Sunday, March 9, 2008

Day 7: Fight Night

Nintendo had Mike Tyson's Punch Out. Even Sega managed to get the Rocky name to use for a boxing game for the Master System. Atari got Fight Night, a game originally designed for home computers and ported to the Atari 7800.

This game would have benefited from the inclusion of the kangaroo standing in line on the title screen. As it is, there are 12 human boxers. Actually 6, but each one has a brother of another color. Six of them appear in the Main Event mode, which is the standard challenger fights his way through a series of boxers to get to The Champ scenario.

Getting to The Champ is easy. Punch high when the computer blocks low. Punch low when the computer blocks high. The computer will often take 5-10 blows to the same spot before moving its block. Using this strategy, I zipped through the first 4 fighters, registering first round knockouts in every fight. Alternately, you could let each computer fighter win and select "Next Boxer" from the continue screen. That's right, you don't have to actually beat anyone to get to The Champ.

Beating The Champ is more difficult, but only because he can KO poor Crazy Craven in about 3 punches. Just stick to the game plan and the title will be yours before you know it.

Fight night has 3 other modes. There's the practice mode, which is completely worthless. Sparring mode pits any 2 of the 12 fighters against each other. Tournament mode is the only 2-player mode. Players alternate adding boxers to a bracket. Regardless of who selected what boxer, player one always controls the fighter on the left, player two the fighter on the right.

Fight Night tries to look cartoony. I guess it's supposed to be funny (Dip Stick does hit below the belt, which, as we all know, is hilarious). But the graphics are so blocky that it just looks sloppy. Despite the long line of people (and marsupials) waiting in line on the title screen, there's no audience visible, though there is a near constant staticy waterfall noise that is presumably the roar of the crowd.

Remember that whole jumping off a bridge speech your mom gave you when you told her you wanted to get your ear pierced? Just because the other guys have boxing games for their systems, the doesn't mean you need to throw a piece of garbage out there just to have a boxing game for your system.

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