SFPW2 was developed for Super Famicom, and was released in 1992. You can select from 25 different wrestlers who all vary subtly in appearance, stamina, and technique. This is not a game with a whole lot of depth; so again, the differences are usually pretty slight.
You can choose from several different modes including official league matches (singles and tag), exhibition matches, lumberjack matches, and elimination matches. You can play with up to 2 players in any mode (up to 8 players in the “open league” mode), though it’s not possible to battle each other in the official league matches, as you are faced with increasingly harder computer opponents.
The gameplay is where this game really shines. It’s a lot of fun to duke it out with computer opponents, though their tactics tend to be calculated and predictable. Human players, on the other hand, tend to be less predictable and therefore more interesting and challenging to engage. Using the X button, you can run to the ropes, and collide with your opponent or the referee to comedic effect. You won’t see computer opponents trying this one on you.
All of the wrestlers have signature moves, and while their moves do tend to differ from one wrestler to another, there are only a limited number (usually the same number) of moves a particular wrestler can execute. No particular move seems to do more damage than the other, so you could repeatedly throw your opponent to one of the corner posts and drain their energy that way. I have personal experience…
One of the things that often catches people off guard about this game is the complete lack of any status bar or health bar. There are other visual cues that tell you how close your opponents are to submission, but the easiest way to tell is to put them in a submission hold or to pin them down. If they don’t give up, throw them into the corner post a few more times and try again.
At least you can tell they’re SNES graphics, but that’s not saying much. It’s an improvement over any NES game to be sure, but not a good reflection of what the system is capable of. Fortunately, the gameplay tends to make up for it in a big way.
Sound & Music
Frankly, quite hilarious. When you put your opponent in a submission hold, it sounds like you’re pulling on rubber or applying pressure to a balloon. When you land a punch or a kick, it sounds a bit like hitting a leather sofa. Quite laughable.
The soundtrack is kind of cool, but is totally stuck in the 80s. The MIDI guitars sound more like motorcycles than guitars as they often did at the time. MIDI Guitar is just one of those hard things to get right. In any case, the music is kind of a combination of Hard Rock guitar riffs with 80s synth riffs. Like I said, the compositions themselves aren’t that bad, but the MIDI sounds make it hilarious.
I remember playing this game with my friend a lot in elementary school and Jr. High. We had a lot of fun playing, laughing, and making spoofs of this game. I’m not sure exactly what it was about this game, but it was quite addictive and maybe a little too easy to make fun of. The gameplay is by far the best quality of the game, and besides that it’s kind of a hit-and-miss game, and doesn’t really hold a wide appeal. What? Don’t look at me like that; wrestling was big in Japan at the time. I will throw you against the corner post if you step over the line. 😉
Watch me throw my opponent against the corner post repeatedly: