Video Games: ECW Hardcore Revolution

Publisher: Acclaim
Developer: Acclaim Sports
Platform: Playstation, Sega Dreamcast, Nintendo 64
Price: Approx. $20.00
Release Date: Available Now
Players: 1-4


Say "ECW" to a wrestling fan, and you'll typically get one of two reactions - they either hate it or love it. The same goes with Acclaim's series of wrestling games, starting with the breakthrough WWF War Zone, then WWF Attitude and now ECW Hardcore Revolution. Unfortunately, even with new features and new wrestlers, Hardcore Revolution is just a remake of Attitude with the same old problems.

As Hardcore As Warm Butter
ECW Hardcore Revolution will give hardcore wrestling fans most of they want in a wrestling title, from women and weapons to barbed-wire and blood. You'll see 43 of the ECW's best wrestlers over the course of Career mode, plus a handful of jobbers that you'll have to take down to rise in ranking. The ECW is all about violence, and so is Hardcore Revolution, as you wield buttloads of weapons, perform neck-cracking moves, or sling opponents into the barbed-wire "ropes." Those disappointed by SmackDown!'s lack of blood can get your rocks off here - there's more blood in Hardcore Revolution than in Count Dracula's icebox.

If you liked WWF War Zone, then you probably liked WWF Attitude, so you should also like ECW Hardcore Revolution, unless you've been seduced by the glitz and glamour of EA's and THQ's recent wrestling efforts. Acclaim's game is a workmanlike and relatively sparse overall experience, the moves and the match dominate over the pomp and circumstance.

The Same F'n Show
Hardcore Revolution looks like Attitude should have looked, and even on the N64 the textures are decent and the frame rate clips along. Characters look like they should, though they still move with the same lack of personality as those in Attitude. To compete with the current N64 king, Wrestlemania 2000, ECW needs quite a bit more show. It looks fine, but you may find yourself looking for something more interesting to watch.

You can hear the crowd and follow their mood swings, and the announcing is actually top-notch for the N64, right up there with the excellent play-by-play in WCW Mayhem. The problem is that the sound bites from the wrestlers themselves seem rather out-of-place, with quotes spouting off in the middle of a match, and gruesome grunts and whines when the characters are caught in holds.

After playing Mayhem or Wrestlemania 2000, ECW's controls seem needlessly difficult, but Attitude veterans will pick it right up. That's because the controls are exactly the same as Attitude's, with all of Attitude's frustrations included. Why is it harder for a character to whip the opponent into the ropes than it is to do a pinning powerbomb? Some would say the difficulty gives more depth, but Mayhem had more moves, and Wrestlemania 2000 is simply more fun.

Don't Give Me That Attitude
Attitude fans who dig the ECW might want to give this one a look, but if you really want to play ECW wrestlers, then try to create them in Wrestlemania 2000 or Mayhem. In an age where both wrestling games and wrestling itself are centering on the show behind the sport, Acclaim's difficult and bland engine is showing its age.

Gamepro Magazine
Gamepro Magazine rated ECW Hardcore Revolution (N64) with the following:

Graphics: 4.0
Hardcore Revolution looks decent, compared to Attitude, but Attitude's look just doesn't do it anymore. Compared to more showy and interesting-looking titles, ECW just isn't "extreme" enough.

Sound: 3.5
The announcing is up there with Mayhem's excellent play-by-play, and the crowd noise sounds fine, but the wrestlers' sound bites seem out of place and awkward.

Controls: 3.5
Attitude veterans will feel right at home, but most others will find the moves needlessly difficult to perform. While your thumbs are gliding about on the D-pad, the CPU opponent will effortlessly thump you with difficult moves that you've been trying unsuccessfully to perform for hours.

Fun Factor: 3.5
Getting beat to learn new moves just isn't fun. The ECW aspects of the title (barbed-wire and such) lend a touch of originality to the game, but otherwise it's just another Attitude. C'mon Acclaim, give us a new engine next year!

Alternate costumes:
Hold C-Up + C-Down, C-Up + C-Left, or C-Up + C-Right and press A to choose a wrestler at the character selection screen.

Random wrestler:
Press R at the character selection screen.

Beulah McGillicutty:
Win the ECW Tag Team belt in career mode.
Bill Alfonzo:
Win single player tournament mode as R.V.D.

Cyrus The Virus:
Win the ECW World TV belt in career mode.

Joey Styles:
Win the Acclaim belt in career mode.

Joel Gertner:
Win the Acclaim belt in career mode.

Judge Jeff Jones:
Win single player tournament mode as Mike Awesome.

Louie Spicolli:
Win ECW World Heavyweight belt in career mode.

The Sheik:
Win the ECW Tag Team belt in career mode.

Win ECW World Heavyweight belt in career mode.

Tommy Rich:
Win the ECW World TV belt in career mode.

All Jobbers:
Successfully defend the ECW World Heavyweight belt five times in career mode.

You can also get all jobbers by successfully defending the Tag belts in Tag Team Career Mode.

Random head mode:
Win single player tournament mode as Louie Spicolli.

Additional custom wrestler items:
Win single player tournament mode as Tommy Dreamer. Alternately, win the Living Dangerously tournament.

Headless mode:
Win single player tournament mode as Taz.

Little head mode:
Win single player tournament mode as Roadkill.

Big head mode:
Win single player tournament mode as Rhino.

Ego mode:
Win single player tournament mode as Chris Chetti.

Big hands mode:
Win single player tournament mode as Jason.

Big feet mode:
Win single player tournament mode as Balls Mahoney.

Fat man mode:
Win single player tournament mode as Spike Dudley.

Hangman mode:
Win single player tournament mode as Big Sal Graziano.

Taunt opponent:
Press A + C-Left during a match.

Hint: Little Spike Dudley's Acid Drop:
Do the following combo when you are in the corner and your opponent has a red life meter: press Left, Right, Block or Up, Up, A.

Hint: Quick moves:
Press a move combo while your opponent is getting up. As soon as he is fully standing, the move will automatically be executed before your opponent has a chance to do anything.

Hint: Easier career mode:
Start career mode with Raven. His finishing maneuver (Even Flow DDT) is almost a guaranteed win. Raven's finisher helps when the odds are against you, such as in 2 vs.1, 3 vs. 1, or even Tag Team. When you try to pin your opponent, their partner interferes and breaks the pin. However, the Even Flow DDT is immune to most types of interference, but can be broken up with a weapon.

Hint: Hold ECW title:
Win the ECW heavyweight title in multi-player career mode. When you defeat the champ at the end, the game will show you holding the ECW title.

Glitch: Women referred to as men:
The game refers to women as men at various points.


Featured Gallery
Below is the featured gallery at TWZ.