Google+   Facebook button  Twitter button 
3DS | DS | PS3 | PS4 | PSP | VITA | WII | WIIU | X360 | XB1 | All

Double Dragon II: The Revenge (NES) artwork

Double Dragon II: The Revenge (NES) review


"“Double Dragon II” is in some ways a step forward and in other ways a step backward. The good comes with the bad, and the bad is often irritating. The lesser parts ultimately outweigh the better ones, and we walk away thinking this could have been a really good brawler. Just a little bit of thought would have gone a long way. "



“Double Dragon II” is in some ways a step forward and in other ways a step backward. The good comes with the bad, and the bad is often irritating. The lesser parts ultimately outweigh the better ones, and we walk away thinking this could have been a really good brawler. Just a little bit of thought would have gone a long way.

One such thought could have been, Is it a good idea to have strict platforming segments in a game where you have to push two buttons to jump? Another: Do spikes *have* to kill the player? “Double Dragon II” resorts to very cheap tricks once it’s combat segments have peaked. Good beat ‘em ups like “Ninja Turtles III” and “Streets of Rage” keep the action fresh by introducing new enemies and bosses across their many stages. “Dragon II” rehashes the same five or so thugs from its predecessor and maybe introduces a couple of new ones. By the fourth level, we’ll have already seen just about everything the game has to offer in terms of goons.

From that point forward, there are less bosses and more impractical obstacle courses. To finish the fourth level, all we have to do is jump across a gap and navigate across two conveyor belts to a door. In the fifth, we have to climb a moving vehicle while avoiding steam emissions that knock us back down to the ground. Stage six has one perilous area where you need to reach a door by hopping across those vanishing platforms from the “Mega Man” games. By the end, I think many people will begin to wonder if the “DD” stands for “Double Dragon” or “Double Dare.”

It’s a shame those frustrating segments overshadow the really good parts. One such sequence is like something out a James Bond movie, where you have to punch out bad guys inside a helicopter while having to avoid being sucked out of an open door. Before that, you’re hopping across some skyscrapers at night in a scene that’s stylishly colored like a comic book. As you’re climbing a ladder, a green helicopter unloads a hail of bullets on you. You follow it only to be ambushed by some insanely fast and lethal ninjas.

The combat mechanics are also an improvement over the first “Double Dragon.” Instead of having to earn your moves through an experience system, you start with all of them. There are two buttons the functions of which become mirrored depending on which direction you’re facing. One is for punching, the other is for kicking. A punch hits enemies in front of you while a kick attacks enemies behind you; this distinction, which didn’t exist in the original game, is a solid amendment. The leaner mechanics suggest a tighter game at the outset.

But while the first three levels are really good, the rest become more and more defined by needless gimmicks. People play these games to beat the stuffing out of thugs, not to hop around like “Super Mario.” With greater enemy variety and an emphasis on bosses rather than vanishing platforms and conveyor belts, “Double Dragon II” could have earned its classic status. Somehow, it ends up worse than the original even though it plays better.

Rating: 5/10

joseph_valencia's avatar
Community review by joseph_valencia (July 18, 2009)

A bio for this contributor is currently unavailable, but check back soon to see if that changes. If you are the author of this review, you can update your bio from the Settings page.

More Reviews by joseph_valencia
Jurassic Park: Rampage Edition (Genesis) artwork
Jurassic Park: Rampage Edition (Genesis)

Alan Grant is mad as hell and he's not going to take it anymore.
Mega Man Zero 2 (Game Boy Advance) artwork
Mega Man Zero 2 (Game Boy Advance)

The first stage of “Mega Man Zero 2” is one of the best possible notes a game could start on. Our hero, garbed in a poncho, fatigued from the battles he’s fought since the prior installment, limps his way through a canyon in the midst of a sandstorm. The storm dies down, and a battalion of Neo Arcadian foot soldiers fl...
Mega Man Zero (Game Boy Advance) artwork
Mega Man Zero (Game Boy Advance)

My initial impression of “Mega Man Zero” when I first played it was: This game is hard as fuck! I was humiliated by the first real boss, Aztec Falcon. The claustrophobic quarters where you fight him caused me to panic. He dwarfed my little Zero character in size, and he nimbly bounded and dashed all over the place. He ...

Feedback

If you enjoyed this Double Dragon II: The Revenge review, you're encouraged to discuss it with the author and with other members of the site's community. If you don't already have an HonestGamers account, you can sign up for one in a snap. Thank you for reading!

board icon
randxian posted July 18, 2009:

By the end, I think many people will begin to wonder if the “DD” stands for “Double Dragon” or “Double Dare.”

Good one.

I would probably score this game higher, but I think you make good points about how the game goes from a good brawler to a cheap obstacle course challenge. I can't really disagree with anything you said here. Plus it really sucks how you only get three lives and no continues unless you know the codes. The codes to continue change depending on what stage you finished off at. I knew about them at one time, but could never pull them off, so they are pretty much useless. The only way to beat this game is to pick 2 player B, steals lives from player 2, and continue with eight lives.

Also enjoyed the writing style. Good use of colorful descriptions and similies here. This is one of your better works.


You must be signed into an HonestGamers user account to leave feedback on this review.

Info | Help | Privacy Policy | Contact | Advertise | Links

eXTReMe Tracker
© 1998-2014 HonestGamers
None of the material contained within this site may be reproduced in any conceivable fashion without permission from the author(s) of said material. This site is not sponsored or endorsed by Nintendo, Sega, Sony, Microsoft, or any other such party. Double Dragon II: The Revenge is a registered trademark of its copyright holder. This site makes no claim to Double Dragon II: The Revenge, its characters, screenshots, artwork, music, or any intellectual property contained within. Opinions expressed on this site do not necessarily represent the opinion of site staff or sponsors.