Greatest Heavyweights of the Ring

a game by Sega

Platform: Sega GenesisGenesis

Genres: Fighting Games, Sports

See also: Boxing Games

  • Machine: Genesis;
  • Manufacturer: Sega of America;

Just when you thought the barrage of recycled boxing games with new packaging was finally over, along comes Greatest Heavyweights.

Fortunately for the game - and you players - the game isn't based on the latest fly-by-night heavyweight champ.

Instead, Sega Sports put together on one cart eight of the greatest heavyweights in boxing history:

  1. Muhammad Ali
  2. Jack Dempsey
  3. Joe Frazier
  4. Larry Holmes
  5. Evander Holyfield
  6. Joe Louis
  7. Rocky Marciano
  8. Floyd Patterson.

And as in earlier sims, Greatest Heavyweights offers a career mode in which you create a boxer, then fight your way to the top. Sure, this feature adds replay value to the game, but it's basically the same career mode found in earlier Sega boxing titles.

Other play modes include an Exhibition bout in which you can pit, for example, Ali against a heavily overmatched 30th-place contender, or a Tournament mode in which you pick one of the greatest and fight the seven others in a round-robin tourney.

Unfortunately, it doesn't matter which boxer you choose - Greatest Heavyweights has already been done to death. The game's bright spot is its compatibility with the Activator and Sega's six-button controller.

If you're a die-hard boxing fan, you might consider saving up your pay-per-view dollars and putting it toward Greatest Heavyweights. But don't be surprised if you find that even harnessing the power and pride of these eight fighters into one cart doesn't help make it different enough for the average sports fan.

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Sega

Greatest Heavyweights of the Ring Downloads

Sega Genesis Greatest Heavyweights of the Ring download

Who's the greatest heavyweight boxer of all time? Is it Muhammad Ali? Jack Dempsey? Or was it Rocky Marciano? You get your chance to find out in Greatest Heavyweights for the Genesis. It's only a lightweight when it comes to graphics and control, but Greatest Heavyweights offers enough other features and options to make it a contender in any weight division.

All Contenders, No Pretenders

Boxing superstars from the past 70 years, from Jack Dempsey to Evander "The Real Deal" Holyfield, answer the bell in this ultimate showdown of boxing legends for one or two players. Greatest Heavyweights features eight of the sports' all-time great fighters. Besides Ali, Dempsey, and Marciano, you get Joe Louis. Joe Frazier, Larry Holmes, Evander Holyfield, and Floyd Patterson ("Iron" Mike Tyson is notably absent). Each boxer fights with a distinctive style, which means you'll match Ali's speed and quickness against Marciano's power. The matchups are as fascinating as they are exciting.

Greatest Heavyweights has several game options. You can fight an Exhibition with any two fighters, or stage your own eight- man Tournament with history's greatest heavyweights. Three judges score the fights, and you get to see punch counts and accuracy stats after each round.

The coolest feature of this game is the Build Your Own Challenger option. This mode allows you to enter the ring and mold a fighter into your ideal champion. This fighter can take on almost any shape or form -- you get to select his head, hair, skin color, and trunks. You enter as the 30th- ranked fighter and take on all comers in the Career Mode. After each fight you'll select from nine training items to increase your power, speed, and stamina. The computer boxers are tough and each has individual strengths and weaknesses. It's a fun, strategic battle to the top.

Head Shots

The controls for Greatest Heavyweights are sluggish, at best. Occasionally it seems as if the computer has more control over your fighter than you do, especially when you're getting pummeled and you can't retreat or cover up to stop the beating. This isn't a problem with the two-player option, where the controls are much more responsive.

ProTips:

  • Alternate your jabs. Don't throw a left or right jab in succession. The computer will eventually pick up on your strategy and block your punches.
  • If your opponent doesn't have a lot of stamina, go for the body. This is the easiest and quickest way to score a KO.
  • When selecting from the Training Menu, pick items that will make you a balanced fighter. Don't load up exclusively on Training items that will give a lot of power.
  • For ultimate success, use a combination of jabs, hooks, and body shots.

The graphics for Greatest Heavyweights arc just above average. You get a waist-up shot of each fighter, with a small overview of the ring at the top of the screen. The fighters are well represented and have good details, such as Dempsey's three-day beard and Holmes' wide waistline. You'll even see the spit fly after brutal head shots. Compensating for the graphics are solid sounds. You hear every punch, every grunt, and every taunt from the champs. These are some of the clearest voices ever heard on the Genesis, and phrases like Ali's "I'm so pretty!" add a lot of personality to the sport. The background crowd reactions and the music don't add much, though.

Reigning Champ

Despite its minor control problems and ordinary graphics, Greatest Heavyweights still scores a TKO with its numerous playing options and its distinctive sounds. This game will go the distance.

reggie posted a review

this game sucks

vinx_619 posted a review
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