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Video Game / Saturday Night Slam Masters

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CWA: Capcom Wrestling Association - The world's largest among the bunch of wrestling associations which mushroomed in 1980's. With its legendary champion disappearing, CWA is going to host a world tournament called "CWA Crush Carnival." Use your tactics and techniques to beat out terrifying contestants.
Game description from the FM Towns version.

Saturday Night Slam Masters (Muscle Bomber: The Body Explosion in Japan) is a wrestling/fighting game released by Capcom in 1993 for the arcades. The original game is a typical wrestling game set on the viewpoint used by fighting games, with the winning conditions being either a 3-count pin, 20 seconds ring out or forcing the opponent to give up. The story revolves around the CWA (Capcom Wrestling Association), which was formed by 8 different wrestling groups all led by Victor Ortega. When Ortega suddenly vanishes, the group falls into chaos and the BWA (Blood Wrestling Association) takes advantage. A tournament is started to find the new chief of the CWA. The game itself has no actual story, and the endings are just the winning character bragging about his victory.

The original has a roster of 10 wrestlers, almost all of which have dub name changes. They are presented English name first:


  • Alexander the Grater (Sheep the Royal): Hailing from Australia, a former rugby player who moved to America and gained notoriety for being way too violent. After being kicked out of football, he turned to pro wrestling.
  • Biff Slamkovich (Aleksey Zalazof): An Ukrainian wrestler from a bureaucratic family who trains under Mike Haggar. He hates when people don't take wrestling seriously. Alex bears more than a passing resemblance to him.
  • El Stingray (El Stinger): Mexican masked luchador with a highly flashy and acrobatic style, which he's very proud of.
  • The Great Oni (Mysterious Budo): A flashy and speedy wrestler from Japan, which excites the crowd with his style. He's got a rivalry with El Stingray due to their fast and flashy styles.
  • Gunloc (Lucky Colt): American wrestler very popular with the crowd. He trains alongside Biff with Haggar, and has the bad habit of hitting on Jessica whenever he can, gaining the hatred of Jessica's boyfriend Cody. The English localization threw in hints about him being related to a certain Street Fighter character, which were picked up by Street Fighter: The Movie, where the cyborg character Blade is revealed to be him, as well as Guile's brother (rather than being hinted about it).
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  • Jumbo Flapjack (Kimala the Bouncer): A BWA wrestler from Chicago and the dragon to Scorpion. He enjoys seeing blood dripping from his victims. Before joining Scorpion he worked first as a bouncer and later as a wrestler's bodyguard, in both cases losing his job after getting a bit too violent.
  • King Rasta Mon ("Missing IQ" Gomes): Hailing from the Dominican Republic, Rasta Mon lived peacefully among monkeys until he was found and his abilities tested, which led to him joining pro wrestling. He has a monkey buddy, Freak, which serves as his manager.
  • Mike "The Uncivil Servant" Haggar (Mike "Macho" Haggar): Everyone's favorite Metro City mayor, in his pre-elections wrestling career (changed in the English version as being post-mayoral career; Haggar comes out of retirement to show all the young punks in the CWA what a real wrestler is).
  • The Scorpion (The Astro): The mysterious leader of the BWA, whose past is unknown. The closest the game has to a big bad.
  • Titanic Tim (Titan the Great): An English wrestler who uses his large size to intimidate his opponent. He's acquaintances with Birdie and at times they formed a tag team nicknamed "500 Trillon Power."

Following ports for the SNES and Genesis, an Updated Re-release titled Muscle Bomber Duo was released in arcades, focusing on the tag team mode of the original. Finally, a third game was released under the name Ring of Destruction - Slam Masters II (Super Muscle Bomber: The International Blowout in Japan), which ditched the wrestling mechanics for a pure fighting game experience (in other words, it featured round-based matches and victory by K.O.), under the excuse of Scorpion changing the rules. Outside that, the game follows the same non-plot as before, now with Ortega coming out of retirement to hold the final bout for the championship. The ten original wrestlers are joined by four new ones:

  • Black Widow: Hailing from Germany, she's the only female wrestler, albeit she's actually hiding that fact (she uses a masculine voice in-game and all, and her ending has her ditching the act).
  • Rip Saber: A Canadian BWA wrestler and former military, which uses any means necessary to attain victory.
  • The Wraith: An Indian wrestler with a ghastly appearance, who fights using his long fingernails and a nest of snakes hidden within his clothes.
  • Victor Ortega: Legendary wrestler and the founder of the CWA, he retired after finding no one able to beat him, and is later invited by Scorpion to participate in the third game, prompting him to return to pro wrestling. He's seen in the first two games in the intro and endings.

This game provides examples of:

  • '80s Hair: Jumbo Flapjack sports a mohawk and certain promotional art (such as the poster above) shows that Titanic Tim did at one point, too. Tim now has a kind of pompadour mullet.
  • Acrofatic: Jumbo Flapjack is very quick, agile, and flexible (look at the height on that punt!) despite being utterly enormous. This is also true of Alexander to a lesser degree.
  • All There in the Manual: The Japanese flyer for the original Muscle Bomber gives out extensive backstories for all the playable wrestlers and as well as some of the non-player characters (including Harry Hicks, the referee). Naturally, in typical Capcom fashion, the backstories in the English version of the game are not exactly consistent.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Green-skinned Wraith, though he's meant to look like The Undead.
  • Amazonian Beauty: Black Widow, especially out of uniform.
  • Amplified Animal Aptitude: Rasta Mon's monkey Freak is said to have a basic understanding of human language. Then again, he's also Rasta Mon's manager.
  • Arachnid Appearance and Attire: Black Widow.
  • Ascended Extra: Ortega started out as just a story-only character, but became the final boss of the third game.
  • Ascended Meme: A magazine claimed Gunloc is Guile's brother. In Blade's ending in Street Fighter: The Movie, Blade is secretly infiltrating M. Bison's organization and turns out to be Guile's brother Gunloc. The Shadaloo Combat Research Institute profile on the Street Fighter V Character Encyclopedia website has a profile for Blade as a Shadaloo agent, but does not give further details.
  • Badass Beard: Ortega.
  • Badass Mustache: Haggar, who else?
  • Beard of Evil: Jumbo Flapjack and Alexander.
  • Berserk Button: Titanic Tim hates being called a "disco reject"; apparently he hears that a lot, might be the headband.
  • Blood Knight: Ortega.
  • Boring, but Practical: Gunloc and Biff's Sunset Splash special is a simple roll-through shoulder throw, but it does a lot of damage.
  • Breath Weapon: Jumbo Flapjack breathes fire and poison mist.
  • The Brute: Alexander and Jumbo Flapjack.
  • The Cameo: Jumbo Flapjack and Biff Slamkovich appear in Ken's stage in Street Fighter Alpha 2, along a bunch of other "Capcom universe guests" for his then girlfriend Eliza's birthday party.
    • At times, Jessica would appear and enter the ring to cheer with her father in his victory pose.
    • Balrog (the boxer, that is) and Zangief each appear in the background of a stage in Slam Masters 2 — namely, in their hometowns of Las Vegas and Moscow, respectively.
    • Ryu, Chun-Li, and E. Honda can be seen in the audience in the first game.
  • Captain Ersatz: Several. Ortega = Hulk Hogan, El Stingray = Lizmark, The Scorpion = Tinieblas, Alexander the Grater = Big Van Vader, Great Oni = The Great Muta, Jumbo Flapjack = Earthquake and Kamala (this one is particularly unsubtle, as his Japanese name is Kimala, the same spelling Kamala used in his early career and Japan), Rip Saber = Owen Hart, etc.
    • Expy: Jumbo Flapjack is basically Zangief with a sun-and-moon motif and also from Mr. Heart. Gunloc, King Rasta and Rip Saber share several traits with Guile, Blanka and Rolento, respectively and Titanic Tim is basically a British Raoh who looks a bit like Thunder Hawk.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Rip Saber, reflected in his movelist in which he employs things such as hand grenades to fight.
    • Jumbo Flapjack will choke out opponents with his wrist tape and breathes mist.
    • King Rasta Mon and the Wraith both bite opponents in some of their grapples.
  • Color-Coded Multiplayer: Every player in Team Battle mode. Strangely enough, mirror matches were not allowed until the Duo version, even though every character has a different palette for each player in Team Battle mode in addition to the standard palette used in Single Match mode.
    • Player 1 - Red.
    • Player 2 - Blue.
    • Player 3 - Yellow.
    • Player 4 - Green.
  • Canada, Eh?: Rip Saber; the English version of Ring of Destruction says he's Australian, though the fight against him still takes place in Calgary. Previously, the American Kimala the Bouncer was changed to the Canadian Jumbo Flapjack. Jumbo's always talking about felling logs, and even says "eh?"
  • Comic-Book Time: The Japanese backstory sets the series before the events of Final Fight and based on Haggar's age difference between both games, the original Muscle Bomber is supposed to be set in 1983 (six years before Final Fight). However, the games never actually make any attempt to make it look like they're set in The '80s (particularly Aleksey Zalazof is established to be from the former Soviet Union and the game uses the current tricolor flag of Russia instead of the red and yellow Soviet one). The Japanese flyer for Super Muscle Bomber actually establishes that the game is set in 1994.
  • Contortionist: Wraith, on top of his size and super natural powers, is also supremely flexible. On a more realistic level, Black Widow is able to bend in a lot of unusual ways to deliver some unique attacks.
  • Dub Name Change: As seen above, all of the wrestlers in the first game except Haggar (who merely got a different nickname).
  • Dumb Muscle: King Rasta Mon, or as his Japanese name puts it, "Missing IQ." Jumbo Flapjack doesn't seem like the brightest, either.
  • Everything's Better with Spinning: Several techniques, Haggar being the best known example with his Spinning Clothesline and Spinning Piledriver.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Ortega does this for being the final boss in Ring of Destruction.
  • Fat Bastard: Jumbo Flapjack and Alexander.
  • Final Boss: Scorpion at first, Ortega in the third game.
  • Finishing Move: Each character has both a signature and hidden finisher.
  • Fanservice: Aside from all of the macho men (for the ladies and maybe some guys), there's also Black Widow's reveal. It shouldn't come as a surprise that the only female of the cast sheds her concealing disguise to reveal herself wearing nothing more than a leotard cut to resemble a training bra and thong.
  • Fragile Speedster: El Stingray.
  • Garbage Wrestler: Rip Saber utilizes foreign objects such as shovels and hand grenades in his special moves.
  • Genre Shift: The original Slam Masters was a typical 2D wrestling game with limited depth movement in which players were required to pin their opponents to win a match. Slam Masters II on the other hand plays like a typical 2D fighting game with multiple attack buttons, a single-fighting plane, victory by KO, and a round-based format.
  • The Giant: Titanic Tim, officially standing over 7'9". His bio lists his style as "Giant Wrestling", which means he mostly fights by being really huge. He has a bit of trouble with projectiles in Ring of Destruction.
    • The Wraith is 7'2", taller than everyone except Titanic Tim, though his fighting style is based on contortion and supernatural powers.
    • Jumbo Flapjack probably also counts by virtue of his girth, but at a listed height of 6'7" he's also pretty tall. He doesn't fight like much like a giant, though his super grapple is a classic big man move, the giant swing.
  • The Great Politics Mess-Up: Probably as a result of this, Biff's profile erroneously says he came from "Kiev, Russia".
  • Heel: The four BWO members: Jumbo Flapjack, Rip Saber, The Wraith, and The Scorpion. The only explicit heel in the CWA is Alexander the Grater.
  • Heroic Build: Everyone. Not for nothing the art is done by the co-author of Fist of the North Star, Tetsuo Hara.
  • Hoax Hogan: Victor Ortega in Ring of Destruction: Slam Masters II is the Final Boss, appearing as cameo in previous games. The Capcom Wrestling Association's original founder and owner who had also doubled as its first undefeated and undisputed champion. Even when he's more based on "Superstar" Billy Graham (Hulk Hogan's mentor and trainer), Ortega has some of Hogan's mannerisms and poses.
  • Husky Russkie: Biff is actually an inversion, being a more balanced character and not even the tallest.
  • Impact Silhouette: Ending a round in Ring of Destruction with a wrestler's special throw will create one with the opponent.
  • Impossible Hourglass Figure: Black Widow.
  • Inevitable Tournament
  • In-Series Nickname: All wrestlers are given nicknames in their bios. Also, certain tag teams in Duo are recognized by the computer and given a specific nickname, like Biff and Gunloc being the "Hyper Cannons."
  • Jack-of-All-Stats: Biff Slamkovich.
  • Kid-Appeal Character: El Stingray was technically this for being the shortest wrestler, standing at 5'6". He's an ankle biter.
  • Latin Lover: In one of his losing quotes, El Stingray bemoans that his ladies won't stand for his beautiful face being so mangled.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Jumbo Flapjack is quite agile for a man of his size.
    • Ortega is also a particularly fine example of this trope. While he's not fat like Jumbo, he is still easily one of the largest and heaviest men in the game, but has movement speeds on par with speedsters like Oni, Stingray and Scorpion.
  • Long Song, Short Scene: Each wrestler has a full entrance theme about a minute and a half long, but only about 5 seconds of it ever plays in Slam Masters and Duo, and only about 3 seconds in Ring of Destruction.
  • Lost in Translation: Converting Jumbo Flapjack's bio to imperial measurements loses a minor joke. He's 6'7" and 441 lbs. In metric, he's 200 cm and 200 kg.
  • Market-Based Title: Strangely enough, the second game (Muscle Bomber Duo) kept the original Muscle Bomber name for its World version, while the third (Super Muscle Bomber: The International Blowout) is localized as Ring of Destruction: Slam Masters II.
  • Masked Luchador: El Stingray and Scorpion.
  • Mighty Glacier: A few, Titanic Tim being the most prominent.
  • Mirror Match: Absent in the first arcade game.
    • Added in the Genesis version, where each character has four palettes that are selected depending on which button of the standard Genesis controller the player uses to pick their character. The standard palette for each character is selected by pressing the B button.
    • In Muscle Bomber Duo and Ring of Destruction, the characters' color palette are automatically assigned depending on the player selecting the character (unlike in the Street Fighter series, in which players get to choose their palette). Because of this, Player 2 in Ring of Destruction always uses the character's alternate palette no matter what and all the players use alternate palettes in Muscle Bomber Duo to make it easier to distinguish everyone since all the matches are 2-on-2.
  • Mission-Pack Sequel: Muscle Bomber Duo is this to the original Slam Masters.
  • Moveset Clone: Biff and Gunloc have nearly-identical movesets, though uniquely enough for this trope most of their shared moves have different inputs between them. They also have unique projectile attacks and stock grapples. This is justified as both were training partners and rivals.
  • Multiple Endings/Cliffhanger: In the first game, simply beating the game has your character challenged at the championship ceremony by three unnamed wrestlers who, judging by their attire, have formed a Power Stable. Beat the game without continuing, and instead you are challenged by a returning Victor Ortega. Either way, you don't get to play, or even see, the fight; instead, the game ends as the new challenger(s) climb into the ring, with the phrase "The next battle begins..."
  • Muscles Are Meaningless: There is no system regarding strength vs. weight, so El Stingray can lift Jumbo Flapjack as easily as he can lift The Great Oni.
  • Mysterious Past/Shrouded in Myth: The Scorpion.
  • New Work, Recycled Graphics: In the Japanese game only. The "Super" in Super Muscle Bomber is the same one used in Super Street Fighter II.
  • Non-Player Character: The game's referee, Harry Hicks. He's even graced with his own bio. Also Jessica, as well as Ortega in the first game only.
  • Oddly Named Sequel 2: Electric Boogaloo: The names of the English versions are all over the place.
  • Parts Unknown: Scorpion and Victor Ortega have unknown hometowns.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: All of the characters' and backstories were changed in translation in the overseas version of the first game. The setting was even changed from being set before Final Fight to being set afterward.
  • Prequel: To Final Fight (in the Japanese version at least).
  • Produce Pelting: The crowd in Scorpion's stage in Ring of Destruction throw garbage at the winner.
  • Professional Wrestling
  • Pro Wrestling Is Real: Not that it would really matter, you wouldn't want them breaking the fourth wall in the middle of a show would you? And a management sim doesn't scream "put quarters in me".
  • Raised by Wolves: King Rasta Mon was raised by monkeys.
  • Rated M for Manly: The vibe alone should make it obvious but if that's not enough, the artwork and character design for the game is done by Tetsuo Hara, the mangaka for Fist of the North Star.
  • Retired Badass: Ortega.
  • The Rival: Oni and Stingray have a rivalry over their flashy styles, while Gunloc and Biff are both rivals and training partners.
  • Samus Is a Girl/Sweet Polly Oliver: Black Widow.
  • Shared Universe: By virtue of the fact that Mike Haggar is a playable character and various Street Fighter II characters (such as Chun-Li, Honda, Zangief, and Balrog) can be seen in the backgrounds of certain stages.
  • Shock and Awe: Scorpion can somehow generate lightning, thought he's only seen using it the intro and his taunt.
  • Shout-Out/Continuity Nod: In Hugo's ending in Street Fighter III 2nd Impact, his opponents in a tag team match are presented as either Biff and Gunloc or Black Widow and Haggar.
    • Biff Slamkovich mentions a "Comrade Zangief" in his losing quote.
    • Haggar's Limit Break in Namco × Capcom is named after this series.
    • In the Creative Closing Credits of Capcom's RPG game Breath of Fire II, a group of bouncer Mini Bosses are given names. Which ones? Kimala (Flapjack), Gomes (Rasta Mon), Titan (Tim), Sheep (Alexander), and "Astoro" (mangled Astro, a.k.a. The Scorpion).
    • The logo for Super Muscle Bomber, the Japanese version of Ring of Destruction, uses the same font to spell "SUPER" that was used for the Super Street Fighter II logo. The SUPER word sprite also appears whenever a successive special throw is performed right after a taunt.
    • In a non-Street Fighter example, Titanic Tim and Birdie's tag team name, "500 Trillion Power" is a reference to the tag team of Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage, also known as The Megapowers.
      • It could also be a reference to the Kinnikuman tag team of Buffaloman and Ramenman/Mongolman, who were the 10 Million Powers.
    • In the English localization, Gunloc was hinted to be a relative of Guile, even though no such relation was ever alluded to in the Japanese version. This relation was brought up again in the arcade version of Street Fighter: The Movie, where Gunloc turns out to be the alter-ego of the renegade Shadaloo soldier Blade.
    • In Super Muscle Bomber, Astro quotes one of Souther's lines from Hokuto no Ken in his win quote.
    俺の体に流れるは帝王の血!! だれも俺を倒すことはできないのだッ!! (Within this body flows the blood of an emperor! No one can defeat me!)
    • In Street Fighter V, various characters from this game are active fighters on CWA, like Alex, Birdie and Zangief. Also, after Black Widow, it's stated women are now allowed on CWA, seen from the same game that R. Mika, Nadeshiko (Mika's partner) and Laura are also part of the fights in their Story Mode in SFV.
    • According to El Fuerte's Japanese SFV profile, he and El Stingray were trained under the same teacher, Meteorito Jr.
  • The Smurfette Principle: Black Widow is the only female character.
  • SNK Boss: The Scorpion.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Out of all the women in Capcom fighting games, Black Widow is the largest, dwarfing them all at 6'6", 209lbs. Judging by her ending, at least 60% of that height is in her legs.
  • Tag Team: One of the play modes, made the central focus in Muscle Bomber Duo.
  • Title Drop: At least in the original version, as it's the In-Series Nickname of Ortega ("Master of Muscle Bomber").
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Most characters.
  • Welcome to the Caribbean, Mon!: In the localization, King Rasta Mon is seemingly (as the name hints) Jamaican, though his hometown is listed as Venice, CA. And the Dominican Republic is still Caribbean anyway so whatever
  • Wild Child: King Rasta Mon's backstory describes him living like an animal in the mountainous forests of the Dominican Republic well into adulthood until he was discovered by civilized people.
  • Wild Samoan: Rasta is from an Atlantic island rather than a Pacific one, but otherwise, he's a perfect example of the trope, fighting with bites and headbutts and running around with a monkey.
  • Wrestling Game: Only applies to the original game and Duo. Slam Masters II is really more of a competitive fighting game with wrestling gimmicks.
  • Wrestling Monster: The Wraith. Yikes.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: The Great Oni has pink hair. Though, considering that his gimmick is kabuki, it may be a wig.
    • Played straight in Muscle Bomber Duo with Biff, Gunloc, and Oni's 2P palettes for having exactly blue hair. Their 1P, 3P, and 4P palettes respectively give them pink, yellow, and green hair.
    • Biff and Oni have white hair in their 2P palettes from Ring of Destruction.


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