Kick'em In The Ghoulies

"It's The Only Way To Survive"

Vintage Video Game Review

The Way of the Exploding Fist - Beam Software- 1985

Version Reviewed- Sinclair Spectrum 

Released back in 1985 , Jackie Chan had just released Police Story a genre defining kick flick for the 80's  and we needed a fighting game to do the same .

Along came The Way oft the Exploding Fist for the 8 bit computers. 

Released on the Spectrum/Commoodore 64, and  Amstrad  CPC .

Fist was the game we had been waiting for, a full blown take on martial arts which consisted of kicks,punches, blocks flying kicks , and more.

Eighteen moves in all to fight and defend as you progressed from a novice up to tenth dan .

Each match consisted of 2 bouts in which you were scored points or parts of a ying yang , 

two ying yangs and you won that bout win two bouts and you would progress to the next level (dan grades) .

But the real brilliance of this game you could play two player against each other which would open up many heated battles between friends and family as each of you twisted and smashed  your  joystick to bits trying to beat your friend .

And Joysticks we broke, in our household we would spend hours battling each-other in winner stays on bouts. Now remember we had to use Joysticks not game pads, so finding one that suited your style was important.

A good set of suction cups was a must on all joysticks for that table top fight. Sat  three feet away from our small CRT TV  and surrounding a cofee table we would battle.

Often those suckers would fail, and that move you where about to pull off, would go out of the window as you crashed and burned and smashed over your cup of tea as you slammed into it with that joystick that just came unstuck.

No other  fighting game came close at the time, the detail to technique was sublime and those whopping eighteen techniques, to think now fighting games have hundreds of  techniques. Pulling of the Round-house kick in fist brought smiles to all, as your opponent fell to the floor.

What's amazing though is how well the game stands up today, it's still fun to play and it's a game that I would love to see re-created for the modern day  with a few hundred moves and snazzy graphics in a remaster of  sorts.

Fist was a genre defining game that claimed many a Joystick and spilt Tea in four  hour battles that gave you repetitive strain injuries, but hell it was a blast  to play in those  hey days of 8 bit computing.

It set the benchmark for all fighting games in the future .

Review By : Bruno.B 

Review: October 2021

Sinclair Spectrum Screenshot

Commodore C64 Screenshot


Develeoper: Beam Software

Publisher: Melbourne House


Gregg Barnett

Bruce Bayley

David Johnston

Neil Brennan

Year: 1985

Genre: One or Two player fighting game

Platforms: Spectrum / Commodore 64 / Commodore 16, / Acorn Electron / Amstrad CPC / BBC Micro 

Fist was a genre defining game that claimed many Joysticks, and spilt tea in four hour battles that gave you repetitive strain injuries. but hell it was a blast to play

Bruno.B - Kickemintheghoulies.com


Awards Won 

Crash smash - Crash Magazine

Sinclair User - SU Classic

Game of the Year - Golden Joysticks Award