Nintendo Fans Duke It Out In A Punch-Out!!! Boxing Challenge

May 18, 2009 | Posted by Jonathan Yaghoubi

Cyr is the new WVBA champ!

Nintendo celebrated the return of one of its most popular video game series by hosting a Punch-Out Challenge at the Nintendo World store in Rockefeller Plaza on Saturday afternoon. It was a very happy and party like atmosphere at the store as friends and family members of contestants gathered ringside to support them on their quest to secure the World Video Boxing Association (WVBA) title. Prizes were handed out to the many fans at the store while there was Dj blasting away some of today’s hottest music to add to the party atmosphere.

At the end of the day, it was Cyr Fernandez, 15, from Jersey City, NJ who outlasted 31 other participants to take home the Grand Prize by being able to defeat Bear Hugger, one of the characters in the game, in a faster time than the other finalist. Fernandez was very excited afterwards and talked a little bit about his winning and his thoughts of the new game.

“This is a great game. This is going to be the best punch out game they have made, “said Fernandez. One had to wonder how Fernandez was able to surpass everyone by being the best at a game that has not even come out yet.

“I have been looking forward to this game since I heard about it coming out. I have recognized all the patterns of the fighters and I am very familiar with the Punch-Out Game. It really was like riding a bike for me.”

With his victory, Fernandez had quite the grand prize to take home. Included in the Grand Prize were (retail value: $200), one copy of the Punch-Out Game (retail value: $50), one 2,000 points Wii points card( retail value: $20), a Punch-Out Sweat Shirt ( Value of $40), 200 dollar gift certificate to the Nintendo Store, and one collectible Punch-Out Glove (retail value of $90). That is going to be one of the better Grand Prizes you can ever win in a video game tournament.

As far as the game goes, I must say that this game is not as good as the original one from the NES. It is, in every aspect, far and away a much improved game. I had some time to play the game on my own after the tournament and noticed quite a few things.

What has been done with the Punch-Out game is that isn’t so much a reincarnation of its 8-bit daddy, as it is an amplification. It’s not what the old game actually was, but what we remember it being. It takes the parts that loom large in our memory, and expands them to 2009 fresher version that will bring in a new generation of fans of Punch-Out.

The classic control hasn’t been changed with any extra options or power-ups. The basic four punches, star punch, block, and dodge are, in fact, identical. But after the first couple fights finish introducing the basics, you’ll begin to notice just how much more complex and difficult the fights have become.

The game still has the Minor, Major and World circuits that include all the original fighters, a couple new ones, and even reintroduces some characters from SNES version. . Beating the last guy and winning the championship is an accomplishment but that is not all.

When you complete the game, there is a title defense mode that is unlocked. In that mode, you are playing an entirely different game. All of the opponents will return faster, tougher, and with whole new patterns that will exceed your expectations. The most shocking part for people will be when you finally take down Mr. Sandman and claim the belt; you get your ass completely busted by Von Kaiser or even Glass Joe!

Other additions, like an exhibition mode that adds specific challenges (e.g. knock down Glass Joe three times then let him win by decision) and the two-player vs. mode are just bonuses to the game.

I also have to mention the fact that I worked quite a sweat playing this game for 45 minutes. You can get yourself a good workout by playing the Punch-Out which is something you can’t say about the original. This is definite a party game and is fun as hell. I’d give it a solid 8.5 if I was reviewing it, as people should not be disappointed.

[Ed. note: Stay tuned for our full review of the game shortly.]


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Jonathan Yaghoubi
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