Publisher: Virtual Air Guitar Company
Developer: Virtual Air Guitar Company
by: Katrina "Shadokat Regn" Pawlowski
Hey guys, I know Kung Fu. Okay, maybe not quite. But I did play quite a bit of Kung Fu Live, the game that puts you (literally, your image) in the game to punch, kick, and cast magic using Chi. Kung Fu Live follows the story of a man/woman (you) who has started working in a comic book store. The comic books look old as though they were in an antique shop, and one in particular stands out. Kung Fu offers the reader three new magic powers, and suddenly the shop boy/girl is sucked into the comic to start fighting ninjas using the PSEye camera.
Later “comics” you find will have a variety of scenarios and enemies to square off against. Each comic offering new special attacks as you advance through the story - the ultimate goal: Protect the stash of magical comics from thieves who would misuse their hidden powers and don’t mess up the old ladies comic shop.
For those of us who are a bit taller than the average target audience, you’ll need quite a bit of space to safely play and fit within the games parameters (feet at the bottom of the camera, hands straight up within the top). 9 ft surrounding the TV is what is requested of you - though I found myself punching the ceiling more often than not with a low ceiling, regardless of how much space I made around myself.
Playing the game is pretty fun, though some of the imagery is bizarre. You are standing on screen with the game as your background. If you’re wearing dark colors, these background images will overlap with what you’re wearing and your movements will be obscured. The game is also less responsive than I would have liked when pretend punching, kicking, and otherwise playing this game.
Otherwise the premise is simple: you’re learning kung fu in a comic book, and you’ll have to clear enemies off the screen as you progress through the story. Enemies attack from left and right, and will block and dodge fairly often. Most attacks (or in the case of getting my PSEye to register, flailing swings) will do a moderate amount of damage. If you’re feeling brave enough to risk actual kicks in your house, you can also do a large amount of damage with some awesome attacks - screen prompts will congratulate you for a combo, an Aerial attack, a jump dodge or something else of the sort.
The game is fun, but it’s got a lot of technical issues. If you’re into trying to fiddle with settings and rearranging your surroundings it’s a great deal of exercise and fun - for the rest of gamers everywhere I’d recommend sticking with the PSMove wands, they’re more responsive and easier to sync up with your movements.