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Primal Rage Reviewed by Cyril Lachel on . Rating: 10%
Primal Rage
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  • Review Score:

  • D-
There's a point in any popular trend where things start to feel more like self-parody. It's hard not to look at Rock Revolution as a game that is mocking Rock Band or Guitar Hero. And how else do you explain the terribleness of Hour of Victory? Sadly this trend is nothing new; it extends far past the music simulator and World War II first-person shooters. It extends at least as far back as 1994, because that's the moment when Atari Games unleashed the single worst fighting game the arcade had ever seen - Primal Rage.

Maybe on paper Primal Rage sounded like a good idea, take the popularity of Street Fighter II and mix in a little Jurassic Park. But that's where the good ideas end. By the time the game hit the arcades it was reduced to being nothing more than a parody of the very worst fighting games on the market. When the most memorable aspect of your game is peeing on your opponent, you know something happened between the conception and the distribution.

Primal Rage was terrible in the arcades and equally bad on the home consoles. So when they decided to port it to the Game Gear one year later they suddenly made the game good, right? HELL NO! Primal Rage on the Game Gear is every bit as terrible as it is in the arcade, only with the added benefit of having even worse controls, uglier graphics, limited moves and a soundtrack so bad that it would make Celine Dion shut up. In other words, Primal Rage on the Game Gear makes the arcade version look like a half-way decent fighting game.

As was the case with Mortal Kombat and other Game Gear fighting games, this Primal Rage port offers a limited selection of characters. Each of the different dinosaurs has a number of special moves, though it's worth mentioning that the overall arsenal has been trimmed slightly. On top of that, you get incredibly sluggish controls and a button layout that doesn't quite feel right. Throw in the choppy graphics and abysmal animations and you have one of the worst portable fighting games of all time.

While the arcade version of Primal Rage offered detailed backgrounds full of digitized graphics, this 8-bit Game Gear port features plain colored backgrounds and the occasional blade of grass. The dinosaurs look a little better, however when they move they tend to look more like fighting blobs. The only way you could get any enjoyment out of the visuals is if you are already accustomed to the arcade game. But even then, playing Primal Rage on the Game Gear is like watching your favorite movie with a paper bag over your head.

So what do you have left when you have an ugly fighting game with terrible controls, the worst backgrounds imaginable, annoying sounds, limited characters and sluggish combat? Not a whole heck of a lot, which is why there's no reason to play Primal Rage on the Game Gear. The truth is, there's no reason to play Primal Rage period, but this Game Gear port is by far the single worst version of the game. Then again, I hear there's a Game Boy version of this game, perhaps we actually have a race for the bottom of the barrel.
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