KUNG FU CHAOS - Mania.com

Game Review

Mania Grade: C+

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  • Platform: Xbox
  • ESRB: Teen
  • Genre: Fighting
  • Players: 1-4
  • Online: No
  • Developer: Just Add Monsters
  • Publisher: Microsoft Game Studios
  • Suggested Retail: $49.99
  • Graphics: B
  • Sound: B
  • Gameplay: B-
  • Replay: C
  • Fun Factor: C
  • Reviewer's Wild Card: C+


A party game for the audience of one?

By Troy Roberts     April 16, 2003

To be perfectly honest, this is a really weird game. That's a great opening statement, eh? Really, I think Microsoft really has yet to understand the concept of first-party games at times. Nintendo gets it obviously, as the first-party games on the GameCube are the best on the console. Sony is coming around, although they release fewer first-party titles than either Nintendo or Microsoft. But Microsoft - it seems like the quality of games alternates. They'll get it right once, and then get it wrong the second time. For every MECHASSAULT and TAO FENG, there will be a KAKUTO CHOJIN and the God-awful SNEAKERS. So here we are presented with KUNG FU CHAOS and I just can't really figure out this game.

In KUNG FU CHAOS, you are able to live your dream and become a 70's kung fu television star. You start off the game by picking one of nine wannabe action stars that are all vying for a starring role in an upcoming kung fu movie. So, using the sets for other movies, you fight against other competitors, hoping to catch the eye of the director.

If you've ever played Capcom's fast-paced fighter POWER STONE, you'll determine pretty quickly where the idea for this game came from. You fight against three computer opponents (or human opponents if you wish, since technically this is a party game) and just beat the life out of them until you win. The toughest part of the game is learning when to taunt. Basically, once you know an opponent down you should taunt, making it harder for he or she to get up while letting you perform another move on them before they can get to their feet. Unfortunately, once you've mastered this, you shouldn't have any problem winning ever again. So, if you're playing someone who doesn't know how to taunt properly, start taking bets.

In KUNG FU CHAOS, the environments will work against you. In certain levels, things will fall from the sky, and if you're hit by it, will take life away from you. Thing is, once you've played a level more than once, you know when something that could potentially hurt your character will take place. Sounds great and all, and it was perfected in POWER STONE 2 on the Dreamcast, but there is a minor problem with this in KUNG FU CHAOS: the camera. At times the camera will be too low, making it difficult to see where your character is standing. And when you get three friends together - wait for the profanities to fly.

While multiplayer is all fine and dandy, the best part about KUNG FU CHAOS is actually the single-player Ninja Challenge. In this, you will take your character across 20-something, coming across fights and even mini-games.

The graphics in KUNG FU CHAOS aren't necessarily bad, but they aren't something that will make you gasp and take your breath away. While the animations are limited, the backgrounds do look surprisingly nice which adds a bit to the way the game looks.

While KUNG FU CHAOS is marketed as a party game intended for four players, I keep finding the single-player mode more riveting and fun. Somewhere in the development process the two got interchanged or something. This isn't a bad game but it definitely could have been a lot better.


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