Sega 32X Reviews W-Z

WWF Raw
Grade: D-
Publisher: Acclaim (1995)
Reviewed: 2005/3/19


screenshotOf the two wrestling titles Acclaim released for the 32X (the other being WWF Wrestlemania), Raw is clearly more ambitious yet falls short in terms of actual gameplay. It features 12 actual WWF wrestlers, depicted in large colorful photos on the menu screens. The actual game characters are fairly small however and less impressive than those in Wrestlemania.

Raw's gameplay is undeniably deep. Like most wrestling games, the action gets repetitive, but you have to give Acclaim credit for incorporating an astonishing number of moves. You can throw your opponent from the ring, jump from the turnbuckle, perform knee/elbow drops when your opponent is down, and even execute signature moves.

One aspect that really sucks however is the "tie-up" system. When two fighters lock arms, a meter appears and the player who taps buttons fastest wins. Not only is this physically tiresome, but more often than not it ends in a draw. The combination of lengthy matches and constant button tapping will take its toll on your hands.

This game's title is apropos, as the visuals look unpolished, with animation that's hard to make out at times. WWF Raw offers seven playing modes including tag team and the Royal Rumble, which features six wrestlers in the ring at once! Yes, it's a big, confusing mess. Just like real wrestling, you can do some crazy things like punch the referee or fight outside of the ring.

And while you're out there, don't forget to smack your opponent with that folding chair that always just happens to be sitting around for no good reason. WWF Raw is not a game I can play for an extended period of time. Then again, I'm not a big wrestling fan. If you are an avid fan, you can probably bump up the grade by one letter. © Copyright 2005 The Video Game Critic.

1 to 4 players 

WWF Wrestlemania: The Arcade Game
Grade: C+
Publisher: Acclaim (1995)
Reviewed: 2005/3/19
Rating: Kids to Adults (Realistic violence)


screenshotWhile not a fan of professional wrestling, I can certainly appreciate the fast, exciting action and over-the-top animations of this arcade adaptation. Unlike real wrestling, matches tend to quickly run their course with few pauses or interruptions. There are eight WWF fighters represented in Wrestlemania, including the Undertaker, Bam Bam Bigelow, Doink the Clown, Leg Lugar, Yokozuna, Bret Hart, Razor Ramon, and Shawn Michaels.

The character sprites are large and well-defined. For some reason however, when you land a solid hit it looks like ice cubes are flying out of your opponent. Is that supposed to be sweat, spit, or ice? Anyway, the Mortal Kombat-inspired controls are simple to grasp and responsive. Although most moves are realistic in nature, some of the more over-the-top maneuvers are embellished by crazy animations to make them look even more spectacular.

Voice samples comment on the action in progress, but they sound pretty rough. This game was a pleasant surprise, especially compared to the laborious WWF Raw. Wrestlemania is a fighting game just about any gamer can enjoy. © Copyright 2005 The Video Game Critic.

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1 or 2 players 

World Series Baseball
Grade: B+
Publisher: Sega (1995)
Reviewed: 2002/5/28


screenshotThis game proves what most of us have known all-along: there's not much difference between a 32X and a regular Genesis. Sega tried to make this game a step up from the Genesis version, but besides some minor cosmetic changes, the game is practically identical. The enhanced color palette allows the stadiums to look a bit better, with more colorful backgrounds and crowds. The pitches now make a "whooshing" sound on their way to plate, and seem to move slower. When a ball is hit to an outfielder, the camera sometimes zooms in on the fielder. It looks pretty cool, but has little more than novelty value. The biggest disappointment is the sound - or lack of it! There's less commentary than other versions of the game, and the crowd is practically silent. Most of the new features of this 32X version, like multiplayer options and player trades, were incorporated into World Series 96 on the Genesis. Yes, this World Series game is better than its Genesis counterparts, but only slightly. © Copyright 2002 The Video Game Critic.
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1 or 2 players 

Zaxxon Motherbase 2000
Grade: D-
Publisher: Sega (1995)
Reviewed: 2000/5/13


screenshotWhen I first found out that a Zaxxon game was out for the 32X, I was giddy as a schoolgirl. The last time I had played Zaxxon was on a Colecovision in 1982. I always thought it was a cool game, and a sequel was long overdue. Imagine my disappointment when I realized this mediocre shooter wasn't really Zaxxon at all.

Yes, the 3D viewpoint is the same, but you can't elevate your ship (except to jump)! In an attempt to show-off the 32X polygon-rendering abilities, all objects in this game are 3D rendered. While the ships and bosses look fairly decent by 32X standards, the blockiness of the objects makes me wish they had just used old-fashion sprites. It doesn't even look as good as the original game!

And unfortunately, all the polygon graphics result in a busy screen with some annoying slowdown in the action. There are some cool gameplay concepts here, including the ability to commandeer enemy ships. But the screen area is limited, and the large bosses often squeeze you into an awkward corner of the screen. This Zaxxon is a real dud. © Copyright 2000 The Video Game Critic.

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1 player 


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Screen shots courtesy of Shinforce, Video Game Museum, Mega CD Library