An excellent example of great graphics don’t make a great game. I will admit that I purchased “China Warrior” based on a screenshot alone – Not a great idea, I know but in my defense, there was no internet website at the time that gave any reviews of video games. All I had was a mail-order catalogued and a few pictures to go on. I thought it was more of a tournament fighter like Street Fighter II but I was greatly disappointed when I played the game and found it was a beat ’em up like “Kung Fu Master” on the Atari 2600. Actually, it was worse because in “Kung Fu Master” you can fight in both directions. “China Warrior” only scrolls to the right.
Now, in it’s defense it was a delayed release in North America which means that it was older by about two years than it’s release date. At this point, much better games like “Street Fighter II” were available. The graphics are fantastic and nicely detailed.
It’s the game play that is its downfall – it’s clunky, predictable and repetitive. Oh, and the Bruce Lee look-alike is very stereotypical of martial arts games of the time. Need to design a martial arts character? Make him look like Bruce Lee. Talk about limited imagination. The Turbo Grafx-16 is not really known for having many terrible games but this is definitely one of the stinkers. It’s not even that hard either since I beat it in less than 24 hours by simply memorizing the stages. As a 13 year old with limited cash, I was terribly disappointed with this game.
Maybe if I had played the game when it first came out, it would have been more striking. I don’t know. I guess being able to punch fireballs in the air is pretty cool but I could never seem to do that great jump kick reliably. Despite being able to beat this easily when I was a kid it seems I’ve gotten a bit rusty, nevertheless, here are the first two levels.