I Love Beat 'Em Up Scenarios. The fact that they need a scenario at all is interesting, implying that as far as games designers are concerned we can't just stroll about the place beating the crap out of other people for no reason (obviously no games designers live in Catford). But for some reason, designers always succumb to the urge to elaborate: there's always a powerful organisation dedicated to evil deeds, which forgoes stretching bunny rabbits over two-bar fires for a while and decides to run a martial arts tournament; there's an unpleasant overlord (sometimes from the Deep, and usually with more than the requisite number of limbs), who appears in a puff of foul-smelling smoke, anxious to display his skill at fisticuffs; and, most importantly, a seriously rich backer whips out his wedge to sponsor the action and provide the exotic locations. Oh, and there's usually a range of bizarre creatures to contend with, who look like Natterjack Toads that work out. (We've had complaints from people with a morbid fear of Natteijack Toads about this, but there's nothing we can do, so stop writing, alright?)
Who wants to be a millionaire?
In real life, seriously rich people are pretty bloody weird. Having so much money that they'll never have to work again isn't enough for the huge egos that made them that rich in the first place: they want to be loved, too. So instead of buggering off to some tropical island hideaway and spending their lives in a sun -, alcohol - and drug-induced daze, they try to make people love them. There are three traditional ways to do this. They may buy a football team, convincing themselves that the fans' love for the team is in fact a love for themselves. They might buy several newspapers and convince themselves that government ministers love attending their dinner parties and talking desultorily about the state of the peanut sweepings industry. Or they might opt for the third, and probably the cheapest, method, and get their quota of adoration by consorting with Thai prostitutes.
But none of these solutions is nearly as weird as the ageing multi-millionaire in the average beat 'em up. who shrugs aside such trivial pastimes and hosts a martial arts competition instead. And usually ends up donning a pair of gaudy pyjamas and taking on the winner, too. Perfect Weapon has many things in common with the traditional beat 'em up. For a start, there's an evil Overlord from Outer Space. This Overlord owns five planets, the rent from which is always handy to fall back on if his job presenting a daytime cookery and gardening programme falls through. And his hobby is travelling around the universe, kidnapping the most impressive physical species wherever he finds them (that's us out, then), whisking them back to one of his planets and setting them against each other in fights to the death. (He used to I collect British Railway Passenger Timetables, but he ran out of space in his bedroom.) Oh, and in a manner reminiscent of the old-fashioned stroll-along beat 'em up, there's a good, old-fashioned hero.
The name's Hunter - Blake Hunter
You are a Blake hunter - a man who's dedicated his life to tracking down and eradicating the former Inspector from On The Buses. (Stop being silly - Ed.) Alright, then. You are Blake Hunter, the top agent in the Earth Defence Force, world champion martial artist, holder of the Northern Hemisphere record for dry Martini consumption in an hour (uncoached), and European Misogynist Championships Semi-Finalist (lost on penalties after extra time). (That's better - Ed.) You have been kidnapped by the aforementioned evil Overlord. But then you were probably expecting me to say that.
As Blake, you will be faced with the traditional seemingly impossible task. (Note: if you're thinking of designing a beat 'em up, the task must only be seemingly impossible, because 1) there's probably some brain-dead kid out there with the reflexes of a humming bird who can finish it in one go, 2) there's an Easy setting and 3) if it turns.out to be properly impossible, no-one will buy it.) The task involves walking across rice paper without leaving a footprint, then picking a boiling kettle up with your forearms, so that CRussell Hobbs' is printed backwards on them forever more, then pursuing a life of peace, pausing only to break a few cowboys' kneecaps at the end of every episode. Oops, wrong press release. The task is to make your way between locations, kicking the shit out of anything that moves. (And you can keep kicking after it's stopped moving, if you want.)
How many hostile worlds?
There will be five hostile worlds to fight your way through, providing 1300 (count 'em) 3D locations to explore, all of which look more attractive than Frank Carson in a rubber cat-suit... That doesn't sound right, does it? Oh, just insert a name yourself. They'll be presented to you in an intelligent camera angle style (sort of like Alone In The Dark).
Anyway, there are 20 different impressively powerful life forms to fight against - none of which will be a Natterjack Toad (I've checked, so good news there). Thanks to a new system called Behavioural Artificial Intelligence, they'll be able to attack you in groups of four at a time, which is less good news. Even worse - or even better if you're a card-carrying masochist - the further you get into the game, the smarter they get, identifying your moves and fighting co-operatively to kick you to death. But there will be over 100 realistic martial arts moves with which you can pummel their noses (if they have any). This is a major departure from the stroll-along beat 'em up, which normally provided three. As well as the all-consuming violence, there will be adventure, exploration and inventory management elements. So you might even have to think a bit (if you can take your eye off the backgrounds). We'll review it when we get a finished version.
Processor: PC compatible,
OS: Windows 9x, Windows 2000 Windows XP, Vista, Win 7, Win 8, Win 10.
Game Features:Single game mode