Bunnies know kung-fu. Maybe you missed out on that one book wherein Peter Rabbit roundhouse-kicks Mr. McGregor in the face, but it totally exists. What, you can’t find it? Well, maybe you should just settle for Kung Fu Rabbit, an iOS platformer game that calls for bunny-quick reflexes.
Kung Fu Rabbit begins peacefully in the Temple of Rabbits. Suddenly, a “Universal Evil” invades and steals your students. Since Universal Evil spells trouble for everyone (it’s universal, after all), you start a quest to save your students and banish Universal Evil forever.
The floppiest ears in ninjaville.
Gameplay in Kung Fu Rabbit is broken up across multiple levels in three worlds (plus one bonus world). Each level is thick with obstacles, pits seething with Unspeakable Evil, and, later in the game, enemy goons. Simply put, you must hop your way around these hazards and rescue the student that’s trapped at the end of the level. Ideally, you’ll grab the bonus carrots that are lying around, too. They’ll help you purchase items and unlock game content.
Kung Fu Rabbit is a pretty easy game to wrap your head around, and it has a simple set of controls to match. There’s an on-screen button to go left, one to go right, and one to jump. That’s all you really need to carry you through the game, and said buttons are pleasantly responsive for the most part. You’ll run, jump, and even climb walls (think Mega Man X) with no problem.
Unfortunately, even though the controls in Kung Fu Rabbit are a lot tighter than what’s standard on the iOS, they’re not quite perfect– and that lack of perfection will trip you up more than once. For instance, it can be very difficult to move that barest inch that’s necessary to drop off a ledge, grab a carrot, and land safely; more often than not, even a tiny tap will send you flying off the cliff.
There’s the carrot; where’s the stick?
More problematic are the directional buttons, which are very close together. It’s not uncommon for your thumb to slip and send poor ninja bunny careening off in the wrong direction. If you mess up, it’s back to start. Even though the levels are considerably short, some checkpoints would not be amiss for this reason alone.
Control issues aside, Kung Fu Rabbit is a well-polished game with wonderful graphics and sound (and some long load times to go with them). The game also lets you skip around levels at your leisure, which is very nice. If you grow bored of one area, simply move on to the next (and leave the student to rot, you cold-hearted murderer). You can unlock worlds not only via progression, but also by spending the carrots that you find.
A lot of care and love has gone into Kung Fu Rabbit, and it shows. The iOS interface doesn’t always mesh well with platforming mechanics, and Kung Fu Rabbit similarly has its shortcomings for that reason– but it tries its best to offer up a tight experience, and for the most part, it succeeds.