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by THQ

10.jpg (6217 bytes)Everyone in the gaming industry knows the World Wrestling Federation. It is either liked or hated, and some won’t even admit to watching it. Myself, I am a fan and have been for many years now, so I always keep an eye open for any new game that tests my grappling skills. THQ brings us a portable WWF game for the Game Boy Color, but it’s unlike any other you might be familiar with – they have taken the wrestlers from the ring and placed them in various environments battling not just wrestlers but other "bad guys" as well. This side scrolling adventure is a refreshing twist that reminds me of Final Fight, but definitely shows why this is an aging genre.

13.jpg (6618 bytes)The story behind this game is a new twist for a wrestling game. Stephanie McMahon-Helmsley has been kidnapped and it is up to you to rescue her. Why would someone want to rescue her you might ask? If you succeed her daddy dearest, Vince McMahon, will give you a title shot for the coveted world title. There are four superstars to choose from: Stone Cold Steve Austin; Triple H; Undertaker; and the Rock. And it wouldn’t be wrestling without weapons, which are available after defeating the individual carrying one. Each character fights his way through various settings such as a construction site and the city streets. There are six levels to wreck total havoc in. If you get frustrated with the game or loose all your lives there is a password feature in the game that will help you keep track of your progress( as long as you have paper and pen readily available.)

06.jpg (7593 bytes)As with any other Game Boy Color game there are not a lot of buttons to use. The two buttons allow you to punch and kick; the only "real" wrestling moves are the trademark finishers and until you reach the upper levels can only be performed when you successfully hit the enemy five times. To add to your small repertoire of moves there is a running move that can be performed by double tapping the directional pad left or right and then either punch or kick.

08-01.jpg (8372 bytes)Graphically the Game Boy Color is showing signs of age for even a portable console now that Nintendo released the Game Boy Advance. As for this game, each superstar resembles their real life counterpart slightly. But that only lies in coloring and the few sprites that make up the face. The bodies look like they are made of the same stuff a Stretch is made of. The characters move like they were created using stop motion animation like Gumby was. The animation at times prevents the running moves from being performed successfully. At least the colors allow everything to stand out. As for the bells and whistles, it is the same as any other GBC cartridge – fine as long as you haven’t been around any other game system recently.

26.jpg (10302 bytes)Side-scrolling brawlers like Final Fight have long since gone from being a major genre to a relic. WWF Betrayal does its part to try to bring back the glory days by adding contemporary heroes, but shows why the genre has struggled so. If you are looking for a mix of old school wrestlers with old school gaming, give it a go, but you might find yourself feeling betrayed

Jake Carder   (09/29/2001)


Ups: WWF Superstars; old-school game genre.

Downs: Choppy animation; repetition.

Game Boy Color