Merscom LLC today announced an agreement with Lionhead Studios pioneer and Media Molecule co-founder Mark Healey to publish Rag Doll Kung Fu for the PC in North America. Widely praised for its originality and creativity at the 2005 Game Developers Conference, Rag Doll Kung Fu is a finalist in the Develop Industry Excellence Awards for Innovation and New PC Intellectual Property. The game, which is scheduled for an August release, will retail for US $19.99.
One of the most original aspects of Rag Doll Kung Fu is that it is the first wholly independently developed game to be distributed through Steam, a broadband platform for game distribution. Merscom’s retail version of the game will ship with a non-Steam build for players without Internet connectivity as well as the Steam version for free updates, patches and community support. Players can choose the version that best suits their needs.
Rag Doll Kung Fu uses entirely physics-based animation and collision; there are no pre-set animation routines, no button combinations to memorize or locked-in fighting moves. Unlike any other fighting game on the market, Rag Doll Kung Fu allows players to use a mouse to move the characters’ limbs as if they were puppets on strings. By coordinating movements of the arms, legs and body, players can orchestrate impressive attack moves and defensive maneuvers. Sounds tricky, but it doesn’t take long before players are spinning through the air like Romanian gymnasts!
In addition to its original, addictive gameplay, Rag Doll Kung Fu includes 16 levels of story mode complete with a retro-style kung fu film. Players can also import graphics and use pre-made body parts to construct their own unique characters. A variety of single-player mini games include Ninja Onslaught, ChuChu Wing Pooh, Rag Doll Soccer and Rag Doll Athletics. With several USB-compatible mice and a Windows XP computer, Rag Doll Kung Fu allows for multiplayer games all on one machine. Players don’t have to fight; they can dance, chat, or act with up to 8 other players online or through a local area network connection. Users can make their own kung fu movies by recording the action with the game’s movie maker. There are also unlockable secrets such as a music-mixer that allows players to remix audio tracks.
“We are proud to be publishing Rag Doll Kung Fu because not only is it unique and original, it’s also a lot of fun,” said Lloyd Melnick, Director for Merscom. “We plan to include some extras in the retail box to provide even more value to our customers at $19.99.”
“I’m totally thrilled that this game has made it to retail. When I started making it at my kitchen table, I never dreamt that I would even finish it, let alone see it being sold all over the world!”, said Mark Healey, Rag Doll Kung Fu creator. “I hope everyone enjoys playing Rag Doll Kung Fu as much as I enjoyed making it. If it brings a smile to your face, then I feel I have done something worthwhile. May your Chi power grow strong.”
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