Written by  :  Jeff Clawson (7)
Written on  :  Nov 05, 2003
Platform  :  NES

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Not Even Mike Can Ruin The Greatest Game Of All Time

The Good

Now, mind you, I was six. This was years before I discovered the internet, and the internal workings of a video game, and how to rate control schemes, and, most importantly, replayability. Before I even knew what the notion of playing games over meant, I completely personified it by wearing the copper out on my M.T.P.O. cartridge. I played this title like Mike locked himself in a room with my mom and demanded for me to finish the game before he opened it. I was focused, I was passionate, and I would not quit. Unfortunately for my mother, she's still Kid Dynamite's proverbial captive, but I'm going to beat it, I promise. It's just that pleasurably difficult. It's simple, you start by kicking the snot outta glass joe, and you end by watching Super Macho Man wipe the floor with you. If you're some of the chosen few who can win the Major World Circuit title, and face Tyson, then you belong to a select fraternity of gentlemen. Have you ever seen two jeeps pass each other on the road? Ever see them wave at each other? That's the jeep fraternity. Every jeep owner waves at every other jeep owner, I don't know why, but it happens. Now watch for people who aren't in jeeps waving at each other. I guarantee you that's people who've beaten Mike Tyson's Punch Out. They just know; there's a mutual acknowlegement of how they carry themselves. It's like climbing Everest. Tyson took you down in one punch, even if you blocked it. It didn't matter. If you beat him; you were god. No, seriously, a tiny angel greeted you, and informed you that the land was overrun by monsters, and it was your job to slay them. But alas, Actraiser is another review for another time.

The Bad

Great Tiger. Forget how easy he is, once you learn how to beat him. Forget how much harder Bald Bull, Sandman, Super Macho Man, and Tyson are. When you first fought Great Tiger, when you first got spanked by Great Tiger, when the guy disappeared and started kicking your ass in blurs, y'all stood up and said, "Badass."

Oh, yeah, and bringing back Piston Honda, Don Flamenco, and Bald Bull in the last circuit was pretty cop-outish, I thought. Still great fights, but logically, if you beat them, how do they show up later fighting a champion they've already lost to?

The Bottom Line

If you own an NES, there are a few, key must-own games that define the system. This is inarguably on that list.