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Before we begin in earnest, I have two confessions to make. First: This was not the original format of this series. The original plan was to do a quick overview of the best cell phones on the market and a quicker overview of the games available, and answer the question: “Is 2013 the year when smartphones grow up as a viable gaming platform for hardcore gamers?”
The best kung fu movies are the ones where the story sets up a wild and barely plausible premise, and then quietly hides in the corner as fists and kicks fly for the duration of the running time. Likewise, the best brawlers let the story fade from view, only bringing it back up to vaguely explain why this particular stage is set on the moon and why you’re beating up on mutant dino-men wearing red hats this level. Kung Fu Strike: The Warrior’s Rise comes pretty close to this ideal.
There’s something timeless and pristine about action movies from the late ’80s and early ’90s: a certain mindless, thoughtless, yet reassuring simplicity. If Roger Ebert were a zen master, he might ask “what is the sound of one hand spraying bullets through dense jungle underbrush with a mini-gun?”, and we would all know that the answer didn’t matter because the point was to sit down with a large tub of popcorn, shut down all critical thinking processes, and enjoy pre-gubernatorial Jesse Ventura trying to kill a cloaked space alien with a laser turret on his shoulder while Arnold Schwarzenegger guided his team of commandos to the chopper.