6 Forgotten PS1 Beat ‘Em Up Games

the sony playstationthe biggest impact on the video game industry, came to the West in 1995. One of the most significant changes in the entire industry that changed the landscape of consoles forever occurred when the game station came to market. It was only discontinued in 2006, Sony PlayStation was a big competitor. Starting with a widely publicized failed effort to create a CD-based add-on for Nintendo, Sony decided to strike out on their own.

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One of the first consoles to move away from cartridge-based games and use compact discs. Sony’s PlayStation was serious business, becoming the first system to sell more than 100 million units in less than a decade. When it comes to games, PlayStation’s back catalog will always be known as one of the best. With the likes of Tomb Raider, Crash Bandicoot, and Metal Gear Solid, there’s no denying the power of PlayStation. Every genre and then some was covered, and among the selection are some classic beat-em-up titles that don’t get enough coverage.


6 fighting force

Released in 1997, Fighting Force was developed by Core Design and published by Eidos. A 3D street fighting game that gave players four characters to choose from and take on those dangerous streets. Hawk, Mace, Alana, and the affectionately nicknamed Smasher teamed up to keep the city clean from Dr. Dex Zeng and his minions.

Originally pitched to Sega as the next installment in their successful Streets of Rage franchise, however, Sega declined, stating that they had their own plans for the series. These plans for a fourth Streets of Rage would not come to light until 2020 when Streets of Rage 4 was finally released. Fighting Force is a fantastic first step into 3D fighting games and also produced a sequel Fighting Force 2 that focused solely on in Hawk and took a much more stealth-based approach compared to the original action fighting game foundation.

5 gekido

Gekido: Urban Fighters sprang from Italian developer team NAPS in 2000. A colorful and fast-paced title that puts players in the shoes of Travis, who has been hired to investigate a crime boss and rescue a girl named Angela. Travis has backup in the form of his three faithful companions Ushi, Tetsuo and Michelle.

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Each level has a timer for Travis to punch, kick, and use strange objects to defeat all enemies on screen before moving on to the next area. Gekido received a sequel called Gekido Advance: Kintaro’s Revenge for the Gameboy Advance. This title was ported to Switch, PS4, Xbox One, and PC in 2018.

4 Jackie Chan: Stunt Master

Jackie Chan was an absolutely huge star when Jackie Chan: Stunt Master released in 2000 for the Sony PlayStation. Controlling the famous martial artist, players must fight their way through 15 stages to save Jackie’s kidnapped grandfather. To be successful, several moves must be chained together through the different challenges present.

Acting as a consultant for the game, Jackie Chan did the voice acting and motion capture to make the game character move and sound as accurate as possible. Upon completion of the game, players can watch a video of Jackie Chan discussing motion capture and behind-the-scenes footage.

3 crisis rhythm

Set on a cruise ship hijacked by terrorists, Crisis Beat arrived in 1998 to bolster Sony PlayStation’s line of beat-em-ups. Developed by Soft Machine and published by the almighty Namco, Crisis Beat allowed players to choose between four characters to fight against waves of enemies.

While the textures and character models may not have aged well, the color palette is quite vibrant compared to other titles in the genre. Often overlooked and forgotten, Crisis Beat is a fun outing for fans of beat-em-ups that has players learning how to chain combos with a simple two-button attack set to progress through each stage.

two Fantastic four

Unfortunately, released in 1998 when the beat-em-up genre was declared all but dead, Fantastic Four brought licensed 2D fighting from Marvel Comics to Sony PlayStation. Based on the comic book series of the same name rather than either of the two Fantastic Four live-action movies, Fantastic Four played like a classic arcade title.

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Taking control of one of the Fantastic Four, players must survive being teleported to various locations by Dr. Doom. Using a PlayStation Multitap, four-player sessions were able to take place on the couch using one machine. The controls aren’t that great and the graphics aren’t anything to write home about, but for fans of the franchise, Fantastic Four gives gamers a chance to play an old-school arcade title, albeit a not-so-exciting one.

1 armored bandit

Another 2D side-scrolling fighting game, Panzer Bandit, was only released for Japanese audiences in 1997 for the Sony PlayStation. However, it came to PlayStation Network in 2011 for gamers to try PlayStation 3 again, this was only for Japan. Based on an unreleased Sega Genesis title, Axion, Panzer Bandit was very similar to the Guardian Heroes game that was released on the Sega Saturn and Xbox 360.

After a robotic army invades cities around the world, main character Kou and a band of heroes must stop this mechanical threat. Each of the four characters has their own move sets to take on waves of enemies and save the city. Set in eight colorful settings, Panzer Bandit is a classic that gamers in the West should strive to try if they can get their hands on a copy to play.

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