|System: Wii||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Grand Prix / Cavia||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: XSeed Games||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Oct. 16, 2007||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
by Tom Kelly
Ippo Makunouchi is a young upstart driven by a burning desire to one day hold the title belt, and it is up to you to guide him to the top. For a sports game, there is a whole lot of narrative going on here. You fight, and then you sit for a couple minutes as more plot points unfold. The story is well detailed and accompanied by cinemas; thankfully they provide a fresh break from the action, which can be quite hectic at times. Unfortunately, the complexities of the tale are limited to one linear path. No matter how you perform, the story will follow the same script leading you from one fight to the next, until eventually you make it all the way to the top. This is a huge drawback to the experience, as it would have been nice to see the quality of your play have some effect on how things developed. I found it absolutely ridiculous to nearly knock Dante out in the first round, only to enter the second and watch a movie of Ippo getting heart punched and losing the fight. As a player, you should be able to feel like you have some influence over what you are experiencing.
The one note story is a precursor to how the game plays. Revolution is a one trick pony. There is the story mode, and then you can either spar with the computer or a friend. Other than that you can train with each control style. A few recommendations for what could have put this game over the top: Training mini-games, more customization or even a create a fighter mode. Training games could have provided a good distraction from the contests themselves, imagine hitting a speed bag with these controls or jumping rope. Additionally, it would have been cool to have the ability to give Ippo some new duds: gloves, shorts, shoes, anything really. The overall lack of depth is what kills this game in the long run, especially considering the overall strength the rest of Revolution has.
As you follow Ippo in his efforts to be the best you slowly realize just how well the cinemas serve this game visually. The unique look of Revolution is one of its better features. The cartoon like graphics give it a fresh feel. Of course, if you have ever played any of the Ippo games before you should be familiar with the style already. Along with Ippo, there are tons of other characters that all look just as good. The character count is accompanied by a slew of arenas in which to wage battle. The only drawback to the visuals is the extremely bland crowd, who resemble paper cut outs.
The sound, in turn, complements the cinema almost perfectly as Revolution uses voice work to tell the tale of Ippo. If the dialogue is the high point, the music and sound effects range somewhere in the middle. There are several tracks that play, but punches land with such little authority that you can almost not tell if they are landing at all. Just as there is a high there is always a low, in this case it would be the announcer who struggles to keep up with the feverish pace that the in ring action presents.