Kung Fu Panda
Based on the hit movie "Kung Fu Panda", "Kung Fu Panda: the Game", has all the trappings of a cheap video game tie-in. While the mechanics are far from original, the quality of this game and fun to be had here is far from cheap.
Just like the movie you play as Po, the hapless Panda with big dreams of one day becoming a kung fu master like his idols, a group of masters known as the Furious Five.
You play through many of the movies scenarios, as well as meet a few extra characters not in the movie, as you smash your way from the daydreaming, Noodle pandling , Panda Bear, in to the hard core Dragon Warrior. Aside from a few misses here and there, the story and humor is handled relatively well, and the actor portraying the voice of Po, does a really good job of impersonating Jack Black.
The graphics , while not completely next gen, are very impressive. The city glows with warm hues, the animations of all the animals seem to have been taken directly from the movie, and Po is very expressive, with his furry, doughy self.
With every punch and kick Po makes, his belly and arm fat jiggle and wiggle with the realism one can only ask for when using a panda bear for kung fu :-p
The fighting engine is solid, if a bit too inspired by other, more successful fighting adventure games.
Hardcore players will definitely get a sense of deja-vu when double jumping, parrying, grabbing and throwing with Po. Even the timed button presses, and occasional shooting mini games suggests that "Kung Fu Panda's" fighting mechanics are heavily inspired by games like God of War, and Heavenly Sword.
Now that's not to say there isn't any fun to be had for the hardcore gamer here! Just simply set the difficulty to "Dragon Warrior" and you should be able to get a satisfying workout for the thumbs!
Being as this game is geared towards kids, great effort is made to space out each new ability as you play along, and level up. There are also mini games littered through out each level that keep the brawling from falling into monotony. Even allowing you to play as some of the other characters like Master Shifu, Monkey and Tigress go a long way in keeping the fighting fresh and interesting.
Sections in the level where you must roll up into a ball and barrel through obstacles was particularly well done, as the controls where crisp and those levels were very fun and exciting. Sonic the Hedgehog could take a few notes from Po that's for sure!
The multiplayer brawl battles are hardly a decent consolation prize, as they cant be played online or against AI opponents.
Still as far as movie tie- in games go, its still one of the best out there in a very long time!