International Karate + (aka IK+) is a karate fighting game produced by System 3, back in 1987, for the three 8bit home-computers, Commodore 64, Amstrad CPC and ZX Spectrum. In 1988 IK+ was developed for the Atari ST and Amiga (1 Disk 3.5") and became one of the best fighting games for the 16 bit home computers. In 2003, following the retro-gaming trend, Maclean's Ignition Entertainment released IK+ for the Game Boy Advance and PlayStation in Europe.
STORY / GAMEPLAY
Three Karatekas are fighting on the same screen (and the same backdrop), in order to further their belts and skills. After gaining some points there are frequently two bonus games where you must either kick bombs away (before they explode) or you deflect fireballs holding a shield. A second player can join the game and the third is controlled by the CPU. The first of the three players to score six points is the winner and is awarded extra points for every second left. The player with the lowest score at the end of the round is out of the game. One of the most impressive aspects of this game is that punches and kicks are fast and furious, I mean really fast! There are twelve attacking moves and a handful of defensive styles at your disposal. Some details are taken directly from the original International Karate, plus a lot more, such as reverse face kick, double head kick (for hitting both fighters) and so on. IK+ is one of the best and more fun to play fighting games for the 16bits home computers. Win points, get the highest belt and become the new karate master! IK+ is everything a fighting game should be. It is intense, spectacular, loud and great looking!
GRAPHICS / SOUND The C64 version is the best release among all 8bit home computers with superb graphics and sound! The graphics have bright colors and more details compared to the MSX, CPC and ZX Spectrum versions. The background of the sunset over the sea looks great with occasionally some animated extra sprites like birds flying! Note that the game plays way smoother on the C64 version and the overall presentation is closer to the 16bit versions (Amiga, Atari ST)! The sound is even better on the C64 version. The in-game music is great while the sound effects are sampled sounds taken from the ST and Amiga (but of lower sampling quality)!
GAMEPLAY SAMPLE VIDEO
On our video below you may watch the Sinclair ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC and Commodore 64 versions.
Some videos belong to retroshowcase.com (indicated); others not