WWF WrestleMania: The Arcade Game | Wikipedia audio article

WWF WrestleMania: The Arcade Game | Wikipedia audio article


WWF WrestleMania (released on home consoles
as WWF WrestleMania: The Arcade Game) is a professional wrestling arcade game released
by Midway Manufacturing Co. in 1995. It is based on the World Wrestling Federation
(WWF) professional wrestling promotion. The game features digitized representations
of eight WWF performers who are pitted against each other in fast-paced matches inspired
by Midway’s Mortal Kombat and NBA Jam games. Commentary is provided by Vince McMahon and
Jerry Lawler, who also appear in the game sitting at the announcers’ table to the right
of the ring and Howard Finkel welcoming players to Wrestlemania at the start screen. Acclaim, who published the console versions
of the game, developed a follow-up, WWF in Your House for the PlayStation, Sega Saturn,
and MS-DOS.==Gameplay==Although based on professional wrestling,
WWF WrestleMania’s digitized graphics and fast-paced gameplay make it more of a fighting
game than a Sports/wrestling game inspired by Midway’s popular Mortal Kombat series. What separates this game from previous and
future WWF/WWE video games is its over-the-top and very cartoonish attacks. Examples include Doink the Clown pulling out
a mallet out of thin air, Razor Ramon’s arm transforming into a blade, or Bam Bam Bigelow’s
fists catching on fire. While actual wrestling moves are present,
matches consist primarily of strike attacks and special moves. There are other similarities to the Mortal
Kombat games, such as uppercuts that cause the opponent to go sky high, flawless victories
and very tongue-in-cheek character animations. WWF WrestleMania’s one-player mode has the
player choose one of eight wrestlers – Bret Hart, The Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, Razor
Ramon, Bam Bam Bigelow, Yokozuna, Doink the Clown, and Lex Luger. A unique feature is that each character can
“bleed” an object that represents them. Such “bleeding” objects include dumbbells
flying out of Lex Luger and valentine hearts coming out of Bret Hart. WWF WrestleMania features two single-player
modes: the Intercontinental Championship and the WWF Championship. In the Intercontinental Championship mode,
the player must win four one-on-one matches, two Handicap 2-on-1 matches, and one Handicap
3-on-1 match to win the title. In the more difficult WWF Championship mode,
the player must win four Handicap 2-on-1 matches, two Handicap 3-on-1 matches, and finally a
“WrestleMania Challenge,” where the player must defeat every wrestler in the game in
a gauntlet, starting with a three-on-one setup, with each eliminated opponent being replaced
with another until all eight have been defeated. The game also features two multi-player modes;
head to head, a one-on-one match between two players, or cooperative, where the two players
team up in a tag team version of the WrestleMania Challenge in which they must defeat the game’s
eight wrestlers in groups of two to become the Tag Team Champions. In-game music consists of snippets from the
roster’s circa-1994 entrance music (with the exception of Shawn Michaels, who has the older,
Sherri Martel version of “Sexy Boy” and Undertaker with his previous theme when he had the Western
Mortician moniker from 1991 to 1994), as well as the opening themes to WWF Monday Night
RAW, WWF Superstars, and WWF Wrestling Challenge.==Development==
Programmer Mark Turmell stated that “I worked 16 hours a day, seven days a week for six
months to get WWF WrestleMania out. People play the game all day in my office
and give me feedback, plus artists are always coming in with new ideas for me and my partner,
Sal DiVita.”Shortly after the game was released, Midway executive Roger Sharpe claimed that
Adam Bomb appears in the game. Many years later, developer Sal DiVita confirmed
that Adam Bomb was a hidden character, but also stated that the character in the game
was not fully completed.==Ports==
Ports were developed for Mega Drive/Genesis, 32X, Super NES, PlayStation, Sega Saturn,
and MS-DOS. The Super NES release omits Bam Bam Bigelow
and Yokozuna. When the maximum of three characters are on
screen simultaneously, the game slows down. It also lacks several voice and commentary
samples and damage taken by in-game fighters from attacks was reduced. The Genesis version retains most of the voice
and commentary samples from the arcade and allows for four wrestlers on-screen, also
with slow down. The 32X release is similar to the standard
Genesis version, but with improved graphics and audio. However, the frame rate was reduced to 30
frames per second in the 32X port compared to 60 frames per second in all other versions.==Reception==
Bruised Lee of GamePro gave the arcade version a positive review, particularly praising the
“unmatched” level of detail in the digitized characters, the wacky sense of humor, and
the accessible controls. He summarized, “Lose the basketball from NBA
Jam, take away the blood from MK, throw in some famous wrestlers, and you have WWF Wrestlemania,
one of the most addictive arcade games to date.” A reviewer for Next Generation similarly described
WWF Wrestlemania as a sort of bloodless Mortal Kombat, and said it is similar to but “much
better” than WWF Raw. He applauded the “cleanly digitized” characters,
variety of moves, ability to play either head-to-head or two-on-two cooperative, and sense of humor.The
PlayStation version was even more enthusiastically received by critics, who praised the game
for having combos which are easy to stumble across, engaging commentary and other sound
effects, and an extensive combination of realistic wrestling moves and comical magic moves which
tap into the fantasy appeal of wrestling. GamePro’s Scary Larry gave it a 4.5/5 for
control and a perfect 5/5 in every other category (graphics, sound, and FunFactor), calling
it “a great wrestling game, a great fighting game, and a great as-fun-to-watch-as-it-is-to-play
game.” A reviewer for Next Generation opined that
it “looks great and plays even better.” The two sports reviewers of Electronic Gaming
Monthly both gave it a 9 out of 10 and an “Editor’s Choice Platinum” award, and remarked,
“[Acclaim and Williams] have turned out the lights on anyone thinking of making a wrestling
game for the PlayStation.”Scary Larry said the 32X version is “no match for the PlayStation
title” and lacks many of the sound samples of the arcade version, but at least has better
graphics than the Genesis and Super NES versions, and overall is a must-have for 32X owners. GamePro’s Air Hendrix commented that the Genesis
version suffers from “excessive graininess” and conspicuous slowdown, and that the gameplay
is somewhat shallow. He nonetheless found the game is enjoyable
and outshines earlier wrestling games for the system. Scary Larry said that while it would be unfair
to compare it to the PlayStation version, the Super NES version does not compare well
even to the Genesis version. He criticized the reduced character roster,
slow game speed, smaller sprites, and tinny sound effects.Scary Larry described the Saturn
port as an “almost flawless” conversion of the PlayStation version, with the only shortcomings
being some graininess around the edges and slowdown in the cooperative mode. However, he also said it was a disappointment
that there was nothing new in this version despite it coming out almost a year after
the PlayStation version. Rob Allsetter of Sega Saturn Magazine maintained
that it was “worth the wait”, applauding the gameplay and humor. He remarked that the key to the game’s excellence
is “its immediate accessibility. After about five minutes you’ll find yourself
able to perform some of the most outrageous moves.”==
See also==List of licensed wrestling video games
List of fighting games

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