Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Olson's Boxing Challenge (Steam) - PC Game Review


With Fight Night not looking like it will come back anytime soon and the new Creed game looking like a disappointment, I have been starved for a new boxing game experience. Sadly, nothing mainstream is in development and I have no interest in MMA. So, I turned to Steam to try and find something to fill this desire; sadly most of the titles that looked interesting were VR only games and I do not have access to VR. However, there is a new E-sports boxing coming next year, but until then, I found this little title that looks like a re-make of an Atari 2600 game. So, click "read more" and I will give you my review on Real Boxing and we can decide if it fills that need for leather gloves.




The game is very simple isometric boxing like game. Only 3 buttons and 1 analog stick are needed, one for each hand to punch and one for blocking. Whoever runs out of health first loses and there is no time limit. Stamina drops fast and you cannot punch if stamina is empty; stamina also increases slower while blocking which is surprisingly a brilliant mechanic to keep a match competitive. 

It is clearly inspired by Boxing on Atari 2600.

I do feel obligated to point out that this game never claims to be a re-make of the Atari game.

Besides just punching each other, there are 8 other modes for some gameplay variety. These including adding power ups, changing gameplay speed, a one hit knockout mode, Chaos mode that changes the mode every 8 seconds, and even a Covid reference with a social distancing mode. This mode has one sick fighter slowly losing health and one who rapidly loses health if they get close to the sick fighter.

The main mode is simply a survival run. After every opponent you only heal a little bit and each opponent has a different mode in play. It is all a high score run. There is local multiplayer, no online, and the game does not end until you manually quit. It is up to the player to decide how many points mean you win and when the matches stop, which is pretty lazy. I cannot imagine it would have taken much more effort to include an option that stops

Overall, gameplay is interesting with some good ideas, but very bare bones in terms of features. It can be fun to play with someone else, but so can a lot of games. Single player has only 1 difficulty with the AI opponent, which is not very hard.


In terms of audio, there is very little to mention with this title. There is no music during a fight, but they do play a short victory jingle, which is cute. For sound effects, there is one grunt noise and a scrapping sound for when punches get blocked. It is as bare minimum as possible.


Visually, the game looks lively. But, there are some obvious corner cuts. A game this simple does not need a lot of complex visuals; just it's small touches like the ring being different colors for each mode and the power ups looking bright are enough. This much the game does. However, one hard to ignore fact is that there is only one character, whom I assume is Olson. No pallet swaps or even color changes, just Olson with red gloves and Olson with blue gloves. On top of that, Olson does not have any legs which is not noticeable most of the time, but when it is it really is.

Final Thoughts

This is a difficult game to judge. On one hand, I want to go easy on it since it is a simple little indie game that only cost $3. However, the fact that it does cost any money means I feel obligated to say whether or not it is worth the buck, and I honestly have to say no. The concept of this is game is a good one, and there was potential. However, so much of the bare minimum was used. I can only recommend this title for a funny video and it is fun to play with someone else, but so can most games. Give this game a look if you have heavy nostalgia for Boxing on Atari, or just looking for something light and silly. But, boxing fans look elsewhere.

Writing - n/a
Gameplay - 6/10
Audio - 2/5
Presentation - 3/5

Overall - 5.5/10

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