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Double Dragon II: The Revenge
  PCCDBeat_em_upJPN  
  opened by paleface at 04:48:05 05/30/04  
  last modified by paleface at 00:18:20 02/20/23  
  paleface [sys=PCCD; cat=Beat_em_up; loc=JPN]
           
Apparently this is a port by Naxat Soft of the NES DDII, which is quite different from the old Technos Japan arcade version I used to play (though I always liked the original DD better). As such, it ditches the traditional punch/kick buttons for a very unusual left-attack/right-attack scheme, where of your two control buttons, the left strikes left and the right strikes right.
 
And this comes in handy, because the AI is absolutely ruthless about surrounding you: the almost always attack in twos, and one always forgoes the pleasure of punching you in the face for the sneaky thrill of getting around behind you. Nasty stuff.
 
Of course, aside from being able to punch in front of you and kick behind you, your hot young street blood has a few additional moves up his cut-off sleeves, namely a wicked uppercut, a mobile jump-kick, a spin-kick that takes out everyone around you, various grapple moves for punch-drunk opponents, and the apocalyptic (or post-apocalyptic, rather, and New York style) knee blast that sends your victim flying most of the way across the screen.
 
Pulling all these moves off with just two buttons can be tricky, but therein lies the game. And let me tell you, there's nothing quite like landing a knees blast on that guy who just got a sucker punch in your back, especially if it sends him flying off a handy nearby ledge. You'll also find a few hand-to-hand weapons (flail, shovel (??), knife, demolition ball (!!)) but since you can't carry these from stage to stage they really just serve as occasional window-dressing next to your mighty hand-to-hand moves.
 
So if you haven't figured it out yet, this game involves a lot of beating people down, street ruffian style. At the end they throw in some jumping bits and these suck, since you can't jump that far really and a miss is instant death. Fortunately that's really only for one stage, then it's on to a hefty string of end bosses. Between each level you're treated to a well-done anime-style cinematic showing the little story bits. And then you go beat more people up.
 
The sprites have been entirely redrawn since the arcade and NES versions, and to my way of thinking they have rather a nicer style than the originals: sharper and tougher than Technos' traditional rounded style. Some of the later tougher opponents in particular look quite improved.
 
The sound deserves special mention: it is superlative. I've maybe put a game CD in my car stereo two or three times in my life, and DDII has been one of those times--and by far the best. The pumping techno soundtrack, intermixed with scratching, vocal samples, and basically whatever they figured would sound kick-ass, is a real work of art unto itself. And the punching and kicking sound effects are as solid and beefy as you could hope.
 
This is probably now my favorite Double Dragon, even ahead of the recent tweaked-up GBA version (see entry 353). The left/right two-button scheme is really cool once you get the hang of it, the sprites are really sharp, the gameplay, aside from the jumping bit, never falters, and the sound is outstanding--as is the overall presentation. Awesome stuff, and you can even turn off friendly fire in two-player, something sorely lacking in the GBA version.
 
  paleface 20:58:51 02/24/19
           
 
  paleface 22:05:30 02/19/23
           
Found a seemingly unknown glitch or something in Double Dragon II: The Revenge on my PC Engine Duo-R: hammer on the I, II, and Run buttons all at once for a while in 1P Play mode, and the 2P character, Jimmy appears; the game acts like it is now in 2P Play B mode, except that both characters are controlled simultaneously using just the 1P controller.
 

 
Sometimes Jimmy appears within seconds of starting to mash the buttons, but other times it has taken 3-5 minutes of button pressing.
 
I was NOT able to reproduce this emulating via Mednafen.
 
I WAS able to reproduce it using a standard Duo-R pad (as well as with a Hori Real Arcade Pro 5 PS4 (v2017) arcade stick through a Brook Super Converter).
 
That would suggest the glitch has been possible ever since the game came out in 1993, and I'm surprised it hasn't been documented before, at least as far as I can find.
 
I did have my Duo-R's controller port repaired--it was loose and glitching out--prior to this; it seems fine now, but I wonder if perhaps this is not a game glitch, but a quirk of my repaired controller port? I don't have another PC Engine to try it with, unfortunately.
 
If you've got your own console and can try it out, lemme know how it goes!
 
Not sure what that graphic glitch at the bottom of the screen is, I guess maybe that's just an overflow area that wouldn't show on a normal TV so they didn't care what sort of garbage might happen down there.
 
~~~~~
 
Note: if you use the PC Engine Multitap, and start a 1P Play mode game with the pad in port 1, then put the pad in port 2, pressing Run on the now-2P pad does cause Jimmy to appear--but controlled only by the controller in port 2 (not in port 1, as happens with the glitch), so you've essentially switched to regular 2P Play B mode.
 
Incidentally, also just found that the Brook Super Converter does NOT work through the PC Engine multi-tap. Tried the Hori stick on PS3, PS4, and PC settings--only responded on I think it was the PS3 setting, but with scrambled controls. DS4 didn't work either. Guess I shouldn't have got rid of all my other PC Engine pads! = P
 
  paleface 00:18:20 02/20/23
           

 
This time played on Easy with Lives and Continues both set to the max, 5.
 
Double Dragon II for PC Engine came out in 1993. Its boss looks like Wolfgang Krauser, from SNK's 1992 game Fatal Fury 2.
 
Double Dragon II for NES, upon which the PCE game is based, came out in 1989. Its boss does not look like Wolfgang Krauser.
 
The jump-kick arc is weird; it's NOT Technos Japan's jump-kick arc from NES Double Dragon II--I checked. This one rockets diagonally upward, slows in midair, and drops vertically to the ground; it's hard to use, and easy to get hit by. Its impact sound is out of sync with the animation, which looks goofy. The AI has been trained to use it a LOT, and from just the right distance to catch you just as you thought you were going to be able to do something; they are incessant about flanking you (as they are in the arcade version), but holding them off by alternating the left and right attack buttons invariably breaks down quickly because an enemy re-approaching after having been knocked back will simply jump-kick you instantly from just out of your attack range, pretty much every time. Technos' DDI&II got their grit from the close-quarters, hotly contested fist-to-fist fighting, but here it's a simple binary equation: your fists dominate at close range and are dominated by anything with a longer range. The last two large bosses, who do not jump-kick, and who maybe are composed of too many sprites to have a partner who could flank you, are shockingly easy once you learn their simple attack pattern.
 
Ooh I'd forgotten: I had got further in olden tymes, according to that dd2_belt.jpg I uploaded in 2003.
    
 
references:
· Double Dragon (NES)
· Kunio-kun: The World Classics Collection (PS4)
· Oretachi Game Center: Nekketsu Kouha Kunio-kun (PS2)

 
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