Has anyone here played Martial Masters?

I was at Galloping Ghost Arcade last weekend and I saw this game. It’s from 2001 and it was developed by IGS for the arcade, but apparently it’s never received a home console release.

The video below doesn’t really do a great job of showcasing it (not sure why the super meters are blinking, for example), but the animation is fantastic! Seeing it in person, I’d say it’s almost on par with the Street Fighter III line of games. Plus the characters are just fun and really well designed.

Has anyone played this? @KRAKENJIMMY, @TempusChaoti, are either of you familiar with this game or with IGS? Curious what you guys think of it if you have. It’d be awesome if this game could somehow find a way on to Xbox One, but I doubt that’d ever happen. It’s really a shame that it never made it to home consoles.


WOW! that looks cool!!! @BigBadAndy have you seen this game?

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Yeah my buddy and I played 3v3 over and over again and the characters were all a blast to use. I think I used Drunk Master, Monkey Boy and Ghost Kick the most. I also used Monk, Master Huang, Reika and Scorpion. It was just so cool to see these unique styles animated SO well, and the moves they had were just really fun.

The game’s supposedly based off of old martial arts movies, which I suppose explains why the character names are kinda generic, but I honestly couldn’t care less about that. The game is so fun!

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I have never even heard about this game.
It has that old-school Capcom/SNK fighter feel to it.
Pretty cool.

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We need a backwards compatibility version or something for XBOX! Was this ever on a console?

Yeah it’s unfortunate that the video’s run through doesn’t really show a lot of what the other characters can do, except for maybe the Scorpion battle and the True Lotus Master battle. But yeah, each character felt like they had a ton of stuff they could do, and the whole fighting engine just felt so smooth.

No, that’s the sad part, it’s never been on any home console before. It was only ever released in the arcade. From what I read, it came out during the 3D fighter boom of the early 2000’s and kinda got lost in the shuffle because of it. One could argue that kinda happened to Street Fighter III as well to an extent, I suppose. But whereas SFIII had a big company like Capcom and a big, well known name, this game didn’t have either and interest was never really there at the time, in spite of the obvious quality.

I’d LOVE to be able to play this on my XB1 some day, but I don’t know how that would even happen. I wish some company, whether it be Microsoft or someone else, would collect some of the rarer, hard to find fighting games out there that never really found an audience or didn’t do quite as well as anticipated, but were still good, or maybe have even were popular but just kinda lost to time and just gather them in a collection. I’d buy the hell out of that, especially if this game were among them!

*Ture Lotus Master

Watching the video now and that typo made me laugh out loud for real!
Also the names are so generic. Monkey Boy and Monk made me laugh too! Also, those win quotes from Master Huang are the most generic I have seen in a long time.

But the graphics, animations and the gameplay look astonishing. The character design is a bit generic too, but the way they move, those ghostly EX moves and such is just beautifully done. I find it kinda funny that Master Huang has Chun Li’s Kikoshou super though. :stuck_out_tongue:

I have never heard of it before. I will check out the video and see if I ever encountered it in an arcade. Once I get off this plane…

Nice to see another show appreciation for this unknown classic, had many a fun time with it back in the day

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Looks pretty good. Sort of reminds me of Garoudo Mark of the Wolf a bit with nice resolution and decent animation. I might check it out if t were to release in something


Yeah I wish the video quality was better. Actually playing in the arcade, I could swear the animation was SF3 quality. I was honestly floored by it a bit, mainly because I wasn’t expecting it to be half as good. Also, the gameplay was just flat out fun.

I’d love to see MS, Sony, Capcom, WB or whoever try and compile a bunch of fighting games that maybe didn’t get nearly the time in the sun that they deserved. I’d say this game, Primal Rage 2, maybe some of those Dreamcast classics that are practically lost to time nowadays like Powerstone 2, Last Blade 2, Garou, etc or maybe even older games like Mace: The Dark Age, Cardinal Syn, Weaponlord, Eternal Champions, etc.

Obviously, this wouldn’t happen for a variety of reasons (and lets also forget that some of those games aren’t that great lol), but it’d be a cool collection that I think fighting game fans would maybe want to check out. Plus it might be kind of a cool way to preserve some history, especially for some of those insanely hard to find games.

But yeah, all that fantasy aside, I was way more impressed with Martial Masters than I expected to be when I walked up to the machine. If you ever get a chance to play it, it’s definitely worth a go.

I love the animation style - it’s very, very close to SF III’s, which makes me wonder if this was a project done by the animation team (or a director) that worked on SFIII as well in some capacity.

Bringing back older games is harder than you think, especially if it’s beyond just emulating it and getting graphics to draw - we had a heck of a time with Phantom Dust without the source code to work from - I don’t think we’d get lucky with most of the fighters mentioned in the thread above when it comes to materials, so it would be an uphill battle.

And also the rights to them - who knows what limbo some of them may be in…


Yeah I can’t really tell. I looked at the credits for each game and didn’t see any names in common, though Martial Masters tends to only have a first name for a lot of people for some reason, unless I’m just looking at them incorrectly.

I know that IGS is based out of Taiwan though, which seems like somewhat of a rarity. So yeah, I’d be curious to know if anyone form SF3 worked on the game as well.

Yeah I had a feeling something like this would be impossible, especially for games that are so tough to come by. I believe there’s only one working Primal Rage 2 arcade machine out in the wild.

I just think it’d be awesome to have some sort of museum for many of the amazing older fighting games out there that either didn’t get a chance to shine or their day’s come and gone so long ago that many newer fighting game fans might not even know these great experiences even existed or how to get their hands on them even they did.

But yeah, I’m sure something like that, especially given the rights issue, as you mentioned, would make something like this nearly impossible.

I thought to mention Tao Feng and Kakuto Chojin in that list as well, but I’m not sure if MS has good or bad feelings toward these games. Didn’t the latter have to be pulled due to a character’s music or his tattoos or something along those lines? Either way, I tend to love any anthology that can gather a bunch of great games together or even so-so games that still deserve a little attention and love from fighting game fans. As much as I like the various SF collections or the MK trilogy collection, there are so many other games out there that shouldn’t be lost to time either.

Ah well, if anyone’s ever in Brookfield, Illinois and feels like playing some Martial Masters or Primal Rage 2 or a few hundred other games, I know a great place. :slight_smile: (not shilling for them, obviously, just been there a few times and enjoyed it)

Looks neat, a bit like Last Blade 2 in some ways.