Genre: Beat-‘Em-Up Developer: SIMS Co. Publisher: Banpresto Players: 1 Released: 1994
Is it just me, or is it kind of off-putting when one of the better fighters and games overall on the Game Gear has to be a Power Rangers game? It’s also a bit more than embarrassing when I have to tell someone that I actually like something to do with the Power Rangers at my age. Nonetheless, it’s a great little fighter where you get to choose one of the five rangers and take the battle to the streets and beat on those annoying putties, Goldar, and a slew of Rita Repulsa’s other goons. This game is an example of how the Game Gear could have a release that could have incredible graphics while not losing sound or gameplay. It’s a nice break for Game Gear fans, as it seemed that most programmers only cared about graphics and nothing else.
And the graphics here are indeed top notch, featuring some of the best detail I’ve seen on Sega’s portable. There’s minimal blur, and the characters aren’t zoomed in so much that they cause resolution problems like countless other games are. The audio is decent as well. The Game Gear was always weak in the sound department, but this game compensates for it quite well with attack sounds that are varied and solid and don’t get annoying like you’d expect them to.
Even with its great presentation, it’s in the gameplay that this Power Rangers shines. Each ranger has different moves and all can be executed with basic button combos, not unlike controlling a character in Street Fighter. It’s very responsive, making it easy to pull off any move off, which you will need to do as button-mashing will get you killed in a flash.
The game is varied and definitely requires some skill, at least to finish the story mode, as the enemies are smart and will kill you if you aren’t careful. Each level is composed of a small beat-’em-up style stage and then a boss. Once you defeat it, Rita makes it grow, then you morph into your Zords and fight it all over again with a varied strategy. Like every other Power Rangers game, Goldar once again ends up being the last boss.
Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers isn’t phenomenal, but it’s one of the better games in the library, and a needed one at that, since the Game Gear’s library is lacking much of the time. MMPR is also easy to find and on the cheap side. Most don’t care for Power Rangers at all anymore, making it even easier to track down. It’s one of those releases that shows that Sega’s little portable could have games that are visually beautiful, aurally pleasing, and also fun to play while making no sacrifices in any area whatsoever. If more companies put the effort into their other games that this game got, then the Game Gear would’ve definitely been able to throw its weight at the Game Boy with much greater effect.