Saturday, 8 August 2015

SNES Review 81: WWF Super WrestleMania

Ok so I kind of feel like I should have tackled this game earlier so I could pace out the WWF reviews but oh well it’s a bit late now (WWF the former name of what is now known as the WWE, World Wrestling Entertainment). So WWF Super WrestleMania is a multiplatform wrestling video game based on the World Wrestling Federation it was released in 1992 for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and the Sega Mega Drive/Genesis. The game was developed by a company called Sculptured Software and was released on the Super Nintendo by the infamous LJN.

Sculptured Software Inc. was a video game developer based in the Salt Lake City, Utah metropolitan area. There area of specialisation seemed to lay in the field of porting games to differing platforms. They were responsible for at least 8 wrestling games as far as I know with the last being WWF Warzone on the PS1. They were responsible for two other 16-bit WWF games, WWF Royal Rumble and WWF Raw, which I will hopefully talk about in the future.
Now I am going to talk about one of my first and biggest issues with this game. Despite being pretty much the same game on both the SNES and Mega Drive with minor differences someone decided that they would give the games different roster’s, I am not sure if there was any real reason for this, maybe they thought it might inspire some people to buy both?

The SNES roster is a little bit larger, with ten wrestlers compared to the mega drives eight. The only wrestlers in both versions are Hulk Hogan, Randy Savage and Ted DiBiase. The SNES version also includes Jake Roberts, The Undertaker, Sid Justice, The Legion of Doom, and The Natural Disasters. The Mega drive version has The Ultimate Warrior, Papa Shango, Irwin R. Schyster, The British Bulldog, and Shawn Michaels. Yes old games didn’t have the dizzying amount of wrestlers you would find in a modern game but why oh why split the number between platforms, surly if you have done the work on the character it wouldn’t be that hard to have them in both versions would it?

It is not like there is mountains and mountains of effort made in making each wrestler feel different, sure they might look different but all wrestlers share the same set of standard wrestling moves slams, suplexes, dropkicks, clotheslines etcetera. There is only a few modes basically a one-on-one mode, tag team mode, and four-on-four Survivor Series elimination style match mode.

It needs to be remembered that when this came out Wrestling was at an all-time high, the crowd for SummerSlam 1992 was one of the biggest in WWF history. Hopes were high as well due to the fact that we had been treated to WWF Superstars the arcade game followed with the release of WWF WrestleFest in 1991 which were absolutely awesome arcade games. We all felt that with the added power of our 16bit consoles in comparison to the 8bit machines we had left behind we could get something which would not be too far away from these great games and that we would be able to remake some of the best matches we had witnessed recently.

Graphics wise by now days standards the graphics are not up to much but I guess for the time it came out really they were not bad at all the wrestlers look like they're real-life counterparts and everything moves around how you would hope for. As far as sound goes well there really is not much sound, there is the title screen music, and the wrestlers theme music and then the odd grunts and groan. I suppose the best thing you can say is it serves its purpose.

I have made this point already but it needs saying again every wrestler has exactly the same moves as all the rest, there is no reason to have a favourite beyond the fact it is the one you liked to watch as a kid. There are no specials or finishers. Beyond this it needs stating that the way you perform the moves is through button mashing, he who mashes quickest wins, which I guess is not the worst way to handle things but it does mean you will batter the heck out of your pads if you have too many heavy button-mashing. I am not criticising the button mashing blaming it for the game I blame the fact that it all just feels a little soulless, it lacks the sense of fun and tension which you got from the arcade WWF games I mentioned earlier.

Would I recommend this game? Not really I would give it a 4 out of 10. Maybe once this was pretty much the best you would get on a console when it came to wrestling, well at least without importing or waiting till latter in the consoles life span. I am sure rather than spending the £7 this game tends to go for as a loose cart online you would be much better served going in to a shop and looking for a modern wrestling game with at least 3 times the characters, additions we now have like create a wrestler, either that or look into a none WWF related game like Saturday night slam masters or import a copy of fire pro wrestling if you want a good Snes wrestling game and don’t mind paying a little more or going to a little more effort.

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