An ex-Fable developer wants to make you the next Bruce Lee.
Kostas Zarifis, Fable veteran and founder of indie developer Kinesthetic Games, announced today that Kinesthetic is seeking a publishing partner for its martial arts smorgasbord Kung Fu Superstar. The game, which can be played with a motion controller, a regular controller, or both, is still in the early stages of development.
You play as Danny Cheng, a martial artist and would-be film star. During the course of the game the player learns actual martial arts moves which are then used to progress through the various different stages of Cheng's film career. Motion control means that the player's movement has to be correct and registered as such by the game's sensors before the avatar can beat down the unruly hordes. Or presumably in this case the unruly extras and co-stars.
This is the game Zarifis left Lionhead to make. Kung Fu Superstar had been pitched at Lionhead's Creative Day and generated positive buzz, but when Zarifis realized Microsoft wasn't in any hurry to go ahead with the idea he formed his own company to get his dream game made.
In an interview with Eurogamer, Zarifis emphasized the importance of motion control, and said he didn't think the true potential of the platform had been unlocked yet. He cited the "massive shift" from conventional to motion control, and argued that "it should have been done in smaller steps, rather than going, now you have to use this."
For Zarifis, a martial arts fan himself, one of the elements he's most proud of is that "the combat system in the game is real Kung Fu. So instead of pressing X to do a punch, you have to use x Kung Fu technique to do that technique physically." He wants to give players the sci-fi thrill of a lifetime, the kind of thing in movies where "you see people play these crazy simulations and you think, oh my god, surely that's going to happen in a few years."
It's difficult to judge on so little information; Kinesthetic has a website, but there's not much there beyond a link to the game trailer. Still, here's hoping Zarifis and his team make this avatar a film star.