Developed and published by Jaleco in 1994
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Back before UFC and MMA became popular, boxing used to be the biggest show in town. The sport's popularity was reflected by the number of video games based on the subject, and coin-op was no different. I guess 1994 was probably toward the tail end of this period, but Best Bout Boxing is yet another entry in the Pantheon of pugilistic punch 'em ups, and it's not a bad effort.
Unsurprisingly, you pick from a roster of prize fighters, then jump into the ring to find out who's the baddest fighter of all time. As with similar games, the characters are the usual bunch of stereotypes, plus some not-so-inconspicuous homages to Apollo Creed and Ivan Drago.
Each of the contenders has different attributes, speed, not to mention punching reach. Those with the longest arms can hold opponents at bay quite effectively, or can land some sneaky jabs whilst back-pedalling, and there's a genuine disparity between how each character plays.
In terms of defence, you can dodge, weave and block incoming blows, but it's also possible to parry. A successful parry gives you a short window of opportunity to launch a counterattack, which the opponent is powerless to defend against. It's a pretty cool system that adds tactical opportunities, rather than sitting there and letting your opponent beat on you.
I wouldn't say Best Bout Boxing was a classic, but it has some cool features, as well as looks pretty good as well - definitely worth a try!
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