STRIP FIGHTER II / Games Express / Turbografx 16
Strip Fighter 2 has a weird history. I'd always assumed it was a Japan-only release and that the name was an unofficial moniker that stuck when people started distributing the ROM around the internet ... it actually appears that it was released in the U.S. under this name, though, albeit unofficially and only by mail order. Publisher Games Express was a longtime unofficial smut producer for consoles, also responsible for the notorious NES carts Bubble Bath Babes and Hot Slots. It gets confusing because they also published under the names C&E and Panesian depending on the title, possibly due to their precarious legal status. But apparently the company did a few other PC-Engine games, then eventually renamed themselves Map Japan / Air Plants and actually got officially licensed as a Playstation developer, publishing around a dozen more titles before folding up around the millenium somewhere.

While Strip Fighter 2 is far from a good fighting game, it actually shows some elbow grease. On the whole, it looks decent, with decent sprites for the time that only suffer from generally lacking frames of animation (especially when doing any kind of a throw move). Though the backgrounds are entirely static, some of them look really nice and are very detailed. The gameplay is even almost passable, except for the fact that sometimes it feels like your controller randomly disconnects for two or three seconds. If not for the random inexplicable losses of play control this would be at least on par with the mediocre non-porn Street Fighter clones of the time. Like World Heroes with less impressive graphics, basically.

Of course, the main attraction was supposed to be the stripping. In-game there's little to see beyond the stripperific outfits of most of the characters, though; a handful of them flash some titty when doing certain special moves, but otherwise the clothes stay on and we stay focused on the fighting. When you win a round, you get a pic of a lady in her underwear, then winning the match gets you the same pic except with the undies removed. Of course, this being 1994, the Japanese No Crotch Rule is in effect, even in versions distributed outside Japan.

The one interesting thing about the porn content here is that they go for a more realistic and detailed style instead of the generic anime that 99% of the Japanese visual novel hentai market was going with at the time. Not sure if they got actual models for the bodies or just pirated from old nudie mags like so many skeezy arcade Qix variants of the time did, but the heads look like they were drawn to resemble major Hollywood actresses of the time like Demi Moore and Rene Russo.


With no final boss, no hidden characters and not even a proper ending (you just get all the old strip sequences again back-to-back), the novelty of this one very quickly wears off. I have to say it probably does have the nicest nudie pics of the 16-bit cartridge generation, but otherwise it's just another non-noteworthy SF2 clone.
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