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The Kung Fu (China Warrior)

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Released: 1987

Genre: Beat-’em-up

Format reviewed: PC Eng/Turbografx-16

Publisher: Hudson

Developer: Hudson

Submitted by: Anthony Staude

Original PC Engine game.

I first remember seeing a screenshot of this game in C&VG back in the late 80's when the magazine started covering Japanese consoles. I stared at it in awe, wondering how any console could produce such amazing graphics. The size of the characters were enormous, the detail incredible,  the colors were so vibrant! I couldn't imagine my C64 producing anything that resembled this marvel.

It was 16 years after its release that I finally got to play the game. Of course time takes it's toll on both your memories and expectations.

The aim of the game is to progress along a scrolling landscape and either avoiding or beating up opponents that you encountered – mostly monks.

The occasional object would hold a powerup which actually just increased your health. At the end of the level, you would encounter the end of level boss and you'd have a real fight on your hands.

Your moves were rather limited – punch, kick, crouch and jump – with some combinations like jumping kick.

Despite it's nice static graphics, it isn't animated terribly well. There are only limited frames of animation. The monks tend to slide along.

However the actual game is quite fun and rather satisfying. Punching and kicking the crap out of your opponents is somehow addictive and you're keen to see what the next stage offers.

For me, it's pure nostalgia as it was the first Japanese console game that really blew me away. I know from than moment on that the PC Engine was for me (though I only bought a real PC Engine about 15 years after it first came out).

EXTRA: The Kung Fu has Hudson Soft volume number 1 – their first PC Engine game. It was released 3 weeks after the PC Engine first came out in Oct 1987.