beats to punch

Punch-Out!! (arcade game)

This article is about the arcade game. For the NES version, see Punch-Out!! (video game).
For the Ugly Betty episode see Punch Out (Ugly Betty episode).

is a 1984 boxing arcade game by Nintendo. It was the first in a series of successful games that produced an arcade sequel known as Super Punch-Out!!, a spin-off of the series titled Arm Wrestling, a highly popular version for the NES originally known as Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!, and Super Punch-Out!! for the SNES. The arcade game introduced recurring video games characters such as Glass Joe, Piston Hurricane, Bald Bull and Mr. Sandman.


In the game, the player assumes the role of a green-haired boxer, known by three initials the player chooses when the game begins. During matches, the player's boxer is viewed from behind as a wireframe (so the opponents can be seen). The player must time his punches, dodges and blocks in order to defeat the opposing boxer. Hints are given as to the opponents next move by subtle eye changes (the white of the eyes turn from white to yellow), but the player must ultimately predict what moves the opponent will make and react appropriately.

Once the player defeats the last opponent, the opponents repeat. On each successive round the opponents are harder and quicker. The player only has one round to land a KO. Technically, there is no TKO element for multiple knockdowns, but the "3 knockdown rule" is utilized nonetheless; no boxer ever gets up from his third knockdown. Additionally, a win by decision is not possible; an automatic loss occurs if time runs out. In the event the player loses, the computer controlled victor will taunt the player and the corner man for the player will try to entice the player to play again ("Come on, stand up and fight!") via the game's distinctive digitized speech. Players are only allowed one continue per play through. Like many games made during the Golden Age of Arcade Games, there is no actual ending and continuously loops until the player loses.

The game is a modified upright, and was unusual in that it requires two monitors, one atop the other, for the game's display. The top monitor is used to display statistics while the bottom one is the main game display (similar to Nintendo's Multi-Screen Game & Watch titles and the Nintendo DS). Apart from this, the game is more or a less a standard upright. The game has a joystick and three buttons. Two buttons control left and right punches, one for each arm (denoted by "Left!", or "Right!" when hitting the head, or "body blow!" when hitting the body with either arm). A large button on the console is pressed to deliver an uppercut or right hook, though the blow can be delivered only if a certain number of normal punches are landed on the opponent, so that the "KO" indicator on the display reads full. When the indicator reads full, it flashes and the corner man's digitized speech encourages the player to either "Put him away!", or "Knock him out!".


  • It was marked in the KLOV Top 100 and was the best game in 1984.



During the same year, an arcade sequel to Punch-Out!! titled Super Punch-Out!! was developed and released by the same company, which has fewer, but tougher boxers to fight against. In 1985, a spin-off called Arm Wrestling was developed and released in the arcades only in North America by the same company, which is based on real arm wrestling. In 1987, the growing popularity of the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) caused the development and release of Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!! for the NES console to happen. Several elements, such as opponents and their names, were changed for this version. In particular, professional boxer Mike Tyson was added as the game's final boss to promote his success in becoming a champion. The home game's graphics and gameplay are also significantly different, to the point it cannot be considered a direct port of the arcade Punch-Out!!. In 1990, when the contract licensing the use of Mike Tyson's name in the console version expired, Nintendo replaced Mike Tyson with an original character name Mr. Dream, re-releasing it as Punch-Out!! (a.k.a. Punch-Out!! featuring Mr. Dream). Like Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!, Punch-Out!! featuring Mr. Dream bore no further resemblance to the arcade version. During its release, the Game & Watch game called Boxing was rereleased as "Punch-Out!!", which used the front box art of the Mr. Dream version as its package art. In 1994, a Super Nintendo Entertainment System title, Super Punch-Out!! was developed and released. It was far more faithful to the arcade stand-up gameplay, however, it was not a direct port either.

Cameo appearances

  • Mario, Luigi, Donkey Kong, and Donkey Kong Junior all appear in the audience
  • The game's title music, also heard in the arcade version of Super Punch-Out!! and the NES versions of Punch-Out!!, is actually the "Gillette Look Sharp March". This jingle, originally heard in Gillette radio and television commercials, was later used as the theme song to the Gillette Cavalcade of Sports, which aired boxing matches.

Other appearances in media

  • In Episode Six, Season One of The Simpsons ("Moaning Lisa"), Bart and Homer play a boxing game similar to Punch-Out!! with characters, movements and sounds mimicking the original 'Punch-Out!!' game.
  • In the Nintendo DS title, Freshly-Picked Tingle's Rosy Rupeeland, Tingle's portrait on the top screen during boss battles resemble the portrait of Punch-Out!!'s main boxer.
  • In WarioWare, Inc.: Mega Microgame$!, all of Jimmy's boss stages (not only his original stage, but also the two remixes halfway into the game) features boxing matches with various people based on Punch-Out!!.
  • In the movie Over the Top, the Punch-Out!! arcade can be seen along with two other arcades: Mario Bros. and one of Nintendo's VS. series.
  • The victory tune heard in the game (after defeating an opponent) was also used in Nintendo's Baseball for the NES as the home-run tune.


External links

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