|Platform(s)||PlayStation 3, Xbox 360|
|Release date(s)|| March 25, 2010|
November 2, 2010
November 5, 2010
|Genre(s)||Beat 'em up|
|Rating(s)|| CERO: D|
Fist of the North Star: Ken's Rage, originally released in Japan as Hokuto Musō (北斗無双), is a video game produced by Koei. It is a Fist of the North Star-themed installment of the company's Dynasty Warriors series. Hokuto Musō was released for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360.
The basic controls and mission system are the same as most Warriors titles. Players can also evade like the characters in the Samurai Warriors series. While a K.O count is still present, enemies don't necessarily swarm the players and appear in certain sections within an area. Enemies are killed in a similar manner as the original comic, including the series' unique death cries, blood, and exploding bodies.
- Players can play under three different styles found among characters: the Hokuto, Nanto, or Special Type.
- Hokuto style users can pinpoint their opponent's secret pressure points at various times, allowing their character to deal critical damage.
- Nanto fighters can use a unique technique called Migiri Kōgeki (Timely Strike in the English release), which allows the characters to see openings in their opponent's attacks. When the player and their opponent simultaneously perform a strong attack, a select button may appear on the screen within that instant. If players successfully press the correct button within the moment it appears, the Nanto fighter will instantly evade the attack and perform a counter. For a short time afterward the screen will be tinted blue, and the Nanto fighter will have stronger normal attacks and a different, more powerful charge attack.
- Special types, like Mamiya and Jagi, rely on a technical perspective and can use weapons for special attacks against their foes. They are made for veteran players who want to use trickier characters.
- A skill point system similar to recent Warriors titles also appears in the game. The main difference with Hokuto Mus'ō is that players need to equip particular skills in order to expand their character's learning curve. As more battles are cleared, players can choose to learn whatever techniques, legendary techniques, and secondary abilities they desire for each character via a "Meridian Chart" that is set up to resemble that character's own pressure points. Skill points are earned by collecting glowing balls, or "karma", found after defeating opponents in the field. They can also be earned by correctly performing a Mus'ō' Ranbu, trashing objects for scrolls, completing missions, or by finishing a stage with a sound performance.
- Players can perform an instant guard, or "Just Guard", against an opponent's blows to open opportunities for more combos. It requires precise timing with the L1 trigger (PS3) to pull off the technique.
- Characters can also grab opponents, climb walls, or pick up and throw items with the R2 trigger (PS3)/RT (XBOX 360). They may also need to destroy objects to clear alternative paths through an area. Some obstacles can only be destroyed by using certain Signature Techniques. Pressing R2 and triangle (PS3) or Y button (Xbox 360) re-adjusts the camera in a target position for players.
- Each character can perform T'ōki Kakusei (Spirit Aura in the English release), which momentarily increases the powers of their characters by sacrificing the Touki/Spirit gauge. It can be activated by tapping the L2 trigger (PS3) or the Left bumper (Xbox 360).
- Tapping circle (PS3) or B button (Xbox 360) lets players use their character's various techniques from the comic. These Signature Techniques (or ō'gi) act as the character's type of "Musō" in this game, allowing limited invincibility and massively damaging a target. When a technique is used, the game will momentarily freeze the action on the field until the move is completed. The nature of implementing a technique varies with each character.
- Characters are allowed to have multiple techniques at once and they can be assigned to each button on the d-pad. There are several new techniques for characters that were made solely for this game.
- Each character has their unique legendary techniques, or Shin Densh'ō' 'Ō'gi, which can instantly kill crowds of weak opponents if performed correctly. They can only be performed during Tōki Kakusei/Spirit Aura.
- Another skill available to each character is the Mus'ō Ranbu, which is a special finishing blow that can only be used against weakened opponents in duels. During the sequence, players will need to input buttons that flash on the screen to pummel their foe with Fist of The North Star flare. The feature is executed in a similar manner as Duels in Dynasty Warriors: Gundam 2, except that players need to input a longer series of button combinations for a successful finish. Making a mistake restores some of the opponent's health as punishment.
- Players can also taunt in the game with their characters. Taunting a foe too many times can make them enraged and tougher to defeat.
- When a character is damaged, their model may change to reflect the changes in their life gauge. If Kenshiro is wounded by an explosion, for instance, portions of his shirt will be blown away.
Similar to the Dynasty Warriors: Gundam titles, this is the story segment which faithfully follows the original source material. The official mode follows the first arc of the series, starting with Kenshiro's beginnings until he faces Raoh for the right of successor. Kenshiro, Rei, Mamiya, Toki, and Raoh can be played in this mode.
Clearing this mode with Rei also unlocks an alternate "white haired" Rei model for players.
Illusionary Match ModeEdit
An original story for the game which lets other characters become playable. The basic outline of the mode has the four Hokuto brothers interacting with the "Nanto army". Each character offers a different perspective or story arc within the mode. Completing character scenarios in this section is needed to unlock more characters for this mode.
Clearing this mode with Kenshiro unlocks an alternate torn clothes version for him at the character select screen.
Unlocked once Kenshiro's official mode is cleared, it pits the players against a continuous string of opponents. Players can simultaneously face the four Hokuto candidates, the six Nanto Seiken, and other challenges as the players continue playing. It acts as the game's survival mode.
The game's tutorial mode for anyone unfamiliar with the game's system, starting with Kenshiro (Hokuto Type). Includes Rei (Nanto Type) and Mamiya (Unique Type) once the second chapter of Kenshiro's official mode is cleared.
Features renders, music, and movies within the game.
Players can arrange the buttons, adjust the sound, or turn off the gauges on the screen. There are three difficulties: easy, normal, or hard. An option to adjust the game's violence level can also be done: "Hard" keeps the blood and gore while "Mild" turns it off.
Japanese voice actors in first parentheses, english voice actors in second parentheses where available.
- Kenshiro (Katsuyuki Konishi)(Kaiji Tang)
- Raoh (Fumihiko Tachiki)(Dave B. Mitchell)
- Toki (Tomokazu Seki)(Lex Lang)
- Jagi (Wataru Takagi)(Dave Wittenberg)
- Rei (Takehito Koyasu)(Matthew Mercer)
- Shin (Tomokazu Sugita)(Doug Erholtz)
- Souther (Nobutoshi Kanna)(Ezra Weisz)
- Mamiya (Naomi Shindō)(Laura Bailey)
- Heart (Takahiro Fujimoto)(Matt Lasky) *DLC Exclusive
- Outlaw *DLC Exclusive
- Yuria (Hōko Kuwashima)(Stephanie Sheh)
- Bat (Umeka Shōji)(Debi Derryberry)
- Lin (Kanae Itō)(Stephanie Sheh)
- Airi (Umeka Shōji)(Dorothy Elias-Fahn))
- Yuda (Keisuke Baba)(Christopher Corey Smith)
- Shū (Takahiro Yoshimizu)(Steve Kramer)
- Jūza (Masaya Takatsuka)
- Fudō (Hiromu Miyazaki)
- Ryūga (Takeshi Mori)
- Zeed (Shunzō Miyasaka)(Richard Epcar)
- Kiba Daiō (Kōhei Fukuhara)
- Uighur (Ryūzaburō Ōtomo)
- Amiba (Tomokazu Seki)(Steve Staley)
- Narrator: Norio Wakamoto (Douglas Rye)
- Hokuto Dojo
- Southern Cross
- Seitei Jūji Ryō
It was originally announced as a "mystery title" during the 2009 Tokyo Game Show and was publicly unveiled during a staged media event on October 14, 2009 (broadcast live to the Japanese movie site, Nico Nico Douga). Its story and characters are based on the famous Japanese comic and anime Fist of the North Star. Tetsuo Hara and Yoshiyuki Okamura, the illustrator and writer of the original comic, have expressed their support and enthusiasm for the title.
Hisashi Koinuma, the game's producer says that the staff aims to create a "new realistic feel" for the Fist of the North Star series while still being faithful to the original's roots. During this process, he remarked his concerns for the characters' body structure, muscles, and other minute details (such as perfecting the model for Raoh's wrinkled forehead). He notes that the official mode for this title carries more action adventure tones than other Warriors titles thus far yet gave his assurance that Warriors fans can easily feel at home in the game's original story mode. He personally spoke his thoughts regarding the game at Yodobashi-Akiba, Biccamera Yurakucho, and Biccamera Ikebukuro on March 22 and March 25. He also played a rock-paper-scissor game for attendants, the winner of the crowd obtaining an original T-shirt signed by the game's voice actors.
Upon release of the game, Koei plans for special downloadable content for the game, including additional costumes and Characters. Players can also gain access to download Kenshiro's original costume from the Manga and the Anime for 300 yen, originally available for the first print editions. In addition to alternate costumes, Heart and Outlaw (a nondescript gang member) will be playable in upcoming downloadable content packs for 560 Microsoft Points ($7 US) each.
The game comes in four different variations; a standalone copy of the game, the pre-order version, the First print edition and the treasure box edition. The first print edition comes with the access to download download Kenshiro's original costume, the pre-order version comes with the Metal Card Case and the treasure box edition includes the character voice Alarm Clock, an original soundtrack CD and a original story book with strategies and artwork.
Female Jpop artist Nana Tanimura performed two theme songs for the game, "FAR AWAY" and "Believe You" during the October 14, 2009 press event. It will be used during promotional videos and will be used during the game. Tanimura herself dresses up as the game versions of Yuria and Mamiya while performing these songs in live Koei sponsored events. The single, titled "FAR AWAY/Believe you", which contains both songs, is released on March 24, 2010.
The first opening song of the Fist of the North Star anime, "Ai wo Torimodose!!", can also be heard in the game as background music. It will be given a special heavy metal music arrangement for the game and will play during important events.
Pokka Coffee was performing a collaboration event with Fist of the North Star in which they had specially printed cans on their products. These same drinks were present during the March 3rd Premium play test for Hokuto Musou.
Tecmo Koei released a short teaser of the sequel on June 5th, 2012. It showed various cutscenes from the first game in English, and at the end of the teaser shows a silhouette of Kaioh, speculating that the game will take place years after.
- ↑ http://www.andriasang.com/e/blog/2010/02/09/north_star_musou_bonuses/
- ↑ http://www.kensrage.com/us/top.html
- ↑ http://www.crunchyroll.com/anime-news/2012/06/05-1/video-wah-ta-fist-of-the-north-star-kens-rage-2-e3-2012-teaser CrunchyRoll