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Double Dragon

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In addition to the arcade version, during the late '80s Double Dragon was also released for Nintendo, Sega Master System, Atari 2600, Atari 7800, Game Boy, Genesis/Mega Drive and Atari Lynx, to name several platforms. The game is considered a classic and an early torch bearer for the beat-em-up genre of gaming.

The gameplay in Double Dragon, as one would expect, is very straightforward. With a few different button combinations, players play solo or in co-op mode and can use objects or simple brute strength to fend off the many enemies that post-apocalyptic New York throws at you. Elbow punches, backwards flying kicks, oil drums, dynamite, throwing knives, baseball bats and even whips are at your disposal in your quest to free Marian from the clutches of the Black Warriors.

The original version of the game progresses through four levels, each with its own boss to defeat, before Jimmy and Billy free Marian. If you play solo, Marian gives you a kiss and the credits roll. If, however, you are playing with a friend in co-op mode, the story quickly turns Cain & Abel, pitting the two brothers against each other for the affections of Marian.

Double Dragon has received plenty of different ports and translations over the years, many with wildly varying levels of authenticity and quality. The NES version, for example, is practically an entirely different game with a story mode that can only be played alone, and most of the advanced moves must be unlocked before you can use them.

The arcade version of the game came to Xbox Live Arcade in 2007 with online co-operative play and an optional graphical update. The NES version was released on the Wii's Virtual Console service in 2008.