The only thing that Punch Out!! could have REALLY benefitted from was a better tutorial to explain the core principle of punchout. This game (as everyone knows) has close to nothing to do with boxing and everything to do with boss fights (pattern memorization, and experimentation to find hidden weaknesses). Once you tackle the game with the different mindset of being patient and trying to figure out all the various counters for each attack (which, surprisingly, there IS a counter for every enemy punch) the game transcends the normal into the sublime of game design goodness! :D
OF course, that mindset is pretty hard to teach since a lot of people are going to want to jump in and start swinging punches madly like you would any fighter. ... for those this game will prove to be completely unrelentless and frustrating since the openings in later levels are very brief and boss fights unforgiving in their power.
But yeah, game terminology aside ... the gameplay's oldschool nintendo hard and satisfying since it's purely puzzle solving of an active sort. The animations and voice work are absolutely HILARIOUS and Valve quality (hooray for Next Level Games, Nintendo's only innovative company). And given the additional challenges (like knocking down Glass Joe 3 times, then losing by decision) and the additional title defense circuit this game has a ton of replay value.
There is a multiplayer option, but it's for local play only and there isn't too much to it, though it is really fun. With a slightly modified moveset you and your opponent try to outbest each other, and if you score enough counter hits on the opponents you turn into Giga Mac (who controlls like the big opponents of the game). It's an amusing bonus, but not a game seller.
So yeah, if you liked the original, get this one immediately. Everyone else should try it with the mindset of puzzle solving to see what's so good about the franchise.
Retro gamers prepare for a wake up call. Little Mac is back, and this time he packs a bigger punch. This version of Punch Out is essentially a remake of the original NES game with a more modern generation twist. Obviously, since this is a boxing game on the Wii, The motion control is there, and it's well done. Thrusting the Wiimote forward throws a right, thrusting the Nunchuck throws a left. If you plan on playing for long sessions though, get ready for a workout, this is the most physically demanding boxing sim (and I use the term sim loosely) for the Wii yet. That being said, there is the option to use only a Wiimote and the 1 and 2 buttions for punches for the less durable players. The career mode advances as you'd expect, climb the ranks by defeating unique and interesting opponents to achieve the title. You fight 3 "normal" opponents per circuit, then the "Boss" fight. Usually and damage sponge that tests your coordination thoroughly. If you're having trouble with a particular opponent, you can fight a hologram of them and learn their attack patterns better. The graphics are about as good as you can get with a cel-shaded boxing game on the Wii, smooth and cartooney. But don't let the light hearted look fool you, this game is anything but easy, I had trouble on the second fight, and there is no way to adjust difficulty. Overall, this game is a great stroll down memory lane, if you're a fan of the first game, you'll love this, if you never played the first, I think you'll still enjoy this. I will be buying this game.