Budokan: The Martial Spirit
Budokan: The Martial Spirit is a versus fighting game published by Electronic Arts in 1989 for the Amiga and MS-DOS. The game pits the player against other martial artists in a tournament known as the Budokan at the Nippon Budokan in Tokyo. Ports for the Sega Genesis, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, and Amstrad CPC were released in 1991.
|Budokan: The Martial Spirit|
|Platform(s)||MS-DOS, Amiga, Genesis, Commodore 64, ZX Spectrum, Amstrad CPC|
|Release||1989: Amiga, MS-DOS|
1991: C64, Genesis, Amstrad, Spectrum
|Mode(s)||Single player, multiplayer|
The player begins the game as an apprentice in the Tobiko-Ryu Dojo, and initially practices skills in four dojos, either Shadow Fighting (Jiyu-renshu) or sparring with an instructor (Kumite). The weapons and combat methods available to the player consist of:
- Bo: classic Japanese long staff
- Karate: Okinawan unarmed combat
- Kendo: Japanese fencing utilizing a wooden sword
- Nunchaku: swinging weapon with two shafts connected by a chain
Once the player is confident in their skills, they can go to the Free Spar mat to engage a human or computer opponent, or enter the Budokan where the player faces consecutive opponents equipped with various weapons (including, but not limited to, those available to the player). The difficulty gradually increases, with each opponent demonstrating increasing prowess when compared to the previous. Most opponents are male, except for one female armed with a naginata. The gender of a ninjutsu exponent with a masked face is presumably female, as they are named Ayako.
Each match is preceded by a briefing screen which provides the player with several words about the opponent. Based on this information (and past experience playing the game), the player then chooses which weapon to use in the upcoming conflict. Since each weapon can only be used in up to four matches, an overall strategy or plan is necessary in order to successfully defeat all opponents. Losing thrice to the same opponent reverts to the previous opponent. Thus the tournament is forfeited if losing thrice to the first opponent, or running out of weapons.
There are two primary attributes shown on the screen -- stamina and ki, the power of each blow. Active movements like jumping and delivering difficult blows decrease the ki, while blocking attacks increases ki. As a player's stamina decreases, movements slow down, making it more and more difficult to act. When the player's (or his opponent's) stamina is completely exhausted, the match ends.