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Ready 2 Rumble Boxing: Round 2 Package Art
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Ready 2 Rumble Boxing: Round 2

A couple of years ago I did something that I usually do. I took a stance that was contrary to the popular sentiment of the time. What I’m referring to is the backlash of hi-depth sports sims (which I love) via the creation of over the top arcade sports games. The game that led this rush was Midway’s NFL Shitz. Everybody was going goo goo over this arcade poop. I said it then and I’ll say it again; give me Madden; give me F1 World Grand Prix; All Star Baseball…games that challenge you; games that have some sort of substance and replay value. Don’t give me mindless button mashing crap that is the same thing in a different box every year.

Now you can turn the other way and say “I never supported that stuff” but we know better don’t we? I was the lone voice of reason and I’m glad to see that everyone’s come back to seeing things the right way. How do I know that? Madden and other sports sims have hit record sales numbers this year.

Mindless button mashing seems to be the company motto over at Midway these days. They’re planning on creating an entire line up based upon the Ready 2 Rumble credo. I’m sure they’ll sell well enough but they won’t be getting my endorsement any time soon. I know the major selling point is that R2R is a party game but if I want a party game I’ll play any of the following: WWF No Mercy, Mario Tennis, Goldeneye or even Twister! Anything but button mashers!

Much like Anna Pornikova Ready 2 Rumble 2 impresses graphically but falls short in every other category. It’s the type of game that you invite your girlfriend or a non-gamer over to enjoy for five minutes. Since all you have to do is crush buttons in a seizure-like-fashion as if you were a Japanese epileptic watching a Pokemon TV show!

Here is the best part of the game. For some reason, the character models seem to remind me of the work done in TWINE. They don’t have any broken angles on the joints and the textures are pretty smooth. More than that, they animate quite smoothly. If only EA would get their Knockout Kings to animate and move have as fluidly in terms of framerate as this title. Aside from the models there is some nice highlight effects when you get the “super rumble” punching action. One thing that is a bit bothersome is that when the action gets tight you seem to loose focus as to what’s happening on the screen because the players come together way too much.

Finally, the front end of the game in terms of the menus and other entry graphics are done well. They endear themselves to the pick up and play aspect of gameplay.

Speaking of front end; I've never seen breasts animated so perfectly. If you watch the gal during the aerobics training session you'll know what I mean. If only the pervs at point of view spent as much time designing a deeper game than animating boobs.

Michael Buffer is in the game. Yipee. I wonder how much Midway shelled out for one of the stalest lines in the history of sports. Once you get into the game you’ll find some adequate sound effects as well as some fairly cool taunting lines. The menu music is hip as well.

If you noticed that I’m keeping this review brief it’s because there really isn’t much to write about the game. That’s the basic premise of an arcade title….there isn’t much to it. Such is the gameplay. You’ll find that the C buttons unleash your blows while the A and B buttons work as block actions. Once you pummel your opponent to a certain degree you spell the word rumble whereby you can further kick ass to a new level. Generally, matches are over way to quickly and the action is so frenetic that you really don’t enjoy the game aside from the perspective of exercise for your fingers and a flattening of your ass as you sit in front of the TV.

Why EA ever tainted their Knockout Kings title so that it would incorporate the arcade aspects of this title is so beyond me that it’s ridiculous. I mean, I feel that I was cheated out of my five Canadian pesos for renting this thing, imagine if I bought it? I might have a serious death wish for Midway!

Honorable mention must be made to the training mode. Some of the training styles are really cool and are nice diversions.

Let me put it this have a pal come over, you get sloshed and crush buttons and yell at the TV! WOW! Incredible gaming action. I haven't had this much fun since I got black sox for Christmas and my birthday for two consecutive years!

Like boxing? Go and buy Knockout Kings. A much better game that will challenge you. R2R redeems itself with the training mode but it isn't enough to save this game. PIUU!!! And I thought my feet smelled bad, this cartridge needs some Lysol!
final score 5.9/10

Staff Avatar Eric Mattei
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"Lost like tears in rain"

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