Saturday, August 6, 2005

Rumble Roses

Genre: Action, Sports
Platform: PlayStation 2
ESRB Rating: Mature
2004 Konami Digital Entertainment America, Konami TYO, Yuke's Media Creations

Rumble Roses Game
Rumble Roses Strategy Guides/Art
Original Soundtrack
Cover Description:


  • A story mode you won't forget
  • Lethal moves and looks that kill
  • Ruthless submission holds
  • Get dirty in mud mode

"Looks amazing! Plays fantastic!"

Just play DOA instead. >>> by Trigon

The concept of placing scantily-clad, beautiful women into a wrestling game instead of scantily-clad, sweaty men is certainly not a bad one. Okay, maybe it's a little bad. Rumble Roses is a decent wrestling game, but it unfortunately falls well short of its potential.

Rumble Roses has a fun, exciting wrestling engine that could have formed the foundation for a great wrestling game. The controls are simpler than many recent wrestling games. While this may turn off the most fervent wrestling fans, the simple controls make Rumble Roses easy to learn and fun to play. Each wrestler has distinctive strike combos, beautiful, gravity-defying grapples, and signature special moves that can be performed with the push of a button. A.questionable. aspect of the game is the Humiliation Meter - a heart-shaped icon that fills up as you perform moves that embarrass your foe. Once the heart is full, there is a brief cut scene showing your blushing, humiliated foe. You can then perform a Humiliation Move, a signature submission move that usually involves twisting your opponent's body into an interesting, provocative position. For both wrestling and titillation, the basic gameplay is one of the best facets of the game.

Unfortunately, Rumble Roses fails to utilize this strong foundation. The most obvious, egregious flaw is the utter lack of any wrestling modes aside from the standard one-on-one match. There is no survival mode, no handicap mode, not even a tag-team mode! This is a serious omission that really hurts this game in comparison to other wrestling titles, some of which have over a dozen special modes. Even the much-hyped Mud Match is, sadly, almost identical to the normal match. At the very least, the characters should have had a different set of maneuvers specific to grappling and rolling around in the mud. Alas, Konami really dropped the ball here, since the mud match could have been where Rumble Roses distinguished itself from other wrestling games.

Rumble Roses has ten appropriately cheesy, over-the-top characters (and one hidden character), each representing an arch-type or fetish. Examples include Reiko, (the Roses version of Ryu), Dixie (the cowgirl), Candy Cane (the delinquent schoolgirl), Miss Spencer (the hot teacher) and Anesthesia (the naughty nurse), to name a few. Each character also has an equally outrageous unlockable alter-ego. Each character has a distinctive move-set suitable to her personality. While the characters have specific strengths and weaknesses, they are exceptionally well balanced.

Rumble Roses has one of the worst Story Modes ever conceived. Granted, the premise and characters are shallow, but even that is not an excuse for writing this bad. The storylines vary for each character, but they all end up dealing with an evil nurse trying to take over the world by creating a female cyborg wrestler. As inane as the plot is, the dialog and voice direction make the story that much more painful to sit through. At first, the story can be described as "so bad it's actually funny," but this sentiment quickly wears thin as you play each character. Luckily, the dialog sequences can be skipped by pushing the Start button.

The visual presentation of Rumble Roses is by far the best aspect of the game. As you might expect, the character models are extraordinary. Significant effort was put into every detail of the character design, including costumes, facial expressions, and the unrealistic (in a good way) movement animation. The game's animation is fluid and smooth, the only problem being some rare clipping issues during some of the grapples. Each character has an elaborate entrance animation, during which you can see all of the assets of the costume and character design (from multiple interesting camera angles). The backgrounds are not nearly as impressive. There are only three stages available, all very similar, mediocre arenas. Graphically, the worst aspect of the game is the infamous mud pit - a square, light brown pit that looks like chocolate milk but does not behave like any liquid or solid known to man. However, the beach background of the mud pit stage looks fabulous; clearly the other stages could have benefited from some exotic locales.

Regrettably, the audio quality leaves much to be desired. The music is decent overall, especially the energetic and extremely appropriate cover of "Yankee Rose" during the opening cinematic. Each character's entrance music is also well-chosen, although Konami fans might notice that some of the songs are recycled from other games. (For example, Reiko's "Looks to the Sky" and Anesthesia's "Keep on Liftin" are both songs in Dance Dance Revolution.) The background music during the matches and on the menu screens is boring and repetitive, but at least it's forgettable. Unlike the voice acting, this will likely have you scrambling to find the Mute button on your remote control. Character voices range from bland and uninspired (like Miss Spencer) to utterly unbearable (like Aigle). The voice acting in this game is a good example of why games should have the option of reverting to the original Japanese voices.

The replay value of this game depends entirely on your enjoyment of (or tolerance for) ogling the characters in skimpy costumes. The rewards for completing the challenges in the game are purely fan-service, such as new costume colors, wearing swimsuits during normal matches, and unlocking character alter-egos. The ultimate example is winning the Title match, which opens up the character's Gallery mode. The sole purpose of Gallery Mode is to watch the wrestler as she stretches and gyrates in the locker room. Even this mode falls flat, however, as watching Gallery Mode quickly becomes boring and repetitive. Replay value is where this game truly suffers for its lack of game modes.

Rumble Roses has an excellent concept that is, unfortunately, ruined by a poor execution. The outstanding graphics and wrestling mechanics do not save the game, and in fact, actually taunt us with a taste of what the game could have been. Obvious, glaring flaws like a lack of options, moronic story mode, abysmal voice acting, and a boring gallery mode drag the game down to the pits of mediocrity. Long story short -- just play the Dead or Alive series instead.

COMPLETION TIME: 10-30 hours to unlock everything (estimate)
RATINGS: Gameplay 6; Battle 9; Story 3; Visuals 9; Characters 7; Sounds 4; Replay Value 6

No comments:

Post a Comment

Copyright 1997 - 2010. The Kraiders Otaku Fridge. All content, except screenshots, belong to the webmaster.