Sinclair User

Kung-Fu Knights
By Top Ten
Spectrum 48K

Published in Sinclair User #77

Kung Fu Knights

It's an absolute natural for a game idea; combine the swords and sorcery of something like Magic Knight with kick-'em-up action of a martial arts game. It's a pity Kung-Fu Knights didn't turn out anything like it.

Basically we're talking colourless backgrounds, poor sprite masking and lousy collision detection. Your knight minces from left to right across a scrolling background consisting of battlements, portculises, embrasures (slitty windows to you or me) and enemy knights.

From the battlements pour down arrows featuring the worst sprite masking I've ever seen (see picture for the horrible details). You don't have much chance to avoid them, but since all that happens when you lose a life is that your sprite flickers a little, you won't really know when you've been killed.

You can launch arrows with a peculiar twist of the arm (but only if you're standing still). The arrows seem to peter out before they hit anything half the time, but if you're lucky you might stick a soldier or a big woofy hound. A pretty nothing game, then, because while the backgrounds are reasonably nice, the animation and gamepiay are pooh.

Overall Summary

Disappointing arcade adventure. A clever idea let down by poor graphics.

Chris Jenkins

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