Review: Punch Club (Steam)

Train hard, fight crocodiles and find love. Earn your place in the Punch Club ranks, and discover who brutally murdered your father, in this choose your own adventure boxing management tycoon.

Punch Club (2)

Pros:

  • Cutesy pixel graphics.
  • Video options: Resolution and Fullscreen mode.
  • Retro effect: On/Off. On makes the game look all retro complete with scan lines and pixelated graphics. Off and it smooths everything out and is a bit brighter.
  • Three save slots.
  • Dripping in nostalgia with many nods to classic films, Cartoons and characters from Hollywood.
  • Chip tune soundtrack.
  • Full of cameo appearances.
  • Simple controls. Easiest way is using just the mouse for everything.
  • Steam achievements.
  • World map screen where you can travel between unlocked areas. Travelling either costs money on the bus or free , Costing just time.
  • Time is a crucial element of the game. Everything you do in the game eats up time from eating to sleeping to training to travelling. At the end of each day you get a breakdown of what you did and notifies you of upcoming events tomorrow.
  • Combat is auto played out. All you can do is select what attacks to use. Fights are split into x amount of rounds. At round end you can change out attacks.
  • Gameplay is that of a boxing management sim. You must fight your way to the top and do so by managing your time effectively. You have to work to earn money, Train to improve stats and many other diversions like love and friends management.
  • Sleeping is a huge deal as it not only restores your energy, It also increases your HP for fights. Lack of sleep will mean less health in fights.
  • Unlock new locations and scenarios as you play through the game.
  • Earn unlock points which you put into a massive skill tree. The tree allows you to add new attacks, buffs and abilities. You can also unlock specific additional skill trees for making your fighter a particular kind, Slugger, Tank or a bit of both being an example.
  • Full breakdown of your fights is available at match end. Here you can see graphs and percentages of hits made/received and what your fight style was.
  • Simple easy to understand UI.
  • Opening and ongoing tutorial.
  • Unlock new fights like street fighting and ultimate fighting.
  • Take “Special drugs” to enhance performance temporarily with side effects.
  • Can get injured and lose stats, Buffs, Performance and money.
  • Gym has a wide range of equipment that concentrates on boosting particular stats. You pay 10 bucks to enter each time but can use any piece of equipment.
  • Auto saves frequently.

Punch Club (4)

Cons:

  • Huge juggling act mentality.
  • Saving money is hard as you are constantly paying out for food and training.
  • Bar decrease rate is far too fast early on.
  • A lot of hand holding and all the game play is very funnelled. It claims to let you do things your way but in truth you are a slave to the same repetitive regime in order to be fight ready.
  • Repetitive game play.
  • Difficulty spikes.
  • Little to no replayability.

Punch Club (3)

 

Jim Smale

Gaming since the Atari 2600, I enjoy the weirdness in games counting Densha De Go and RC De Go as my favourite titles of all time. I prefer gaming of old where buying games from a shop was a thing, Being social in person was a thing. Join me as I attempt to adapt to this new digital age!