Wrestling purists' best bet on the SNES is a difficult game without a bunch of bells and whistles, but an impressive variety of moves.
Whether players choose Big Ape, Python, M. Roach or someone else, they will find out quickly that this isn't a game where one just smashes all the buttons and sees what happens.
The grappling system is a bit tricky to get into initially. It'll take at least a few matches before most players find they can master the many moves. Once they do, the experience is rewarding.
In many ways, Natsume Championship Wrestling feels like actual pro wrestling.
All those moves of the weak, medium and strong variety look fluid with solid animations. The graphics may remind some fans of games like Streets of Rage.
The wrestlers don't look fantastic, but the visuals don't take away from the experience.
What will get the majority of gamers to toss their controllers at the screen is the sheer difficulty of playing against the computer. John Cena-like comebacks are a regular occurrence.
The computer seems to have the advantage far too often. Be prepared to do a ton of sticking and moving.
The music may come off as dinky or nostalgia-inducing. The ring is touch oversized. One of the announcers seems to be shrugging no matter what you do to your opponent.
Those details aside, this is a game that did well for its time and offers a few hours of throwback fun to folks interested in that sort of thing.
Especially considering that Natsume Championship Wrestling is basically an Americanized translation of Zen-Nippon Pro Wrestling Dash: Sekai Saikyou, the results were pretty impressive.