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Classic Games: Karateka for the Commdore 64

Note: This article has been reprinted from an original article that I wrote in early 2004 for the website "Lemon - Commodore 64."  I am the author, and it has not been stolen, so if you see it there, know that I wrote it.  The pictures all come from that site as well and include a link to the original website.


Back in the days when most games were simple ideas, a game came along that stood above the rest. That game was Karateka, programmed by Jordan Mechner (who later would go on to create the "Prince of Persia" series of games). Featuring an actual storyline, mostly unheard of outside of adventure or role-playing games of the day, and cutscenes, the game stood out as a memorable experience.


While not a completely original story, the woman you love has been kidnapped by an evil overlord and it's up to you to save her. You climb the mountainside where the overlord's hideout is, and battle opponents one at a time in order to reach the inner sanctum.

As the game progresses, more cutscenes appear to give you an update on what's going on deep down in the enemy's stronghold. The enemies get harder as you continue, increasing the challenge.

Featuring wonderful (though sometimes repetitive) music and sound effects, the game truly captures the imagination, even twenty years later! As mentioned before, the creator of this game later went on to create the innovative "Prince of Persia" series of games, but I think I like this game much better.


This game also has something rarely seen in the early days... more than one ending. I won't ruin it for you, but one ending is totally predictable... and the other one will shock you and make you laugh out loud once you realize what's happened...
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Vaporman87 Posted on Dec 31, 2012 at 12:12 PM

Yeah, I'm not sure why that is. It appeared just fine in the Admin Panel.

Interesting game. I reminds me of a game I had for our IBM PC back in the day, minus the cutscenes and other fancy stuff. That game was very difficult as it was more about good timing than button mashing.

Again, nice one ProphetSword.

ProphetSword Posted on Dec 31, 2012 at 03:44 AM

I see something went a little wacky with the first picture in the article. I wonder why that is?

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