NES Sports Spectacular!

Nintendo wouldn’t be known as a sports game system but it sure had it’s fair share of sports games for every sport-activity you can think of: I mean  , look at this list:

Racing, Boxing, Baseball, Soccer, Hockey, Volleyball, Tennis, Skating, Basketball, Golf, Football, Pro Wrestling, Martial arts, Fishing, Bowling, Motocross, Pool, and even Chess, and they made games for all of them.  I played through one of each (over the course of the last several weeks and while I won’t expound upon all of them, I’ll give you the highlights)

Motocross Champion- 57% (Sick controls and I couldn’t stop playing it, even though the visually wasn’t appealing)

Championship Pool- 55% (Whoever this old man was beating me up the whole tourney, he can sit on a pool cue.  Soundtrack and replay value was high)

Championship Bowling – 64% (super fun game me and my daughter played for quite a while, it’s not Wii bowling but the best thing we had in the 90’s)

Black Bass USA – 52% (If one more fish swims away from my bait while being right on top of it, I’ throwing this pole in the water!  Really fun concept)

Best of the Best Karate Championship 29% (I took karate for over 10 years and nothing about this was fun, engaging, or even close to what I would call a game representing anything resembling karate, just crude strikes from badly animated characters)

Tecmo Bowl- 53% (Again, highly playable, played this a bit in my youth, but not as fun as I remembered)

Jack Nicklaus Greatest 18 Holes – 33% (I know Golf is a silent game, but where’s the music?  Hated the line up mechanics of this and the map, even just Golf, the original NES game, played better)

Jordan v. Bird- One on One – 38% (in hindsight, I should have chosen a more traditional basketball game; that being said, I always loved this concept, but the graphics were absolute garbage and really took the enjoyment away as even the way you shoot and move around the court is archaic)

RollerBlade Racing- 15% (This is Paperboy but on rollerblades; not even kidding you)

Kings of the Beach – 44% (also played this with friends as a kid; if you can get the mechanics down, it’s sort of enjoyable and there aren’t that many beach volleyball games; that being said, there’s way too much training you need to get good at this game)

Wayne Gretsky Hockey – 23% (I played this 5 days ago and don’t remember a thing; that should say a lot)

FIFA 97 International Soccer – 52% (I love the passing mechanic here; which can sometimes suck in soccer games; everything about the game was fun except my small, pixelated characters with no personality)

RBI Baseball- 46% (looks like Playmobil characters as baseball players; still, game is really easy to pick up and get the hang of and you can set really short games; we liked this one’s simplicity)

WrestleMania Challenge- 61% (the music, the music, the music, having watched wrestling as a kid this takes you back; the gameplay is very limited and challenging, but in a good way oddly)

Ivan Iron man Stewarts Off Road Racing- 51% (This technically wasn’t a true NASCAR -style racing game; felt more like watching a mini-RC car race; there are tons of options for your vehicle, which is a neat feature but I hate the camera angle of the game itself; still even a decent racing game is fun)

Mike Tyson’s Punch Out- 87% (it feels a little wrong to bury this amazing game at the bottom of this long review; perhaps I’ll revisit it for a longer style later- but it’s iconic, classic characters, strategy for days for each fighter, challenging gameplay that’s incredibly rewarding, great and fun animation, there’s not much wrong with this game)


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