Black Belt (video game)
North American cover for the game
|Platform(s)||Sega Master System|
|Genre(s)||Beat 'em up|
Black Belt is a side-scrolling single-plane beat 'em up game released for the Master System in 1986. It is a localization of the Japanese Mark III game, Hokuto no Ken (北斗の拳), based on the manga and anime series of the same name (which would later be published as Fist of the North Star in English). The export version was released without the Hokuto no Ken license, forcing graphic alterations to the game. Black Belt was one of programmer Yuji Naka's early games prior to his involvement in Sonic the Hedgehog.
Plot and gameplay
The player takes control of a martial artist named Riki, who sets out to rescue his girlfriend Kyoko from his rival, Wang. The game is composed of six left-to-right side-scrolling stages in which Riki faces different types of underlings (depending on the stage), facing the occasional sub-boss at midpoints of certain stages. Keeping true to the original source material Hokuto no Ken , underlings violently explode upon being punched or kicked. At the end of each stage, Riki must confront the stage's boss, each being susceptible to only one type of attack. The player must exploit their opponent's weakness and use it to finish the boss off.
Black Belt was originally a Hokuto no Ken game in Japan. The changes were the characters themselves and the backgrounds, as well as everything related to the property. Furthermore the third boss is changed. In Hokuto no Ken it featured Ken fighting Devil's Rebirth in zoomed out mode. In Black Belt the fight is against a new character, Gonta, in the zoomed in mode similar to the other boss battles. However, the game mechanics are still the same and even the lesser enemies die by exploding into bits, which in Germany resulted until 2012 in legal ban ("Indizierung") of this game for people below 18 years of age. A sequel was released for the Mega Drive in Japan, which was released internationally as Last Battle, once again stripped of the Hokuto no Ken license.
|Black Belt||Hokuto no Ken||Role|
|Ryu||Shin (シン)||1st Boss|
|Hawk||Colonel (カーネル)||2nd Boss|
|Gonta||Devil's Rebirth (デビルリバース)||3rd Boss|
|Oni||Toki (トキ)||4th Boss|
|Rita||Souther (サウザー)||5th Boss|
|Wang||Raoh (ラオウ)||Final Boss|