Commodore User

Yie-Ar Kung Fu II
By Imagine
Commodore 64/128

Published in Commodore User #39

Yie-Ar Kung Fu II

As the scenario would have it, it's twenty years since Kung Fu master Lee wiped out Pole, Nunchaku and the rest of the Chop Suey Gang. All but one that is. Yen Pei escaped and set up a new gang of warlords that extended their evil power once more across China. Since old Lee is getting a bit long in the tooth now, his son Lee Young takes up the role of noble lunatic and sets out to rid China of this scum.

What it all boils down to of course is more of the same. A host of freaky opponents which you confront in turn before you can win the game. The game isn't a complete copy though, there are additional elements and changes.

To begin with there are some special techniques that old Lee never knew about. Junior has a taste for Oolong Tea and Chow Mein. Collecting the first, as he goes, gives him extra energy and the latter which appears miraculously (from the local takeaway I suppose) gives him brief bursts of immortality.

Yie Ar Kung Fu II

Another important change is the scrolling screen. Lee Young can walk left across a number of screens before he encounters any really tasty opponent, but en route he will be set upon by floating midgets! He can jump over them or kill them. Should he do so to a group of three consecutive midgets he gets a tea leaf. Five leaves and he can stop for a brew and get more energy. This is all pretty ridiculous and since it's tough enough to land accurate blows on the little shorthouses you're more likely to lose energy than gain it.

The nitty gritty of the game though comes when you face the freaks. There's eight of them all kitted out with the nastiest array of weapons since Liverpool player Man Utd. First up is old Yen Pei himself, and boy does this guy need a haircut. He's done it up in an enormous pig tail and attached a lump of iron to the end (pig iron I suppose). This he swings around viciously clouting you resoundingly on the nut or alternatively the knees.

Another thing you'll notice is that although your opponent can exit the screen stage left and perform the clever little trick of returning stage right, you can't.

Yie Ar Kung Fu II

If and when you beat him, you'll have to make your way across the screen until you meet my pet hate, Lang Fang. She's armed with loads of nastily sharpened fans.

After that you'll face a fire breather (another fatty!), a guy with flying masks, then assorted weirdos armed with boomerangs (Wei Cobber?) daggers, bombs and lightning bolts. This is hard work I can tell you, harder than the first game.

One other change from Yie-Ar 1 is that the sequel allows a two player contest between yourself, as Lee Young, and any of the first three opponents.

Yie-Ar Kung Fu II is more of the game, but it's better value than its predecessor. Having said that, when you compare it to the number of martial arts games it isn't a major progression or a new challenge. Your fighting moves are incredibly limited in comparison to Fist, International Karate et al.

Graphically the figures are nearly twice the size and it's all as colourful and polished as you might expect and the animation is excellent. Martin Galway has written a new loading tune and the sound all round is typically excellent from the game to the sound effects.

Basically it's got to the stage where I'm looking for something a bit different in these games. If you haven't got Yie-Ar Kung Fu, this is better, but it's no big deal.