Xing Yi Quan

Original Title
Official Website
Also known as Martial Masters (English) or Shin I Ken (Japanese), Xing Yi Quan is the second of three fighting games to be released for the PGM system. The game is set in late Qing dynasty China and loosely draws upon real-world Chinese historical events such as the White Lotus sect uprisings and folk hero Wong Fei Hung as the basis for the plot and the characters.
There are ten characters to play as, with a final eleventh (Shi San Yi) unlockable once certain conditions are met. Basic controls are much the same as other modern fighting games – the four buttons are split between light and hard punches and kicks, holding back blocks incoming attacks and double-tapping forwards initiates a dash.
There are two gauges in addition to the usual health bar – a guard meter just below the player’s health and a qi meter at the bottom of the screen. Various moves make use of stored qi – as well as standard “super” style moves the player can press C+D while blocking to break off an opponent’s attack and find some breathing space.
The game encourages the sort of movement expected in Chinese martial arts by making moves such as recovery rolls, jump-in attacks and back dodges (often followed up by jump-in attacks) relatively easy to execute and cost-free. A full set of character move lists can be found here.
While one player mode is set up by default as a standard two round one-on-one game two player matches are always King of Fighters style three-on-three matches, although players are free to choose the same character three times if they wish.
As with many IGS games the character names were almost all changed in the English release, only White Lotus Master survived unscathed -
Chinese Name English Name
Huang Fei Hong Master Huang
Bai Shao Ting Scorpion
Hu Ke Tiger
Shi Wu Zhen Monk
Zui Bu Gui Drunk Master
Ling Er Reika
Tie Hou Er Monkey Boy
Gui Jiao Qi Ghost Kick
Ji Yun Xiu Crane
Qu Yan Hong Red Snake
Shi San Yi Saojin
The game has hidden “Extreme” and “Crazy” difficulty modes activated by button commands at the title/character select screens – the method for activating these varies depending on the version played.