch of sweaty Americans having a play fight, not really my sort of entertainment. So you can understand that at first I was quite sceptical about getting No Mercy, but I wanted a fighting game and let’s face it the only other kinds of beat em ups available for the N64 are either cartoon button bashers or Xena the Warrior Princess. When I first got the game home I turned it on too hear the most cliché Wrestling music possible, some weird sort of mullet rock number, I really started to wonder what I had let myself in for. It was only when I started to explore the game menus to find more options than you can shake a steel chair at, that I realised that maybe there was some fun to be found in the so called WWF. From the moment I entered the ring for the first time I was hooked, numerous days of pile driving, face slapping and somersault twisty things followed. I was hardly seen outside my bedroom for a good week, only occasionally emerging for food and the odd toilet break. Not since Perfect Dark had I been this hooked on a game, I found myself staying up into the early hours of the morning just trying to get the next belt. With over 65 Wrestlers, tons of different match types including Iron Man, First Blood, Submission, Cage, Hardcore (take you opponent out back and smash him through a pool table) Ladder match (damn good fun with some friends)and many more, you really get your moneys worth. The single player is absolutely immense; it consists of two main sections. The main mode is Championship, in this you choose which belt you want to go after, then the game takes you down a story driven path until you finally get a shot at the title. The outcome of your matches changes the story as you go along. One thing that really made me laugh is in the women’s tournament they have a Bikini Contest, watching these stupidly proportioned freaks of nature walk around in bikinis i
s just hilarious. The other single player mode is Survival, which is basically like a big never ending royal rumble, in which you have to knock a continuous supply of wrestlers out of the ring. The main reason for survival mode is to get money, which you also earn in the Championship mode. Which brings me on too the Smack down Mall, this is one of the options in the game that nearly made me fall backwards off my chair. All it is a shop where you spend the money you earn from the single player game, but there really is so much to buy, there are literally hundreds of items ranging from A foam finger to new arenas to fight in. I have been playing the game for months now, but still I have only managed to unlock about half of what’s available. It really would take some serious hours spent on the game to even come close to buying it all. The main part of the game that I enjoy is the Multiplayer; in my mind one of the best 4 player games on the system. There are so many options and things to fiddle with that the possibilities are almost infinite. Get some mates round, get the beers in (or coke) and organise your own pay per view, you will just keep wanting to come back for more. All this and I haven’t even mentioned how easy the moves are too pull off and how well they flow together, there’s no finger breaking button combinations in this game, hell no everything ranging from a slap to a Pedigree is just a buttons press away. Hell I haven’t even mentioned the create a player mode, the most in depth player creation tool I have ever seen. I managed to make an exact likeness of Hulk Hogan, and don’t even try telling me seeing the Hulkster come out to Real American wouldn’t raise a smile. Hell it’s even got old ladies in swimming costumes if that’s what your looking for? not being a Wrestling fan myself I am happy too say that this game is still DAMN good, anyone who has any intres
t in Wrestling or fighting games should own a copy, you won't be dissapointed. WWF NO MERCY = OH HELL YEAH
Is there any more fun to be had than watching big oily men with bad hair throw each other around? Well, maybe only playing as them! WWF gives you and up to 3 mates the opportunity to take on the role of one of over 60 wrestlers, and beat each other up in any way you see fit. Whether you choose to use weapons, drop your opponent through a table, or just do it the old fashioned way with the hundreds of wrestling moves at your disposal, including the signiture moves for each wrestler, you're bound to have fun. There are plenty of different types of match available, with the best of them being fatal-four way matches, Royal Rumbles, and ladder matches. You can also fight in a cage, or or a number of backstage areas, just to give a little variety to the environment. The game also excels in single player, with the option to go after 7 different titles. They become a rather impressive story mode, with your results dictating what path you must take next on your quest towards the gold! WWF No Mercy is a very easy game to get into, and you'll learn to perform all sorts of manouvres with relative ease. As you play more, you'll also learn to reverse you're opponents moves, very handy to stop them gaining the upper hand! The artificial intelligence in the game is rather impressive, if you use the same move all of the time your opponent is more likely to reverse it, so this encourages more tactical matches, and you'll have to use your full range of moves to beat the tougher wrestlers! A 'create a wrestler' option is available, so you can keep the game up to date, by adding any newcomers to the WWF. You can also edit the existing wrestlers, which can lead to much hilarity when fat The Rock takes on 4foot Undertaker! The graphics are superb, amongst the best on the N64, with the wrestlers looking just as they should. Sound and music is also top drawer stuff, with all of the wrestlers theme tunes inclu
ded, and crunching sounds when you connect with the right moves! This is far and away the greatest wrestling game available for the N64, and amongst the best games of all N64 releases. It comes highly reccomended, as both a great stress reliever, and fantastic entertainment!
After learning that THQ were going to be taking over the official WWF licence from Acclaim and relieving us of the pain of seeing The Rock looking "that damn ugly" in a video game again, I was praying that they wouldn't mess with the WCW vs NWO series and just put the new characters in. And by golly, they did! Wrestlemania 2000 was a far superior game to the Playstation's WWF Smackdown! for a number of reasons. Firstly, it was ALL you. You always felt in control of the action and as if all of the moves were actually performable. Secondly, the game ran at a speed more akin to real life wrestling than Smackdown's high speed, hyperactive, arcade style action. And so to the sequel... WWF No Mercy is my favourite game on the N64 so far. Goldeneye, Mario 64, ISS 2000 and Zelda were all great games, but I've come back to this more often. It feels just like being in the WWF. You create your character, dress him/her, choose the music and video that accompanies them to the ring and then go through the encyclopaedic moves list, selecting the ones that you would like you character to perform. Or if that's not your cup of tea, take one of the 40+ real life WWF superstars into the ring. All of which are superbly rendered, have superb animation and their authentic finishers and special moves. There are 8 titles to compete for in a variety of different match types. You can build your own Pay-Per-View and see how it goes down with the audience, play the Championship/Story mode and go up against the odds to get the title belt or just hammer it out against a buddy in an exhibition match. As you progress through the story mode, you earn WWF Dollars which can be spent in the newly featured "Smackdown Mall". The mall contains new characters to buy, new arenas, new moves and a whole host of new clothing for your created wrestlers. The story mode must be wrestled several times to be compl
eted. You may get the Heavyweight belt after 8 matches or so, but that's not it. To complete the story, you must defend your title, win it back if you lose it, and make sure that you come out on top....whatever it takes. It would be remiss of me to finish this review without saying that the new "ladder" match works INCREDIBLY well and is great fun with a pal. Matches can last anything up to an hour, just like real life, and it's a FUN hour, not just boring old punches and kicks, but moonsaults, sunset flips, neckbreakers and all the rest. No Mercy controls like a dream (the same as THQ's other N64 grapplers) and sounds great. For me, this is one of the few N64 games that I feel was actually worth £50. BUY IT!
Every little boys dream is marching down to the ring and beating up countless groups of evil bad guys, but usually all the gym work involved leaves many people short of the neccessary attributes to get the chance. So this game is truly an outlet with which we can stop mindless lager lauts like Stone Cold Steve Austin from eating solid meals again. My experiance of wrestling games is quite broad, when I first got my Nintendo 64 I purchased WWF Warzone, and was delighted at it's realisim and brake through into the relm of "create a wrestler" Although this was nothing but an appitite teaser as I was constantly thinking "If only I could......" and "he's changed his angle now, but he's still the same here....." and the limited array of moves really began to dig at me after a while, nevertheless I completed the game and never really tired of playing the odd match, until WWF Attitude came out. And this game was the same engine but with a whole wealth of new options. The expanded on the create a wrestler option by realising my dream of allowing you to choose individual moves for my grapplers. But I soon completed that, and still wanted more. So I turned to the already released WCW vs NWO world tour, which had been out for a while and quite slated in magazine reviews. But this showed me another type of game with the game really based at an arcade style. This game (the first to use the WWF No Mercy Engine) was limited graphically and the options were a bit minimal, but there was something in the game that kept me coming back. So when wcw vs nwo revenge came out, they had added to te options, much the same as the WWF series, and had a small dabble in the create wrestler mode. But in my oppinion didn't really surpass the quality of WWF Warzone. So my loyalties were firmly with the WWF Attitude style set up. So imagine my annoyance when the wwf license was sold to the people who made the WCW games. I thought that they would
just change the charactors and stick it on the shelves. But they didn't, they obviously had seen the market for the WWF logo, and wanted to produce a game that surpassed all others, and as they had quashed the compitition they had no pressures to get it out there to steal sales. So they really worked on it, and delivered probably the N64's best beat em up game and definately the best wrestling game. The options were vast and deep, the modes were enjoyable, the graphics were much improved, and the whole game had a more polished feel that was absent from the previous THQ incarnations. I however was going through a bit of a cash flow crisis, and could only briefly borrow it from a friend, so I wasn't treated to the full experience. After a while my money problems had cleared and I was ready to enjoy the game, but I read in a magazine that the next wwf game was well underway and ready for buying in under a month. So I with held from my wrestling games for over a month so that I could fully appreciate this one when I finnally bought it. And did I enjoy it! I turned it on and was greated with a visual treat as to what was in store. For wrestling fans this demo/intro was superb. For years I have not understood why advertising for wrestling games didnt' show a clip of actual footage and then after show the same type of thing in the game. (EG Rock bottom on Stone Cold through a table) As this would show the fans that it really was in tune with what they were watching, and they'd buy it. Well this intro showed loads of difining moments in the recent wwf shows as in game moments. The rock running into the ring and laying the smack down on the macmahons. Stephanie slapping Test, and then Stepanie attempts to slap linda and she blocks and returns the favour. Jeff Hardy winning a ladder match. The Dudley Boys 3-d'ing Edge. Triple H pedigreeing Mick Foley in a cage. The Rock, Rock Bottoming HHH through the announce table. The Rock doing the peopl
es elbow in the middle of the ring. The list goes on. I have never tired of watching it. And it certainly leaves you ready for action and you are not kept waiting. The matches themselves are very realistic and the carnage you can cause is very "grin-worthy." I thought that I'd start by using The Rock, as almost everybody knows his moves and style. So I did, and after a severe pummelling of Grandmaster Sexay I was very happy indeed at my purchase. The moves are absolutely spot on, the music, the taunts, the walk, everything. Not only that, but during my match, HHH interfered!! I was half happy that the game could manage it, and annoyed that I was getting teamed up on. One pedigree later and I was convinvced that the people who made this game were generally wrestling fans and knew what they were doing. I then had a little explore of the other features. The array of matches took me some time, as I just couldn't leave them untried. Ladder triple threat matches. Hell in a cell first blood matches. Iron man matches. and guest referee matches. Where you actually get to be the referee and count a pin, call a submission, and interfere against anyone you wish. I finally got to a stage where I thought I was able to switch over to the next menu. and was presented with career and survival matches. I guessed about the career, but had a go at survival. It is, as it's name suggests, a survival of the fittest. It was set out like the royal Rumble, and the rules were the same, but this time you had to try to stay in the ring as long as you could, and 100 wrestlers will come in, in turn, and try to get you out. And it isn't easy. I managed 14 before Rikishi kicked my in the chin and toppled me over the ropes backwards. Then after the match, you were rewarded WWF money for your efforts. I was oblivious as to its use until I turned the menu again. I went into the "Smackdown Mall" and seeing a rather strange option in a wrestling game, went i
nto the section marked Shop. Inside was a huge amount of costumes, tatoos, glasses, gloves, moves, weapons, secret wrestlers, arenas and more. I was truly like a kid in a candy store. And my $4000 I got was quickly gone on a fire extinguisher weapon, and a pair of boxing gloves. Happy as punch I went in search of the "Create a Wrestler mode" I also found such options as, edit a superstar, name stable, edit stable, al of which seemd to hold more than the name suggests. But I stayed loyal to the cause and got into the create a wrestler mode. This mode is by far the best I have ever seen. No exaggeration. You get to name him, dress him, choose his favourite weapons, choose his moves, choose how often he is likely to bleed, high tall he is, how heavy he is, the shape of his head as well as his face, which wrestlers dislike him, and which ones would accompany him to the ring, which parts of his body are good at recieving hits, and which parts are good at delving them out, how good at submission moves he is, how far he can jump. I will stop there because I think you get the picture. It was the moves that took the longest, as there are moves for the unlikliest situations. And there are thousands to choose from, even with specially created moves which aren't in use by any other wrestlers, but look just as deadly. Infact I think if there was a special move that you wanted then I bet it is on the game somewhere. The depth of this game is still astounding me, almost a year after I bought it. I still haven't bought everything in the shop, and there are many career paths that I haven't taken. The caree is set up in a type of flow diagram style. You start off trying to get a certain belt. You fight a match, if you win you will go one way, and if you lose you will go another. If you win that one you will go one way and lose another and so on. You also get money from winning these matches, and each match is different. One match you might ge
t a lucky win over D'lo Brown. And next you could be in a bar room brawl against the accolytes (not adviseable). The flow of these matches is also very good, with each one usually tying in with the last in some way. And the variety of stipulations for matches are almost as varied as the WWF. Another example I recently tagged up with Shane Macmahon, and he told me to try to injure The Rock, and in order to do this successfully I had to put him through a table. Also, while I'm here, I would like to express my happiness that when you do a move on a weapon, like a chair of steel steps, the noise rattles out and extra damage given off, really like that. Anyway. I love this game, I play it religiously, I have created all of the new wrestlers since it came out, and moved them in in place of the ones who have left. (And with the recent WCW/ECW Invasion that wasn't easy, I can tell you!) But this game has everything. I cannot praise it enough. I did have problems with the bug in the past but got it exchanged for a bug free one with no extra cost. The depth, the graphics, the moves, and the fluidity make this an absolute must for wrestling and beat 'em up fans alike. And thats the bottom line.....
No mercy is the gretest wrestling game yet with the hidden table matches and the exelent ladder match but the down side is that theres no hell in the cell and you have to do loads to get the table matches (every thing on 100%) the move are great the hardness is varied and the entrensess are ok i cant put the game down and i would advise anyone to buy it so pull out 50 pounds and run to the shops and buy it and have loads off fun.
I have played alot of wrestling games in my life and this one absolutely knocks the stuffing out of any I have ever played. The first thing people would use against this game is that the game-engine is very old. A good 4 or 5 years old but the fact remains that it is still the BEST. Firstly the game-engine is so good because of the way moves are executed. The graphics are not the most realistic but they give the game a certain feel, and the moves look incredibly realistic. Not jerky like Smackdown on the PSX, but the motion is almost identical to watching the moves performed in real life. Speaking of which there are more moves to select from than any other game when creating your own character to rise up the ranks of the WWF. The career mode has advanced alot from the last version of this game, in that now you must choose a particular title to pursue, and then you enter storylines that have past been used in the WWF. Another big new feature is the backstage fightning. One of the most highly-anticipated additions to the game for fans of Wrestlemania 2000, the previous version. This lets you fight in the parking-lot, the locker-room, even the pool-hole! And now with even more weapons you can attack your most hated wrestler with a snooker cue, a foam hand, the steel ring steps.... almost anything! Perhaps the most breath-taking new feature though is the ladder match, where you can jump straight off the top and crush an opponent from a 20 foot drop. And if you get bored of all that dragging an opponent onto the announce table and smashing them through with your favourite move is always enjoyable. Despite all the new features nothing in the game has been taken out, the popular royal rumble game is still therefor a good four player battle. I find it hard to see how the makers of No Mercy will ever better the game, it has nearly everything you could want from a wrestling game. Wrestling fans will love this game. Non-wrestling fans will
probably love this game. Definately the best multiplayer game I have ever played.
The best wrestling game to hit the N64 since Wrestlemania, No Mercy is huge. There are over 65 wrestlers including the ate Andre The Giant and Shawn Michaels, with a fabulous Create-a-wrestler mode. More options than ever before! More than 10 Arenas, from No mercy to Armageddon to wrestlemania, with backstage areas such as a bar and changing room. Many game modes such as Ladder, TLC, Tag etc. and an excellant story career mode. But by far the most innovative part of the game is Smackdown Mall. Here you can buy Costume parts, weapons, moves, characters and arenas with the cash you earned in the Career mode. Many secrets are opened as you progress through the game, including new game modes and characters. This game also has a great hardcore match where you can use weapons such as a giant cheese, ring bell its great fun and i am reccomending this game to anyone with an N64 and who loves wwf.
The sequel to the best-selling WWF Wrestelmania 2000 is finally here, but does it live up to the hype? Is it better than Smackdown 2? Have THQ done the job? And more importantly, can Scottie 2 Hottie do the worm? The answers? Yes, yes, yes, and yes! From the moment you turn the game on, the games smacks of authenticity. You are treated to a brilliant game-rendered intro, which is fully customizable (you can change the Rock to look like Angle, or one of the women to look like good old JR). Then, once in the game proper, you have many options: Exhibition, Career, and Smackdown Mall among others. The first thing you notice is loading. Whereas Smackdown 2 needed long, long loading times, No Mercy is on a cartridge, so you get instant loading. This is most evident in the backstage arenas and the Royal Rumble. The graphics are also far superior to SD2, with deep, crisp colour schemes. But you can have fast loading, and you can have great moody graphics but loading speeds and graphics does not maketh the game. Which is why THQ have spent a lot of time implementing an easy to learn, hard to master control system. Strangely for an N64 game, you use the D-pad instead of the analog stick, but you soon get used to it. You have your basic grapple moves on A, punches on varying power on B, run on C-Down, and a plethora of other moves that are not essential but do help. In total, each character has around 100 moves. Once you get a string of moves together, you get Special. Once this is flashing, you can do your finishing maneuver. This is different for each character, but all of them are pretty powerful. The move animations do not flash by as fast as SD 2s blink-and-you’ll-miss-it steroid-fueled versions, but they all move slickly with almost no clipping. There is an amazing amount of move animations, from your basic Back Drop and Suplex to the popular moves like the Stone Cold Stunner and Rock Bottom to never before seen moves that THQ seem to have made up like the Si
x Seconds Magic and the Dragon Rana. These would be good on any of the real characters, but the wide range of moves really comes into play in the Create A Wrestler mode. Your wrestlers are putty in your grubby hand. You can create a 7’4 bikini wearing man/woman hybrid, a 500-pound Rock lookalike, or your alter ego. And it’s not only the appearance you can change, its all-100 moves. You can make your 500-pound Rock do moves like a 450 splash or a Swonton Bomb and laugh. That is, if you want to. The single player career mode is my favorite bit of No Mercy. You go through matches in the usual way, but depending on if you win/lose, the storyline changes. You also get some bits where you can choose what you do. For example, Shane McMahon asks for help in his upcoming match. You can reject his offer, in which case you’ll start to be the face and feud with him, or you can join him and become a heel. You can also hire the APA, if you are wet. The game does make it so you HAVE to lose some matches in order to see all of the storylines, and to unlock some characters, but the stories are so good you won’t mind. They are ripped straight from the ‘real’ thing – most fans will be able to guess what happens next in some stories, especially those in the WWF Championship mode. You can take the part of the Rock against Triple H in the build up the Wrestelmania 2000. You can relive the classic Foley VS Triple H feud which led to Foley being taken out of the WWF, cumulating in the Hell In The Cell match (which, as No Mercy has no HITC, is cunningly replaced with a cage match). Your actions are less predictable in the other belt modes, like Hardcore, which have very different stories. You get into pseudo-table matches, where you must put your opponent through the announcers table then pin, into Ladder matches against the Hardys, First Blood cage matches against Test, and submission matches against Shamrock. Which are all very fun, as is thi
s whole mode. Multiplayer is where wrestlers really shine, and No Mercy is no exception. Although Veterans (unlike Smackdown 2) always beat beginners, when you get a group of equally skilled players you can have some great back and forth matches. If one of you is winning every match and starts boasting (I’m very guilty of this), theres the handicap match in which 2 of you kick the poo out of a poor victim (heh heh heh). And if you’re all equal, the ladder match is always brilliant fun, although they do tend to last for a long time. Hardcore matches are funny, with some extremely unlikely weapons like a lump of cheese and a foam Rock logo. The backstage areas are all good, and the absence of loading times makes it more fluent. There are handily placed tables to put your opponents through, including a cool pool table. With four players the action does slow down a bit, but with the graphics on this it is to be expected. Not as much fun for beginners, but with two pros going at it you’ve got a top quality game. There are not as many match types as there are on SD2s massive list, but the ones that have been implemented are all very polished. Whereas SD2 had a lot of matches that were almost identical to normal (the Anywhere Falls and Hardcore matches are very similar, and the TLC and Ladder match have almost no difference), the NM matches don’t have a dud among them. The Ladder match is much tenser than the SD2 one, which is probably more down to the game speed than implementation, but it makes a big difference. The Cage match gives you a few more moves than normal, as some buttons let you slam your opponents face into the metal, and you can make them run right into the cage wall. Apart from that, the cage match is a bit weak compared to the other modes, because you only need to do your finisher once on your enemy, then climb to victory. Tag matches are good, because there are some awesome double team moves, and there is an emphasis on n
ot letting your opponent tag, as in the real thing. Hardcore Tags are also very sweet, as you can both put people through tables at one, or do twin chair shots. Special Ref is better than SD, because you have to at least do a reasonably good move to keep your opponent down and get a quick 3 count. Inevitably, the guest referee mode results in someone turning the N64 off and storming off home or it starts real fights (this happened with me. I got my opponent into my own finisher, the MacMission, which is a modified sleeper). The Survivor mode is a 100 man royal rumble. The best thing about this is that secret characters come out at random, and if you eliminate a secret, you unlock it. You also get walletloads of money to spend at the Smackdown Mall. A HITC would have been much better on No Mercy, because of the slower speed. If you watch the proper HITCs, the action on top of the cell is always slow paced, which builds tension. And I can’t see NM letting you get straight up after being thrown off the top of the cell for the fifth time. The Smackdown Mall is my second fave bit of the game. You spend money that you earn in single player on bonus clothing, moves, characters, arenas, and weapons. The good thing about this is the choice. On some games you might unlock the Rocket Launcher, when you actually want the not as powerful but slightly cooler machine gun. Well, this is the perfect solution. Although the best characters must be unlocked on Survivor or Career, everything else is available from here, including the Holy Grail of the game, the Ho. She costs $500,000, and you don’t get much for your money apart from bragging power. All her moves attack the groin in some way. A secondary function of the SD mall is the Create a Wrassler. This could be a game in its own right, albeit a boring one.
I believe No Mercy for the N64 is the best wrestling game you can buy! Playstation owners may disagree but I have seen many mags, which clearly state that WWF No Mercy for the N64 is the best wrestling games out yet! I agree! This game has 60+ wrestlers and a ‘create a wrestler option’. There are 50+ modes that you can play in which the main mode on this game is the ‘Ladder Match’. On this mode you have to beat you’re opponent to a bloody mess and set up a ladder beneath the belts hanging 20ft up in the air. Then you climb for the gold! But if your opponent is not beaten up enough he may knock you off from the top, which may knock you out! You can also throw the opponent onto the announcer’s table then set the ladder up beside it! Then you can get someone like Essa Rios (a high flyer in the game) and actually do you a flip onto them through a table! You also have the old modes like Royal Rumble, King of the Ring etc. but a knew mode, which has already been introduced by the Playstation games, is the ‘Special Guest Referee Mode’ where you can determine the outcome of the match! There is also Anywhere Falls and Hardcore matches as well which are probably the most exciting, as now there are backstage areas such as: The Ramp! The Corridor! The Locker Room! The Boiler Room! The Parking Lot! The Bar! There is also a Championship mode in which you can win all the championships in all kinds of different ways as you lose and win matches which change the story lines like the Smackdowns for the Playstation! There is also a new mode which has never been seen before called ‘Survivor Mode’. This is where you face all members of the WWF in a sort of Royal Rumble atmosphere in which new wrestlers such as Shawn Michaels come down and if you eliminate him then you can use him as a wrestler in the future! I hope this has been of a use to you! Seanaphun <
Hot on the heels of last year's WWF Wrestlemania 2000, THQ's latest effort, WWF No Mercy, seeks to be this year's game of choice for pro wrestling fans. While No Mercy will seem immensely familiar to fans of WWF Wrestlemania 2000, THQ has added quite a bit to the fray in order to provide a pleasant experience to seasoned veterans. At the outset, exhibition, royal rumble, pay-per-view, king of the ring, guest referee, iron man, ladder match, championship, and survival modes are available. Each of these modes allows you to pick from a stock of 52 wrestlers, eight arenas, and a multitude of official and unofficial rules. Should you progress up the championship ladder, you can earn bonus dollars to spend in the game's SmackDown Mall, bringing the total number of wrestlers and arenas to 60 and 10, respectively. The SmackDown Mall is perhaps the coolest addition to WWF No Mercy, in that it not only allows you to create and edit wrestlers, but it also lets you purchase a variety of secret items. Unlike past games that gave you a hidden item for winning a belt, WWF No Mercy lets you choose exactly what goodies to unlock and when to unlock them. Additional costumes, moves, arenas, weapons, props, and wrestlers are for sale in the SmackDown Mall - all of which may be utilized in any of the game's modes. If this isn't enough, the in-depth create-a-wrestler mode is sure to please. Physically, you can alter a wrestler's gender, facial features, body type, costume, moves, and even his or her fighting style. On the glitz and glamour end of things, ring introductions, background music, TitanTron graphics, and allies/rivals are all fair game for adjustment. Looks, moves, finishers, and celebrations - it's all up to you. The game leaves room for 18 customized wrestlers, which should be plenty for those looking to add recent additions to the WWF lineup to the game's stable. As far as wrestlers are concerned, Chris Benoit, the Dudley B
oys, and Rikishi join the hallowed ranks of such WWF mainstays as Steve Austin, The Rock, Triple H, and Kane. It's taken me roughly three months to get each of the game's wrestlers at the rate of one a day, so that ought to be some indication as to how diverse WWF No Mercy's character selection is. For those who'd prefer a list, though, here's what you'll find initially: Albert, Kane, Al Snow, Ken Shamrock, Tazz, Scotty Too Hotty, Kat, Grand Master Sexay, Shawn Michaels, D'Low Brown, Chris Benoit, Billy Gunn, D-Von Dudley, Big Boss Man, Triple H, The Rock, Christian, Bradshaw, Mankind, Buh Buh Ray Dudley, Eddie Guerrero, Chyna, Mark Henry, Kurt Angle, Jeff Hardy, Matt Hardy, Perry Saturn, the Godfather, Rikishi, Faarooq, Crash, the British Bulldog, Lita, Hardcore Holly, Terri, Edge, Steve Austin, Tori, Dean Malenko, the Undertaker, Stephen Richards, Bull Buchanan, Steve Blackman, Ivory, X-Pax, Road Dogg, Taka Michinoku, Val Venis, Test, Essa Rios, Viscera, Stephanie McMahon, Cactus Jack, Earl Hebner, one of the Godfather's "hoes," and Trish Stratus. If this rather long list isn't enough, just beat the championship a few times to find a few more friends or create your own stable of daffy deviants in the SmackDown Mall. On the gameplay end of things, punches, kicks, and basic attacks are the same for everyone - exactly as they were in last year's Wrestlemania 2000. Tap A to grapple and B to strike. Combine them with a direction, and watch as every wrestler executes the same stale punch, kick, arm bar, or takedown. The C buttons control your wrestler's basic focus, ring position, and running, while the digital D-pad executes general body movement. Need to yank a wrestler up to a seated or standing position for a special move? Hit the R button. Prefer the pin instead? Get close and tap the L button. While the general move timing remains the same, WWF No Mercy does have one noticeable change from last year
39;s release - easier counters. Shake the analog stick or tap the appropriate button a few times, and you can escape from your opponent's hold. Exhaustion is still a factor in how easily you can escape, but the level of button mashing and frustration is much less than in Wrestlemania 2000. Although basic attacks and counters form a solid base, WWF No Mercy's true bread and butter lies in its grapples, throws, and signature moves. All of the game's 65 wrestlers possess the same moves and flash as their real-world counterparts. From The Rock's Rock Bottom to Faarooq's Dominator, the gang's all here. Executing these and other moves is as simple as tapping A to grapple and then performing a short directional pad and button combination. If your wrestler's onscreen attitude meter is full, you can execute a super-finishing move, usually with the analog stick or an A and B button chord. For the most part, the move selection is the same as that of last year's release, although new additions such as the continuous powerbomb add a little extra variety. Thankfully, the one-second delay between move input and execution that plagued Wrestlemania 2000 is missing, giving WWF No Mercy an additional level of control and realism. Since No Mercy plays roughly the same as Wrestlemania 2000, it should come as no surprise that it also looks pretty much the same. WWF Wrestlemania 2000 did a wonderful job of topping out the capabilities of the Nintendo 64's graphical hardware, but it brought with it a plethora of frame rate issues. In turn, WWF No Mercy takes last year's looks and attempts to fix these shortcomings. THQ has revamped each wrestler's prematch introduction, eliminating some of the pixelation present in the still-image collages and the video snippets while maintaining the same level of pyrotechnic flair and attitude for the runway walk. Walking the walk and talking the talk in a bath of explosions, your wrestler saunters
from runway to ringside with all of the scripted charisma of his or her real-life counterpart. The character models are less blocky this time around, and unlike last year's game, the facial textures aren't simply pasted-on renditions of your favorite wrestlers' glamour shots. There's still some slowdown present when four characters are onscreen at once, but with three or less combatants, WWF No Mercy flows like a well-oiled machine of pugilistic might. Regardless of whether it's Steve Austin's Stone Cold Stunner or Triple H's Pedigree, each of the game's 100-plus moves leaps out with a simple button press or combination. Most impressive of all, there's absolutely no slowdown or polygon dropout present during cage matches - quite the change from last year's release. The repetitious crowd and bland ring visuals show that THQ still has a little way to go before it brings its series' graphics up to the level of Acclaim's WWF Attitude, but from the standpoint of character models and animation, the company has hit the nail on the head. Speaking of nailing - last year's WWF Wrestlemania 2000 sounded like a ball peen hammer striking one's forehead. Although nowhere near perfect, WWF No Mercy sounds light years better. The digitized intro music has been cleaned up and the audio samples have been lengthened, such that you actually get the impression that THQ took them from actual televised wrestler introductions. No more garbled chagrin and marble mouth - yay! The menu and in-game music are made up of MIDI renditions of popular WWF themes, and while hearing the same drum loop or "diggety-dog" speech sample repeated in the menu music gets old after awhile, the overall quality of the soundtrack is a marked improvement. There's still no in-game speech or commentary, however, so the brunt of the game's audio might stems from the game's body and mat sounds - the same collection of tinny punche
s, kicks, slaps, and mat crashes that THQ has been using since WCW vs. NWO: World Tour. There isn't anything inherently poor about the game's sound, but since a takedown sounds just like a triple powerbomb, there's nothing inherently spectacular either. As usual, the best way to consider WWF No Mercy is to look at it like a serialized sports game. Each year, THQ takes the current WWF roster, wraps it in a bevy of features, and remedies some of the problems of the previous release. On the upside, if you've never played any of THQ's wrestling titles, WWF No Mercy is a game you should have loads of fun with - especially with your friends. However, if you've stuck with THQ through its early WCW games and WWF Wrestlemania 2000, No Mercy may not be fresh enough to hold your attention. Of course, that depends on just how fanatical you are about professional wrestling and wrestling video games. If you're still drooling over Wrestlemania 2000, then the roster updates, graphical refinements, bonus secrets, and new modes found in WWF No Mercy should be more than enough to keep you going for another year. I rate this game 8.5 out of 10, as there is room for some minor adjustments, but nothing important.