Total time played: 10 Minutes
Short review: A total snooze fest of a street fighter style game. There is no replay value and hardly any difference in characters and stages. Even though this is a very early NES release it is disappointing.
Interesting links related to Urban Champion:
Urban Champion was a very early NES game and it shows. Let me take some time to go over the in depth button schematics.
Start – Used to get from the title screen to the game and once in the game used to pause.
A – Light Fast Punch
B – Heavy Slow Punch
Up + A or B – Punch the face of your opponent
Down + A or B – Punch the stomach of your opponent
Left – Move your character left
Right – Move your character right
Urban Champion, in a very round about way may have paved the way for games like Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat as it is one of the earliest one one fighting games. But, there is no strategy needed. Just move right and punch until your character is pushed off the screen.
Every so often a character will appear in a window and try to drop a flower pot on your head, I assume it stuns you if you get hit but you have so much advanced warning it is almost impossible to get hit. This may change in the later stages but I didn’t last that long. Once I found out the game loops after 3 stages I gave up and didn’t play much farther. I believe I made it to stage 7 before I got bored.
I read online how sometimes the cops will show up during the fight and you and your opponent will take a break and wait for the cop to leave. This serves absolutely no purpose and just slows the game down. I guess they wanted to add a sense of realism to the game but it just pisses off the person playing.
I very vaguely can appreciate Urban Champion as a pioneer of a genre of games that still finds ways to be innovate 30 years after it came out. But, even 30 years ago I find it hard to believe that the game designers couldn’t have found ways to make the game a little more enjoyable. You can’t jump, you can’t kick and there is so little variety in characters and backgrounds that it is hard to imagine anyone playing this game for more than a few minutes and enjoying themselves.
Urban Champion reminds me a lot of the very first NES game I ever played, Karate Champ. Karate Champ is so bad that I am surprised I gave any other games a chance after playing it. That being said, now I am thinking about Karate Champ and will probably try to play it in the near future, which I am sure I will regret.