Let's keep it clean! Now come out boxing!Punch-Out!!
debuted in 1984 as a dual-screen arcade game produced by Nintendo. It was a boxing game where the player fought for a world title against a series of quirky opponents, typically consisting of various outdated national stereotypes
such as Glass Joe, Bald Bull, Mr. Sandman, Bear Hugger, Dragon Chan, Vodka Drunkenskinote
, Great Tiger, and Super Macho Man. It was followed by a sequel, Super Punch-Out!!
, released in 1985. A spinoff game titled Arm Wrestling
(an arm wrestling game
) was also released in 1985. A modified version endorsed by the British heavyweight boxer Frank Bruno was also released in 1985 on various eight bit computers of the era.
The series made its home console debut on the Nintendo Entertainment System in 1987. Originally released in Japan as a gold cartridge given away exclusively to certain Grand Prize Winners of the Famicom Golf: U.S. Course
Tournament, this new version of Punch-Out!!
featured most of the classic boxers, as well as newcomers such as Von Kaiser, Don Flamenco, and King Hippo, Mario in a cameo as the Referee, and two new protagonists in Little Mac and his trainer Doc Louis. The final opponent was Super Macho Man.
After then-Nintendo of America CEO Minoru Arakawa saw Mike Tyson at a boxing match, the decision was made to capitalize on his then growing popularity, by releasing the game publicly worldwide under the name Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!
, in which the final opponent was the infamous real-life champ himself. The 1990 reissue of the game (available in the first Animal Crossing
game as well as on the Wii
and Nintendo 3DS Virtual Consoles
instead of the Mike Tyson version), reverting back to the original Punch-Out!!
name, replaced him with a fictional champ named "Mr. Dream" (actually a white head swap
of Tyson, more reminiscent of Rocky Balboa
). Many people assume that this stems from Tyson being convicted of rape, causing Nintendo to ditch him, but since Tyson was dropped from the game a year before
he was arrested on the rape charges, this is clearly not the case. In reality, Nintendo's contract with Tyson expired, and since Tyson was no longer the heavyweight champion of the world having lost the title earlier to Buster Douglas, Nintendo opted not to renew the contract (since Sega
signed a licensing deal to use Buster's likeness in a pair of boxing games for the Master System
in order to spite Nintendo).
A second console installment was released for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System
in 1994 titled Super Punch-Out!!
(unrelated to the earlier arcade game, but closer to it gameplay-wise), which brought back characters from the first NES game (as well as the arcade installments), while introducing new ones.
Fifteen years later, a Wii
version of Punch-Out!!
was released in 2009, developed by Next Level Games
(of Super Mario Strikers
fame). Featuring modernized 3D graphics and full voice acting (with all boxers accurately speaking their native tongue), the game essentially functioned as a "greatest hits" collection of the series, consisting almost entirely of boxers from previous entries with the same patterns and weaknesses. In addition, there's a newly-added, very difficult "Title Defense" mode, where Little Mac has to defend his newly-gained World Circuit title from the boxers, now sporting new patterns and tactics, he went through to win it. The game was rereleased on Wii U
eShop in January 2015.
stand alone game titled Doc Louis' Punch Out!!
is an exclusive download for platinum Club Nintendo members where players take control of Little Mac once again and fight against his mentor, Doc Louis. Released around the last week of October 2009, players spar with Doc Louis in training sessions, so the game could be a prequel to the Wii version. Doc Louis can also use the Star Punch technique like Little Mac can due to Doc being the inventor of the technique. This title was later rereleased for all Club Nintendo members to purchase during the club's closing sale in 2015.
Little Mac has also appeared twice in the Super Smash Bros.
games; as an Assist Trophy in Brawl
, and as a playable character in 4
This series features examples of:
- Acrofatic: Mad Clown in Super Punch-Out!!, who will retreat by doing a few backflips.
- Addiction Powered: Soda Popinski. Quite the Meaningful Name.
- Adipose Rex: King Hippo, very much so.
- Aesop Amnesia: From Title Defense:
Super Macho Man:
Oh, now you love me. Now you love Macho Man. Well, it's too late... (beat
) ...Maybe not! -flexes-
- Agony of the Feet: When you knock off King Hippo's manhole cover in the Wii version's Title Defense mode, it lands on his foot - much to his dismay.
- Ambiguously Gay: Disco Kid in the Wii version. Although he's just projecting up the ambient gay of the 1970s. In Title Defense Mode:
Disco Kid: "I AM FAB-U-LOUS!"
- Preceeded beforehand by him jumping into the air and arcing like a rainbow. While letting out a blissful "WHEEEEEEE!" And he's dressed up ''exactly'' like Richard Simmons.
- Animal Athlete Loophole: Apparently, the World Video Boxing Association thought letting Donkey Kong fight as the game's Bonus Boss would bring in a lot of fans.
- Anti-Frustration Features: In the NES version, the first fight of each division has a way to end the fight in under a minute. Since passwords all only start at the beginning of a circuit, this way the player can get to the harder fights without straining themselves too much.
- Anti-Poop Socking : In the Wii version, per Nintendo standards.
- Doc Louis:"That's great kid, you won! But you look a bit tired out there. Isn't it past your bedtime?"
- Attack Its Weak Point: Hit King Hippo in the mouth when he opens it to get his pants to drop. Then hit his stomach repeatedly when his hands drop down to pull his trunks back up. Repeat until you've depleted his meter once. He won't get back up.
- Hitting opponents at certain windows of vulnerability is how you're supposed to pull off the One Hit Kills mentioned below.
- Bear Hugger is so overweight that hitting him in the stomach doesn't do squat, so he has to be hit on the head. However, in the arcade and SNES Super Punch-Out!!, if the player waits a second, Bear Hugger will taunt the player, making Bear Hugger's belly vulnerable enough to stun him. In Title Defense mode in the Wii game, he wears a hat that makes doing so harder, so Little Mac has to wait for him to take it off to be able to do much damage.
- Aran Ryan in the Wii version. Mr. Sandman in Punch-Out!! Wii may also qualify, as he punches an entire building to rubble out of anger from having the WVBA title taken from him by Little Mac.
- Bald Bull; his contender movie shows him attacking the paparazzi, and his victory sequence in Title Defense Mode has him chase the referee for no reason.
- Badass Beard: Bear Hugger sports a large beard.
- Badass Mustache: Von Kaiser, full stop. Also Bald Bull and Soda Popinski.
- Badass Normal: Little Mac. Considering the gimmicks used by most of his other opponents, Mr. Sandman and the Bruiser Brothers might also qualify.
- Bald of Awesome: Soda Popinski. Also, Bald Bull, though in-between rounds he says "My barber didn't know when to quit. Do you?" suggesting that he's not naturally bald. Nick and Rick Bruiser are this in the SNES game.
- Banana Republic: the fictional Hippo Island, in the South Pacific Ocean. (Though not so much the republic part since its resident boxer isn't called President Hippo or Prime Minister Hippo.)
- Barehanded Blade Block: Piston Hondo in the Wii version.
- Berserk Button: Narcis Prince really doesn't like being punched in the face.
- Big Eater:
- King Hippo, Bear Hugger, and Piston Hondo in his Title Defense mode.
- Soda Popinski is basically this with his carbonated drinks.
- Mad Clown, ostensibly.
- And Doc Louis with his chocolate bars.
- Big "NO!": Aran Ryan gives one of these when you dodge his more, uh, questionable attacks. Though slamming his foot with his own boxing glove might have something to do with it.
- Also Mr. Sandman when you're about to Star Punch him.
- Big Ol' Eyebrows: Piston Hondo. His eyebrows even make a "doink doink" sound!
- Bilingual Bonus: Most non-Anglophone challengers' dialogues in the Wii version are voiced in their native (foreign) language.
- In fact, the only one who doesn't speak a real language is King Hippo, and that's probably only because his home country is fictional as well. Granted, he doesn't appear to speak any kind of language, period. He mostly just grunts and roars, not unlike a hippo.
- Blood Knight: Aran. Ryan.
"Fightin's like breathin', Mac!"
"Keep hittin' me, I love it!"
- Boisterous Bruiser: Bear Hugger in the Wii version.
- Bonus Boss: Donkey Kong in the Wii version.
- Bowdlerization: Changing the Russian boxer's name and his drink of choice from Vodka Drunkenski to Soda Popinski. Even worse, his between round dialog ("I can't drive, so tonight I'm gonna walk all over you!", etc.) clearly makes references to alcohol as his drink of choice. This carries over into the Wii version, as one of his between-round taunts translates to "I am Soda Popinski! I will run over you!"
- Boss Game: If we consider each individual boxer as a boss with its own patterns.
- Boxing Lesson: Duh!
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: They didn't call it the World Video Boxing Association for nothing.
Mr. Dream/Mike Tyson
: "You think the speed of your fingers can match the strength of my fists?"
Little Mac: Help me, Doc!
- Also, Aran Ryan if he wins the contender match. He also tries to during mid-round cutscene in the Title Defense Match, and the Ref stops him.
Doc Louis: Join the Nintendo Fu—I mean, Club Nintendo today, Mac!
- Bullfight Boss: Bald Bull. Instead of dodging his special technique - the Bull Charge, you have to hit him head-on.
- In the Wii version, it's possible — and preferable — to do this against almost all special attacks. Von Kaiser, of all people, has one that can't be stopped this way.
- Butt Monkey:
- Glass Joe.
- Von Kaiser even more so, having been beaten up by his own pupils and cowering behind his gloves whenever he gets hit with a star punch. At least Joe takes his beating like a man. It's especially humiliating when you consider that Kaiser's pupils are children. In the NES game Kaiser is much bolder and more confident; Glass Joe, on the other hand, is afraid of you, and constantly talks about how he just wants to retire, yet he still doesn't cower from you.
- The referee himself in the Wii version, mostly noticeable if you lose to someone in Title Defense mode. Bald Bull will literally chase the referee around and headbutt him like a bull. Mr. Sandman lifts the referee up with just one arm. Super Macho Man also smacks the referee before the start of the next round.
- Calling Your Attacks: Useful as an audio cue in the Wii version. Also see Memetic Mutation.
- This seems to be a bit inverted, as most people seem to be naming attacks after the attack cues, rather than calling the name of an attack as a cue.
- Early fighters vocalize their attacks, and a few later fighters do too, but there's also a distinct sound attached to every motion the character makes, making it essential to develop keen ears.
- The arcade games had the announcer call every punch you made.
- Canada, Eh?: Bear Hugger.
- Cane Fu: Well it's more of a staff but Hoy Quarlow uses his with gusto.
- Canon Discontinuity: A sequel for the NES was developed under the name Mike Tyson's Intergalactic Power Punch and released as Power Punch 2, where the player takes the role of Mike Tyson lookalike Mark Tyler as he sets out to punch a variety of aliens in their faces. Unfortunately, when Nintendo saw what a terrible mess the game had become, they pulled the plug on the project, and a third-party publisher decided to release the game instead. For more information, see this video.
- Captain Ersatz: Mac is definitely based on Rocky Balboa. His miniscule size is a nod to Sylvester Stallone's below average height. Taken a step further with the Challenger in the arcade game, whose face is clearly based on Sylvester Stallone's.
- Captain Ethnic: It's easier to count how many Punch-Out characters aren't fairly blatant ethnic and/or national stereotypes: Piston Hurricane, Little Mac and the Bruiser Brothers. The addition of language appropriate voices and mid-match cutscenes in the Wii version only makes it even more obvious. The majority of boxers also tend to come from the capital of their home country. The fact that the publisher (Nintendo) is also making fun of their compatriot, Piston Hondo, is an indication on how no one is spared. Same with Next Level Games and Bear Hugger (on the Wii version).
- Carpet of Virility: As befitting a Canadian logger, Bear Hugger has one in the shape of a pine tree.
- Catchphrase: The boxer in the SNES game (whose identity is subject to Flip Flop of God) is fond of saying "Piece of cake!" when he KOs his opponent without being knocked down.
- Celebrity Is Overrated: In Title Defense Super Macho Man's cutscene, Little Mac is clearly shown as uncomfortable around the paparazzi, which is probably one of the things that influences his decision to retire early in the end. Super Macho Man himself realizes this after you lose to him. Almost.
- Character Development: In the rematches in the Wii version, basically, most of the fighters seem to try to rectify mistakes that got them beaten, and try to remove blind spots.
- Characterization Marches On: Aran Ryan was an unassuming, generic opponent in Super Punch-Out. Then they brought him up to the Wii version. And made him completely insane.
- Not only that, he's a dirty fighter, bringing good luck horseshoes into the ring (within the knuckles of his gloves) and eventually making a boxing glove whip, which is as ironic as anything when you consider that he was one of the few boxers in Super Punch-Out who generally fought clean, as his gimmick in that game (clinching) is common in Real Life boxing, though Wikipedia's article on boxing says it is "technically against the rules" (though it obviously isn't as ridiculous as what Aran Ryan does in the Wii game); however, Wikipedia continues saying that professional boxing (which the WVBA presumably is) rarely deducts points for it.
- Kid Quick probably would have applied to this assuming his name was kept the same in the transition to the Wii title (he is now Disco Kid). It's quite possible his new characterization was the reason for the name change, assuming he can still be considered the same character at this point.
- Bear Hugger seems to have a more mellow personality in the Wii game. In the SNES game, he introduced himself as "a killer," but in the Wii game he says he's "a hugger, not a fighter." In addition, the Wii game's portrayal of him as being fond of wildlife hardly fits how he described himself in the SNES game.
- Charles Atlas Superpower: Some of the training methods the opponents put themselves through for their rematch in Title Defense mode qualify. Piston Hondo's is the most prominent example. In it, he...
- The Chew Toy: If you're going for world records, there will be some fights that require getting knocked down. But for Soda Popinski, you have to BARELY survive a TKO in order to get the fastest time.
- Circling Birdies: In the Wii version, this indicates that you've stunned the opponent and set him up for a flurry. In some boxers' cases, it's something different, and more appropriate to that boxer.
- Stunning Piston Hondo causes tamago (egg sushi) to circle around his head, which he then proceeds to point out by repeating the said item's name.
- Bear Hugger has fish circling his head, likely as a reference to the name of his hometown of Salmon Arm, British Columbia.
- And Doc Louis has chocolate bars, of course.
- Glass Joe has croissants and King Hippo has pineapples.
- Don Flamenco has roses.
- Combat Pragmatist: Masked Muscle from the SNES game, who includes headbutts and spitting in your face in his boxing repertoire. Aran Ryan takes on this role for the Wii version, complete with headbutts, elbow shots, and even uses horseshoes in his gloves and swinging weighted boxing gloves.
- Don Flamenco in the world circuit rematch in the NES game, who will constantly force you to punch at him as he just stands there blocking until you're tired and unable to hit him back when he unloads on you.
- Comedic Underwear Exposure: This is King Hippo's weakness. In the Wii version, he wears Super Star-print boxers.
- The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: The NES game managed to be popular despite (or perhaps even because of) this.
- Continuity Nod: Title Defense Sandman in the Wii game is a clear throwback to Mike Tyson with his new haircut and his winking attack.
- Also, during the breaks between rounds against King Hippo, sometimes Doc Louis suggests to Little Mac to take Hippo out to lunch after the fight. This was something Hippo said to Mac in one of the intermissions in the NES game ("I feel like eating... after the fight, it's time for lunch!").
- Also from the breaks, Dr. Louis will suggest you give Hondo a "TKO from Tokyo", one of his taunts from the original.
- "Join The Nintendo Fun... I mean, Club Nintendo today, Mac!"
- Bear Hugger's special Knock Out animation involves spinning on his toes and landing in a sitting position, much like his knock-out animation in the previous games.
- One of the comments Doc Louis can give about Bald Bull is that if Mac can't beat him at boxing, he should try arm wrestling, a refference to his cameo in said game.
- Controllable Helplessness: Depending on how you get knocked down, Mac won't stand up no matter how much you mash the buttons, but the game's "Get Up!" message still flashes as you try.
- Dance Battler:
- Disco Kid. Later an aerobics battler as well.
- Even more so with Don Flamenco, who uses many dance moves in his attack patterns.
- The SNES version has Bob Charlie and Heike Kagero.
- Darker and Edgier: While not very dark on its own, the Punch Out Wii installment does have more of an edge than any other installment so far. For starters, all of the boxers can get torn up pretty badly and unlike the NES game, the injuries stick throughout the match, not just in the intermissions. Some boxers actually swear during a match which is disguised by them speaking in their own language. Some of the boxer's personalities are also darker. Von Kaiser has a bad case of self esteem issues, Aran Ryan's attitude is much more psychotic, and some of his tactics could actually kill someone if done a certain way. There's also a little bit of angst in this version as seen during the Mac's Last Stand bout and even has a fairly emotional moment between Doc and Mac before the bout begins.
- Death of a Thousand Cuts: This is how Little Mac fights, along with being a Fragile Speedster. While most of the other fighters have moves that deal roughly a forth of Macs health bar, Mac uses a flurry of jabs and uppercuts to whittle down his opponents health.
- Death or Glory Attack: Bald Bull's Bull Charge attack. If it hits you, you're kissing the canvas. But if you can hit him at just the right moment, he goes down. Nick Bruiser has very similar attack that's harder to counter.
- Averted in his Title Defense match on the Wii version. If you counter his Bull Charge, it seems like he'll go down... only for him to stay up and laugh in your face. It will still deal him quite a bit of damage, but it's no longer an instant knockdown.
- Most of the fighters have a specialty move that will knock you down if they nail you with it but which will allow you to knock them down if you can either counter it or dodge/block it and hit them afterwards (depending on the opponent).
- Defeating the Undefeatable: The last opponents in all the console version of Punch-Out. Not only are they literally undefeated, but they are usually made out to be flat out unstoppable. The final opponent in Punch-Out Wii's Contender mode, Mr. Sandman, explicitly invokes this, by having his slideshow show every single opponent you've faced previously getting overwhelmingly waylaid in order.
- Determinator: In the Wii Version, it's an actual GAME MECHANIC for Little Mac to occasionally come back from sure defeat with one final burst of strength if you're doing reasonably well in the fight. Really cool when it happens, and even cooler to come back and WIN when it happens.
- Glass Joe, moreso in the Wii Version.
- Also, Gabby Jay from Super Punch-Out!!
I'll never retire! I can win at least once more. Come on!
- Disco Dan: Disco Kid
- Disc One Final Dungeon: World Circuit in the SNES and Wii versions. In the SNES version, there is a fourth circuit unlockable by having an official 4-0 record on the other three circuits. In the Wii version, gaining the WVBA title is only half of the work! Also, World S Circuit in Title Defense mode for the Wii, as Mac still has to keep fighting until the end in Last Stand.
- Disc One Final Boss: Super Macho Man in the SNES version; Mr. Sandman in the Wii version, in both circuits.
- Doppelgänger Spin: Great Tiger's signature move.
- Downer Ending: In the Wii version, in a reference to the NES version, Little Mac will literally "give up and retire" after losing "Mac's Last Stand" three times. Doc Louis then reminisces about the time he spent training Mac. Worse yet, there's nothing you can do about it; this occurs canonically, which means that it will eventually happen, even to the best of players. There's even a cutscene leading up to it, and the game explicitly warns of this certainty just before starting this mode of play.
- Drunken Master: In his appearance in the Wii version, Soda Popinski takes a swig from his trademark bottle of soda to power himself up and restore his stamina.
- Dummied Out: The sparring theme against Doc Louis in Doc Louis's Punch Out has all the song variations used in the sparring matches of the main Wii game, complete with variations of the main theme, victory theme, the "Mac Down" theme... and the "Opponent Down" theme which, since just getting Doc's health to zero results in giving him an instant KO, goes unused in during gameplay.
- Eagleland: In the Wii game, BOTH types are present: Little Mac is Type 1 (young, scrapper, humble roots, works hard to get to the top and achieve his dream). Super Macho Man is Type 2 (rich, arrogant, self-absorbed, etc.).
- Early Installment Weirdness: The original gold cartridge version of the NES game featured a different song for the Title Bout, and no Dream Fight tune, as well as slightly different graphics and Engrish.
- Easy-Mode Mockery: If you think about it getting the protective headgear means you have as many losses as Glass Joe. May also fall under an in-universe Mercy Mode.
- Evil Laugh: Mainly Great Tiger's. It really gets on your nerves after a while, to the point where you want to beat him just so you won't have to hear it anymore.
- Soda Popinski's good old 8-bit guffaw, borrowed from Ganon, for when Little Mac is knocked down, and he doesn't stop laughing unless Mac gets back up. The Wii game gives him a more realistic-sounding laugh that fits this trope pretty well, and is used in the same manner as his laugh in the NES version.
- In the NES game, Bald Bull (and Mr. Sandman) laughed like Soda Popinski when he won a match. The Wii game gives Bull a gruff "heh heh heh" laugh which in that game he has for whenever Little Mac is knocked down (though, unlike Soda Popinski, he doesn't wait until Little Mac gets back up to stop), regardless of whether he wins.
- Extremity Extremist: Not surprisingly, in a boxing game most of the boxers fight with only their fists, but certain boxers subvert this trope by using weapons, items and other body parts to fight with. Hoy Quarlow is the worst at following the trope, as he barely punches at all.
- Expy: Disco Kid, who is advertised as the only new character in the Wii installment, was designed to be an updated version of Kid Quick from the original arcade game. Piston Honda/Hondo from the NES game is also somewhat based on Piston Hurricane from the arcade game.
- Gabby Jay in Super Punch-Out is a Glass Joe expy, right down to the country of origin, despite saying "Come on!" in a Southern United States drawl. (In fact, his only win in 100 fights came against Glass Joe.)
- Failure Is the Only Option: See "Downer Ending" above.
- Fat Bastard: King Hippo (NES); Bear Hugger and Mad Clown (SNES). The first two also appear in the Wii installment, while the second originally appeared in the arcade Super Punch-Out!!
- The Fighting Narcissist: Narcis Prince, who true to form goes completely apeshit if you manage to punch him in the face.
- Also applies to Don Flamenco in the Wii game, where knocking off his toupee causes him to fly into Unstoppable Rage.
- Final Boss:
- Arcade Punch Out: Mr. Sandman, though the game loops.
- Arcade Super Punch Out: Super Macho Man, though the game loops.
- Arm Wrestling: Frank Jr., though the game loops.
- NES Punch Out: Depending on your version, Super Macho Man, Mike Tyson, or Mr. Dream.
- SNES Super Punch Out: Super Macho Man, though there is a True Final Boss in Nick Bruiser.
- Wii Punch Out: Mr. Sandman. Except if you count DK as the True Final Boss, rather than a Bonus Boss.
- Flexible Tourney Rules: It's a boxing federation... that includes "boxers" who use flying kicks (Dragon Chan), a quarterstaff (Hoy Quarlow), throwing weapons (Mad Clown's apples), his own hair (Heike Kagero), and more. Hell, even one of the more mundane fist fighters uses an elbow crush that would get him thrown out of any actual ring.
- The Wii version's Title Defense mode is hard because of this. Realizing that his stomach is a weakness, King Hippo wears a manhole lid over it. They're even worse cheaters than before!
- Wait until you see Aran Ryan's title defense move. It can't be legal in any ring whatsoever. He's made a boxing glove whip - and the glove has his lucky horseshoes in it too.
- Even some of the more mundane attacks tend to go against most boxing convention and rules. Backhands, overhead punches, double hooks, etc. Even the Bull Charge probably goes against some kind of rule, despite being just a ludicrously powerful uppercut in the end.
- Foreshadowing: Don Flamenco's intro has him punch a bull mid charge, providing a hint on how to stop Bald Bull's charge.
- Four Is Death: One of the Exhibition challenges tasks you to defeat Japanese boxer Piston Hondo after blocking 44 jabs.
- Fragile Speedster: Mac is definitely one. He's good at dodging, but it only takes three or four punches from any given opponent to knock him down.
- Friend to All Living Things: Bear Hugger in the Wii Version. His training and drinking partner is a bear, and in Title Defence he has a little squirrel in his hat, that he seems to have developed a rather strong bond with. It actually makes him one of the nicer fighters (he even describes himself as "a hugger, not a fighter, eh"), personality wise, when he isn't one-shotting you.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Face it: the first time you play Title Defense mode, you will lose to Glass Joe. Part of this is due to muscle memory. You're literally so jumpy and hair-triggery after surviving Mr. Sandman that Joe's laconic jabs, misleading body language and invulnerable head mess with your mind, watching yourself being outsmarted by Glass Joe is video game psychological manipulation of the very first order.
- Frothy Mugs of Water: Soda Popinski is really drinking Soda in the Wii version, inheriting the changes made to him from the Arcade to the NES versions (in the former, he is called Vodka Drunkenski and always fights drunk).
- Gaiden Game: Nintendo's arcade game Arm Wrestling is in the same little universe as Punch-Out!!, and includes Bald Bull as a contender named Mask X.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar
- One of Great Tiger's taunts in the Wii version is telling Little Mac to suck his mother's teat. In Hindi, of course.
- The name Aran Ryan is a play on ordering a "rye and air" (in other words, just rye).
- The Giant:
- Plenty of fighters, but especially Bald Bull, Bear Hugger, and Mad Clown.
- Soda Popinski and Mr. Sandman as well in the Wii version. Mr. Sandman in particular comes off massive enough that even when he slouches for a particular move, he's about as big as any other character in the game. Bald Bull is noticeably shorter that many of the later boxers in the Wii version, but no less muscular than he's always been.
- Giant Space Flea from Nowhere / Guest Fighter:
- Glass Cannon: King Hippo. He hits hard, yes, but once you knock him down, he's not coming back up. Once you figure out how to hit him reliably, he's one of the easiest fights in the game.
- The Glomp: Doc does this to Little Mac during title belt victories in the Wii version.
- Gorgeous George: Heike Kagero.
- Gretzky Has the Ball: In real boxing, Mac would be two or more weight classes below his in-game opponents, hence would never be allowed to fight them. (See Rule of Cool)
- Guide Dang It:
- Both Nintendo and Next Level claimed that players would be able to "intuitively" figure out to beat the opponents in the Wii version without having to use a guide. However, while this might be the case for some players, others may have a really hard time, especially in Title Defense mode and in "Mac's Last Stand". The biggest offender however, is the challenges in exhibition mode, as it's not immediately clear what you have to do to clear some of them. Without a guide, it could take hours, maybe even longer, to figure out how to clear some (if not most, or even all) of the challenges.
- How to earn stars. Stars allow you to use a powerful uppercut that is essential for taking out most opponents quickly. Most players will easily learn to earn a star by hitting the opponent when he taunts and flashes gold. However, this will only get you one or two stars per round - the game never even hints that most moves can give you stars if you counterpunch them. Even if you know that, when to counterpunch - as the move winds up, just before the move connects, after the move misses and the opponent is in the follow-through animation, just before the opponent puts their guard back up - differs from boxer to boxer and even move to move, with no discernible patterns. The game also never mentions that after a standard dodge-and-counter combo, you can extend the combo with a few extra hits by timing it so you hit the opponent's head just as he starts to center himself; doing this long enough earns more stars. The World Circuit and Title Defense are much easier when you learn this trick.
- Head Swap:
- In the NES version, every character except King Hippo shared a character model with another boxer. Compare Von Kaiser with Great Tiger, for instance.
- The arcade games have Glass Joe/Kid Quick, Bald Bull/Mr. Sandman and Vodka Drunkenski/Super Macho Man (both of which appear in the NES game) and Piston Hurricane/Pizza Pasta/Great Tiger.
- The Super NES game has Bear Hugger/Mad Clown, Gabby Jay/Bob Charlie, Dragon Chan/Heike Kagero, and several others.
- The Wii version has similar body models to one another; compare Bear Hugger / King Hippo (The only two overweight boxers) and Super Macho Man and Soda Popinski, very tall yet muscular speedo wearing contenders. Although there are some differences between fighters with similar body types, some more subtle than others (for example: Soda Popinski is slightly taller and leaner than Super Macho Man, who has a narrower waist and broader shoulders.)
- Heel: Aran Ryan puts horseshoes in his gloves and sabotages opponents. Super Macho Man knocks the ref over and showboats like there's no tomorrow. The crowd reacts to both of them like wrestling heels, booing whenever they do well and cheering like crazy when Mac takes them down.
- Heroic Mime: Little Mac in the Wii version. His only speech appears to be grunts when he attacks or is hit/KOed or what have you, and happy laughs and whoops when he wins; the only actual word he ever says is, "Yeah!" That said, in the NES version, he seems to speak a bit more, asking Doc for help in between rounds.
- Heroic Second Wind: Incorporated into the gameplay of the Wii title; after a few knockdowns, start mashing 1+ 2 (or shake like crazy) after being hit by a punch that would ordinarily KO Mac instantly. If you're lucky, Mac stops himself from hitting the canvas, and fights passing out just to give himself one... more... chance to win. Becomes this trope instead of merely Determinator (see "Determinator" above) if you manage to start thrashing your opponent immediately and easily after returning to the fight.
- Hold Your Hippogriffs: In the Wii version: "I'm a hugger, not a fighter."
- Husky Russkie: Soda Popinski/Vodka Drunkenski.
- Hyperactive Metabolism: Doc Louis's remedy chocolate bars will instantly replenish his health if he manages to eat them. In fact, if Doc Louis eats one around Little Mac between rounds, Little Mac will replenish some health himself. This also goes for Soda Popinski and his soda.
- I Hit You, You Hit the Ground: Disco Kid's plan for Mac in Title Defense mode:
- I Let You Win: Rick Bruiser's record is 41-1, and his only loss is to his brother, Nick Bruiser. However, Rick Bruiser claims he let his brother win their match, and that he's really the best.
- Important Haircut: Von Kaiser and Mr. Sandman in Title Defense mode.
- Jerkass: Many of the fighters in the game are massive jerks at the start, while some are just eccentric. However, if they best Little Mac in a bout, the jerk tendencies come immediately to the surface for each and every one of them. The one exception seems to be Disco Kid.
- Jive Turkey: Disco Kid.
Doc Louis: Time to teach this turkey how to jive!
- Jobber: Glass Joe, your first opponent, has a 1-99 record (his one win once being jokingly called a fluke victory in a freak incident over Nick Bruiser, the final boss of Super Punch-Out. Or a fluke win over Von Kaiser; no one knows for sure, though the latter is more likely due to Nick's undefeated record). In Super Punch-Out, Gabby Jay has the same record... and his one win was Glass Joe. The Wii version returns Glass Joe to his place of "prominence".
- Kaizo Trap: Subverted. Aran Ryan, in Title Defense on the Wii version, will do one last desperate attack every time he's knocked down. However, the said attack can't actually knock you down regardless of how little life you have left, even in the mode where every hit knocks you down, and star-punching him during the attack is a One-Hit KO.
- Kevlard: Lots.
- King Hippo is one of the earlier video game examples. He was completely immune to being knocked out until you figured out you were supposed to hit him in his gaping maw and then proceed for the rather obvious bandages.
- Bear Hugger and Mad Clown, both fat boxers, are nearly immune to body blows. You have to punch them in the head to damage them. Punching them in the stomach results in a boing, and the boxer mocks you. If they taunt, their midsection is vulnerable, and hitting it will stun them.
- Large Ham: In the Wii version, Super Macho Man is "gonna put on a show".
- Late-Arrival Spoiler: The Wii U rerelease uses the Donkey Kong fight as one of the screens on the Wii shop.
- Late to the Punchline: If Little Mac were taller, he would be called Big Mac. This may be why Aran Ryan asks Little Mac if he has cheeseburgers in his gloves when he knocks him down.
- Leaning on the Fourth Wall: The pre-fight intros in the Wii version see some of the opponents messing around; e.g. Von Kaiser, Aran Ryan, King Hippo, Great Tiger...
- Lightning Bruiser: Almost every opponent in the World Circuit qualifies in most versions, but Mike Tyson takes the cake, giving you very little time to react to his One-Hit KO move.
- Limit Break:
- The Star Punch is this, especially at Three-Star level.
- Great Tiger's special attack in Title Defense.
- Von Kaiser's TD move is a windmilling wowser of a hit: it slams Mac horizontal before he actually falls to the canvas!
- A game mechanic in the multiplayer mode in the Wii version. When the other player flashes blue, landing a hit on the opponent fills your Giga Juice meter. Should the meter become full, the player's Little Mac character transforms into Giga Mac, a taller, more muscular version of Little Mac, and the camera angle shifts behind the non transformed Little Mac, mimicking how fights look in single player. Giga Mac hits a lot harder than Little Mac, but he is prone to being stunned, allowing the other player to combo him, which is also what you do in single player.
- Long Song, Short Scene: The training music in the Wii version is chopped up to only 14 seconds or so due to the length of the videos, so all you ever hear is the introduction to the song. Until you think to stitch all the training montages together...
- Lost Forever: The Minor and Major Circuit title fight themes are unavailable in any of the sound tests, meaning they can only be heard during King Hippo's and Don Flamenco's fights in Circuit mode, and are gone unless you start circuit mode over again.
- Love to Hate: In-universe, Doc Louis says this about Aran Ryan as one of his intermission quotes.
- Luck-Based Mission: In the Wii version, one of Mr. Sandman's Title Defense challenges requires you to come back from getting knocked out to win the match. This has a random chance of happening if you mash buttons as you are getting knocked out, and if it doesn't happen, you have to start the whole match over again.
- Lucky Seven: In the Wii version, being Irish, Aran Ryan has some motifs with the seven, such as the number of hearts you have and when he's knocked down, he'll get back up when the ref counts to seven. He'll also take up to 7 punches when he's stunned, and the Contender and Title Defense mode challenges require you to land 7 star punches on him and defeat him on the 7th minute of the match, respectively. Even his stats contain 7s, in a sense. He weighs 160 lb, and he's 6'1" tall).
- Mask Power: Masked Muscle, as well as Bald Bull in his Mask X disguise.
- Meaningful Name:
- Glass Joe (think Glass Jaw), Kid Quick (his attacks are fast).
- Mr. Sandman will put you to sleep.
- Soda Popinski drinks a lot of Soda, King Hippo wears a crown and is roughly the size of a Hippo, Super Macho Man embodies the stereotypical strong male celebrities, Bear Hugger's signature move is the Bear Hug, etc.
- Megaton Punch: In the Wii version, Don Flamenco does this to a bull during his back story.
- Mercy Mode: In the Wii release, lose 100 times during Career mode and you will be given damage-reducing headgear ... much like they did to Glass Joe after he took his 100th loss against you.
- Mind Screw: In Super Punch Out, one of the top fastest times against champion Nick Bruiser is Glass Joe. Because of this, people are starting to say that Joe's one win was a fluke win against Nick before the Bruiser Bros. went pro.
- Mini-Game Credits: Find the upside-down letters and boxers' names!
- Mission Pack Sequel: The arcade Super Punch-Out!
- Mood Motif: In the Wii game, everybody has their own remix of the same tracks. For example, Soda Popinski's fight is filled with Orchestral Bombing and Ominous Latin Chanting. Don Flamenco's is an acoustic guitar.
- Mustache Vandalism: Aran Ryan's introduction video has him doodling a moustache onto a poster of Little Mac.
- My Rules Are Not Your Rules: Little Mac has fought against opponents who intentionally disregard the fact that boxing is strictly a hands-only sport. Intended by the game designers as defeating them makes Little Mac a very honorable badass.
- Dragon Chan uses kicking attacks.
- Masked Muscle spits in you eyes and headbutts you.
- Hoy Quarlow fights with a walking stick.
- Heike Kagero attacks with his hair.
- Aran Ryan uses a Flail-Whip in title defense mode.
- The Name Is Bond, James Bond: Don Flamenco in the Wii version does this in Spanish as one of his taunts. see 5:04.
- National Stereotypes: Most of the cast.
- Nintendo Hard: The series is well-known for this. The last few fights in the NES version (the very last one in particular) are the biggest example. Champion Mode on the Wii version is hard enough to unlock: win 10 random defense fights before losing 3 in Mac's Last Stand. Should you fail, you literally need to create a new save file and climb up the ranks to try again. But you probably don't want it anyway; Champion Mode is an option you can enable in any exhibition fight that turns any attack on Mac into a One-Hit KO, and stops enemies from blinking red before they attack. Then again, should you do manage to unlock it, winning every fight in said mode is a Bragging Rights Reward.
- Noblewoman's Laugh: Heike Kagero has a male example when he wins a fight, though he does look very feminine.
- Nobody Touches the Hair: Don Flamenco has a battle quote telling you not to touch his hair. In the Wii version, it's a wig you can punch off him, which angers him. The NES version has the same thing, although you don't see him bald until the closeup on his face between rounds.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed:
- Bob Charlie, if in name only.
- How to make up for Mike Tyson's absence with a game that had him as one of its claims to fame? Make Title Defense Mr. Sandman an Expy of him.
- No Fair Cheating: Supposedly, if you used a Game Genie or Pro Action Replay with a Super Punch-Out career (or just plain lost any fight in the first three circuits), you could never access the fourth and final circuit for that career.
- This definitely applies to SNES9x Game Genie codes, and likely to all emulators, as much as it did the console. An Emulator/Console Game Genie code now exists to reverse the disabling effect.
- There isn't really a disabling effect. If you fail to finish the Minor, Major, or World Circuits with a perfect 4-0 record, you could just repeat the circuit until you got the needed 4-0.
- No Name Given:
- There is absolutely nothing hinting as to who the boxer in the SNES Super Punch-Out!! was. Word of God has declared that the Super Punch-Out!! fighter is Little Mac, after leaving Doc Louis and getting a makeover.
- The green-haired fellow from the arcade games is only known by the player's initials.
- Not Cheating Unless You Get Caught: Masked Muscle's spit-in-your-eye move.
- Not So Different: All versions, depending on the player. If Little Mac can make it to the champion without a single loss, he'll get a chance to take on an opponent who boasts a very similar record. Unlike most of the other opponents, this one doesn't have much in the way of a gimmick; for the most part, they're just very good boxers. Much like Little Mac himself at this point.
- Oh, Crap: In the Wii version, fighters gain this expression just before you counter them with a signature uppercut, though Von Kaiser's is particularly noticeable, as he shouts "HILFE!"note
- Old Master: Hoy Quarlow, who fights with a staff!
- Once per Episode: Every game in the series features a match against Bald Bull...with the exception of the arcade Super Punch-Out!!, although the developers made up for it by including Bull in Arm Wrestling.
- One-Hit Kill: A staple of the series, for both you and opponents.
- The first and most well-known is from Bald Bull - if you get hit by his Bull Charge, you're going down. Conversely, if you throw a jab or uppercut at him just before he throws that punch, he gets knocked down instantly (and if the uppercut is powered by three stars, it'll be an instant knockout instead). Bear Hugger (only in the second arcade game), Dragon Chan, Von Kaiser (only in the Wii version's Title Defense), Super Macho Man, Mike Tyson/Mr. Dream, and Rick and Nick Bruiser later continue the tradition. Mac himself can pull off One-Hit Kills on almost everyone in the Wii gamenote , whether it's a simple knockdown or a match-finishing knockout (in fact, it's necessary for various otherwise impossible Exhibition challenges).
- Piston Honda's 2nd fight in the NES version (and Piston Hurricane in the SNES version) allows Mac to hit a literal one hit KO. Counter the Piston Rush with a left body blow and Honda will stay down nearly every time.
- In the NES game if the player punches Glass Joe at the right time after Joe gives his taunt it will be an instant KO. Since there's no reason to attack before the taunt (it's impossible to knock Joe down before it) this becomes a literal One-Hit KO.
- In Super Punch-Out for the SNES, it is possible at some point to throw this in any fight. When you punch your enemy enough and in the right way, they will become dizzy and will come back and forth dazed. During this time, an observant player will notice the timer will stop twice. If the player unleashes a super punch and it lands on the enemy's face in the exact moment the timer comes back, no matter if it's Gabby Jay or Nick Bruiser: They are down for the count. If they come back somehow, this means you didn't land in the proper moment. It still counts as a very damaging move and they rarely come back with a full gauge.
- The Wii game has an unlockable extra option in Exhibition Mode that can be Lost Forever if you screw up Mac's Last Stand, which turns any and all opponent's attacks into a One-Hit Kill (with the exception of Aran Ryan's attack whenever he gets knocked-down in Title Defense).
- Paint It Black:
- Parts Unknown: The Bruiser Brothers, Rick and Nick. Also King Hippo, hailing from "Hippo Island."
- Pec Flex:
- Super Macho Man in the NES and Wii versions. (In the former, he tends to do so when Little Mac is knocked down, much like Soda Popinski laughs in the same situation.) In the Wii version, he steps it up by flexing his glutes at you before the fight begins.
- Also Frank Jr. in Arm Wrestling, who strikes a big ol' man-candy, arms-curled pose in a thong when you lose.
- Perma Death: Not really death, but in "Mac's Last Stand" in the Wii version, losing three times results in Mac hanging up his gloves and retiring, and the player no longer being able to play on that save file, forcing them to start from scratch.
- The Power of Hate: While a lot of opponents in the Wii version train harder to get at Mac during their rematches during "Title Defense" mode, a few who Mac beat use THIS to fuel their focus:
- Aran Ryan resorts to a whip tied to a boxing glove to take on Mac.
- Don Flamenco was extremely bitter after losing to Mac, tearing down a poster of Mac and putting on black shorts and black eyeliner, and giving Mac a black rose.
- Super Macho Man found that Mac was the somewhat reluctant darling of the public, with girls falling for him and Mac dealing uncomfortably with the media. He trains harder to get back what he lost.
- Mr. Sandman wrecks the building he trained in with his bare hands.
- Produce Pelting: In Title Defense mode on the Wii, the crowd will pelt Aran Ryan with all sorts of garbage, to which he threatens the spectators. Super Macho Man also gets this treatment before the start of the 2nd and 3rd rounds.
- Product Placement: "Join the Nintendo Fun Club today, Mac!"
- Puzzle Boss:
- King Hippo, who can only be hurt in the stomach, which he guards constantly unless punched in the mouth. More so in the Title Defense bout for the Wii version, where you have to knock off a manhole cover that he taped onto his stomach. It is also possible to hit his stomach without punching him in the mouth first, but it's not the best and easiest strategy (and it only has to be done once for an Exhibition challenge).
- In the Wii game, you will likely not win (even by decision) unless you figure the best way to outmatch the strategies done by the opponents. In Title Defense, Glass Joe has a helmet to protect his head, so it won't be so easy to land a jab unless the helmet is raised with a Star Punch; in the same mode, both Bear Hugger and Soda Popinski must be dealt with via unique methods (namely and respectively, landing a Star Punch to prolong the stun period for extra hits, and not being hit at all so the stun period prolongs gradually by itself); and so on.
- Racing the Train: Piston Hondo does this in his backstory.
- Railing Kill: In the Wii version, every time you knock out King Hippo, he staggers back, falls over the ring ropes and crashes onto the floor below. Just like in Real Life boxing, leaving the ring for any reason is a disqualification, and King Hippo is done the second it happens.
- Real Men Wear Pink: Little Mac wears a pink tracksuit when jogging, as seen in the Training Montage in the NES and Wii versions.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: A surprisingly not Color-Coded for Your Convenience example: The Bruiser Twins - Fiery red Rick with speed and overwhelming power on his side, and cruel blue Nick with the grim inevitability of a glacier (while lacking all the warmth) and, uh, even more overwhelming power on his.
- Recurring Riff: Almost every theme from the NES game returns in the Wii version, with each boxer having their own versions of the fight theme, both countdown themes, title bout victory theme and failure and game over themes done in their own style (a laid back acoustic guitar style for Glass Joe, a beat-driven orchestral style for Soda Popinski, a menacing metal style for Mr. Sandman, etc.)
- Recycled IN SPACE!: The NES game's sequel was going to be Mike Tyson's Intergalactic Power Punch, but then Tyson's controversy erupted and the game was changed to drop all ties to the series as it is. Super Punch-Out!! for the Super NES, which is not set in space, was the true sequel.
- Recycled Title: There are 3 games with the name "Punch-Out!!". The latest one was released in 2009 on the Wii.
- Replay Mode: In the Wii game, both the training session scenes and the slide show of the boxers (both in Contender and in Title Defense) are available for rewatch.
- Ring Out: King Hippo in the Wii game.
- Rogues Gallery: Several boxers, most notably Glass Joe, Mr. Sandman, Bald Bull and Super Macho Man, have been recurring antagonists from the very early arcade game in the 1980s. In fact, the only of the arcade boxers that doesn't come back in any waynote is Pizza Pasta.
- Rule of Fun and Rule of Funny: How else could they get away with such stereotypes? And how else could they let many of the characters get away with fairly blatant cheating?
- Rule of Three: Knocking down an opponent (or getting knocked down yourself) three times in one round results in a TKO. Also, each bout has up to three rounds and in the Wii version Mac can get up to three stars for his star punch.
- Scary Black Man: Mr. Sandman.
- And, of course, Mike Tyson.
- Scotireland: Aran Ryan the Demoman.
- Second Person Attack: The SNES and Wii versions essentially use this perspective, with only a transparent version of the player visible in the foreground.
- Self Plagiarism: Teleroboxer on the Virtual Boy.
- Some of the training montage scenes are inspired by similar scenes the first Rocky film. The scene where he trains by jogging in the pink hoodie is very similar in appearance to a shot from Rocky's training montage, except Rocky's hoodie was gray.
- Dragon Chan is a reference to both Bruce Lee (appearance) and Jackie Chan (name).
- Both times you fight Mr. Sandman:
- The first time around, he bears a resemblance to Muhammad Ali.
- In Title Defense, it's clear he's supposed to be a Mike Tyson Expy.
- TD Disco Kid appears to be channeling Richard Simmons.
- In the NES version, Soda Popinski mentions that he's gonna "walk all over you", a reference to Nancy Sinatra's song, "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'".
- When doing a blocked right uppercut, Don Flamenco shouts out, "Carmen, mi amor!" before executing this attack. This is a Spanish shout-out to his quote in the NES version: "Carmen, my love... I dance so sweet for you!" The name Carmen in itself is a shout-out to Carmen.
- Doc Louis makes a reference to Arm Wrestling when he asks Mac if he can beat Bald Bull at it.
- One of Doc's taunts against Giga Mac is, "Come on, kid, you got to be smart out there again. What's your Brain Age again?" referencing a certain DS title.
- If Aran Ryan knocks you down:
"Ya got cheeseburgers in those gloves, have ya Mac?!"
- Shows Damage: Wii Version. Both Mac and his opponents develop black eyes, bruises, and Instant Bandages as they take hits and are knocked down.
- Sim Sim Salabim: The Great Tiger.
- Slasher Smile: Aran Ryan in Title Defense before the 2nd or 3rd round starts.
- Smug Snake: If Super Macho Man knocks you down, he'll pose and sneer, "Stay down". Then you just want to beat his face in.
- Something About a Rose: Don Flamenco carries one around before he enters the ring in both of his appearances. In Title Defense form in the Wii version, he carries a black rose instead of a red one, to show you that he means business.
- Soundtrack Dissonance: Losing to Don Flamenco in the Wii version will still play his "Match Over" theme, done in very relaxing Spanish guitar.
- Speed Run: There are videos of people defeating almost every boxer in Super Punch-Out in under ten seconds.
- The Stoic: Nick Bruiser, the Final Boss from the SNES game. Hardly ever changes expression while fighting, even after being hit in the face. Only getting hit with a super punch will faze him.
- Suddenly Voiced: Everyone but Little Mac and King Hippo in the Wii version, thanks to the addition of voice acting (Hippo just has inhuman grunts). Mac is voiced in the live-action commercials for the Wii game, but not in the (cel-shaded) game itself.
- Mac has a few lines in Head-to-Head mode between rounds, but they don't always play.
- Surprisingly Good Foreign Languages: Numerous foreign languages at that in the Wii game. Next Level Games didn't BS on the boxers' native languages, to the point that Great Tiger speaks Surprisingly Good Hindi. Most people wouldn't be able to even tell you what language they speak in India.
- The Wii game was developed in Canada, which has the highest per-capita immigration rate in the world. At least in urban areas you can expect someone to know that, though probably not the two dozen or so other languages that are spoken regionally.
- Suspiciously Similar Substitute:
- The Wii version introduces Disco Kid, a character who resembles Kid Quick from the first arcade game: Both are 210 pounds and have their home in Brooklyn, New York, and also share a few attacks and moves. Disco Kid isn't quite as stereotypically black as Kid Quick, though, as he embodies more the image of a disco dancer from a suburb. A look into the game's files reveals that Disco Kid's codes are typed as kid_quick. It's been revealed that Disco Kid was supposed to be Kid Quick, but they had a lot of fun with the redesign so they just called him a new character.
- Super Punch-Out!! for SNES had Gabby Jay. French nationality (though he looks and sounds like a Southern USA Colonel for some reason), a 1-99 record, first opponent in the game, just like Glass Joe. It is Lampshaded, too, since Gabby Jay is Glass Joe's pupil and his one win was against Glass Joe.
- Piston Honda/Hondo is a Suspiciously Similar Substitute for Piston Hurricane.
- The 1990 reissue of the NES version replaced Mike Tyson with Mr. Dream, after Nintendo declined to renew Tyson's contract.
- Suspicious Video Game Generosity: The NES game gives you 77 hearts for the fight against Great Tiger, more than any other fight, and certainly far more than was given for previous fights. You'll be using a lot of them to block.
- Teleport Spam: Great Tiger's tactic in the Wii version, though it can be intercepted.
- The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: In Title Defense, even if you lose the belt to any of the challengers, you get the same intro cutscene in rematches. Against Mr.Sandman, the same cutscene that plays in Contender Mode's Title Bout against him plays if you rematch him in Title Defense after losing the belt to him.
- Thirteen Is Unlucky: Played straight with Mr. Sandman, who personifies the meaning of the number in many subtle ways: He manages to beat twelve boxers from the WVBA and becomes World champion. Little Mac, the 13th opponent, beats him and renders his victory track imperfect. The inversion comes from Mac, likewise, having defeated 12 boxers and then Mr. Sandman to become the champion. This is further symbolized with the following statistics: Little Mac has 13 hearts of stamina in both fights against Sandman (the rematch is in Title Defense mode, where the latter is once again the 13th opponent), Sandman's Contender introduction cutscene is 13 images long (the other boxers only have four-image-long cutscenes), he has to be hit 13 times (in case Star Punches aren't used) after the Berserker Rage is over to be definitely defeated, and even his stats (age, fight record, height) provide nods to number thirteen as well. Something interesting to note is that he, during his World title hold, has the highest rank in the World Circuit, while Aran Ryan (who embodies the Lucky Seven trope) is the lowest in the same circuit.
- Timed Mission:
- The arcade Punch-Out!! and Super Punch-Out!! give you a single 3-minute round to win. Run out of time and you're done.
- Punch-Out!! on the NES and the Wii version give you three 3-minute rounds. It is occasionally possible to win by judgement if you're still alive after all 9 minutes, though it's more straightforward to just win by TKO.
- Super Punch-Out!! gives you only 5 minutes to beat your opponent and if it rounds out, you lose.
- In the WiiWare game with Doc Louis, failing to beat him in 3 rounds makes you lose by default.
- Unlike the SNES or arcade games, the NES game has "winner by decision" if there is no knockout by the end of the third round. Some of these matches are automatically decided for your opponent (these are called "unfair hometown decisions" in the NES manual) while others can be called in your favor if you score enough points (3,000; 5,000; or 10,000; depending on the opponent fought).
- A strange thing to note about the timer is they all run down extremely fast. 3 minutes of game time can be just a minute and a half real time. The clock does slow down or stop at times when certain actions happen in the fight.
- Took a Level in Badass: All of the rematched fighters, but especially Don Flamenco.
- This is perhaps the driving premise behind the Title Defense mode in the Wii version. Just about everyone can dodge star punches and loves to fake you into dodging the wrong way or too soon.
- Don Flamenco MOST especially took a level in badass in the NES version when you fight your rematch with him on the world circuit. If you're expecting it to be anything like the pushover your major circuit match with him was, think again.
- Toros y Flamenco: Don Flamenco. It's in his name, for crying out loud.
- Totally Radical: Super Macho Man.
- Trademark Favorite Food:
- The Wii version gives Doc Louis chocolate bars.
- Soda Popinski, and his namesake.
- Bear Hugger chugs down jugs of maple syrup between rounds and in his intro montage. That may be why he weighs 440 pounds.
- He's also a Big Eater, as his intro in Exhibition mode shows him eating tons of bacon, eggs, and pancakes.
- Piston Hondo and egg sushi (it replaces the Circling Birdies for crying out loud!).
- Training Montage: In the NES and Wii versions. Well remembered for Mac's bright pink track suit, which caps off the end of the montage in the Wii version.
- True Final Boss: Nick Bruiser in the SNES version.
- Turns Red: Bald Bull doing his signature Bull Charge in the Wii version.
- Soda Popinski goes from pink to bright berserk red upon getting up from knockdown, getting hit by a star punch or having one of his sodas knocked out of his hands. In any of these cases, the end result is between 3 to 6 successive uppercuts (depending on which fight, and when in the fight).
- Don Flamenco also turns red after you knock off his toupee.
- Underestimating Badassery: What happens in the Wii version as the challengers don't take Little Mac seriously enough in "Contender" mode. Once they're beaten, they take Little Mac a LOT more seriously (as with the belt on the line, their reps could be remade and then some).
- Unique Enemy: See under Head Swap.
- Unmoving Plaid: Mad Clown's shirt.
- Unstoppable Rage: Title Defence Mr. Sandman gets this at a certain point in the fight, requiring you to dodge enough of his punches until he gets tired to counterattack or block, at which point depleting whatever life he has left while he stands there defenseless leads into an instant KO. Also, he apparently tore apart a building with his bare hands prior to the fight.
- Unwinnable (or Endless Game depending on how you look at it): It doesn't matter how many opponents you defeat in "Mac's Last Stand", you will lose the game eventually, resulting in the game's Downer Ending.
- If you hit the "menu" button on the Wii remote to pause the game, you can force a reset on the console allowing you to safely abort a doomed match.
- Variable Mix: In the Wii version. The soundtrack from the original Punch-Out!! is used, but is remixed multiple times, with the fighters getting variations based on their country of origin.
- Visual Pun: After you press Start on the NES game, a boxing glove Punches Out of the screen towards you.
- Vodka Drunkenski: Soda Popinski is the Trope Namer. His stereotype is that of Russians drinking a lot. He was even called Vodka Drunkenski in the arcade version of Super Punch Out!!, until he was renamed in the console games.
- The Von Trope Family: Von Kaiser
- Walking Shirtless Scene: Almost the whole cast. The only boxers that don't are Narcis Prince, Hoy Quarlow, Mad Clown, and Little Mac himself.
- Wake-Up Call Boss:
- Bald Bull in the arcade version, due to his Bull Charge being an instant-knockdown attack.
- King Hippo and again Bald Bull in the NES version, the former because of his more enduring HP and the infamous hippo hug attack.
- Dragon Chan in the SNES version, due to his habit to attack with kicks.
- In the Wii version, Beginners will more-likely-than-not easily beat Glass Joe, wipe the floor with Von Kaiser, learn a new trick on Disco Kid, and then get horribly, horribly owned by King Hippo when they find their old tactics don't work. Doc tells you to meet him in the Exhibition mode after your first loss to practice, and for beginners, it'll probably be against King Hippo. In the case of Title Defense, Glass Joe surprisingly becomes this.
- Both Great Tiger and Don Flamenco are big wake-ups in the Wii version, especially if you played the NES version. In the Wii versions, it seems like their attack patterns are the same... and then Tiger starts using spooky voodoo he never had in the NES version and he introduces you to the concept of having to dodge a specific way in order to avoid an attack (rather than just dodging in one direction the whole time like you could in the NES version). Flamenco, meanwhile, gradually increases the speed of his attacks (and in Title Defense, he can attack up to twice in a row before you can attack him back).
- Aran Ryan is this in two separate games: in Super he's the first boss you need to use the super-punches on and in Wii he's the first boss you have to use counter-punches against.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Many people wonder where Bear Hugger's squirrel ended up after his defeat.
- Wild Samoan: King Hippo's official bio lists him as hailing from Hippo Island, which is somewhere in the South Pacific. And although he isn't a hippo, he's called that because he looks and sounds like one.
- Worthy Opponent: Rick Bruiser says he's okay with having lost to you; his brother Nick, however...
- X Meets Y: The Wii version has been described as the Rocky franchise as a Saturday Morning Cartoon.