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Arcade: Solo beat-em-up
ZX Spectrum 48K

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Chris Bourne

High up in the Himalayas there is a mystical Kai temple. This holy shrine is guarded by fearsome martial arts warriors: Ninjas and the Divas. Their sole job is to protect the treasures and religious artefacts within the temple, and very dedicated to their vocation they are too. It is into this potentially dangerous situation that you unwittingly stumbled...

It is impossible to escape from the Kai temple, unless you happen to be a martial arts supremo. The Ninjas can only be despatched by an accurately timed combat kick. When one of these kicks hits home, the Ninja dissolves into a crumpled mass on the floor. Divas can only be killed by lobbing a dagger into their torsos.

Each screen consists of three platforms patrolled by a number of guards. Your character can leap between the platforms to avoid flying arrows and daggers and must chase around the screen dealing death. Each screen has a time limit indicated by a counter if the guards aren't eliminated quickly enough, the game ends. Contact with a Ninja or Diva result in the loss of one of your three lives.

As you progress in the game, more and more pasties have to be dealt with and time limits get shorter. Every time three screens are cleared a bit of bell ringing Is needed before the game moves to the next level. Pounding on the fire key makes a strength bar grow and then your man leaps onto a seesaw, propelling a ball into the air. If the bell is rung by the flying ball it's onto the next screen, otherwise it's back to the last section of the temple.

Tibetan air is very thin, and while the Ninjas and Divas are perfectly acclimatised you aren't. Now and again your oxygen starved brain plays tricks, making the task a lot harder the whole screen turns upside down!

Points are scored for each Ninja and Diva destroyed and for every level completed. There is a high score to beat each game, but the main problem is simply staying alive...


'Oh dear, this game is awful. The collision detection is poor, and the graphics are very bad. The noises made during the game don't exactly make you sit up with pleasure, and as far as playability and addictivity are concerned, Kai Temple must be one of the most boring games I've played recently. The whole thing is totally unexciting, and well worth steering clear of'

'Kai Temple is an extremely boring game. The graphics are far too small for a game that has hardly anything happening in it. I couldn't find anything in Kai Temple to show that the programmer had any ability... The backgrounds are very simply drawn, and the animation of the characters is nothing special. The way that the screen flips upside down is about as complex as a sausage roll. The game features some very cunning collision detection - you can put your loot right through the opponent and he'll survive. But you can be a few pixels away from him and he'll get you - something to do with bad programming? I couldn't ever go wild over Kai Temple'

'Don't be fooled by the loading screen which looks suspiciously like a screen dump from Way of the Tiger - the only thing the two games have in common is that they are both beat 'em ups. Although you don't need much in the way of brain power to play this successfully, you do need a lot of patience as this is a very frustrating game mainly due to its simplicity. The graphics are adequate but not good, the characters are small and undetailed and the backgrounds are mediocre. The sound effects aren't too bad; there are a few nice effects here and there but no tunes. A mediocre game.'

Control keys
Joystick: keyboard only
Keyboard play: responsive
Use of colour: monochromatic
Graphics: amateurish
Sound: irritating spot effects
Skill levels: one
Screens: 9


Screenshot Text

Two Ninjas close in on you on the lowest platform. Seventy seconds remain in which to despatch them with a well placed kick.