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Wrestlemania the Arcade Game

A Blog Post for GameBanana



Ooooh boy. When it comes to wrestling games, it can't get any better than this. I got some really fond childhood memories with this one.

I finally got MAME to work yesterday, it previously just wouldn't start. After some tweaking and over a dozen tutorials, I finally got it to work. The first thing that ever came to my mind was this very game, WWF - Wrestlemania the Arcade Game. 

Released by Midway (Yep, the same company who made Mortal Kombat, Albeit not the same team) in 1995. Although it never caught on the same popularity as her cousin, MK, it was still a really decent wrestling game, and although I'm calling it a wrestling game, it actually isn't technically one. Yep, a wrestling game that isn't a wrestling game. It's actually a tournament fighter just like MK, with wrestling themes and real-life digitized wrestlers.

Good evening ladies and Gentlemen, this is Howard Finkel, and welcome, to Wrestlemania by Midway!

The game had wacky and hilarious moves, and over the top exaggerated wrestling moves. Razor Ramon's hand turned into Razor blades whenever he slapped, Undertaker struck you with a Tombstone and shot ghosts, Shawn Michaels and Doink pulled out a baseball bat and a Mallet respectively out of thin air, Bam Bam combusting you by jumping onto you from the top ropes, opponent's back and arms breaking and twisting, heads getting flattened with Piledrivers, gosh...
I can ramble on about this game forever. It was really exciting. No wonder why it spawned countless home console ports (Okay, maybe countable.) 

The only complaint I had about this game, was that their roster was really weak. (Razor, Doink, Bam Bam, Undertaker, Shawn, Bret, Lex Luger, Yokozuna). They could've added up a few more to expand the roster up a bit. Diesel and 1-2-3 Kidd could've been added. They could've also added wrestlers as British Bulldog, Tatanka, Triple H, Crush, Dibiase, IRS, Rick Martel and many more. Actually, there are rumors that Mr. Perfect and Steiner brothers were also to be in the game, but never made past signing the papers. Adam Bomb was also supposed to be in-game as a hidden character (Even had his moveset filmed) But mysteriously remains cut.

I was lucky enough to own a Sega Genesis as a child, and this was included by my Mom as a pack in game. I can't forget the countless hours of smashing heads and burning people. 

The game was ported for SNES and Genesis too. Genesis version, while graphically inferior, is actually better gameplay wise than nintendo (as in case with most games made for both systems.)
The SNES version is quite slow, so it feels like a amalgamation between mortal kombat and street fighter. SNES version is missing voicelines from McMahon and Jerry Lawler. It can slow down to a pace of a turtle if more than two wrestlers are on-screen together, and as such, matches such as one on Three handicap matches were actually cut. On top of it, Bam Bam Bigelow and Yokozuna were cut! weakening the already weak roster to 6. 

Note: Many game reviewing magazines claim that he Sega version suffers from slowdowns, but in reality, that is quite untrue. You cannot really rely on these people from the 90s. Someone in Nintendo mag claimed earthbound stank (next time, Mr. Editor, stop sniffing your armpits and concentrate on reviewing the game) and early mags praised E.T...

If you ever wanna pick this bad boy up for a console, please consider the Sega 32x or Genesis version as they are far superior to the Nintendo. (Who cares just get it on a Emulator). But the best way the game can be truly experienced is on Arcade. Get yourself some MAME and a Rom, and try it out. You won't be disappointed. 

GOOOOOD NIGHT!
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  • Romeo (L) avatar
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    Oh my, I remember days in school spent not in classes but at home with friends playing this awesome game. It was such a hilarious gaming experience!

    I especially like the thing, that when you hit the enemy, it drops special things, related with his personality. I remember Lex was dropping some sport stuff, like dumbbells and other fitness stuff, while Yokozuna was dropping fat food, like fried chicken and burgers =)

    And either remember, that Razor Ramon had the longest and deadliest combo, that took almost 70% of healthbar if performed right. Damn, there were some really cool games back then... not those shitty Call of Duty, that don't differ one from the another.
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