- Category Archives Nintendo (NES)
A rip off of the Power Pad you say? No, you’ve got it all wrong… The Family Fun Fitness “Control Mat” was released by Bandai in 1986 with a North American release in 1987. It came with a game called “Athletic World” with exciting mini-games like “Hop A Log” and “Dark Tunnel”.
Shortly thereafter, Nintendo acquired this item and rebranded it the “Power Pad”. There were no functional changes and the same game was included, at least initially. Like most NES peripherals (e.g. the light gun and power glove) there weren’t a lot of games released for it. The Power Pad had a total of six games released in North America with a few others being Japan only releases. While the Family Fun Fitness Control Mat is functionally the same as the Power Pad, the original is far more collectible because of the relative short amount of time it was on the market. In addition, when Nintendo bought and rebranded it, they recalled all of the original versions left on the shelves. I imagine a boxed original could fetch a pretty penny on eBay. The games released for the Power Pad are not all that memorable for the most part but this device influenced the development of far more popular games that would come later like Dance Dance Revolution. The above ad is from the Fall 1987 issue of Nintendo Fun Club News (the predecessor to Nintendo Power). Screen shots are from Athletic World, the game that was packaged with the control mat/power pad.
WWF WrestleMania: Steel Cage Challenge (LJN, 1992)
WWF WrestleMania Steel Cage Challenge was released by Acclaim first for the NES in 1992 and later ported to the Sega Master System and Game Gear in 1993 with the SMS version being a Europe only release. The game features 10 wrestlers including, of course, Hulk Hogan. The SMS/Game Gear and NES versions feature slightly different sets of wrestlers to chose from. While WWF fans will certainly be interested, this is a pretty mediocre title and you should probably temper your expectations.
There are various modes of play to choose from including one-on-one, tag team and championship. With tag team you of course get to choose two out of the ten wrestlers instead of just one. There are a fairly wide variety of moves that you can execute including punches, kicks, body slams, throws, headbutts, clothesline, powerslam, stomp, elbow drop and others. So what’s the down side? The controls are pretty crappy and the movies are difficult making for an often frustrating play experience. However, multiplayer is the great equalizer and no doubt WWF/WWE fans can still have fun with this one. There has been no re-release of this game nor is there likely to be one. You’ll have to track down an original version (the NES version preferably or perhaps the SMS version if you are in Europe) or try it out on an emulator. There are better fighting games out there, even on 8-bit though so I would say this one is only for the hardcore WWF fan.
All screenshots above are from the NES version of the game.