The game begins with the protagonist, Han Tao, taking a nap. Warriors inexplicably leap into the scene and the action starts. The first thing you’ll notice is the filmic layer of grain and dust on screen.
“It’s old school style, but a brand new game,” said Nick O’Leary, PR Coordinator for publisher Namco Bandai. “It’s very reminiscent of the older kung fu 70s movies. Very tongue-in-cheek humor, over-the-top fighting action.”
Combat is a mix of punch and kick combos, with a heavy emphasis on evasive maneuvers. The right stick controls dodges in four directions. Some environmental objects, such as pots and trees, glow red and can be used to hurt enemies or make a quick escape. Enemies aren’t afraid to gang up on you – a few quick attacks can result in death. Meditation will regenerate health quickly, but it leaves you vulnerable.
The O’Leary addressed the game’s difficulty. “This build is a little bit harder than the final version – they’re still trying to balance the difficulty,” he said. “It’s still pretty early. It will be challenging for people, but not as hard as the demo is.”
The game will feature two-player co-op, as well as a four-player versus mode. Both modes will be playable locally or online.
Possibly the most interesting feature of the demo was a mysterious “3DTV” setting buried in the options. Switching it on caused the screen to flicker violently. It’s not clear what this setting’s true purpose is, but the implications for 3D functionality were there. When asked about the option, O’Leary responded, “Don’t worry about that…it’s a developer tool. Yeah, it’s the debug menu, weird things are in there.”
Namco Bandai will be releasing Invincible Tiger: The Legend of Han Tao this summer on Xbox Live Arcade and Playstation Network. The price, according to O’Leary, “will be standard downloadable game pricing.”