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Continuing the tradition of arcade-style boxing games like Punch-Out!!, Punch King casts players in the role of a touted prospect named Tiger Armstrong. The goal is to become the top-ranked pugilist after fighting 12 offbeat characters from around the world. The game is played from a perspective behind Armstrong's back as players throw combinations of left and right hooks, jabs, uppercuts, and feints at such characters as Basho Ishibashi, Tuten Kha Boom, and Wan Jab Lo.
As players slug it out with their opponents, they'll need to monitor three meters: health, stamina, and KO. Taking punches without blocking or ducking will diminish Armstrong's health, while throwing too many punches will reduce his stamina. Health can be replenished in between rounds, but stamina is restored only after resting or using defensive maneuvers. Each successful punch landed by players increases the KO meter, which, once filled, enables Armstrong to swing away freely without affecting stamina.
Three modes of play include Arcade Mode, Vs. Fight, and Survival Mode. Arcade has players challenging each of the 12 fighters in succession until becoming World Champion, while Vs. Fight is a single bout against any of the available fighters. Survival challenges players to keep fighting until they kiss the canvas, as there is no time limit and health does not replenish in between rounds. Punch King also features voice clips and individual arena music that changes based on the fight's locale. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide