Review: Hah! I never thought I'd see the day a Capcom has the title ONE in it.
Internet icon Mike Haggar is back where he started, along with his confederates Guy and Cody, who were just in Street Fighter Alpha 3 and have no idea what the hell is going on. Yes, it's Final Fight One, featuring the threat of the Mad Gear, a kidnapped woman, and a lot of goofy gangbangers to pummel to death!
I was always a bigger fan of Double Dragon than Final Fight, back in the day. Final Fight is decidedly more shallow, with its comparative lack of moves, but Double Dragon got lost somewhere back in the 8-bit days (probably around the same time some jackhole at Tecmo greenlighted Double Dragon III; it was like they were trying to ape Renegade). After that, Final Fight was the frontrunner in a field of games like Sonic Blast Man, Maximum Carnage, The Death and Return of Superman, Separation Anxiety, and, over on the Genny, Streets of Rage and Golden Axe. Take one angry martial artist/street brawler, add street gang, toss in a double handful of weapons (improvised or not, it's your call), and stir to taste.
Now, we get Final Fight One, and like a disproportionate amount of other GBA games, it's a direct port of the SNES title, making it a port of, what, a ten, eleven-year-old game? The graphics have taken a hit to keep the animation fluid, and it's not like GBA games are meant to be graphical powerhouses anyway, so... enh. It runs.
How much you like Final Fight One will depend on how much you like beat-'em-ups. It's a very simple system, compared to its modern descendants like Zombie Revenge and Gekido; one button attacks, and the other jumps. Push them both at once to knock down everyone around your character, at the cost of some of your precious and all-too-finite health. You can also grab a gangbanger with the direction pad, which can lead into a knee strike/bear hug combo, a back throw, or a devastating jumping throw which is sure to negatively affect their lifestyle. You can also pick up weapons. That's it; no elaborate buttonstring combos, no team-up attacks, and no guns. It's, you know, retro.