Platform: Atari 2600
Release Date: July 1980
Players: 1-2 (simultaneous)
Special Features: None
Who needs 4K graphics with realistic physics and lighting effects with gameplay this good? The simplicity of this game’s presentation allows for the action to stand out. Boxing is a top down fighting game that features two boxers, one in white and one in black. These boxers have two minutes to bludgeon the snot out of each other. The winner is determined by whomever lands 100 punches first or the most in the allotted time. Gameplay features two difficult settings and the ability to face the “AI” or another player.
Two player mode is where this game really stands out. It provides hours of endless cat and mouse type boxing action. The sound effects driven by the Atari 2600’s 2 channels of 1-bit monaural sound with 4-bit volume control amazingly recreate the satisfaction of delivering a jab to your opponents ugly mug. This is a game that I did not experience during its initial release, (I wasn’t born yet) but still look back on fondly.
Activision Boxing is a timeless classic that simply does not get enough recognition in today’s modern era. This is one of the few Atari 2600 games that holds up today mostly in part by its easy to understand concept and control scheme. On the surface Boxing seems like such a simple concept that would devolve into button mashing that would translate into little strategy. This is far from the reality. The manual that game with the game even features a strategy section written by the developer, Bob Whitehead.
Like what you read? Want more? Check out our review of Lego Racers on Nintendo 64.