At a Glance: Kickmaster is a game so full of martial arts knowledge that I have already achieved olive belt status, something I made up just right now. Having the chance to review such a game works out well for me, considering I've always wanted to become a master of kicks. So far I've only managed to become a master of clicks when I crowned myself King of Internetia after reaching my 50th level as a dwarf merchant. You want to sell some mithril? You talk to me.
Platform: NES (Download Emulator here - 192k)
Download: Download ROM here - 64k
Game Plot: As you shine up the boots and set sail for adventure in this title, you assume the role of Thonolan, the aspiring martial artist who pretends he's important becuase his brother is a knight. While you two are talking about boots, the kingdom is attacked by the evil wizard Belzed because they called her fat on the internet. After various legal threats that included the words "paralagal" and "libal", she sends her evil flying praying mantis henchmen to pick up the princess Selphee and subject her to listen to all the boring drama.
Your brother asks you to bring your vast martial arts training to aid in the battle. This, in the gaming world, is commonly referred to as a "meat shield". But it doesn't take long for your brothers' plans go awry asthe two of you meet your first skeleton, where your brother dies instantly. From here on out, never expect to meet anything that you wouldn't be forced to apply your kickonomics on. If one month of karate and exotic dancing has taught me anything, interaction only takes away your focus from kicking and tassles. This game has such a profound effect on myself that I now believe any and all of life's problems can be solved by kicking, not so much tassles. For instance, my sister told me that I should go outside and not break so many convientantly placed vases, so I dragon heel kicked her in the face. That will show her for challenging me in my own dojo.
The sound is on par with any Castlevania game. Actually, I think this is a Castlevania game. Wait, no - my mistake. You kick. On the other hand the sound effects, or SFXicle as they say in the 'biz, don't register that badly until you fight some of the easily bootable bosses. The unholy sound you hear are pretty much only achievable by beating a digital cat to death with a rusty violin. All sound enjoyment is lost at this point as you begin to develop theories on how to craft some sort of bee earplugs so you don't have to hear this awful screeching.
Enemies: All enemies are kickable, and that is all you need to know. Yet no enemy is more terrifying as the bottom of the screen. You can kick witches, ghouls, and even death in the face. But you can never kick the edge of the screen that kills you the second you touch it.
Weapons: As you progress through the levels you have the ability to gain expierence or something, allowing you to gain access to new types of kicks. This utilizes the age old video game concept of "hitting things makes you learn how to hit things in new ways." In this case, instead of forcing a little white glove to poke some words and use that level 3 firararga that you spent twelve hours depriving your children of food to get, you grab some sort of heads that pop out of the enemies like a pinata. Usually you have to jump to get these things. Jump to your death, that is.
These new moves prove so invaluable that you end up getting yourself killed as you accidently launch yourself into the enemy jaws with your sliding kick. And inbetween bouts on my Tae-bo authorized thighmaster, I noticed that you get different little orbs that follow you around when you want them. These orbs shoot whatever and do whatever, things that I don't care about because they get in the way of my kicking.
Levels: There are eight levels within the Kickmaster game, each one with more gradually annoying jumps, falls, pits, and monsters that morph into other monsters when you kick them. I planned on putting a joke here. Sorry.
Apples: Are delicious. I like green ones better than red.
Bosses: At the end of each stage you are given something to kick. Actually, at every moment you are given things to kick in various amounts. Not many people realize it, but this game gets kind of repetitive after a while. Each boss is some sort of medieval monster for you to fight. For example, the first boss is a witch that I kicked in the face. The second level is some kind of chick with a bunch of wolves that I also kicked in the face. Not many people realize it, but this game gets kind of repetitive after a while.
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Reason 9: Ongoing mechanical issues with the internal Superman 64 fog machine.
The Rom Pit is dedicated to reviewing the most bizarre and screwed up classic console games from the 1980's, the ones that made you wonder what kind of illegal substances the programmers were smoking when they worked on them. Strangely enough, the same illegal substances are often necessary to enjoy or make sense of most of these titles. No horrible Nintendo game is safe from the justice of the ROM Pit.