SNK's button-breaking 3 Count Bout returns on modern platforms


Ruining MVS cabinets throughout the '90s

It's Thursday, and that means that its time for another retro re-release from SNK fans Hamster. This week sees batshit wrestling title 3 Count Bout make its return on PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch, although this particular ring-rocker is a little different from the WWE 2K series.

Released in arcades and on the Neo Geo platform back in 1993, 3 Count Bout (known in Japan as Fire Suplex) was SNK's attempt to cash in on the global pro-wrestling craze of the day. 3CB is a strange wrestling/one-on-one fighter hybrid that presents typical pro-wrestling bouts, but adds the barbed-wire bats and electrified ropes of Japanese "death-match" promotions such as the legendary FMW.

What this translates to is a super-clunky fighter based almost entirely around waggling the joystick and mashing buttons like a maniac, as you take your chosen jobber through a series of matches held not only inside the squared circle, but also out in warehouses, car parks and other odd locations.

Though 3 Count Bout features crazy, huge sprites, bone-breaking sound and a hilariously nihilistic approach to the art of wrasslin', it's also pretty clunky to play, with mean A.I. and linear controls. Still, in the history of pro-wrestling games, 3 Count Bout is definitely one of the more curious oddities.

3 Count Bout is available today on PS4 in Japan and Xbox One and Nintendo Switch worldwide, priced around $8.

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Chris Moyse
Chris MoyseSenior Editor   gamer profile

Chris has been playing video games since video games began... still terrible at them. Former Saturday Night Slam Master, rambles nostalgically like Abe Simpson. I ain't here to fight, so let's no... more + disclosures



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