Johnny Kung Fu (3DS)

Johnny’s girlfriend Paula has been kidnapped by an evil corporation, and now Johnny must use his Kung-Fu powers to stop them! Help Johnny beat up the bad guys and make it to the top of the building in an hour before his girlfriend gets whisked away in a helicopter for good. This downloadable 3DS eShop game is a crazy mix of old school beat ‘em up and LCD Game & Watch style action.

Johnny Kung-Fu has two modes of play. If the skyscraper elevator is on the bottom screen, you’ll play a classic LCD style game. These challenges are similar to old Game & Watch titles. In one, jump over obstacles to make it to the top like Donkey Kong. Another game is like “Judge” where you must attack the opponent if your number is bigger, and dodge if yours is less. Or juggle bombs to keep them from hitting the ground in a game similar to “Ball.”

If the elevator is on the top screen, you’ll play a simple beat ‘em up challenge with more modern graphics. You may have to defeat a certain number of baddies, battle a boss, or overcome another Game & Watch style obstacle. By reaching certain stages, you’ll unlock new moves and other goodies, like free play for some of the LCD challenges.

You have an hour to make it to the top of the skyscraper. If you get defeated, you can continue as much as you want, but it’ll take five minutes off your time. When time’s up, you’ll have to start over again. But if you are in the middle of a game, you can continue from your last stage with the rest of your time intact. This timed aspect makes the game a little too difficult for my tastes. I wish you could just play the game without having to worry about a time limit and starting over.

Really the only other problem I had with this game is that the download price is a tiny bit higher than what I’d like to pay for this simplistic kind of action. But if you had fond memories with Game & Watch and Tiger Electronics LCD handhelds, you might want to check this one out anyway.

Kid Factor:

Johnny Kung Fu is rated E-10 with an ESRB descriptor of Fantasy Violence. But it’s no worse than a Road Runner cartoon. You can punch and kick enemies and get blown up by bombs, but defeated enemies just fly off the screen. Reading skill is helpful for the moves instructions, and younger gamers and novice players may get frustrated at the game’s difficulty.

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