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A.P.I Review: K-1 Revenge Fighting Illusion '97
Developer: Daft OPTIONS: S.SHOT
No.1   No.2   No.3
Distributor: Xing 1-2 Player
Game Type: Beat-em-up Memory Card
Review Date: June 1998 Standard Joypad

Setting the Scene

K-1 Revenge Fighting Illusion '97 is the follow-up to the
semi-successful K-1 fighting game that was released last year.  It has
the unique distinction of being the only kick boxing games ever released
on the Playstation so it kind of has that niche market all to itself.  

All of the fighters in K-1 are genuine kickboxing or martial artist
tournament winners from the '90's.


K-1 Revenge is a kickboxing fighting game.  It can be played against the
computer or versus a friend.


The graphics in K-1 are truly a mixed bag.  On one hand, they are nice
large, well modeled polygon characters...yet they are also quite
unstable and tend to flicker around a bit too much.

First the good stuff... K-1 features large, finely detailed polygon
fighters that closely resemble their would-be counterparts.  Texture
mapping is generously implemented onto the character models to good
effect.  Muscle cuts around the fighters abs, triceps and shoulders
really stand out giving the champs that finely sculptured appearance.
Facial features are also intricately designed with nose, eyes, mouth,
beards and ears all prominently displayed.   You can even make out the
referees bowtie and buttons on his white shirt.

Great care seems to also have been taken with the special effects.
There is a lot of light-sourching and blending effects used when you
connect with a punch or kick and also when you use your special attack.
The light literally pops in and out in vibrant blues and reds as you
pummel your helpless opponent.  There is also a nice little light show
at the beginning of each match with Roman candles shooting outing of the
ring posts.  The effect I enjoyed the most though was this really trippy
blurring effect that takes place when you are moving your fighter
forward or backward.  It's kind of like watching that comic book hero
"The Flash" buzz around.  Super effect.

Even the crowd is given a bit more detail then normal.  Yeah, they still
look like little cardboard figures out there, but at least they are not
just some color blobs smeared around the screen.

I would also like to mention the nice warping effect that accompanies
your menu selections.  It's kinda like dropping a stone into water and
watching the rippling effects it makes.

Alas, all of the pretty character designs and special effects come at a
cost.  While the polygon models are highly detailed, they are also a bit
on the jagged side.  There is also a decent amount or clipping and
seaming going on as you beat your opponent to a bloody pulp.   The
screen also tends to jitter around on occasion. 

Perhaps a bit more fine tuning could have helped cleaned up these rough
edges, but overall the graphics are just fine and do the job. 

Sounds and Effects

The sound effects are nicely implemented here.  There is the nice
exploding sounds that accompany the fireworks display as you begin each
game and the crowd noise in the background creates a nice ambiance to
the game.  You also have some solid effects for the punches and kicks.  

The music is a nice rocking soundtrack, which goes perfect for this kind
of sport.  It's just over the top enough to get you pumped for the match
and keeps you going throughout the fight.    


K1 is truly a different style of fighter than most fans of the genre may
be used to.   Yeah, you can string together a nice series of combo's.
Yep, you have those special moves that dish out a lot of damage, but the
overall style of kickboxing is so much different from the Tekken style
fighters that you really need to re-adjust your approach to this game.  

Jumping into the ring of K1 and mashing buttons will in all likelihood
not get you very far at all.  Instead you need to deliberately choose
your punches and kicks and look for openings in your opponents stance
and defense to be truly successful.  This makes for some interesting
gameplay strategies and exciting defensive maneuvers.

The game features your basic Vs. Mode and Arcade Modes as well as a Team
Battle and Tournament Modes.

In the arcade mode you get to fight 10 grueling battles with
increasingly difficult opponents until you finally face the Master Ishii
for the final showdown.  Beat the Master and you get to unlock him as a
playable character!

Team Battle consists of a 3 on 3 contest.  You can fight against the
computer or battle it out with a friend.  The first person to wipe out
the opponent's three fighters wins.

Tournament mode places you in a battle with seven other fighters in a
elimination mode.  You start out the tournament fighting a computer
selected opponent and then watch the computer battle out the others.  I
thought Tournament mode was pretty cool except for the fact that you
must sit and watch the computer fight through the other matches. There
was seemingly no way to skip this part.  

Overall, I found the actual gameplay to be quite engaging once I
actually get into the style of fighting that this title presents.  It's
kind of a primitive satisfaction just standing in there toe to toe and
slugging the crap out of each other.  Of course it's a huge plus being
able to do this kind of stuff in a console game and not real life...but
then again... 

Value for Money

You are initially presented with 15 fighters of varying skills and
talents.  I thought that they were quite evenly balanced on the whole
and learning all of the moves will indeed take some time and patience.
There are also some "secret" characters that become unlocked as you
progress though the game.  

It delivers a good enough challenge and should hold your interest long
enough to be worth you money.
GRAPHICS: 16/20 I found K-1 to be a truly unique fighting game and highly addictive to boot. Yes the Playstation certainly has its fair share of fighting games in its library, but K-1 manages to stand out with its special brand of combat.
While it is certainly not in the same class as Tekken 3, Street Fighter EX, Tobol or Soul Blade it's in an entirely different category so it really doesn't have to be.
The graphics are pretty darn good and the overall gameplay is engaging. Control of the fighters is a bit on the sluggish side, but nothing that you can't compensate for once you get used to the game.
On the whole I would say that if you like fighting games, this one pretty much delivers the goods, it's just a different kind of fighter than you may be used to seeing and playing and it certainly requires a different strategy to be successful.
SOUND: 7/10
VALUE: 15/20


GRAPHICS: 15/20 Last year I remember being captivated byVictory Boxing, the Playstation's first boxing game. K-1 had a similar effect on me.

I much prefer the - dodge, jab, jab, dodge - gameplay than your standard 'multi-combo thrash-em into the ground' style of beat-em-ups which are accepted as the norm.

Of course a slight problem with VB was that you occasionally wanted to really let go and throw a barrage of lightening punches in your opponents direction. To facilitate this, K-'s style of fighting allows you to thrash out using you feet in between plodding left and right jabs which adds to the overall entertainment value of the game.

SOUND: 7/10
VALUE: 16/20


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