Streets of Rage
Sega - 1991
Machine: Sega Megadrive
Streets of Rage was the second game that I bought for my Megadrive/Genesis. I couldn't believe it. It looked great, and it had two player action! My mate and I used to call a truce and promise each other not to fight amongst ourselves. It never lasted. It was fun, playable and it had the best music I'd ever heard on a console. It was so funky and exciting. Before the age of CD based games, music had to be crammed onto a cartridge that had the capacity equivalent to a normal floppy disk. But as happens with all consoles, programmers discover ingenious ways to cram more information into small spaces...
The game itself is a descendent of the Double Dragon buddy fighting games... there are various baddies to contend with, and various weapons to hit them with (bottles, baseball bats, guttering) The ubiquitous 'industrial' level even turned up. Nothing drastically original there, but there is a neat twist: there are two different endings to the game. One good, one bad. Certainly, at the time, I thought this was amazing. It was really tough to get the bad ending and I never managed to achieve it - always too much in-fighting.
Streets of Rage spawned a couple of sequels: again well worth hunting down, but this was the classic for me: simple and direct, a good example of what the Megadrive/Genesis was all about.
Bubbaray 14 Sep '03
Streets of Rage - Online - A detailed fansite with lots of links and stuff.
Streets of Rage Expanded Universe - I didn't know there was an expanded universe but that just goes to show how little I know. Go here for info on the Streets of Rage novels(!) and more.