Movie Review: Kung Fury

Kung Fury is a short, Kickstarter funded,YouTube movie made by and starring Swedish filmmaker David Sandberg. The movie is about a cop in the ’80s who travels back in time to beat Hitler with glorious Kung fu. And he’s named Kung Fury.

Also Thor shows up.

It’s really hard to put into words the bizarre mashup of events that is the plot. It jumps from scene to reference to fight scene with the speed and finesse of a Van Damme gut punch.

The plot revolves around a cop who goes back in time to kill Hitler. That’s about as much of it that makes sense. The story doesn’t follow a plot but rather the characters. There’s the main character, a cop with the powers of kung fu; a triceratops cop named Triceracop; a pair of lady viking  warriors, a super-hacker who can hack time and of course the Führer himself. Also Thor. Did I mention that?

The combat is visceral and fluid flowing from nut punch to spin kick to…you know what? It’s better if you see it for yourself. Combined with an amazing soundtrack reminiscent of 80’s bands like Poison and Styx mixed in with some Daft Punk.

The movie is steadfast in it’s dedication to encompassing everything about the 80’s aesthetic and it does it flawlessly. This movies is a testament of how a small team can make something great if they know what they’re doing and how to do it in the best possible way.

Honestly I don’t know why you’re still reading this; you should’ve already watched it two paragraphs ago. But for those who waited till the end, enjoy.

Advertisements

Budget Gaming: Kung Fury- Street Rage

Kung Fury: Street Rage

Kung Fury is a … well…uh…a short film. Unfortunately no-one can be told what Kung Fury is, you must see it for yourself. Which is exactly what you should do. Right now. Besides it’s only 30-minutes long and you can watch it for free on YouTube.

Now that you’ve experienced the pure awesome that is Kung Fury, let’s talk about Street Rage.

Street Rage is a tie-in game to the movie. And just like the movie, it’s got the same kind of retro ’80s sensibilities. Everything from the visual design and aesthetics to the music and sound is just oozing that same kind of style you’d expect from Bloodsport: The Video Game.  The game even looks like you’re playing it on an old school arcade machine with a CRT screen.

373180_2015-07-07_00008

It has the same pixel art style of many retro games but with a slightly fuzzy overlay that just nails home the arcade-y feel. Add to that the animation style and visual effects that are both smooth and retro and it all just comes together very well.

The audio, oddly enough, doesn’t take the 8/16 bit chiptunes route you would normally expect from a game like this. Instead it uses music from the original movie. The music itself is also an ’80s style glam rock track and sounds amazing.

The in game sound effects for the kicks, punches and flying enemy insides are all pretty much the exact kind of 2D sidescrolling action game sounds you’d expect and it just adds to the feel of the game.

373180_2015-07-07_00011

Now it might seem like I’m just harping on about the aesthetics of the game wothout going into the gameplay. But it’s the game’s aesthetics, both in terms of visuals and sound, that come together and really give it a unique personality and identity that’s hard to find even with big AAA titles with million dollar budgets that need a supercomputer to run.

But getting to the gameplay. Here is where the creators show that they really know what they where doing. It sticks to the adage of “Easy to learn, Hard to master”.

It show’s the “Easy to learn” part by having only two buttons: left attack and right attack. It may look like Streets of Rage or Double Dragon, but it doesn’t play like them. Instead, it plays more like One Finger Death Punch. You (Kung Fury) are positioned in the centre of the (arcade machine) screen and enemies just come at you from both sides. Hit left to attack to the left and right to attack to the right. The screen shifts as well, keeping you dead centre always. You get points for taking out a foe but loose one of you three lives if you are hit by an enemy. Survive as long as you can and rack up as many points as you can.

You got that? Good.

Now comes the “Hard to master”. Getting the best score requires you to rack up a combo counter. You do this by land continuous hits. Attack too early, you miss and your combo counter drops. Missing also leaves you open to enemy attacks. Add to this varied enemy types with different patterns for each and you get a game that encourages you to really pay attention to your attacks and discourages button mashing.

373180_2015-07-07_00015

All of these elements gives the game a fair amount of depth. Along with smooth and fluid gameplay, the increblible music and stylish visuals create an exprience that you’ll keep coming back to, if only to beat Thor’s score.

373180_2015-07-07_00023

This isn’t to say that the game is perfect. The screen tends get a little too full at the later waves and this makes things a little hard to track of; and the visuals effects just add to it. But that’s a minor complaint.

This game is truely a product of love and care. The attention to detail in every aspect of the design really makes it shine. The creators took a simple idea and polished it to a mirror shine.

And all of this is for the low, low price of 1.99$ on Steam. So you really don’t have any reason not to try it.