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Revenge of Wounded Dragons is a PSN game developed by Wanako Studios that sells for $10. It is a 2D beat-em up where the main characters must fight through hordes of enemies armed with a variety of weapons in order to save their kidnapped sister.
The story of the game is told in colorful comic book style screenshots and goes like this. A Yakuza man walk into a shop occupied by a girl, her two brothers and their grandfather. He begins to touch the girl inappropriately and she defends herself which leads to the man physically assaulting her. The guy is immediately dealt with by her two brothers as more gang members inter the shop. The gang members proceed to capture all of them, kidnap the sister and execute their grandfather right in front of them. The two brothers, one wearing red and one wearing blue, go to rescue their sister and avenge the death of their grandfather.
The game starts in a village and has the player traveling across the lands battling countless thugs along the way. The enemies will fight with their fists, knives, bats, hand guns, machine guns and more. Weapons are scattered all around and are dropped by enemies. All the weapons have limited uses but all the kicking and grabbing attacks can still be performed, so weapons can be used sparingly. The fighting in the game is enhanced by the “Bruce Lee” type sounds the characters make while they’re beating up on the enemies. You know the sound.
The game is broken down into four chapters each of those broken down into six areas. The game will travel from villages through caves, swamps, a city and a temple. All the environments look vibrant and colorful as some of them are deadly. Falling of the boat and into the falling swamp is bad for any character but great for the alligators down there waiting for food. The enemies change as the game progresses and are appropriate for that area. When on the docks, the player will be fighting sailors and in the temple, monks will be the opponents. Even though they game does a great job of keeping the waves of enemies fresh, the game does start to become repetitive after a while. There’s not much dialog in the whole game, mostly told in comic style cut-scenes, so it goes from cut-scene to next chapter to next cut-scene and on.
The controls are the expected type for a beat-em up. Square is for punch, Triangle for kick, X is for jumping and O is for picking up objects. The character can also perform back-flips and forward rolls to avoid attacks. They also have Dragon Rage which temporarily gives the player near invincibility, makes them stronger and refills their energy bar 25%. It uses Chi, which is a meter above the health bar that is filled up by beating up enemies. The character is controlled with both the analog stick and the D-buttons, which actually works better to control the player.
The gameplay in the game is fun. The fighting styles are modeled after movie style kung-fu. Certain kicks will, for example, kick people through the background as seen in countless kung-fu movies. The game features really fun finishing moves like Iron Head which is jumping on top of a enemy while they’re on the ground, punching them twice and then head-butting them into death. Other fun finishing moves include, Exploding Fist, which is punching them a few feet back, Grasshopper Kick which is kicking them up in the air, then kicking them down back on to the ground and this reviewer’s favorite, Bamboo Breaker which is using your feet to break your enemies neck while standing over their head. All the finishing moves are performed when the enemy is in a stunned state, which can be done easily on most basic enemies by a simple attack.
As the game progresses, the difficulty ramps up. Enemies began to block and dodge more as well as become harder to take down. At this point, the game forces you to switch up kicks and punches, and to start dodging more to get through the game. Even though the game becomes harder, the game never changes from being a button masher.
The game also features local two player mode. When in 2-player mode, the two players can team up together to fight enemies. These moves do require a bit of coordination to perform but are fun to watch. Co-op moves include the Ping-Pong which is when both players kick the stunned enemy back and forth to each other and Power Kick which is when one player kneels down to be a stand as the other player jumps over him with a super power kick.
This brings up the one major flaw of the game. The game has no online co-op, and that is a missed opportunity. If the game had online Co-Op, then more people would be able to play through the game with a partner which is more fun. Revenge of the Wounded Dragon has no real online presence other than leader boards that compares your scores to other around the world. The game also as minigames that are simple to the point of being uninspired. The story mode forces you to complete these between chapters which breaks up the flow a bit too much.
The soundtrack to the game is a great retro 70’s style funky soul soundtrack. There’s not much variety to the music but the game features custom soundtracks just in case anyone wants to listen to Wu-Tang Clan while playing this game.
Revenge of Wounded Dragon is a fun action arcade-style game that does a great job pulling off the ’70s movie kung-fu fun. The game is not deep in any way so one should not expect to find the meaning of war nor whether technology is a good thing being discussed here. It is arcade Double Dragon style story telling, only they’re after their sister, not a girlfriend. This game is a fun arcade game for those who like beat ’em ups, shallow storytelling and fun Bruce Lee kung-fu game play. The biggest drawback is the lack of Co-op online multiplayer. It should really have online Co-op.