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Victorious Boxers Revolution

Score: 88%
ESRB: Teen
Publisher: XSEED Games
Developer: Cavia
Media: DVD/1
Players: 1 - 2
Genre: Sports (Boxing)

Graphics & Sound:

Since Wii-Sports was packed with the system, gamers got a taste of what boxing would be like on the Wii. Victorious Boxers Revolution takes those basic concepts and pushes them further, making them into a much more complete game.

Visually, the game looks good, even for a system which always gets compared to the PS3 or 360. The stylized arenas and characters come off good and look like the images I've seen of the characters in the anime Fighting Spirit. (I regret to say that I haven't had a chance to watch the series itself yet).

Probably one of the more unique visual styles of this game is the fact that the camera is positioned directly behind your fighter. The only reason why you can see what he sees is because your character is almost completely transparent. This really helps to make you feel like you are the fighter himself. For some reason, this angle made me feel more at home than the completely first-person view that Fight Night presents.

The cut scenes are done with still backgrounds and character sketches that look like they come straight from a manga and really help to sell the game's comic-inspired feel.

Audio-wise, there isn't a whole lot to Victorious Boxers. The music is fairly solid, but it doesn't really stick with you. I did find that the music kept me sufficiently pumped up and in the moment, which helped to add to the game's overall excitement. Granted, the game never played "Eye of the Tiger," but what I heard was just as energetic.


Gameplay:

Victorious Boxers Revolution follows Ippo Makunouchi as he starts off as a no-class high schooler who gets picked on all the time. One day, a boxer steps between Ippo and his bullies and Ippo decides he wants to get into the sport. Ippo trains under Mamoru Takamura (his rescuer) at the local gym.

As Ippo progresses, he takes part in various tournaments that net him the rank of Amateur Japanese Champion, Japanese Featherweight Champion and so on. Ippo's story isn't filled with victory all the time. Early in his career, he will develop a hand injury that really hinders his performance and he will even lose a fight or two (basically, when you win the fight, you go to a cut scene that shows your opponent coming back at the last second and taking you out - don't worry, these are planned losses and you will still be able to progress).

With each new title, Ippo gains new rivals and he will have to fight various characters from around the world. There are a total of 25 playable characters that are unlocked by playing through the Story Mode.


Difficulty:

Victorious Boxers Revolution has three levels and while I typically stayed on the easiest one, I ventured into the other two occasionally. Since the game's controls are pretty complete (letting you do everything from swaying to footwork fairly easily), I felt a little over my head in the two higher settings. The more difficult the setting, the more you have to dodge and wait for opportune moments.

I found that on Easy, I could do the Wii equivalent to button-mashing and make it through most fights in the first round. The higher levels, on the other hand, were a bit more work and while I might have still won most of the fights on my first try, it typically took multiple rounds.


Game Mechanics:

Victorious Boxers Revolution has three different control schemes that are designed to fit your personal style. If you prefer to have a controller in your hand, then you can attach a Retro-Controller to your Wii-mote and treat the game like it was Fight Night. If you liked the way Wii-Sports handled the controls, then the Swing Mode is for you. This is the one that I stuck with and I got really used to. These controls, while similar to the Wii-Boxing, felt much more realistic and reacted to my motions a lot better.

The third one was the hardest for me to get used to, and the one I spent the least time in. In that mode, you use the Wii-mote to point and click your way through a fight. I can see how some people, most likely FPS fans, would find this more appealing, so I'm not dogging it; it just wasn't right for me.

If you got a taste of Wii-Boxing in Wii-Sports and have been chomping at the bit for a more complete game, then this is a must buy. I found that, not only did I have fun, but the game provides even more of a workout than the one bundled with the system.


-J.R. Nip, GameVortex Communications
AKA Chris Meyer

Sony PlayStation Portable Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions Sony PlayStation 2 Crash of the Titans

 
Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated