It's not easy being a superhero. You stand out in a crowd, attract attention to yourself and have to beat off admirers. Underwear Man is one such crusader - but unfortunately he takes things a bit too seriously and attacks anyone that comes near him.
Resplendent in his black boots, studded wrist bands, blonde hair and startling yellow Y-fronts. UM makes his way across the horizontally scrolling suburbs of Melbourne, running the gauntlet of its odd collection of inhabitants.
The player takes control of UM and battles hordes of fatties, stick-wielding blind men, handbag lobbing grannies, escaped giant gorillas and snarling dogs who attack individually at first, then in groups on higher levels.
UM isn't exactly defenceless, and has an amazing and often hilarious array of moves, ranging from simple kicks and punches to head butts, belly butts, swinging opponents above his head and even wringing their ears! Not all are immediately available, though, since they alter depending which level he's on.
At the top of the screen are two energy bars. The first denotes UM's energy level and remains on screen throughout the game, while the second appears only when an opponent draws near. As the combat ensues, both bars diminish according to contact made between the two parties. Should UM's energy disappear completely, he loses one of this three lives and begins the level from scratch.
Lost energy is replenished by catching the winged hearts that are periodically released by a midget in a trench coat. Care should be taken, however, since on higher levels this character also rolls out bombs, and unless UM swiftly tosses it off screen he loses another life. It's certainly all go in Melbourne these days...
Street Hassle isn't really anything special. Beat-'em-ups have been around for a long time, but I found myself instantly hooked on this game. Some of the moves your hero uses to beat merry hell out of his opponents are incredibly funny, and have to be seen to be believed. Maybe I'm a closet hooligan, but I really enjoyed beating up all and sundry, especially the granny.
I have doubts as to its long term lastability, but for the moment, Street Hassle will do nicely, thank you.
It's "Odd Game of the Month" award time again, folks. And the winner is... well, you know the routine. Street Hassle has got to be the weirdest beat-'em-up ever - to the point of self-ridicule. It's also bordering on the sick, as it involves beating up blind men and whirling grannies around the screen.
Still, it must appeal to some basic instinct, since it's actually quite good fun. The graphics and sound are nothing to shout about, although the characters are large and quite effective. A little difficult to control perhaps, but enjoyable nonetheless. If you're tired with all that Oriental good-mannered rubbish, take a look at Street Hassle.
Plenty of options and a good screen layout.
Large and humorous cartoon-like characters and great backdrops.
Suitable effects, and an odd tune.
The violent nature of the game is worryingly addictive.
Enough in it to keep a hardened beat-em-up fan amused for some time.
A extremely strange but enjoyable beat-'em-up.