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YMMV / Streets of Rage

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  • Author's Saving Throw: One of the reasons why the International version of Streets of Rage 3 came under fire was due to the changing of the character's colors to ensure gender neutrality, despite going against what they wore in the past. In 4's trailer, one of the first thing you will notice was that Axel is back with his white t-shirt and blue jeans, and Blaze is back with her red bra (beneath a brand new black jacket).
  • Awesome Music: The soundtracks of the games are quite enjoyable. There's a good reason Yuzo Koshiro's name appears on the title screens of all three games directly under Sega's copyright. The soundtracks are so popular, Koshiro makes money on the side by remixing his own tracks and playing them at clubs. (Full set here.)
    • Now has its own page.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: Several sub-areas seem rather out-of-place, specifically the creepy Alien-themed area in the middle of a fairground, complete with entertaining lethal exploding alien eggs and a giant lethal monstrous swingy thingy.
    • In the third game, there's the oddly placed Japanese styled building that comes after a tunnel level, complete with a boss fight that looks like a samurai and he can split into two other copies. Luckily, you only fight one of them at a time.
  • Breather Boss: The robots in the second game's penultimate stage are easier than the insane elevator sequence beforehand, though they're still pretty challenging. On higher difficulties though, there are more of them, so this applies less.
  • Breather Level: Round 7 of Streets of Rage, which was a brief and simple Elevator Action Sequence before the final stage, which consisted of a Boss Rush. Besides having the Elevator of Death as the great equalizer against high-level baddies, this is also the last level in which the player can call upon their squad buddies for backup.
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  • Broken Base: There's neverending argument about SoR3's soundtrack. Unlike first two games, which were generally electronic house music, this one utilized randomized sequences to create very distinct hard techno. The reception was extremely polarizing; some thought it's innovative and serves as a clever change to genre, while others claimed it's rather unmemorable and ill-fitting. The general public eventually warmed up to it long after release as trance becomes more popular, basically making this game the sort of a pioneer, but there're still some grips about whether this change in style was needed.
  • Contested Sequel: Streets of Rage 3, see They Changed It, Now It Sucks!.
  • Demonic Spiders: Those Raven kickboxers have a lot of health, can block attacks and deliver powerful kicks.
    • Those jetpack mooks are not much weaker than their boss version (which is by all means That One Boss for some people). Very hard to hit, hit very hard with their flying kick, superman punch, and can grab you and drop you from the sky.
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    • Ninjas in 2 and 3. They jump around, can hit you when you are jumping, toss shurikens at you, and they can throw you like bosses could. Even worse if they have swords or kunais.
  • Even Better Sequel: Streets of Rage 2, with better graphics, better gameplay, more characters, more enemies, more stages, more weapons...
  • Evil Is Sexy: If you manage to replace Mr. X as crime boss while playing as Blaze, then in her "evil ending" cutscene she qualifies as an example of this.
  • Fanon: The game never went into details on how Mr. X managed to kidnap Adam in 2, so fans tends to think that it happened because around this time, Mr. X hired Shiva as his Dragon, and he proceeded to ambush and trounce Adam. Considering that Shiva is the game's penultimate boss, it would make sense that Adam, after months of peace and not fighting, would be outclassed (whereas in-game, Axel and friends needed to plow through Mr. X's men by fighting, so when they reach Shiva, they've already honed their fighting experience to defeat him).
  • Game-Breaker:
    • Axel's Grand Upper/GRAND UPPA! attack in Streets of Rage 2. Toned down in power in Streets of Rage 3. To explain a little, all characters had three specials: a standing A, forward A, and forward-forward-B. The first took off some of your energy if it hit, the second regardless of whether you hit or not, and the latter was a power attack but didn't use energy. Axel's Grand Upper was more powerful than anyone's forward-A, his own included. Axel is invincible for the entire animation (it could be used to slide straight through projectiles), it scored a hit on every single frame, hit anyone who touched Axel's sprite from any direction at any time, and slid forward until Axel hit something if he did it away from someone. About the only enemies who could deal with it were those with long counter-moves that could wait it out (so that'd be Abadede, R. Bear, and absolutely nobody else), Shiva (who had roughly the same attack with the slide run out to most of the screen) and Mr. X.
    • Streets of Rage 3 however has Shiva's "back attack." Unlike normal characters, he doesn't have the full range of attacks, so instead of a back attack he does a short swinging elbow to the face. This move is fast enough that you can infinitely combo it, with only the edge of the screen (or other enemies) stopping you from comboing almost any enemy to death.
    • Shiva as a playable character in 3. His normal moves have a lot of range and are very fast, instead of the back attack he has a 2-hit punch that can combo infinitely, and his special attack takes half of one health bar and is completely invincible. It's not like he makes the game a cakewalk, but he outclasses everyone at everything.
    • In Streets of Rage 2, certain characters have an infinite combo that involves rhythmically using the first hit of their regular combo. It's slow and not too flashy, but it can take down most enemies easily.
  • Goddamned Bats
    • For starters, there's those Signal mooks who are able to slide and throw you, and the Garcia mooks who point their knives at you in any game.
    • From the first game, the black-wearing Nora mooks. After getting hit by a punch, they'll sometimes kneel on the floor, becoming invincible and making it much harder to combo them.
    • In the first game, there are the Hakuyo mooks who will repeatedly kick you, jump back to avoid a counter attack, waltz up and repeat. The second and third games have the blue/yellow/orange/green Hanzo ninjas that will always jump around and sidestep to avoid your attacks, then they will either jump and punch you to knock you down or do a kick to knock you off your ass and throw shurikens at you. And then they become Demonic Spiders when they start to carry swords and kunais.
    • Those motorcycle-riding Fog mooks in some stages in 2 and 3. They have a habit of showing up in unexpected moments while you are running to the edge of the screen and run you over. The ones that aren't on the bikes also count, as they often punch you from a fair distance or grab you from behind. Other ones only appear in the background (and thus can't be hit) and throw grenades into the stage.
    • The Vices. Them holding you down for others to hit you is very annoying.
    • Electras are usually easy. But this changes if there are other mooks backing them up, they can easily knock you out multiple times with their electric whip and jump kick attacks while the other mooks prevent you from getting close. They also will not get back up immediately if knocked out.
    • The various fat enemies. They laugh tauntingly, usually after doing a full run at you that usually knocks you down. And they come in twos or have someone backing them up, and tend to run off to the sides of the screen. Later on, they bellyflop at you repeatedly. And in the original game and 3, attempting to throw them over or suplex them results in failure and heavy damage.
  • Goddamned Boss
    • Barbon in 2 tends to block often, has a habit of using his kicks to knock you out of the air, and may grab you first and throw you if you try to do the same to him.
    • Robo-X in 3 is pretty fast on the move, and on the draw. He not only has a machine gun attack (don't be on the same lane he is), he also has a homing rocket attack. (which leaves him open while the missile's on screen) Take too long to throw or slam him, upon grabbing him, and he will electrocute you a la Zan. And he laughs at you every time you get knocked down.
  • Good Bad Bugs: Max is full of them in 2, which is probably why they switched him out for Zan in 3. He slides faster than he walks, so expect expert Max players to slide, not walk. His Thunder Tackle will DEMOLISH blocking opponents since they will take a huge amount of chip damage during his dash attack. Finally, Max's grapples work on any enemy who walks into range. This is true for all characters, but Max covers a lot of area and can jump while holding his opponent. Expect good Max players to backbreak about 4 enemies at once.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
  • It's Hard, So It Sucks!: While it's far from a bad game, Streets of Rage 3 gets a bad rep compared to its predecessor for its notorious and constant spikes in difficulty, whereas Bare Knuckle 3 was a challenging but fair game much like the second.
  • Memetic Mutation: "It's like BOO!"
    • "GRAND UPPA!"Explanation 
      • "RENT-A-CAR!" "SANTA CLAUS!" "GRANDPA!" and so on.Explanation 
    • Streets of Rage 2 Except It Makes That Weird Tim Allen Noise When People DieExplanation 
  • Most Annoying Sound: In SOR2, Mr. X's "DAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!" every single time you get knocked down. You'll get knocked down a lot facing him. Another variant, "HUHEHEHEHEHEHEHE!" is let off by the Big Ben/Bongo enemies and Robo-X, also when knocked down. You'll hear this a lot when Robo-X or one of his mooks knocks you down.
  • Most Wonderful Sound:
    • "GRAND UPPA!"
    • When playing as Max, ramming your knee into the enemy's spine produces that oh so wonderful cracking sound.
    • The 1-Up jingle at the end of the stage for Every 10,000 Points, especially if you hear it mid-stage.
  • Polished Port: The Sega Vintage Collection (developed by M2, not Backbone Entertainment) on XBLA not only compiles the entire Genesis trilogy, but also allows players access to each game from different regions, giving players the ability to play the original Japanese version of Bare Knuckle III. It also offers a slew of customization options, from video adjustments with full 1080p support to fully re-mappable control scheme. You can also save your progress at anytime, save replays, play trial modes, play online multi-player, and listen to games' soundtrack at your leisure (including the unused tracks).
  • Scrappy Mechanic: 3's overseas versions deprive you of the last two stages and any sort of good ending if you play on Easy. Not only does no such mockery exist in the Japanese version, the non-Japanese versions have their difficulties inflated by one level each, which can make one feel like the developers intentionally screwed over their Western playerbase. It's quite likely this was due to the American game rental industry of the 90s and Sega wanted to encourage players to rent the game multiple times, but in hindsight, punishing the player for playing on what the Japanese version calls default difficulty is still a low blow.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song: SOR2's "Under Logic" bears more than a passing resemblance to The Shamen's "Move Any Mountain." Also, it is sweet as hell. The main theme ("S.O.R. Super Mix") does sound much like Enigma's "Sadeness."
    • SOR1's "Fighting in the Street" has a few elements from Technotronic's "Pump Up the Jam."
    • Here are several videos that note the above examples and lot of others. Apparently, Black Box was a major influence on the soundtracks of the first and second games.
    • Also, Streets of Rage 3's "Percussion" sounds kinda similar to Henry Mancini's "Peter Gunn Theme."
  • That One Boss:
    • The clawed twins in the original, Mona & Lisa, Abadede, R.Bear, and Shiva. Most players are guaranteed to lose at least one life against these bastards.
      • The clawed twins. Fighting one of them's no big deal for an experienced player: just approach them from the top or bottom of the stage, grab them and attack. Try doing that when there's another one to deal with.
      • Mona and Lisa in both games they appear in. They have very high evasive skills, can throw you, have jump kicks that can be quite tricky to dodge, and each of their attacks does a crapton of damage. Oh, and there's two of them.
      • Abadede in the original isn't too hard, as he only has his running uppercut attack, which can be countered by either moving to the side and grabbing him, or by jump-kicking him as he charges towards you. In 2 however, he gets several new attacks, including a damaging back throw, a bellyflop attack, he can randomly break out of your combos and grapples, and his running uppercut is a lot less predictable because of all his new moves.
    • In 2 on Mania, Mr. X is practically impossible due to moving roughly as fast as Skate and every attack slashing away a significant part of your entire health bar.
    • R.Bear in Stage 5 of Streets of Rage 2. JUST R.Bear. The bugger beats out pretty much ALL your attacks with his ridiculous range from his punches and his ability to counter. And you fight him AGAIN in Stage 8 (as a palette swap named Bear Jr.). Granted, using a katana or a pipe makes him easier, but still.
    • Jet and the Rocket Mooks at the end of Stage 6 in Streets of Rage 3. In SOR2 Jet was a Glass Cannon. Now Jet's a lot more robotic than before and is bald. He gained a flamethrower, a TON of health (4 bars on Normal!), and has an infinite number of Rocket Mooks he can summon (actually 10, but you'll never live that long to see it unless you're good enough to defeat Jet in the first place.) Never mind that you just got through That One Level. After you beat him, twice as many Rockets flood the screen... luckily Adam arrives in a helicopter and provides More Dakka to gun them down.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: The North American version of Streets of Rage 3 was hit hard by this. It not only inflates the difficulty levels by one level each, but also locks you out of the last two stages if you are playing on Easy, which is Normal in the Japanese version. The Japanese version has no such mockery, not even on its own Easy difficulty, which would be Easier Than Easy in the North American version if it existed. The storyline also heavily bowdlerised to remove the fear of a war storyline in favor of more general lawlessness and disorder in the city, with many dialogue changes resulting in some dialogue making little to no sense. In addition, the female enemies were given jackets to look less revealing, Axel, Blaze, and Skate swapped their usual colors for gender neutrality, and Ash was Dummied Out (he still existed in the game's code, but you had to use a game enhancer to use him). This may be among the reasons why the Sega Vintage Collection for the Streets of Rage trilogy features all regional versions of the game.
  • Vindicated by History: The soundtrack for Streets of Rage 3 received a mixed reception at the time of release, due to its more experimental approach. Nowadays, it got better received and was considered ahead of its time. The Mean Machines magazine went to say that "ironically it pre-dated the 'trance' era that came a short while after release."


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