Kung Fu Rider E3 Impressions

If you read my The Shoot E3 impressions just the other day,then you know I made it a major part of my E3 to check out Sony’s Move controller and the games they were showcasing it with. One of the earliest Move games to be revealed was none other than Kung Fu Rider, which was originally known as ‘Slider’. Seeing as how it’s the only Move game announced by Sony Computer Entertainment Japan, I thought I would spend a good bit of time seeing what our friends in Japan have accomplished with the Move. If you’re looking for one of the most interactive Move games available, then your going to want to read my impressions!

The premise for Kung Fu Riders is as weird as they come: Tobio, your typical Officer Worker and Karin, his cute secretary, must escape the dreaded Yakuza by…rolling down hills via rolling chairs, avoiding obstacles, the Yakuza, plus  gaining money and points along the way to help your score. Ok, yeah, so this game is 100% Japanese, but is pretty fun!

The Move controls are as follows: Quickly wave your controller up and down to gain speed, although you need to be careful. The jumping action requires you to move the controller ALL the way down, then all the way UP to jump and if you’re not careful, you’ll jump instead of run, which can be a pain in the ass because when a Yakuza member gets ahold of you, you have to start over. Quickly moving the controller to the left will allow you to drift around a corner and quickly turning to the right will do the same. Holding the T trigger on the bottom of the controller throws your main character back so that they can dodge obstacles by going flat to the point that they’re almost touching the ground. Then add in the ‘Move’ button which allows you spin-kick enemies and objects out of the way, plus the ‘x’ and ‘square’ buttons that let you kick to the left or to the right equals a helluva lot of buttons and movements to remember.

Still, with everything I had to remember, I had fun with the game. Instead of simply moving my arm around, I would constantly find myself moving my entire body and I wonder if someone out there has footage of me looking like a fool playing the game. But like I said, I had fun with the game and when it comes down to it, we game because of the gameplay, right?

If that didn’t scare you off, then the graphics certainly won’t either. The game features some of the best graphics out of all the Move titles available and the game would throw quite a bit of objects on the screen at once, with little slowdown or framerate problems. The team over at JAPAN Studio sure knew what they were doing when the created the look for the game. Something else that was interesting is the facial animation system. When hit by an enemy or whatever, Tobio’s face would quickly change to the reflect the pain, all in slo-mo as you fly off your chair. It was pretty fun to watch, especially since no two faces were the same.

Overall, my experience with Kung Fu Rider was a good one. It didn’t feature tacked-on or limited Move interaction, yet it did require you too learn a bit too many controller requirements, which could turn some of the casual gaming crowd away. I personally enjoyed the title and I recommend you give it a chance once the PlayStation Move hits this September!