Simple is good.
That’s the best way to describe Kung Fury: Street Rage, by the award winning game studio Hello There. If you’ve seen the movie which the game is based on, you will have a pretty good idea of the theme that you’ll get from the game itself. It’s plain old dumb fun, with absolutely nothing to take totally serious, all on purpose. Story-wise, there’s nothing here that’s deep and engaging. If you want to know what it’s based on, go to the YouTube page to watch the movie. The basic elements from the movie show up within the structure of the game, and that’s as far as a connection as there in the “narrative” department (in all reality, there is no real narrative to speak of). To summarize the plot: You’re Kung Fury, a bad ass cop taking on all things Nazi and evil.
In the way of graphics and style, everything about the game matches that 1980’s vibe that movie depicts. If you remember beat ’em ups such as Double Dragon (1987 arcade version), then you have a good idea about how the game looks. Hello There did a great job at turning your TV into what feels like a glorious arcade cabinet, from the time you start the game, into pausing it to take a break, and down to the top scores screen, bringing you a visual package that will make you feel you’ve triumphantly made your way back to your local arcade. It’s all simple, and it all works without any hitches.
Just as the game’s graphics and visual style stay in the real of simplicity, so does the gameplay. While the game looks like those old school beat ’em ups as we described, the game plays nothing like it. Here’s how things go in Kung Fury: Street Rage: There are many button combinations one can use to play it, but the one that makes most sense revolves around using the left and right buttons on the d-pad. Kung Fury himself, does not move; all he can do is attack left, or attack right, by pressing the left and right d-pad buttons. As enemies approach, one must hit the corresponding attack button that connects to the enemy in the proper direction. The more enemies you hit consecutively, the bigger the bonus pot gets, which balloons your score. If you happen to miss due to bad timing, your bonus build up gets slashed. Sound simple right? That’s because it truly is.
There is a twist though: each enemy has a hit pattern you need to memorize in order to survive the onslaught. For example, the basic Nazi soldier can go down with one hit, while the Nazi Nurses need a three hit approach that has you tapping left, right left (or right, left, right, depending on which side you’re being attacked) in order to make consecutive hits to properly dispose of the enemy. Again, simple by design, but when you place all the different enemies on screen, things can get tricky, hectic, frustrating and fun. There’s nothing else you need to memorize. LEFT, or RIGHT. No specials moves, and no other buttons to concern yourself with.
The sound is also a pretty good feature that stays true to the theme. Just as it looks like a game from another era, it sounds like it as well. You won’t find a deep OST here, but what is there simply fits the setting and does its job of tying the package together.
While the game lacks multiplayer or leaderboards, it’s a pick up and go design that you can play over and over again just based on it’s addictive nature. In the end, the entire experience challenges you to take your level of both concentration and patience to another level, leaving you frustrated yet satisfied when you’ve had enough, but entertaining enough to come back to when you don’t want to dive into something that is far more complicated.
- Graphical Quality
- Style and Appearance
- Content and Replayability
- Sound & Audio
The Final Judgement
At the current price point, you have absolutely nothing to lose with Kung Fury: Street Rage. It's simplistic approach lends itself well to quick play sessions, and it's addictive nature will keep you coming back for countless attempts to defeat your previous top score.
It's not state of the art. It's not flashy. It's not going to wow you. It's not a GOTY contender. And even so, it's a game you should put in your rotation, due to the low commitment, high reward it offers you.