Downtown Nekketsu Monogatari EX (ダウンタウン熱血物語EX, "Tale of Downtown Nekketsu EX"), also known as River City Ransom EX in North American, is a Game Boy Advance version of Downtown Nekketsu Monogatari released for the Family Computer. It is the first Kunio-kun game developed by Million Co., Ltd, which is comprised of former staff from Technōs Japan.
Early Japanese orders included a Kunio strap.
The most notable change is the loss of a true cooperative mode. Instead, the game can be played with an AI-controlled partner, and players may exchange the data of their own characters to fight alongside each other.
In addition, the game includes a vast amount of configurable options that can adjust game play on the fly, such as changing AI behavior, the amount of enemies in 1 map area, and shop item reshuffling frequency.
The password system is replaced by battery backup, which allows saving up to 12 characters. Character's appearances, keystrokes for learned techniques, even enemy characters can be customized and saved using secret shop items. A saved game does not store story progress or reputation, but it does store the player's statistics, techniques, current items and money, player's name, and customized appearances.
Although this game does not have a password system, using certain names can change the player's techniques, statistics, items, cash, or delete all saved characters.
Diagonal walls featured in the Famicom/NES game no longer exist. As a result, in the GBA version map 9, it is no longer possible to throw enemies into water.
This version can display up to 8 characters (the player, his 3 allies and 4 enemy characters) on-screen at once. The number can be adjusted in game.
The player can gain additional computer-controlled allies and form a "posse" who helps the player-controlled character on his adventure. Some of these are boss characters from the original NES version, while others are taken from later Downtown Nekketsu games. The player's character can be accompanied by up to 3 AI-controlled partners.
The allies that can be hired depends on the story progress, player's existing allies, and player's reputation. Once an ally is recruited, the ally cannot be dismissed throughout the game.
Player's reputation is invisible, but it decreases when:
- Defeating less than 4 minor enemies within a map
- Attacking boss before they complete their speech
- Attacking a fallen enemy
- Attacking an ally
- Death of an ally (including suicide)
Conversely, player's reputation increases when:
- Defeating 20 minor enemies within a map
- Defeating boss
- Hiring an ally
- Player is knocked down
- Crashing into walls
- Player attacked at knock down phase
- Receive hits 4 times
- Player dies
8 extra store-bought techniques are added, up to total of 12 available techniques. Each player can learn up to 12 techniques. In addition, each boss character (including Kunio and Riki) includes a unique set of techniques, which can be saved into a character slot by using a secret shop item.
Some secret shop items, such as magic pants, consume 1 technique slot per item.
- Main article: Downtown Nekketsu Monogatari#Characters
In addition, these characters are from Downtown Nekketsu games:
New characters in EX: