The Total Recall


Artist touch: RVD kicking Jerry Lynn in the head with a chair is a great example of what ECW is all about! It just looks cool. Maybe there could have more recognizable wrestlers on the cover but it is still great as it is. Cover art rating: 9/10
Month it won: January 2005

(Acclaim, March 1, 2000)
Special note: This is ECW's first video game!
Introduction and Story:
One of the coolest DVD's to come out in 2004 in my opinion was The Rise and Fall of ECW. This special 2 DVD set chronicles a small but highly violent and entertaining wrestling company that liked breaking all the rules. That company was ECW: Extreme Championship Wrestling! In it you can witness all the controversy surrounding its heavy use of blood, swearing, and some of the most shocking matches in wrestling history. The DVD was so good that is easily out performs other wrestling WWE DVD's that year like the dismal Great American Bash 2004 and even Wrestlemania XX. Sadly, one of the reasons why the company folded in the first place was because it just didn't have the big budget to get the name out there and it certainly didn't help matters when the video games were total garbage. Take Acclaim's ECW Hardcore Revolution for example.

To warn you in advance: this game is really Acclaim's WWF Attitude from the Summer of 1999 (also on the Dreamcast, N64, and Playstation) but now Acclaim has lost their big WWF license to rival company THQ. To counter the lost they created a new wrestling game under the ECW name, a company few people would know about but at the time this brand of wrestling was gaining some serious popularity at the time with its more edgy style. ECW is based on more hardcore 18 to 35 demographic rather than more family friendly Sports Entertainment wrestling that the WWF (or WWE) and the old WCW are known for. With then huge up and comers like Tommy Dreamer, Mike Awesome, Sabu, Justin Incredible, and the Sandman making a name for themselves for their wreckless and intense fighting style, ECW Hardcore Revolution had the chance to be a much more different game.
Controls and Game Play:
So did Acclaim fix any of the problems from WWF Attitude when they released ECW Hardcore Revolution? Nope, this game sucks too! You still have all the play modes for single or multi-player action and you can still Create-A-Wrestler if you like but there is for little else new and even the low energy presentation looks the same. You can fight with cool weapons like Singapore canes, chairs, and lots more but what wrestling game doesn't these days? You can also wrestling in a cool looking barbwire ring but this is really used for a novelty effect more then anything else so it quickly becomes boring.

Not only is the game play in ECW H.R. is very chunky with most the modes looking the same but the controls are unresponsive and out of date as well. Punches and Kicks often don't have to need to connect to hit a player and to add insult to injury the audience will even boo you if you use the same moves over and over again. There is virtually no difference between this lousy game and its N64 and Playstation counterparts either but I did noticed it was harder to control your character on the bulky Dreamcast controller.
Graphics and Sounds:
Moving on to the graphics, guys like Lance Storm, Taz, and Rob Van Dam do not act like their TV counterparts at all. Usually when a guy like RVD comes down to the ring he is in a overly cocky mood and loves to show off to the crowd, in the game however, his animations look incomplete and he does his jumping roundhouse kick it just looks awful. Despite having some decent character models, everybody on the roster looks so sluggish that they appear to be drunk in the ring and why does it look like they are dancing at the end of the match? Diehard ECW fans will also notice that several stars will not come out to their original heavy metal music either so you can forget about hearing Rob Van Dam's "What Ya Say!", The Sandman's Enter Sandman from Metallica or basically anything good. The sound effects and voices are a little better because wrestlers will shot off a few one liners now and again but they feel more cheesy then extreme especially when it looks like the guys are washing tables (which is what many of the wrestlers are actually doing today).
The Bottomline:
If you’re into wrestling and you’re an ECW fan then please avoid the ECW games on any system and pick up WWF No Mercy for the N64 or the WWE Smackdown games for the Playstation2 and create your own favourite ECW fighters instead of getting this recycled piece of junk. ECW Hardcore Revolution will leave you more disappointed then an ECW wrestler looking for their next pay check.
ECW Hardcore Revolution
overall rating: 38/100

For 1 to 4 players
Rated (M) for Mature
graphics: 4/10
sound: 4/10
gameplay: 5/10
replay: 5/10

(Ryan Genno) 2005

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