Before things escalated into Streets of Rage in 1991, there was Street Hassle released by Melbourne House in 1988.
The streets are a mess, and armed with nothing but his bare fists our hero has decided to clean up wearing nothing but a pair of speedos and wellies!
Street Hassle is a 10-stage gang beat-em-up where you get to beat up old ladies who drop down like Mary Poppins, old codgers that are throwing things at you, aswell as dogs, gorillas and men on motorcycles. The enemies have a nice variation of abilities and it is easy to get overwhelmed when there's a few of them on screen. There's no variety in the backdrop of each stage however you do get access to different moves which you need to figure out how to use.
Keyboard controls are QZIP (designed for someone with big hands?) and space to hit - joystick options are also available.
The sprites are large and the animation and movement is smooth - I absolutely love our protagonist's swagger although the way he humps the floor when he dies is a bit concerning. The controls are reasonably responsive although getting a special move to actually work takes a bit of mashing.
There's a small amount of sound and a little jingle when you start a stage.
I really like this game - the graphics are good and the enemies are fun; it does get a little repetetive but the 10 stages will keep you going for a while.
Download Street Hassle from World of Spectrum.