(Wii Virtual Console / Mega Drive)

Streets of Rage 2 (Wii Virtual Console / Mega Drive)

Game Profile

On the eve of the one-year anniversary of their defeating the Syndicate, Blaze, Adam and Axel met up for drinks. The morning after, Axel receives a frantic phone call from Eddie 'Skate' Hunter, Adam's younger brother, who lives with him on the edge of the city. Blaze and Axel then find Adam and Skate's house wrecked, and a picture of Adam chained to a wall at the feet of Mr. X.

The city has once again returned to its former nightmarish state, with the city streets, roads and parks swarming with criminals. Unable to contact their old friend in artillery, Axel and Blaze team up with Skate and Max Thunder, an old friend of Axel's, to free the city and rescue Adam from the Syndicate's private island. It is up to you to take down Mr. X once and for all!

Game Review

Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Darren Calvert

The city has once again returned to its former nightmarish state, with the city streets, roads and parks swarming with criminals.

For many of our readers this game will need no introduction. If you haven't yet played Streets of Rage 2 then you are in for a treat. Simply put this is probably the best scrolling beat-em-up available on any console. Yes it is that good!Sega didn't do...

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User Comments (71)

__Mart

#1

Mart said:

Combine this with the announcement of Sonic 2 and we have two of the Mega Drive's greatest games on route. Two new characters in this one to replace Adam from the previous title. Skate was my personal favourite whereas the wrestler Max was all too slow for my liking and kinda reminded me of Zangief from Street Fighter. The special moves are so much better aswell, no more pointless cop car scenes. Wii points at the ready.

Mendez

#2

Mendez said:

Yay! I only played SOR for the first time when it came on to the VC, and I heard part 2 is meant to be a lot better. Another game to look forward too! =D

DEMON212

#3

DEMON212 said:

Just wait then Mendez, if you thought the first one was good, just wait till the third one. There's nothing better than annihilating your foes, with a Kangaroo.

Roo was always my favourite character and it made me like 3 better. 2 is probably the better game, I just loved Roo.

Also, I liked the cop cars in 1.

RMA

#4

RMA said:

Completed the og SOR last week...can't wait for this to make its appearance. Demon...love 3 as well but 2 was the pinnacle of the series...just awesome.

DEMON212

#5

DEMON212 said:

My mate had a SEGA MD and he had all 3, we went through em and had a real blast. And I think I enjoyed 2 more, I just knew that I loved Roo.

I DL-ed SOR 1 ASAP when it hit the U.K and had just as good a time beating it with the same mate and with my bro. I love the VC :)

Kelvin

#6

Kelvin said:

I can't tell you how many afternoons were lost playing SoR2 from start to finish on both single and two player. Easily the best of the series (although I too loved Roo!), and while purists and SNES-heads may prefer Final Fight, they're wronger than Mr Wrong of Wrongtown. SoR2 is a much more fun and playable game, and while the graphics aren't quite as nifty as those of FF (though still very good, and I prefer the bright cartoony look of SoR to the washed out but more "realistic" FF sprites), the soundtrack is one of the best ever. This is a definite must buy for me.

After a less than A-list Mega Drive VC release schedule, with this, Shining Force, and the mighty and unbeatable Sonic 2, long-time Nintendo loyalists are finally getting a look at what they missed back in the day.

Kelvin

#7

Kelvin said:

Yes, better than the first SoR, and yes, better than Turtles in Time. It's literally the best side-scrolling beat-em-up that's ever been. Fact! ;)

DazzaAdmin

#9

Dazza said:

Wait for SOR3 then, it had double-tap running goodness!!

Kelvin

#10

Kelvin said:

Skates had a run move in SoR2, didn't he? I mean he was awful anyway, but you can't have everything... ;)

Mendez

#12

Mendez said:

I hope we get it next Friday =(

It's became my most wanted VC game now...

__Ghetto_ninja

#13

Ghetto_ninja said:

This is definitely on my top 10 of wanted VC games. I heard that The Simpsons arcade game(my most played and favorite arcade game ever) might be an unlockable in the new Simpsons game thats going to be released to coincide with the new movie.

Kevin

#14

Kevin said:

My favorite Streets of Rage game is finally released! I can't wait to download it!

TheNintendoBoy

#15

TheNintendoBoy said:

"Wait for SOR3 then, it had double-tap running goodness!!"

Yeah, but SOR3 had a crap soundtrack, and old man instead of Max, ugly levels.. etc. :P

I meant that they should add a run-move to this as an option. It would make the game perfect imo.

__ham

#16

ham said:

Never had a Genesis/Mega Drive... so I just played this for the first time. Nice game! The bad guys are fun to beat up, and the levels are creative and well-designed. 2 'Hard' modes. Believe the hype! Do BASEBALL!

__ham

#17

ham said:

Wow, also have to add that the differences in the 4 fighters gives this game considerable replay value. And, 'Skate' actually does have a double-tap run, FYI. Worthy of 5 stars, no question.

Yoshi175

#18

Yoshi175 said:

I don't think streets of rage needs to have a run, I doubt I'd use it if there was one

__Frolicols

#19

Frolicols said:

The holy grail of scrolling beat 'em ups has arrived! Let battle commence! Woot woot!

__Asger

#21

Asger said:

REALLY good game! I didn't try this one until it came on VC, so I'm not affected by the nostalgia :) Especially the option to play 2 people at the same time is awesome!

TheNintendoBoy

#22

TheNintendoBoy said:

@ham - Yes, I've owned this game for over 10 years.. so actually I know about skate's double-tapping! :)

@yoshi - it needs a run, period.

If you like this game, I recommend checking out the fan made remake of it for the PC:
http://www.bombergames.net/sorr_e.htm

And fan made doesn't mean crappy in this case! It's like a best of from the whole series with updated gfx/sound.

__keenon roy

#23

keenon roy said:

This is one of my all time favorite games up there with Aliens vs Predator the arcade game, Battletoads the arcade game, X-men the arcade game i guess i have alot of favorite arcade games most of these should be playable games, axel is probably the best character to use in 2 & 3 shiva is pretty coo also.

__Garland Russell

#25

Garland Russell said:

This game should have been in Sega Genesis Collection for PS2 & PSP. As a matter of fact, All SOR games should have been in that compilation, to replace those other crappy classics on there.

__Biohazard_4

#26

Biohazard_4 said:

Hey everyone, I was wondering for the people who have downloaded this, what are the controls on the wiimote? There's special, attack and jump but only buttons 1 and 2, just curious to see how it works. Thanks :)

__Ryo

#27

Ryo said:

This is my second favourite side scrolling fighter, next to Battletoads. Highly recommended.

CastlevaniaTest

#28

CastlevaniaTest said:

Biohazard_4 - The A button is used for special attack. 1 and 2 are attack and jump, respectively. ;)

This was the first beat-em-up game I ever tried (except for that old Simpsons arcade game), and now I'm really interested in the genre. It's amazingly fun and very easy to pick up and play. Well worth the 800 points.

__Lone

#29

Lone said:

Another old classic MD game I used to play way too much for my own good xD
I remember beating this once only but I was only like... well young... wasn't the ending theme Elvis Presley's Fool or something very similar?
Bah, really good game in any case, an easy 5/5.

__pocki

#31

pocki said:

This may seem a daft question... but it's still bothering me...
how come my graphics aren't as crisp as the screenshots on the right of this article and really grainy? are they from a HD box or do i need to change my tv and/or wii settings? ta muchy in advance!

DazzaAdmin

#32

Dazza said:

@pocki

It's a fair question - The screenshots we use are taken from an emulator so they do look crisper.

TKS144

#33

TKS144 said:

I bought this game a few months ago. I just had to have it because I used to have Streets Of Rage 1 as a kid. This one is very much like the first, but a lot more advanced and they obviously tried to make it more intense. Yuzo Koshiro did an awesome job on the music, as always. Definitely a must have, although it's pretty difficult.

__Mii be you

#34

Mii be you said:

I love this game.
But why didn't anybody tell me that in multiplayer, you and your friend can hurt each other?
Nevertheless, 5/5.

alvieao

#35

alvieao said:

Streets of Rage 2 is the BEST in the trilogy with a great soundtrack composed by THE legend in video game music, Yuzo Koshiro. SOR2 is not only everyone's favorite (and mine) in the series, but also Koshiro's favorite as he delivered a memorable soundtrack. Great levels, special moves from each character, and better gameplay than the first. Streets of Rage 2 simply owns the SNES version of Final Fight. A timeless Genesis classic that must be played!

DazzaAdmin

#37

Dazza said:

Shortay - there are difficulty options. If you are finding the going too difficult on normal you can whimp out and play on EASY with 9 lives.

dualj

#38

dualj said:

This game was really great! It is not too hard, but not too easy (especially in the last few stages). Its great with multiple players. Five Stars is perfect!

__Barb

#39

Barb said:

For those seeking for harder gameplay, there's a littre trick to unlock the hardest game difficulty level, called Mania (O_O): you just have to hold down A and B on the second controller on the main select screen (with 1 Player, 2 Player etc), then select and enter the Options screen (still holding A+B until the Options screen fully ends appearing).

This also unlocks 9 lives foer every Continue :D

Mania is a lot more hard than Hardest, enemies AI is much more aggressive and they're even much faster and with more life.

Enjoy and... good luck! :D

__usmc2003

#40

usmc2003 said:

I recieved this with the Genisis (SIC) for Christmas from my dad. I played the heck out of it. Great game.

__Denivire

#41

Denivire said:

I still have my cartridge, still play it sometimes.
I can honestly say I am not disappointed with that purchase.

__Hazgibbon

#42

Hazgibbon said:

My fave megadrive game and all time favourite.
Used to love playing the second stage on mania as Axel. "Razor claw!" or whatever it was he said. :D
SOR 3 dissapointed me after this one.

__007

#44

007 said:

This game is so cool! I even have the original 16-bit cartriage!
SOR2 is super sweet and is a challenging game! And it's 15yrs old,
too! This game is a classic in it's own right and a sequel done right, for once!

Mad_Bomber

#45

Mad_Bomber said:

Great game.
Skate is a little twat.
Why kidnap Adam and not Cody er I mean Axel? Jerks.
Max is also lame.
On the plus side, Skate was a heck of a lot of fun to play.
Max not so much. He's no Haggar, that's for sure.

Superior to the following SOR3 in the level design department at least(3 was kinda dull) and even though they wouldn't even let you unlock Adam after beating the game I still loved it.

Mixer152

#46

Mixer152 said:

I really dont know what to say about this game that hasnt been said already, as far as 16 bit games go its top draw! Even to this day it never gets boring, the multiplayer fun is second to none. Try playing on Mania difficulty with a friend (madness).
The music was just as good as the gameplay (if not better) and thats saying something!
I loved playing with Max because of his brutal power and variety of moves (although I equally like using Axel as Grand Uppa! is lethal)
Okay im just babbling on now. 5 Stars

Solid_snake

#47

Solid_snake said:

This game is even worth downloading for the soundtrack alone, great stuff.
I really miss side scrolling beat 'em ups these days.

Jon2

#48

Jon2 said:

A game worth downloading! Even if it is a little short it's still one of the best beat'em ups ever.

Bass_X0

#49

Bass_X0 said:

Played this for the the first time two weeks ago. Awesome game, much better than SNES Final Fight 1 and 2. Maybe even Final Fight 3 too... but I'm not entirely sure although I have played that game too.

Oh, and the scrolling on the beginning of stage three is really weird. I never seen scrolling like that at all in a video game. Still a lovely looking stage.

witchfinder

#50

witchfinder said:

I loved this game 'back in the day' but have to say I'm a little disappointed after downloading it. It looks and sounds great but is rather slow and I just found myself hitting the enemies until they disappear off the side of the screen, then waiting for them to crawl back on and repeating ad infinitum. All in all a wasted 800 points for me... :(

Indy

#51

Indy said:

The only thing I hate about this game is that you can hit the second player. WHY?? But it is still a good game :)

sirmatt

#53

sirmatt said:

My wife and I beg to differ on this game.

We find it hilarious that you start in the streets and end up going through:

  • A video arcade
  • A pirate ship
  • Disneyland's front yard sidewalk
  • an Alien (cave? den?) to ultimately beat up an alien
  • a baseball field
  • then the pitchers mound apparently drops thousands of feet down into the ground to an underground (fight club?)

It's like they said "hmmm...let's put everything that a 13 year old might think is cool...hmmm...baseball...street fighting...disneyland (for the weenies and home schooled kids)...aliens...DANG WE'LL EVEN THROW IN OUR OWN VERSION OF 'BLANKA'!!!"

This may be a killer game, but the themes are just plain RETARDED. I really have a hard time playing this with a straight face, or playing it without groaning.

Oh and the dude on the first level with the rocket pack...the sprites don't scale at all, so it is fairly hard to judge depth when fighting him...it's like you're Paper Mario fighting with your thin edge...just another annoying bit.

I have played this on and off for many months now, I had to hold off on my disgust for it's visual aesthetic and give the gameplay a fair shake. It's fine, probably excellent as above, but I just have a hard time getting over the crap themes.

Give me the Simpsons or 'Turtles Arcade games any day...crappier playing I know, but at least with a much more coherent theme.

BTW for reference purposes, VC games I have and actually like:
Soldier Blade
Baseball Stars 2
Harvest Moon
Street Fighter II Turbo
Bubble Bobble
Mario 64
Mario Kart 64

and I don't care for another "5 star" hero, Gunstar Heros lol...so there u go. Different strokes for different folks.

DazzaAdmin

#54

Dazza said:

@sirmatt - you do have some valid points on SOR2. The themes are indeed bordering on prepostourous! In some ways It doesn't really bother me too much thou, its sort of the same as a 80s blockbuster movie - they could be as cheesy as hell but it didn't matter cos there were big explosions and cool stuff :p

I played through TMNT arcade again tonight on XBLA and that does have more coherent themes, but lets face it the gameplay isn't all that. No matter how good you think you are you are gonna lose credits. SOR2 has much more skill and loads more moves too. Its in a different league from TMNT or the Simpsons arcade which were just button bashing madness!

sirmatt

#55

sirmatt said:

Viva la Button Mashing!

I am definitely the kind of guy who can't be bothered learning combos and fight strategy so on...I just want to mash buttons and wail on dudes. I love the feeling of calories rapidly burning through my ever-weakening thumb when it comes to beat-em-ups, hence the Simpsons love. My thumb becomes a meta-example of the strife and struggle my character is going through and, on that 1:1000 scale level, I can viscerally relate. ;)

This game, for me, is just a hard one to get into: as above, the cast of characters and story locations pretty much suck. I mean, I can buy into being chased 'round a maze by a hedgehog trying to save the Egg Roll Kingdom in Chew Man Fu better.

Viva la Chew Man Fu!!!

:D

DEMON212

#56

DEMON212 said:

Well the game was called Bare Knuckle. Which meant that you didn't just have to fight in Streets.

Although it makes Axels Gloves really questionable :lol:

Charco

#59

Charco said:

Great game, it is better than Final Fight on SNES as it has two player. Music is fantastic too.
I must say though, if you liked the Streets of Rage series you simply HAVE to download Streets of Rage Remake from
www.bombergames.net
It's a brand new game, using sprites from the originals, has new or redone stages, has Adam from SOR1 as a playable character...the list goes on!! Basically it has all the best bits from the originals and more! It's freeware so there is NO excuse!!

Karma

#61

Karma said:

#54, sirmatt... erm.. so the mere levels themseves bother you more than the gameplay? I think the over-the-top style of the game is one of it's many strengths. I mean that is quite an anal way to over-analize the game.

Sure the progression of the levels are ridiculous. It's one of the key factors into the variety of the game, and plus... it's pretty funny.

I had a completly different reaction than you to the silly levels. I suddenly found myself in a cave fighting a giant, rubber alien head? I just laughed and shrugged it off. I found it amusing.

Instead of letting things bother you, you should realize it's a video game, not the real world. Sit back, laugh at it's quirkyness, and enjoy.

After all, it's a Japanese game and 8 times out of 10, in a Japanese video game, it's a bit more off-kilter and weirder than the sense of gritty realism that people expect from say, a Tom Clancy shooter. And plus, this is Japan's quirky portrayal of Hollywood B-action films.

Much how Earthbound was a quirky portrayal of how they viewed the western area of the world. The insanity of Streets Of Rage 2 and 3 is more of a light hearted, parody of "over-the-top" B-movies than anything else. I mean, come on. The game is riddled with cliches that aim to be funny in a subtle sort of way. Right up to the "Big Boss" Mr. X being a stereotypical crime lord with a machine gun. How can the parody of that stereotype escape people as being intentional? Don't over-analyze it. Just play the dang thing.

Don't let some silly minor hang-ups on what the levels simply look like ruin an otherwise great game. Doing so is even more nonsensical than the levels themselves.

Not to mention that your point, in itself is rather hypocritical. I mean you say "Give me The Simpsons Arcade and TMNT any day"? Those games, and the inherent themes in those are absolutely 3 times as ridiculous as Streets Of Rage 2 could have dreamed of being.

I mean, complaining about silly themes in a game and then personally preferring two games that take "ridiculous" to a whole other level is really no way to make a good point.

Will

#62

Will said:

" #54, sirmatt... erm.. so the mere levels themseves bother you more than the gameplay? I think the over-the-top style of the game is one of it's many strengths. I mean that is quite an anal way to over-analize the game.

Sure the progression of the levels are ridiculous. It's one of the key factors into the variety of the game, and plus... it's pretty funny.

I had a completly different reaction than you to the silly levels. I suddenly found myself in a cave fighting a giant, rubber alien head? I just laughed and shrugged it off. I found it amusing.

Instead of letting things bother you, you should realize it's a video game, not the real world. Sit back, laugh at it's quirkyness, and enjoy.

After all, it's a Japanese game and 8 times out of 10, in a Japanese video game, it's a bit more off-kilter and weirder than the sense of gritty realism that people expect from say, a Tom Clancy shooter. And plus, this is Japan's quirky portrayal of Hollywood B-action films.

Much how Earthbound was a quirky portrayal of how they viewed the western area of the world. The insanity of Streets Of Rage 2 and 3 is more of a light hearted, parody of "over-the-top" B-movies than anything else. I mean, come on. The game is riddled with cliches that aim to be funny in a subtle sort of way. Right up to the "Big Boss" Mr. X being a stereotypical crime lord with a machine gun. How can the parody of that stereotype escape people as being intentional? Don't over-analyze it. Just play the dang thing.

Don't let some silly minor hang-ups on what the levels simply look like ruin an otherwise great game. Doing so is even more nonsensical than the levels themselves.

Not to mention that your point, in itself is rather hypocritical. I mean you say "Give me The Simpsons Arcade and TMNT any day"? Those games, and the inherent themes in those are absolutely 3 times as ridiculous as Streets Of Rage 2 could have dreamed of being.

I mean, complaining about silly themes in a game and then personally preferring two games that take "ridiculous" to a whole other level is really no way to make a good point. "

I second that rant!! LOL!! :P

AUnkownFuture

#63

AUnkownFuture said:

I have to say this brings back a lot memories when i was a young lad.This game is great people who like fighting games.This game is must have download but its a lot better then Streets of rage 3

lucario13

#64

lucario13 said:

I used to play this with my bro when i was 7 but i was probably more of a hinderence. When i play ed it with ma occassionally we only got to level 6ish. IMO the best megadrive game

puresthatred

#65

puresthatred said:

Streets Of Rage 2 is a great game, but the Wii version is 800 points and the Xbox Live Arcade version is only 400 points, is online playable and has save states built in. Nintendo really need to lower their pricing on games. I bought the Xbox version as was superior and cheaper. Shouldnt be like this.

davegorack

#66

davegorack said:

great game and the beast in the series.
im kinda sad they got rid of the cop car though.
Axels super moves were awsome thogh.

Clayfrd

#67

Clayfrd said:

I thought I commented on this. Anyway, it took me until I played with a friend to see how awesome this was. It comes highly recommended if you have a buddy to play with you. So much fun.

#69

said:

This is a great game. I used to beat the thing every time I played it, and with Blaze!

jwl

#70

jwl said:

Got this on the Sega sales, and it is great fun! Great replay value. Completing the game once is easy enough, but difficulties and different playable characters makes it last longer.

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