In 1987 one of the greatest console boxing games was released, Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!! If you owned an NES I don’t need to tell you how great a game it was. You play a boxer named Little Mac who has to beat on a cast of colorful boxers on your way to the title fight against the champ, Mike Tyson. The game was colorful, had great gameplay and even had Mario in as the Referee. So why did a sequel never materialize?
Well it did it just had a different name, Power Punch II. You see in the early 1990s, Mike Tyson had some famous legal troubles so the name of the game was changed from “Mike Tyson’s Intergalactic Power Punch” to “Power Punch II”. For anyone who has tried this game, it is pretty obvious that most of the development was done with Tyson in mind. The main character in the game, Mark Tyler, besides having a sound-a-like name also bears a striking resemblance to the ex-champ. They even throw in an appearance by de-haired Don King and woman who looks a lot like Mike Tyson’s ex-wife and “Head of the Class” co-star Robin Givens.
The game itself is pretty lame, when compared to the original Punch Out!! The premise is bizarre. Having defeated 33 people on Earth, Mark/Mike claims invincibility. This doesn’t play well with the citizens of the Universe and well, ITS ON!! As you can see from this ad, not all of your opponents are traditional humanoids. In fact, some of them are riding vehicles (hoverskirts anyones?) and one of your earlier opponents look like a Borg! As I should have guessed, it turns out The Queensbury Rules only apply in our Solar System.
Ludicrous plot aside. The gameplay was very choppy. I remember trying to time my hits in this game and it was nearly impossible at times. This game was quickly traded away to a friend for a copy of “Pool of Radiance”.
I tried to find a commercial for Power Punch II, but I came up empty handed. Maybe they never made one? Here is a video of game play so you can at least get an idea of how the game worked.
Dig those training sessions..ZZZZZZZZZZZZ.