Thursday, July 26, 2018

Hong Kong Phooey

A story about a mild-mannered janitor

Once again, I've been plodding through my YouTube channel and found another old video, Hi-Tec's Hong Kong Phooey. This is a scrolling beat 'em up that begins with a cool intro based on the 70s cartoon I watched as a kid - this certainly brought a smile to my face!! After Spot releases the unappreciated janitor from the filing cabinet, we begin our adventure searching for Baron Von Bankjob who has just escaped from jail.

Watch out for the thugs wandering back and forth who want to stop us from capturing the villainous Baron. Thankfully, we are an expert in kung fu which is very handy. The joystick controls are superb and we can punch and kick our foe in many different ways: pushing up (whilst walking) performs a killer Van Damme flying manoeuvre. To reach higher platforms requires a bigger jump and that means also hitting the fire button which is a little cumbersome.

I love the title sequence. It's short 'n sweet but I feel like a kid watching it!
The moves are easy to learn but lots of fun. "Yee-ah that, sucka!" (say this in a Mr T voice!!!)

Hanna-Barbera magic?

The graphics are pretty nice and cartoony with an oldskool style that might not appeal to many looking for that gorgeous 16-Bit sex appeal. I must say, the scrolling is smooth but it's at the expense of screen size which has been reduced by a largely pointless status panel. Gotta love the crude character sprites and their pathetic animations but the worst of all is when we jump - it's more of a float through the air! Totally ludicrous, but who cares?

Musically, there are nice tunes which I loved and that's accompanied by sound effects for jumping and so on. Okay, they're just about good enough so it's the background music I enjoyed the most.

Learning kung fu certainly didn't help this janitor to jump grace. More like floating!

One gets kicked into the air and then Flash Gordon turns up!

The CryptO'pinion?

I remembered making this video recording along with a lukewarm feeling afterwards - basically because I kept on getting lost. Perhaps I should have had checked out the map first? Anyhow, back then, I wasn't sure if the game captured the heart of the TV show or not. And I must admit, I'm still not exactly sure now.

So, Hong Kong Phooey brings nothing new to the table. However, the lame Chuck Norris kicks are crudely entertaining and I enjoyed exploring a technicolour world. If you have a cat called Spot, and a cabinet to get changed in, then I suggest you boot it up. A good game but, there are better platformers available for the Atari ST.

Download the floppy or hard disk version.

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