The USA version of the game modified several things from the original Japanese version such as removing most of the music and simplifying the special moves' animation. The story was also changed entirely from the original version.
Although the Western versions of the game sever all ties to the previous Rushing Beat games, a reference to Brawl Brothers is made at one point. A character that looks very similar to Lord J from Brawl Brothers can be fought at the Musashi Plaza. If he is defeated by Norton, Norton will ask if he's Lord J and the guy will say that he was once known by that name.
Many of the character and place names in the North American version are derived from esoteric real-world, literary, and cultural sources. This includes the villain Iago (from Shakespeare) and the weakest and most prolific enemy in the early stages of the game known as Fnord (from Robert Anton Wilson's books, The Illuminatus! Trilogy).
Levels with these name conventions include the stage Stalag 17 which takes place in the ruined Deutschland Moldavia labs; the street level "Snake Plissken Ave." (from the Kurt Russell character); and "Ozymandias Island" (from the Shelley poem). The "Roy D. Tutto Hospital" level features a misspelling of "Ray D. Tutto," Robin Williams' pseudonym credit in The Adventures of Baron Munchausen. The Pirate Dock known as "Agrajag Cavern" is named for a minor character in the radio comedy series The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
Two poems are also referenced: The final stage "Abandon all hope, ye who enter here!" is derived from Dante Alighieri's epic poem The Divine Comedy; and the text shown in Flynn's ending (if Norton is unavailable) is a quote from T. S. Eliot's poem The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock.
Source: Wikipedia, "The Peace Keepers", available under the CC-BY-SA License.