[Review] Streets Of Rage (Sega Genesis)

An unnamed city’s heart has turned to black: bad guys and gals with switchblades, whips and fire-breath roam the streets at night to take out their hatred on anyone passing by. City Hall is overrun by a corrupt organization. Garbage and blight make up what was left of this strong and prosperous city.

Three ex-cops, all in their early 20s, are hell-bent on cleaning up the Streets of Rage. They walk the beat with only their jeans, wife-beaters, MJ Thriller jackets and the occasional beer bottle to protect them.  Apples and steak can be found to eat under barrels and crates, increasing health depleted from fighting against the violence. They beat up the baddies, and call in the cops for an occasional backup. And when they choose to fight the leader of the syndicate in the final boss battle instead of joining his posse, they fight alone.

Streets of Rage is a simple 16-bit side scroller beat ’em up game, similar to Golden Axe, a game I played and reviewed in September 2013. Using the three buttons on the Sega Genesis game pad – one button to fight, one to jump, one to call the cops (who arrive in their cruiser to fire a bazooka at the baddies) – it was easy to advance and fight the bad guys. Of course, I am sure the game is much harder if played past easy mode…

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I played as Blaze, the only female character in Streets of Rage. I loved her gait – what might be construed as stiffness, or “a pickle up the pooper” I turned it around as a woman leading with her chest, confident and determined to rid the town of filth. And she did! She kicked some mean butt! The hubs, my partner in playing this game, was Axel, one of the two male characters.

Although the game is a side-scroller, the baddies come from both sides of the screen and are varied. For example, one looks like a joker juggling knives. Another looked like they are mean Ninja Turtles (purple and green outfits). Dominatrices with leather and whips also contribute to the fight club. Then there are the fire-breathing fatsos, which made us both ask, “Do they have bad breath, or…just bad indigestion?” At that, the character you play has varied moves, from punching, to drop-kicking, to kicking in the nuts.

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The scenes of the different levels are unique, ranging from a dark alley, to a ferry, to a lift, and leading down the corridor of a fancy hotel, and for a 16-bit game, they looked great. The music had an upbeat rocky dance music tempo which made me tap my feet and bob my head as I was taking names (thank you very much!).

My only complaint of the game is that if you are playing two player, you can punch out your partner (heehee Oops!).

Streets of Rage has been ported to several game systems, including the Wii, Nintendo DS, Windows and iOS devices. I recommend this game for its fun gameplay!

Streets of Rage
Developer: Sega Genesis
Released: 1991

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3 comments

  1. I was addicted to Streets of Rage back in the heady days of owning a Sega Mega Drive. Axel always the character choice cause he just sauntered through all the trouble around him. Such a great game. Hours of fun.

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