ECW Hardcore Revolution
Game Boy Color
Acclaim is mainly remembered for their ten year run of making games based on the WWF, and probably after that, it’s their Legends of Wrestling trilogy of games that people think of when it comes to Acclaim and wrestling. In between losing the WWF license and making Legends of Wrestling games, they would release two games based on ECW (Extreme Championship Wrestling), unfortunately for Acclaim shortly after they secured the ECW license, the WWF bought out ECW.
One of the bizarre things about the Acclaim ECW games is that they only would release two, but the sequel to Hardcore Revolution which was called Anarchy Rulz, would be released about six months later. It is worth noting that this was actually the very first game to be based on ECW.
Acclaim would use the same engine that powered WWF Warzone and WWF Attitude and you can clearly tell this with just one screen shot. I think that when they are standing still the character models do look pretty good, but at the same time they really are not that much of a step up from what was on offer in WWF Attitude. The game does have ECW all over it, but you get the impression that they just cut out all the WWF stuff and then slapped on ECW logos. It comes across as a really lazy game.
One thing though that I always felt Acclaim did do really well was the play by play commentary. In Hardcore Revolution the play by play duties are handled by the awesome Joey Style’s. If you are a wrestling fan then I am sure you will be familiar with his work. Well he has the same enthusiasm here in this game like he does on TV. On thing when it comes to the sound that is really disappointing is the wrestler theme songs. ECW used a number of licensed songs for their wrestlers theme music. There was no way in hell Acclaim were going to pay to use them, but some of the replacement themes are really not that bad.
I really enjoyed WWF Warzone and WWF Attitude when they were first released, but the fact is that by 2000 we had the amazing THQ/AKI WCW and WWF games and we also had WWF Smackdown which was released really close to this game on the Playstation. By 2000 the WWF Warzone engine really did feel quite outdated and slow. Sadly Acclaim really did not do enough new things in ECW Hardcore Revolution. It is pretty much WWF Attitude with an ECW skinm and they missed most of what made ECW special. They did have the option to replace the ring ropes with barbwire, but I never really felt like that added a great deal to the match.
There is a great amount of game modes here, many of which can be played in multiplayer, which is always fun. Well fun for five minutes until you and your buddies decide to fire up Wrestlemania 2000 instead. Pretty much any match type that you can think of is here, but the game play just does not feel like ECW. The single player campaign is pretty lengthy just like it was in WWF Attitude, but again not enough new stuff was added.
This is a very lazy game and it is a real shame that we did not get a great ECW game when ECW was at its peak. A game that really embraced what made ECW so special and not just a WWF game with some ECW stickers slapped on it. I can still remember the first time I watched ECW wrestling. It was in 1995 and a friend of mine had a bootleg VHS tape (no internet back then folks) of an event called “Double Tables”, and it blew my mind. It was just so unlike anything that the WWF or WCW were doing. Sadly this game comes no where near close to capturing that magic.
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