There is a deep-rooted fascination with penguins in Japan, which explains why there are more than a handful of video games starring the flightless bird, with Sega’s Pengo being the country’s most famous offspring here in the States. At first glance, Penguin Kun-Wars is yet another bright, bouncy, and cheerful game from the Land of the Rising Sun. Yet underneath its charming exterior is a devilishly challenging game that’s sure to ruffle a few feathers.

Though the title suggests a blast-fest or possibly a strategy game for control of Antarctica, Penguin Kun-Wars is a sporting event of sorts, with gameplay a strange mix of dodgeball and ping-pong. You are, not surprisingly, a penguin, and you have apparently signed a waiver to compete in a 16-critter tournament against a lineup of adorable koala bears, pandas, beavers, and mice. The main viewpoint is not unlike tennis, with the camera fixed behind your penguin in the foreground and an opponent in the background. In the first match, a crowd of energized animals lines the stands, though none appear to be penguins.

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