| paleface [sys=PS1; cat=Fighting; loc=JPN] |
|Port of the Neo*Geo game, a 2D 1-on-1 fighter. You get ten characters, some inspired by the live-action Double Dragon movie that came out a while back for some reason, each having one "Charge" super attack and two special attacks, like fireballs and so on. There isn't much attempt at story, though they throw a quote at you in Japanese between rounds.|
I don't know if the animation is cut down from the Neo*Geo version--probably is--but the characters don't animate very well, for the most part, and some of them are just plain drawn funny. They're big and colorful, at least. Some of the effects are very pixellated here, and you can even see weird vertical line gaps in the graphics for some of the larger Charge move effects. There's not-so-infrequent slowdown, but it's hard to tell if it's sometimes "on purpose" or not. The sound ranges from mediocre to irritating, and there seem to be a lot of sounds missing--I mean, I don't know if they ever existed in the arcade, but there are just things that happen during fights that you would expect to have sound effects, but don't.
Characters can double-jump, but the paucity of special attacks, coupled with the fact that the buttons really just range from strong to weak attacks, and you can use any of them for a special or charge attack, with the same effect, and the relatively stupid AI, can make for some dull matches. There are down attacks, too, and lots of stuns, which combine to rather deaden the fight. Not only that, but it doesn't feel like character balance has been achieved; the two Double Dragon brothers in particular seem somewhat overpowered.
The default mode here is "Overdrive" or something. I'm not sure what's different there from Normal mode, though. Then there's "Tiny 3D" mode or whatever, which is a really bad joke, I hope--the sprites are converted into separate 3D planes, and you can angle the camera around a bit to see them in depth, with horribly blurred colors. Ugh. Horrible.
Still, I like the big, bright colors and characters, and even the goofy intro montage of footage from the live-action movie. The thing has a certain silly appeal. But don't expect a good fighting game, or any real Double Dragon beat-em-up feel; the thing is more of a Street Fighter wanna-be.