Set in the historic country of China or was it Japan…I can’t quite remember the game proclaims. You begin the journey to rescue your sister from an evil Warlord. Taken from your home, he strikes down an old man who with his final words gives you his head band to help defeat the dictator. You must now pursue the mad man before it’s too late. Does Kung Fu Fight! have the kick necessary to knock you out of your chair or is it simply a flawed fight.
Starting with controls, they are excellent and easy to pick up; though there is a strange choice surrounding the button choices. You have the traditional “a” button to jump so you would think you have “b” to attack. This is not the case as for some bizarre reason you have the “x” button filling this role. This takes a bit of getting use to as I did find myself failing on some occasions because of this. Unsurprisingly the GamePad is underused being shunned as a second screen. That second screen could easily be improved as during the game you lose a 1/3 of the visuals. The screen becomes restrictive much like a cinema outing. This does not affect TV play, however slimming down to the GamePad I was immediately put off.
As previously stated the main story mode takes you chasing after an evil Warlord who has kidnapped your sister. The only other mode available is the “infinite fortress” which seems to be a custom with all 2D running games now. Here as you can probably guess this is the endless runner section where you must try to survive as long as you can. It’s very standard and very unimaginative but there is some fun to be had. There are selections of trophies to be collected too, which if your anything like me, you’ll love completing all the challenges to make sure you collect every last one. Considering the Wii U doesn’t support trophies or achievements like its competition this is a nice bonus.
With the art style rendering in pixels it can be difficult to portray any personality to the 2D sprites, however Nostalgic Software’s witty one liners add a humorous side to these usually one-dimensional characters. With endless runners being as prominent on the mobile as flying, agitated birds they’re now transitioning to consoles more and more. So to stand out from the crowd you need to give your game a good sense of personality which Kung Fu Fight! does really well. With quotes like “This would be peaceful if everyone wasn’t trying to kill me” you’ll be smiling from start to end. The pixel graphics themselves hold up reasonably well, considering this art-style is normally quite disjointed when expanded onto a wide-screen. No facial features are disappointing though as the personality given with the comedic one liners are taken away with the lifeless characters that portray them.
Reminding me of NES days the music track fitted the atmosphere superbly, but this one track (as great as it is) should not be the only one used throughout. After spending a few hours you wish for suddenly another song to seep in to burst some more life in and yet this never materialises.
Nostalgic Software’s latest game may just seem like another endless runner and that’s because at its heart it is. It offers no revolutionary concepts in terms of music and gameplay, yet the familiar concepts that are on offer are honed in on well. With some cracking humour to be had along the way, Kung Fu Fight! is very much like a strong kick to the head. You’ll notice it at first, but ultimately it’s not memorable.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Nintendo Wii U code was provided to Brash Games for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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