Ready 2 Rumble Round 2 E3 2000 Hands-On

Midway's over-the-top boxing game comes to the PlayStation 2. Previews Editor Ben Stahl takes a look at Midway's star-studded boxing game.

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I was a big fan of Ready to Rumble for the Dreamcast, and I was pleasantly surprised when I heard that Midway was bringing the franchise to the PS2. The version that I was able to play at the Sony press conference featured six characters - Butcher Brown, Angel Rivera, Lulu Valentine, and Afro Thunder from the original Ready 2 Rumble, and two brand-new characters. All of the older characters have been updated with new outfits and moves, while the new characters are unique and original.

Midway admitted that the game still needed some major tweaking, and I could definitely tell something was wrong about the gameplay. The characters seemed very slow, and in some cases their timing was off. But it was still apparent that the heart of Ready 2 Rumble is there. The fighting is as arcade as ever, with new moves and taunts. Midway said that in addition to the regular blocking system, Ready 2 Rumble 2 will feature a new parry system that will allow you to knock your opponents punches away, leaving them open for an assault. Midway is also working on a new rumble system, with multiple levels of the rumble meter - letting you save up and unleash more powerful assaults.

The graphics definitely looked better than Ready 2 Rumble on the Dreamcast, and some of the bruised faces look simply amazing. But whether the PS2's graphics are superior to those of Ready 2 Rumble Round 2's on the Dreamcast is yet to be seen.

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