Gigi the Warrior, the review of the crazy satirical fighting game



Halfway between a satirical comic book and a picchiaduro, Gigi il Guerriero pokes fun at Italian politics in style, let’s see how in the review.

Writing a review of Gigi il Guerriero seems almost unfair, because evaluating it as a video game could be reductive, being to all intents and purposes a sort of interactive comic, a divertissement that has vaguely the form of a fighting game, but it is above all a way to have a laugh about Italy and its politics. And it’s already funny that while we try to sensitize the latter on the need to give space and support to the video game industry, here comes this project by Simone di Giorgi that perhaps is not the most suitable for a captatio benevolentiae towards the institutions, because it really doesn’t tell the truth and for this reason it is irresistible. It is a satire of big grain, which does not go for subtlety, but the ridiculously forced parallel between the parable of a certain Italian politician belonging to a certain Movement and the story of Ken the Warrior is really enjoyable, there is little to do.

Of course, the choice of Buronson and Hara’s series is smart, because it winks at a generation that grew up dreaming of Ken’s adventures and living in the shadow of the Second Republic, which is able to precisely grasp both the quotes of one and the other, here fused together as only in the wildest imaginations among the fumes of alcohol.

At the end of the fair, the playful part becomes almost an accessory, at least during the first game, when you would simply advance from meeting to meeting to see how the absurd story evolves.

Speaking of history, Gigi the Warrior narrates the exploits of a young politician intent on following the path of honesty in a post-apocalyptic world where the government has fallen and the old parties no longer exist. Initially defeated by the fearsome Cavaliere, who carves the five stars on his chest, he is saved and trained for combat by the President, who sets him on a path of revenge and redemption to restore democracy in an Italy in disarray, prey to criminal gangs and old political tools who aim to cover the role of Emperor.

Gameplay: a real button masher

In Gigi il Guerriero the politicians do not have their original names but are easily recognizable

The game is all about confrontations between the protagonist and the opponents he meets on the way, through various Italian cities now destroyed and turned into desert heaths. “However, mankind has survived” and apparently also several politicians, who in the meantime have recycled themselves as more or less lethal fighters and marauders. Introduced each time by hilarious scenes in the style of Ken the Warrior, the fights have little of the fighting and much of the button masher without much reasoning behind: during the fight are displayed three pairs of fists on the side edges of the screen, which light up red for brief moments. The player simply has to touch the fists when they are red, trying to do it as fast as possible to inflict more damage and avoid hitting late, or else losing energy.

The gameplay is all here, and it’s easy to see a clear reference to Punch Mania: Hokuto no Ken, the old booth that required you to throw real punches at a series of timed targets, just inspired by the clashes of Ken the Warrior, only that the overall effect is obviously very different here, on a small touch screen. The mechanics are extremely simplified and based only on the immediate reaction to the input on the screen, which is also made a bit ‘difficult by the poor visibility given by the position of the hands that inevitably cover sensitive portions of the display and everything is reduced to a frantic pressure in the hope of getting the right shots that appear randomly, not exactly the most fun.

An animated satirical strip

Gigi the Warrior, one of the final moves directly taken from the tradition of Kenshiro

The absurd situations staged and satirical representations of politicians represent the core of the matter and are the elements on which all the interest is focused, the game is basically a pretext to get some fat laughs by dropping us directly into this interactive madness between parody of Ken and general mockery of the entire Italian political landscape. In this, Gigi il Guerriero works perfectly, also demonstrating an artistic direction of a certain thickness, which is based on a nice style with regard to the drawings and a good ability to adapt the real figures to a completely foreign context as the post-atomic apocalypse of Kenshiro. We have seen similar operations in the past, even quite enjoyable in their being caciarone as Call of Salveenee or Super Botte & Bamba 2 Turbo, but in this case shines a greater consistency of vision, emerging more as a stand-alone product than a kind of handcrafted mod, at least in terms of technical implementation and style.

Touch of class is the overlapping of the dialogues in Japanese taken from Ken with the exchanges of jokes that the characters address each other in the interlude scenes, which contribute in some way to create a mixture that works, despite the general absurdity or perhaps because of it. In the same vein, let’s also mention the sequences with the coup de grâce that bear the name of the move in kanji and the montages with recordings of real speeches by the various politicians used in a way that is often perfectly apt. In some cases, such as when a certain art critic was insulting us in rotation while Gigi was performing the typical Kenshiro-style screams, we had real difficulty in sustaining the fury of the confrontation given the laughter that the situation provoked.

Comment

There is little to turn around: the gameplay of Gigi il Guerriero is absolutely limited, insufficient to ensure a satisfactory gaming experience, but this title is based on something else. It is to all intents and purposes a sort of animated satirical strip, an interactive comic that pays homage to and distorts a myth as Ken the Warrior to make fun of Italian politics in a rather caciarona but irresistible. It is a satire of large grain that we find here, as befits a game that literally makes us punch some bigwigs in politics (not without a certain satisfaction, we must say) but it is very easy to tear several laughs. At the proposed price, is probably worth buying just for these, but taking into account that as a game has little to offer.

PRO

  • The subject is really unique
  • Aesthetically very well done, despite the limitations of a small production
  • You will easily find yourself laughing like crazy by randomly pressing on the screen
  • The gameplay is practically non-existent
  • Once you’ve seen the whole story it has little else to offer but to revisit it
  • Have you noticed any errors?
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