Double Dragon II: The Revenge

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For the unrelated Game Boy game, see Double Dragon II (Game Boy).
Double Dragon II: The Revenge
DD2 Flyer.jpg
Promotional flyer for the North American arcade version. The same illustration was used as a cover art for most of the home versions released.
Developer(s) Technōs Japan
Publisher(s) Technōs Japan
Designer(s) Arcade version:

Yoshihisa Kishimoto(director)
NES version:
Hiroyuki Sekimoto (director)

Composer(s) Kazunaka Yamane
Series Double Dragon
Platform(s) Arcade, NES, Mega Drive, PC Engine, ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, Amstrad CPC, Atari ST, Amiga, IBM PC, TurboGrafx CD, Virtual Console, Xbox
Release date(s) December 1988
Genre(s) Beat 'em up
Mode(s) Single player, Cooperative
Cabinet Upright

Double Dragon II: The Revenge (ダブルドラゴンII ザ・リベンジ Daburu Doragon II: Za Ribenji?) is a side-scrolling beat 'em up produced by Technōs Japan originally released as a coin-operated arcade game in 1988. It is the sequel to Double Dragon, released during the previous year. A home version for the Nintendo Entertainment System was released in 1989 which differs drastically from the original arcade game. Other home versions were also released for the Mega Drive and PC Engine.

Arcade version[edit]

The arcade version of Double Dragon II: The Revenge begins with Marian, the damsel in distress from the original Double Dragon, being shot to death by the leader of the Black Warriors. Once again, the players assume the role of brothers Billy and Jimmy Lee, who are now tasked with the duty of avenging Marian's death. The arcade version of the game is essentially an improved version of the original title. The biggest change in the game's controls are in the replacement of the original's punch and kick buttons with two directional-based attack buttons (Left Attack and Right Attack) similar to Renegade. Pressing the attack button of the player's current direction will do a standard series of punches, while pressing the opposite attack button will perform a back kick. A few new moves are added as well, including a Hurricane Kick.

Almost all of the returning enemy characters from the first game were given makeovers and new moves which they can use against the player. The weapons that can be used by the player have also been redrawn and modified from the previous game. The steel bats and dynamite sticks for example, were replaced by shovels and grenades.

Like in the original game, the arcade version of Double Dragon II is divided into four missions: a heliport, a lumber storehouse, a wheat field, and the new hideout of the boss. Each stage has its own boss character with his own theme. After defeating Willy (the final boss from the original game) in the fourth stage, the player will confront a double of their own character for the game's final battle. If two players reach the end together, then both will each to have to face their own clone for the final battle.

Home versions[edit]

Review scores
Publication Score
Crash 85%[2]
Sinclair User 87%[3]
Your Sinclair 77%[1]
ACE 725[4]
The Games Machine 83%[5]
MicroHobby 78%[6]


Mission 4 is set inside a moving helicopter, which features a trap door that will kill the player if he gets sucked out.

Double Dragon II: The Revenge was released for the Nintendo Entertainment System on January 1990 in North America, with a PAL version released sometime afterward. This version was developed and published by Technōs in Japan, with the English version produced by Acclaim Entertainment.

The NES version is not a port of the arcade game, but rather serves as a loose adaptation, much like the first NES game. While the basic premise of Billy and Jimmy Lee going on a mission to avenge Marian's death is the same, the main antagonist was changed from Machine Gun Willy to a new enemy known only as the "Mysterious Warrior", a rival martial artist who challenges the Lee brothers with his own supernatural fighting style. Unlike the first NES game, Double Dragon II can be played by up to two players simultaneously. The game offers an "A mode" where both players can't harm each other and a "B mode" that allows friendly fire.

The structure of the game is completely different. While the first stage resembles the one from the arcade version, the level designs deviates completely from Mission 2 and onward, with scenes set in a variety of new locations such as the interior of a moving helicopter, an undersea base and a series of trap rooms. There are a total of nine stages in the NES version. Before each stage, a cut-scene is shown (similar to the ones in the NES version of Ninja Gaiden) consisting of still imagery and text which provides the setting of the stage. The enemy characters are roughly based on the ones featured in the arcade version, but some of them carry different weapons or have new fighting techniques, such as Rowper's ability to throw boomerangs at the player. Besides the final boss, the other enemy characters that are introduced in this version are the "right-hand men" that serve as recurring sub-bosses from Mission 2 and onward, and the ninjas that appear at the end of Mission 2 and later on in Mission 8.

The game retains the directional-based combat system from the arcade version. Unlike the first NES game, the player has full access to Billy or Jimmy's entire repertoire of moves from the beginning. In addition to the Cyclone Spin Kick introduced in the arcade version, two additional special moves were added to the player's set of techniques, the Hyper Uppercut and the Flying Knee Kick. These two moves are performed while the player's character is crouching, which is only possible after landing from a jump or recovering from a fall.

The Family Computer version (released in Japan on December 23, 1989) has a few differences compared to its NES counterpart besides the obvious language change. Both versions feature a choice of three difficulty settings at the start of the game. However, the Famicom version allows the entire game to be played on any difficulty setting, whereas the NES version restricts the game's length based on the level chosen: the easiest setting ends the game on the third stage, whereas the final stage is only accessible on the hardest. The difficulty levels are also balanced differently in the Famicom version, with the platforming sessions in Mission 6 being easier on the Easy and Normal setting than they were on the equivalent settings in the NES version, while enemies have more health on the hardest setting. The NES version requires the player to input a cheat code at the game over screen to continue the game at the previous stage, while the Famicom version gives this option as a standard feature.

The NES version was re-released on the Virtual Console in North America on June 21, 2012 for the Wii and on June 12, 2014 for the Nintendo 3DS and on August 14, 2014 for the Wii U.

Mega Drive[edit]

The Mega Drive version of Double Dragon II: The Revenge was released by Palsoft exclusively in Japan on December 20, 1991. Unlike the NES version, the Mega Drive version is a straight port of the original arcade game, featuring the same stages, techniques and weapons, as well as almost every enemy character. The only significant change to the level designs was in Mission 2, which was substantially changed in order to make it a longer and more complex stage. However, the characters have been redesigned to much smaller proportions and are less colorful than the ones featured in the original arcade version or even the Genesis port of the original Double Dragon by Accolade released a year later in North America and Europe. The game has compatibility issues when played with a 6-button controller, suffering from slight input lag when the player moves their character with the directional pad.

PC Engine[edit]

A PC Engine version of Double Dragon II: The Revenge was also released exclusively in Japan, which was published by Naxat Soft on March 12, 1993. Released in Super CD-ROM² format, the PC Engine version is based on the NES version of the game instead of the arcade one. The story sequences from the NES version were remade and are now animated, with voice acting featuring Makoto Horikawa (as Billy), Nobutoshi Hayashi (as Jimmy), and Hiroko Emori (as Marian) among other actors.

There are other few slight changes to the game as well. While the gameplay is the same, the graphics have been remade completely and the soundtrack consist almost entirely of new music (with the exception of the final boss theme and the closing credits theme). Some of the levels designs have been altered and the order of Mission 4 and 5 (the Undersea Base and the Forest of Death) were switched. The PC Engine version allows the player to reach the final stage in any of the three difficulty settings, making the game closer to the Japanese Famicom version in this regard than its western NES counterpart. However, the ending changes depending on the difficulty setting, with the full ending shown only when the player completes the hardest setting.

Computer platforms[edit]

Virgin Mastertronic released ports of the arcade version for the ZX Spectrum, Commodore 64, IBM PC, Commodore Amiga, Amstrad CPC and Atari ST in 1989. The computer ports were developed by Binary Design, the same outfit that handled the computer ports of the first game.[7]

Wander of the Dragons[edit]

Double Dragon II: Wander of the Dragons is a 3D beat-'em-up loosely based on the arcade version of Double Dragon II: The Revenge, developed by Korean game studio GRAVITY and published by Barunson Creative Co. Ltd.[8] The title was in development for more than three years when early footage was released in 2011. It was released on April 5, 2013 as a digital download for the Xbox 360 via the Xbox Live Arcade service.[9] It received extremely negative reviews, with a score of 18.12% on Gamerankings and a score of 17 on Metacritic. It is currently the lowest scoring Xbox 360 game on Metacritic and the sixth lowest game on all platforms.[citation needed] GamesRadar ranked it as the 42nd worst game ever made. The staff compared it unfavorably to the previous Double Dragon Neon.[10]


A soundtrack, simply titled Double Dragon II: The Revenge, was published in Japan by Meldac and released on March 10, 1990. The soundtrack features arranged versions of the music from the NES version (originally composed by Kazunaka Yamane) composed by Kazuhiro Hara and Nobuhito Tanahashi. The soundtrack also features a vocal J-pop rendition of the Double Dragon opening theme performed by Manami Morozumi titled "Dead or Alive". Its catalog number is MECG-28001. An excerpt from the arcade soundtrack was included on the Sinclair User cover tape.[11]

  1. Dead or Alive (Opening Theme) - Female Vocal Version
  2. "The Vengeful Demon Has Began to Move" (Mission 1) (動き出した復讐鬼 Ugokidashita Fukushū Oni?)
  3. "A Quiet Pursuit" (Mission 2) (静かなる追跡 Shizukanaru Tsuiseki?)
  4. "Tension at the Night Sky" (Mission 3) (緊迫の夜空 Kinpaku no Yozora?)
  5. "A Pleasant Advance to the Morning Glow" (Mission 4) (朝焼けの快進撃 Asayake no Kaishingeki?)
  6. "Escape to the Forest" (Mission 5) (森を抜けて Mori o Nukete?)
  7. "Wicked God" (Mission 6) (邪神 Jashin?)
  8. "Breaking the Barrier" (Mission 7) (難関突破 Nankan Toppa?)
  9. "Enter to the Enemy's Base (Mission 8) (敵基地を行く Teki Kichi o Iku?)
  10. "Roar of the Twin Dragons" (Fight of Fate) (双龍の雄叫び Sōryū no Otakebi ?)
  11. "Miracle of the Twin Dragons" (After the Battle) (双龍の奇跡 Sōryū no Kiseki?)
  12. "Sweet Memories" (Ending Theme) (懐かしき思い出 Natsukashiki Omoide?)
  13. "Dead or Alive" (Edit Version)


  1. ^ "Double Dragon II". Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  2. ^ "Archive - Magazine viewer". World of Spectrum. Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  3. ^ "Archive - Magazine viewer". World of Spectrum. Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  4. ^ "Archive - Magazine viewer". World of Spectrum. Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  5. ^ "Archive - Magazine viewer". World of Spectrum. Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  6. ^ "Archive - Magazine viewer". World of Spectrum. Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  7. ^ Double Dragon II: The Revenge at World of Spectrum
  8. ^ "Double Dragon II -". Retrieved 2013-09-15. 
  9. ^ Hilliard, Kyle (2013-03-26). "News: Double Dragon 2 Remake Heading To Xbox Live Arcade Next Week". Retrieved 2013-04-02. 
  10. ^ "The 50 worst games of all time". GamesRadar. 2013-04-15. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  11. ^

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