In which simple walls introduce themselves as Okkto's worst nightmare.
(Originally published on YouTube: May 11, 2014)
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River City Ransom, originally released as Downtown Nekketsu Monogatari (ダウンタウン熱血物語 Dauntaun Nekketsu Monogatari?, lit. "Downtown Hot-Blooded Story") or Downtown Nekketsu Story in Japan and later as Street Gangs in PAL regions, is an open world action role-playing beat 'em up video game for the Family Computer/NES. It was developed by Technōs Japan and originally released in Japan on April 25, 1989. It is the third game in Technos' Kunio-kun series released for the console, preceded by Renegade and Super Dodge Ball. Like its predecessors, River City Ransom underwent great changes in its storyline and graphical presentation during its localization in order to make the game more palatable in the Western market. It was one of the first console games published by North American subsidiary American Technos.
Remakes of the game have been released for the Sharp X68000, PC-Engine Super CD-ROM², and Game Boy Advance (GBA). The NES version was re-released on Wii's Virtual Console in 2007 as well as Wii U's Virtual Console in October 2015. It was also released on the 3DS Virtual Console in the PAL Regions in July 25, 2013 and in North America in November 14, 2013.
The plot follows high school students Alex and Ryan as they cross River City in an attempt to rescue River City High and Ryan's girlfriend Cyndi from the clutches of a villain called "Slick". Along the way, they battle with gangs of students (with names such as "The Generic Dudes", "The Frat Guys", "The Jocks" or "The Squids") and several gang leaders which act as bosses or sub-bosses.
River City Ransom is a beat 'em up game with action role-playing elements. The game is non-linear, allowing players to explore an open world, in a sandbox manner. The fighting style is very similar to Double Dragon, in that the player can move freely around the screen while pressing buttons to punch, kick, or jump. Objects such as brass knuckles, steel pipes, and trashcans can be used as melee weapons or thrown at enemies. However, the characters' effectiveness in battle is determined by several statistics and their knowledge of fighting techniques, such as Grand Slam, Stone Hands, and Dragon Feet, which are purchased as books in shops throughout the city using funds recovered from defeated gang members. This loot may also be spent on various food items and spa treatments which serve to not only revitalize the player's stats, but may also permanently increase attributes like "Punch" and "Kick" (Foods and items offer varying levels of improvement).
The player can input passwords that keep track of their character's stats, skills, possessions, money, and defeated bosses. There are a total of nine gangs in the original NES version (which are distinguished by the color of their t-shirts) whom the player will encounter during the course of the game, each with their own characteristics and attacking patterns.
River City Ransom is an English localization of the Family Computer video game Downtown Nekketsu Monogatari, which is the third title starring Technōs Japan's mascot character Kunio, who previously appeared in Nekketsu Kōha Kunio-kun and Nekketsu Kōkō Dodgeball Bu (the Japanese versions of Renegade and Super Dodge Ball respectively). This is the first game in the series where Kunio teams up with his rival Riki, who fought against Kunio in the previous games. The gangs the players fight in the Famicom version are all students from different high schools and many of the characters introduced in this game would reappear in subsequent Kunio-kun games (particularly those that were directed by Sekimoto and Yoshida).
In addition to anglicizing all of the characters' and locations' names, as well as the game's dialog in the English translation, the characters' sprites were also redrawn, replacing their Japanese school uniforms with t-shirts and jeans.
The number of difficulty settings was reduced from three to two (the easiest difficulty setting was removed and the Medium setting in the Famicom version became the Novice setting in the NES version) and an alternate 2-player mode (2P Play B) which disables player-against-player damage was removed too. In addition to a Password feature, the Japanese version also features support for the Turbo File, a peripheral released only in Japan that allows the player to save and load game data.
River City Ransom. (2016, January 11). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.
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