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Punch - Out

free_punch_out_arcade_game.jpgThe sports arcade game genre is one of the most unique forms of video game available today, allowing a regular gamer to immerse themselves in a virtual sporting experience without even putting on a pair of sneakers. In fact many of the current high-speed home gaming consoles have added so much intricate detail that it almost feels as if you were crossing sticks in a NHL ice hockey tournament, playing side by side with your favorite footballers in the world cup or even speeding it round the course of a professional Nascar circuit. But however realistic and exciting the sporting games of today are, all of them have their roots in some basic and bland games developed in the 70’s and 80’s. Believe it or not it was the hit game "Pong" released in 1972 that helped birth the rise of the sporting genre with its simple tennis style game-play that put virtual players on the TV screen knocking a small ball back and forth.

Although Pong helped start the sporting genre, it wasn’t really until the early 1980’s that sports games became a popular must have for gaming enthusiasts. At this time technology had started to evolve more rapidly which game developers used to their advantage; adding multiple angle camera shots that gave a player a 3rd person view of what was going on and offering more fluid game-play. New sporting games were now titling themselves after popular events and including the names of well known celebrity figures to help boost peoples interest; for example "World Series Baseball" by Intellevision or ‘Dr J and Larry Bird go one on one’ by EA.

One of the most popular sports games titles, now considered a classic is the "Punch Out" which started it life in the dimly lit arcade centers and rose to fame in peoples homes on the Nintendo Entertainment System, later spawning an even more popular title Iron Mikes Punch Out, released on the updated Super NES system. This little gem of a game took arcade boxing to a new level offering a unique fighting view-point, a wide range of punches, blocks and special moves, as well as a chance to fight one on one against a true life world champion boxer. The story-line was simple, the player is put into the role of an amateur boxer named "Little Mac" who trains his way up the ranks, fighting an odd-ball collection of tough characters up until the very end when he gets his chance to punch-out the then heavy weight champion of the world, Mike Tyson. In fact the game continued to include Mike Tyson as the final fight up until their contract ended, then his name was changed to Mr. Dream to avoid any lawsuits.

Since its start back in 1984 the original Punch Out game has been followed up with a number of equally successful titles, including Super Punch Out on the NES and for the arcades, Mike Tyson’s Punch Out on the super NES, a 3-D version for the Nintendo Wii and an exclusive Doc Louis Punch Out version released for members of the Nintendo platinum club.

Game Controls:  A = left hi punch, D = Right hi punch, Z = left lo punch, 
X = right lo punch, S = super upercut, up = Hi block - tap, Down - Lo Block - tap.

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