Melbourne House
1985
Arcade: Solo beat-em-up
£8.95
£1.99
English
ZX Spectrum 48K
None

27
Jonathan Davies
Chris Bourne

The game that launched a thousand others.Can it really be 38 years old already? Known simply as Fist to its millions of fans, this laid the foundations for all that were to follow, and without doubt remains the most famous beat-'em-up of all time.

Classic moves brought to us in Fist for the first time were the unsporting but very rewarding punch-in-the-stomach, the boot-in-the-back-of-the-head and the useful kick-in-the-shins.This last move, unfortunately, proves to be the games downfall(in one-player mode at least),as its repeated use leads to attainment of 10th Dan level within minutes.

Sonically Fist remains perfect.Music is restricted to a marvellously irritating tune at the start of each level, and the sound effects still bring tears to the eyes. The graphics, too, are examplary.

Unfortunately, rather than bow out and watch all others scrambling onto the bandwagon, Melbourne House decided to hang in there. Fist's follow-up was the forgettable Fighting Warrior, then the distinctly average Fist II. The final humiliation was Exploding Fist +, almost a direct copy of International Karate + (qv). Nonetheless, Melbourne House was there first, and can be held entirely responsible for the situation today.

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