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Basketbrawl Reviewed by John Huxley on . Rating: 20%
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  • Review Score:

  • D
Like Arch Rivals, Basketbrawl for the Lynx combines full-court, two-on-two roundball with fisticuffs and flying limbs. In a one-player or ComLynx game, you'll control a player chosen from a motley crew of gangbangers whose fighting skills need to be as well developed as their ability to shoot hoops.

As you can tell by looking at the above number ratings, Basketbrawl is pretty weak - it's one of the least enjoyable Lynx titles of all time. The characters are stiff, blocky and devoid of personality, and the animation is strictly third-rate. Heck, the ball doesn't even move or bounce in a realistic fashion. The soundtrack is deader than a doornail - with the possible exception of the title theme, a pounding tune that deserves a much better game behind it.

Not to misunderstand the game's intent, at the time of its release the Lynx desperately needed some solid sports games, and this is really more of a tag-team wrestling match than a game of skill and athletic ability. It's been proven that the two can be successfully combined, but Basketbrawl is too much "brawl" and too little "basket." Gang members patrol the sidelines and throw knives at the players; the players themselves can slug each other with baseball bats - even the referee comes out and starts to pound your character whenever he feels like it. It'd be fun stuff, but the imbalance really throws the game off course.

With all of these sore spots, Basketbrawl comes across as nothing more than a poorly executed Arch Rivals knockoff, but without the sense of humor that made the latter so enjoyable. Even when the game tries to liven things up by throwing blurbs like "You!" or "He's Hurtin'!" up on the screen, it still falls flat.
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