It’s difficult to establish a new fighting game franchise in today’s gaming industry. The balance of story, well-designed characters and fighting mechanics can prove a difficult challenge to developers (and in particular, inexperienced developers) as it seems only the long-time running IPs like Street fighter and Tekken get the exposure a fighter deserves.
Can a new fighting game succeed in today’s industry? I’m sure they can, however they need to have that X-factor that both seperates them from other fighters, as well as impresses their audience.
‘Girl fight’ from Kung Fu Factory, is a fighting game with an all-female roster. In it, players choose from one of multiple “sexy” femme fatales, though initially, you can only choose from one, and unlock additional characters as you play through the game’s “story” with previously unlocked characters. It sounds silly, and it is.
The “story” mode, is almost completely void of a story. The game’s various characters are psychically gifted females from all different backgrounds (though none are original) who have been kidnapped, and forced to fight in a virtual arena, where their psychic abilities are enhanced. Winning a tournament means that your chosen character sees freedom as well as obtains their deepest desires.
Unfortunately, the sloppy presentation and awkward fighting mechanics means that you simply won’t want to complete the story with every character. Between the game’s different fights, the story is delivered through bizarre cutscenes. This would have been okay if it felt as though the story progressed or at the very least was entertaining, but usually, there is a few lines of spoken dialogue, and it often repeats itself despite the fact you have progressed through numerous rounds.
The fighting, however, is what makes a fighting game and not the story. Once again though, this is something that is lacking in Girl fight. Sure, it has some okay moments, but nothing to get excited about. Each character has a unique move set, and the combos feel similar to the combos in the brilliant Dead or Alive franchise, though nowhere near as polished or as impressive visually.
Most fights can be won by repeating a single combo over and over. The A.I never seems to learn or adapt to your fighting technique, and the inclusion of the psychic abilities feels awkward and like a performance boost for players who can’t graps the game. Getting your ass kicked over and over? Just equip a mind explosion or shield next time, and learn your character’s best combo.
Speaking of psychic abilities, they can be entertaining, but I usually repeated a combo until my opponent had a third of their life left, then used an explosive punch move. This is when I realised my experience with Girl fight was one of simply trying to end the fights as quickly as possibe, and therefore, trying to limit my time with the game as much as possible. It just isn’t fun.
One would expect with a name like “Girl fight” that there would be an obscene amount of exploitative characters and gameplay elements, like jiggling boobs and or sexual poses. If done correctly, this might have been acceptable, such as Grand Theft Auto V, which has some highly sexual situations, but is often a clever parody of previous GTA games and gangster movies. Perhaps if Girl fight mimicked the early Dead or Alive games a little more it would have proved more fun to play. Yes, in Dead or Alive 1 the girl’s breasts bounced around so much that were practically slapping themselves in the chin, but there was rock solid gameplay underneath, this is what Kung Fu Factory should have emulated with their game.
Finishing Girl Fight unlocks a new character for use in the story mode, as well as the opportunity to purchase “sexy” pictures of the girls. While some of the pictures are gorgeous (in terms of the actual talent displayed by the character artists) they once again don’t posess enough incentive to play the game repeatedly.
- Shows some potential for future games.
- Jarring, awkward gameplay
- Boring, cliche characters
- Stupid concept of unlocking characters/story progression
Girl fight doesn’t offer any thrills or incentive to play it. It is a boring and sloppy game that everyone should avoid. It does however, show potential for future games, but even then I get the feeling that any improvements to the game will be ripoffs executed better in other games.
Score – 3/10