I can't disagree with any parts of Chi's review. As arcade boxing games go, I really thought only Nintendo could effectively create unique and oddball boxers in a great playing boxing game, but in this case, Midway has done a superb job in matching Nintendo's best efforts. My favorite guys are Afro Thunder and Butcher Brown but I have to agree with Chi about the ethnic stereotyping; it kept me from liking the game for a good long while. However, after playing through more of the game, it really began to open my eyes. It's also not a 'guys only' thing as there are two female characters, but they go along with the extreme side of Rumble exemplified by their Lara Croft-esque anatomical proportions. They jiggle so much during a fight it could be considered a brilliant distraction tactic to today's boxers, but these ladies can battle with the big boys and that's what's the most important. In fact nothing in the game is overtly ofensive. Midway gets their point across on the light-hearted nature of every-thing and allows Rumble to reach a level of satire that is truly rare in video games.
The training mode is another highlight of Rumble. I got quite a thrill out of taking my boxer through the ranks and into a championship bout. Here, all of the mini-games like pounding the heavy bag and weight training are used excellently to add some dimension to a game that, to be quite honest, needed it. What knocked Rumble down to a 9.0 was that it lacked a create-a-player option. Doing so would have made the whole training and championship mode work all the better. I disagree with Chi on the ease of beating the game. To me, it is a plus because one of the goals of the game is to unlock characters. I wouldn't play through the game for too long if it was hard to get to the end and I still needed to unlock like 10 players.
When it comes right down to it, Rumble is brash and full of attitude and has all the goods to back it up. Unlike another boxing franchise (Knockout Kings 2000), Rumble really does allow me to fly like butterfly and sting like a bee and get a good laugh while doing it. Rumble won't win any awards in the sim category, but its crazy moves, slick animation and graphics, and tons of personality makes Rumble a definite 'contenda.'
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