Of the many many manga and anime series out there few actually catch my attention these days. Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure is a notable series that has held a firm grip on my heart, and 20th Century Boys blew my mind. While having not read Fist of the North Star(shame on me), I appreciate what it is because of how awesome it’s core elements are and that it is manly enough to make you sprout a ZZ top beard by touching it’s cover.
If you’re not familiar with the series, in short it’s about a post-apocalyptic world where Kenshiro, the main character, has vowed to help the weak and innocent by exploding people with his fists. The series is insanely popular in Japan, and has had several games made based on it since it’s inception. Koei, being a developer with an eye for cash, has decided to make a game in their Musou(Dynasty/Samurai Warriors here in America) series based on the manga series.
Perhaps the most concerning issue about this would be Koei’s approach to the violence. The manga series had gratuitous amounts violence in it, often resulting in heads, hands, or any other body part you can think of exploding. So it stands to be said that this violence would have to be a part of the game in a series that is usually very flat on gore. The first few pictures Koei’s released aren’t full of exploding people, but one particular picture appears to be bathed in blood and chunky bits. Koei also mentions two particularly strong points on playing as Kenshiro.
Channeling their energy into a single deadly blow, players can strike their victims and cause them to violently explode on screen. Gamers can also let loose with Kenshiro’s signature move- a ruthless flurry of ferocious punches, triggering the instantaneous breakdown of internal organs, and death.
With Fist of the North Star being a Musou game it’ll be much like any other Dynasty Warriors or Samurai Warriors game, but what makes this stand out to me the most is the appearance. The visuals and environment look well above par for a Musou game. There’s no word on if this is going to be released outside of Japan, but it’ll be a damn shame if it isn’t based on visuals and heritage alone. However it will be seeing a release in Japan in 2010 for the PS3 and Xbox 360.