Now earlier I said that I was nearly bored of FPS games until I played Team Fortress 2, I say this because this has happened again, this time, beat ‘em ups, now Final Fight and the Streets of Rage series do not count because they’re such classics, but then you think about Capcom just making more and more of these games, they’re mostly notable for Street Fighter and beat ‘em ups, it was getting old…then it happened again, there was actually one that I actually had pure fun and made me want to play it again, and it’s a game based off a comic book, The Punisher, released in 1993 for the CPS-1 system.
So who is The Punisher? Well his real name is Frank Castle who was part of the Special Forces, his life crumbles when his wife and two children were murdered by the mob and this is where he uses all his skills to kill anyone who is considered a bad guy and I mean everyone, if you did something bad, you’re dead. So making a beat ‘em up based of this makes a whole lot of sense and when you have Capcom you got gold.
Of course the game follows every beat ‘em up made by Capcom, you play as The Punisher and player 2 play as Nick Fury (white Nick Fury, not Samuel L Jackson Nick Fury, but wouldn’t have that been cool) you’re beating up enemies and using different weapons like every other. Whilst it’s formulaic as heck, there is two differences, it’s fast paced and they went all out, you’re going to blast everyone with a pistol, quickly smack down everyone in sight and the bosses are some of the best in a Capcom game in my opinion, both Punisher and Fury play the same so there aren’t any differences, I mean it is a game about The Punisher, the second player is just assistance. The graphics fits the comic book style and it has a great distinct comic style, every time you hit someone you’ll see the comic onomatopoeia like ‘BLAM’! and ‘KRAK’!
There was a Mega Drive/Genesis port made but is considered inferior to the arcade original but it hasn’t stopped collectors selling the port up to £150, yep, it’s that pricey. Thank goodness I played the arcade port so I don’t have to put money on useless manure.
Overall, this is stupidly fun, its gameplay is addictive, the game design and the world itself immerses you into the game, I even love the continue screen, this is when he’s being resuscitated, put a coin to continue and he’ll get up guns blazing, this is the best continue screen ever, now that is pure motivation. This will be on my list for best beat ‘em ups ever made and one of my favourite comic book based games ever. Vengeance has never been so much fun, unless you’re hunting for the wrong person.
You can get it for the Arcade and the Mega Drive/Genesis.
(Oh, I did watch the 2004 film and it was OK, I’ve seen bits of Punisher: War Zone but it looks boring, the more action movies you do, the more boring it gets unless you’re a fan of those movies).