So Ashita no Joe is a boxing manga which came out in 1968 latter on itturned into an anime series, then a movie and obviously as I am talking about it in my series of SNES game reviews it was turned into a SNES game . A translation of the title would be Tommorow's Joe but outside Japan it is also referred to as Champion Joe, Rocky Joe or even just Joe. The SNES game was developed by Wave Corp and published by K Amusement Leasing two companies I have never even heard of, I tried to research Wave Corp and the information was almost none exsistant it looks like all they have made is Joe based titles, K Amusment Leasing dont seem to be doing anything much past this game either, still lets not worry about that and lets look at this game. This was a Japense only release so you either need a convertor or a modified SNES to play it.
Basically the game is an arcade style boxing game, the game is 2d and is played from a side on view, you can move backwards and forwards and you only actually use two buttons, one button punches the other button makes you put up your guard. To be perfectly honest it looks like a SNES game a good quality SNES game even with nice big sprites and great presentation with its intro/attract sequence full of manga but it plays like a NES title. If you play the one player story mode then you play the role of Joe Yabuki, the stories protagonist, but if you decide to play two player then you both get to choose from a whole bunch of boxers, the whole having to be Joe thing doesnt bother me as hey lets face it in Super Punch out your always Mac, it works for a boxing game when the story is that kind of Rocky type set up where your the underdog going after the title.
The game consists of 8 opponents which Joe must defeat one after another. Each one must be knocked out in the first round or Joe will have to begin the fight again, well as long as you have the continues to do so (you only get 3). Apparently all of these characters come from the manga which I guess if your a fan of that it would really help you eak a little more entertainment out of this game. The first two opponents are an absolute cake walk just keep punching before they punch and youll walk them easily enough but come the third opponent boy does that difficulty curve aim itself straight towards the sky.
Both you and your opponent can move left and right across the ring but not forwards and backwards your stuck on one plane with steppiong back being the only escape option at your disposal. So you punch, block, and dodge each other until one of you knocks the other down three times.Most likly youll enjoy this despite finding it limted when fighting the first two guys but then youll find that the third guy just seems to have a larger reach than you and youll wonder what stratergies you could use against him, youll think maybe I could circle him or if I block he will pause, then you realsie you cant circle only move back and forwards and that if you block it still hurts you and it doesnt really help.
I really really wanted to like this game, the game has excellent presentation, I love the big chunky sprites and the music but its just so bare bones and budget feeling. I spent £3.50 on this game so I dont have a lot to moan about but I wonder what it cost new as basically if this cost the same as a genuine first party classic like Super Punch Out or Mario World or anything like that then I would haev felt super robbed paying top dollar for this, maybe just maybe the connection to the manga roped people in and they were so happy to be playing the role of one of there heroes that they were a lot more figiving with this game than I am?
I think I am stuck reluctantly giving this game another 5 out of 10, dont get me wrong I really like some things about it but then it comits some major sins in my oppinion and you could spend your money much more wisly.