Street Gangs (NES)

Game Profile

Street Gangs is the Western version of the acclaimed Japanese hit Downtown Nekketsu Monogatari, a unique mix of beat 'em up and RPG.

Friends Alex and Ryan must save River City from the evil Slick and his gang who have also kidnapped Ryan's girlfriend Cyndi. Fight your way through gang members and bosses, raise your stats by eating the right foods, and gain new techniques by reading special books. Play solo or battle with two players simultaneously via Download Play (only one copy of the game is required).

Game Review

Wii U eShop Review

Europe PAL Version

Posted by Jonathan Town

Holding your funds for ransom

Originally released in Japan for Nintendo Famicom, classic beat 'em up 'Downtown Nekketsu Monogatari' was then heavily localised for its eventual release in the US; background artwork was amended to look more 'western' (for example, rooftop tiling designs...

Game Review

3DS eShop Review

Europe PAL Version

Posted by Damien McFerran


River City Ransom — or Street Gangs as it was known upon release in Europe — is arguably one of the most famous fighting titles for Nintendo's 8-bit NES console. Ported from the Japanese Famicom title Downtown Nekketsu Monogatari, the game combined...

Game Review

Virtual Console Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Marcel van Duyn

Big trouble in River City

Street Gangs — known as River City Ransom in North America — is a strange game. It's one of many in the extremely popular Japanese "Kunio-kun" series, which started in the arcade and is still going strong today, with the latest instalment being on the...

Game Screenshots

Related News

News: ​An Enhanced Version of River City Ransom is Being Made for 3DS

​An Enhanced Version of River City Ransom is Being Made for 3DS

Japan-only, for now

Some of you may be familiar with the River City Ransom, the classic NES brawler. It's from the same developer as Double Dragon and Renegade, and fits right into the same genre as those two, while taking some creative liberties of its own. While it may be true that it's far from a perfect game and it's perhaps somewhat simple by...

Nintendo Download: 1st October (North America)

1st October (North America)

Freedom Planet! Pumped BMX+! Chronus Arc! More!

It's that time, North American gamers, to cast your eye over the new downloadable eShop treats that are available this week. There are diverse offerings, including a highly anticipated and delayed action platformer, a creation tool, BMX stunt action and more; some discounts are also rather tempting...

Nintendo Download: 23rd April (Europe)

23rd April (Europe)

Double Mario Kart delight, Kirby week, discounts and more

A day later than is custom, we finally have the European Nintendo Download Update details to pore over. It's a week with one particularly notable DLC pack on Wii U to be excited about, along with some Virtual Console offerings, a special Kirby-themed promotion ahead of the arrival of Kirby...

Nintendo Download: 14th November (North America)

14th November (North America)

Mario & Sonic, cheaper Zelda, busty brawling and much more

The Nintendo Download news has come in later than usual today, and no wonder. It's another lengthy list to get through this week, with some major retail releases joining a host of download-only options. With further preamble, let's get to it. Wii U Virtual Console: Uncharted Waters: New...

News: River City Ransom: Underground Dev Still Wants To Bring The Game To Nintendo Consoles

River City Ransom: Underground Dev Still Wants To Bring The Game To Nintendo Consoles

Smartphones, not so much

Conatus Creative's Kickstarter campaign for a new version of River City Ransom may have surpassed its original funding target, but it failed to meet the stretch goals which would secure a version for consoles — including the Wii U and 3DS. River City Ransom: Underground is only certain for PC, Mac and Linux at present,...

Game Trailers

Subscribe to Nintendo Life on YouTube

User Comments (94)



chiefeagle02 said:

Awesome title. I remember playing this at my cousin's house during the summer when I was younger. I bought the GBA update a while ago and it's still great (albeit, shorter than I remembered). Definitely recommend this to anyone who hasn't played it yet.



deggs said:

i can't wait for this one. i really hope it's true and not just speculation. i just bought Double Dragon 2 for the original gameboy off of ebay (which was originally a japan-only sequel to this game that had the sprites and music changed to make it more double dragon-like for it's north american release). that game is amazing (though super short)



BF-Medic said:

This is one of my all time favourites! Me and a friend used to play it all the time. Hope it still holds up.



LostHeaven said:

This game is AMAZING! One of NES' best games. It's so rare to find one, I tried forever with no success. I never had the opportunity to play it on the GBA, so this is a must download for me. Barf!

(if this one is released, then Nintendo World Cup Soccer must be next)



JODIsBack said:

If this game didn't exist, one of G4's best comedy shows would not exist either.



big_ed said:

a wonderful game that should come to the VC for everyone to enjoy. If that happens i'm definately getting it.



v404 said:

This game is a classic!! If you were into old school side scrolling beat em' ups, you'll love this. It takes a chapter from Double Dragon but makes it much more dynamic & fun to play. It even has a bit of an RPG quality since you acquire new moves & have other variable attributes.

I think the music in the preview alone speaks for itself & the stocky character design makes it a charm to play..

I can't wait for this on the VC!!



Kevin said:

I've unfortunately never had the opportunity to play this one back in the day. I can't wait to download it.



Kaze said:

Wonder when this is coming out. Can wait. Wonder if Earthworm Jim is coming to vc too...



Sharecrow said:

I feel obligated to play this as much praise as it has gotten over the years. I played it only briefly back when it was more contemporary....I'm sure I'll like it just as many others have....



Jogurt_the_Yogurt said:

Best of genre, no question. Fantastic game, and will be an instant download for me. Great, smooth gameplay, fantastic music, very easy to pick up and play, fun two-player, and some apparent stat-building depth!



shaggyc said:

Man, this game was awesome. I put countless hours into playing this game when I was little and will likely put in countless more once this is released.



LazerGun said:

Really fun game, kinda goofy with certain animations but overall well worth the 5 bucks.



BF-Medic said:

Crossing what can be crossed for this game to be released this week, both in EU and NA! Pretty, pretty please...



Villain said:

A true cult classic, and for good reasons! Surprisingly deep gameplay for a NES side-scrolling brawler, hilarious jap design and plenty of comedy. Keep your eyes peeled for this release.




WarGreymon77 said:

Newbies need to check out this game. The guys on the River City Ransom message board at GameFAQs all agree with me: best NES game ever.



Bass_X0 said:

I'll get this when another game is released that I want. I'm short on money this week.



Kelvin said:

I just added some Points, and somewhere else expressed a wish that this game would be released. It's like destiny!



lordbowser said:

Hey Drake this actually isn't the only fighting Kunio game released in our regions. I'm pretty sure Renegade is part of the series.



chiefeagle02 said:

I remember playing this gem with my cousins. More recently though, I bought the GBA remake. The game was a lot shorter than I remembered, unfortunately. It was still a joy to play it through. BARF is still a priceless death rattle. I'd like to see Nintendo World Cup released on the VC.



Slionr said:

FINALY!!!!!!!!! Though I hoped more for Double Dragon 2, this game still kicks ass



Drake said:

lordbowser: What I meant was it's the only Kunio fighter with RPG elements that we got. Renegade was more like Final Fight. I'll reword it slightly though.



Rapadash6 said:

Hey Nintendo, please keep in mind that the US really wants this game too, mm, k? We also would like the Mega Man games!!



Knux said:

Not to mention that the USA wants Mario's Super Picross also.



Marvel_Maniac said:

This game is truely great. However, I wouldn't say its better than Double Dragon II, that, for me, is the money.



Adamant said:

"I wasn't aware that Renegade was apart of the Kunio-Kun series; is it any good?"

The arcade version is decent. The NES port sucks ass.



Rossi said:

Looks quiet good, but not enough for me to spend my nes points i have saved up!



raiamino said:

Has anyone else noticed the chronic slowdown in this game? A 60hz version really would have been good. Otherwise it's very fun and challenging.



KhaoShar said:

<This is me, having awfully lot of fun playing this game.

Even though, where can I find a list of whta food is doing what to my stats? There are dozens and it will take hours to earn enough mony to try them all...



MaxPlastic said:

I've always heard a lot about this game, but never played it... It looks really awesome. I hope it comes out!



v404 said:

ARGH! Everytime I come here & see this as the featured review it's like another slap to the face.. MAN, do I want this game!!

For the love of me, release this in the US already...



TheLuigiDude said:

CAN'T WAIT!!! Haven't played this in over a decade and the GBA remake was good, but no co-op was really bad. Plus who doesn't want to have the original?



Bass_X0 said:

Its apples and oranges. They're both similar but completely different. Nobody can make up your mind for you because they are both good, it all depends on what kind of game you're looking for. Scrolling fighter or one-on-one fighter.



ShoRyuKen said:

Timmy, it all depends on how you spend your time playing the wii.
If you have some friends who love SF2 Turbo & visit frequently I would say SF2 Turbo, if you play alone most of the time I would say get River City Ransom first. That's just my opinion. FYI SF2 is my favorite game of all time...unless i have a copy of wetrix at my disposal.



WarGreymon77 said:

I have this game on my original NES and I guarantee you, it is the best game on the Virtual Console so far.



Karma said:

"I have this game on my original NES and I guarantee you, it is the best game on the Virtual Console so far."

I love River City Ransom too.... but with games like Super Metroid, Super Mario Bros 3, and tons of games that are easily on a whole other level of greatness than RCR, your guarentee is pretty much worthless.

Not trying to be a prick or anything. I like this game and I'll likely download it as it's a very good game. I'm just saying. There are at least 9 or 10 better games on the VC than this by FAR.



Steve said:

I didn't know there were more in the series nor that there was a GBA version. I do know that this is an essential purchase. Even today, this game is highly enjoyable and can be played over and over again.



TheLuigiDude said:

@Karma: Sure Super Metroid (IMO) is the best SNES game of all time and SMB3 (I like SMW a tad bit better) is awesome to and others like LttP, but RCR is a classic that has held up extremely well over time and is one of the most intuitive and fun beat 'em ups of all time. It really needs a true seqeul.

For any oldschool gamer this will be a $5 very well spent! (Co-op is an extra fun factor as well)



Rapadash6 said:

Definately one of the defining games of the NES era. Personally I'm not that great at this game but I will download it simply because no NES game collection seems complete without it. I am VERY close to completely replacing my entire NES cartrige collection now. The only games I have left to replace are Bionic Commando, Mega Man 1 through 3, Blaster Master and Castlevania III. I have a few Disney games as well but because they are licensed based, I don't think they'll ever make it to Virtual Console.



TheLuigiDude said:

Downloaded it asap (first day) and I am so glad that you could use the quick save with the Wii, I HATED using the codes for saving your stats since this is a long game (I still can't believe they managed to pull off fun level grinding in a Beat 'em up). This version is definetly better than the original because of this.

Though I really hope Million (dev from Technos) makes a new River City Ransom with multi-player (the only weak spot of the EX verison), that'd be awesome.



Masuyo said:

I thought to myself "Anything less than a 5 out of 5 on this game and I'm not coming back"

Rating games shouldn't be compared to other games, only the time period. I guess that's your opinion blah blah blah but when I found this game in college in 2004 I couldn't believe they made a game for the NES that had such amazing controls and decent physics that had hilarious outcomes... I disagree with you! lol



The_shoemaker said:

The game doesn't interest me much. I'm a fan of fighters, and this game doesn't look any different from the rest.



Jona said:

this is a good fighting game that really started it all. (actually more like double dragon but still) i like it more than double dragon (i still like double dragon) cause its more polished and has better controls. but double dragon is double dragon its amazing)



Mad_Bomber said:

Great. Great. Great. Game. So many memories, none of which were spoiled once I downloaded this classic rpg-ish brawler.

Love it as much as when it first came out on my NES!



Maxime_St_Rasse said:

this game is so awesome... nothings better than grabbin a friend and runnin around beatin up frat guys and other thugs... you gotta find a list of what all the items do though cuz i found myself buying items i really didnt need at the wrong times...

so much fun though... highly recommended



Kingston said:

Wow. this is one of the greatest NES games, second only to Super Mario Bros. I only wish it was longer. 9.3/10, especially for the price.



Ian_Daemon said:

Fun, fun, fun!
You can find "tips" for food and items online fairly easily. (I would put a link here, but there's no need to advertise another website.)



MasterMario said:

I just beat the game, and it was very short. And the final boss didn't put much of a fight. I give it 4 stars.



CanisWolfred said:

Really fun game, but I could never get my brother to play, so I never got much play out of this.



davegorack said:

When i get my Wii this is gonna be the first game i download.
Best Beat em up ever.....



deggs said:

what would be awesome now that we got this is to get some of the sequels translated (though i know it's pretty much never going to happen).

"Shodai Nekketsu Kouha Kunio-kun" always looked cool supposedly it was more of a sequel to renegade on the super famicom but it was actually good.

the other one i wouldn't mind checking out is "Shin Nekketsu Kouha Kunio-kun - Kunio Tachi No Banka" for the super famicom, which returned to the more cartooney look of river city ransom.

the next brawler game in the series that was released for the nes after this game (river city ransom) was, of course "Kunio Kun no Jidaigeki Dayo Zenin Shuugou!". it looks quite similar to (and plays rather similarly to) to river city ransom. the main difference being that it takes place in medieval Japan and its story concerns past relatives of the protagonists of this game (river city ransom). i wouldn't mind checking that one out as well.

also, i could go for the snes version of combatribes while we're at it



Corbs said:

I enjoyed the game back in the day, but it hasn't aged as well as other games of the time period have. Unless you're a fan of the game from back in the NES days, I'd pass on this one.



Kurachi said:

i dont know it, but did read good things about it at double dragon comments, and after watching the video i thought: cool, same fight style, but rpg-ish
at wanted-list
i think it might actually be worth my points ( after SoM )



Kurachi said:

just bought today, its very nice
i was looking at VC shop and didnt see river city ransom..
then i realised that it was under the name Street Gangs, lol
very fun to fight
the only thing i dont like is the very big password, but thats no problem

8/10 for me



sponge said:

anybody notice extreme slowdown with two players? disappointed. maybe it was there before and i didnt notice, but it still bummed me out. BARF!

but i LOVE this game. first VC game for me.



Modern_Legend said:

This reminds me of Code Monkey lol, i already have SOR2 so i dunt think its worth it to get it? However, my friend just got the wii shop channel n im thinking about gifting it to him cuz its only 500 points. Good idea?



Travenous said:

Who knows how much money I've spent on peppered beef in this game lol!

Game still holds up, but I prefer the GBA remake as it has a solid framerate, more moves, plus you can form your own gang and after you beat the game once you can buy an item which allows you to create your own character. If you have a GBA find it!!



michaelmax said:

Almost as good as Double Dragon, just missing the gritty tone of the DD games. The gameplay and use of dialogue make it a worthwile addition for a beat'em up collection though.



NeoShinobi said:

This is quite possibly my favorite game on the NES, or atleast its in my top 5. Its been a while since this came out on VC, but I still hope we see more Kunio Kun games on here.

... or at the vary least they could give us Double Dragon II.

Leave A Comment

Hold on there, you need to login to post a comment...