In 2003 a Thai martial arts film was released that unleashed high-kicking, face-crushing, Muay-Thai action upon an unsuspecting public. That film was Ong Bak and it quickly catapulted its incredibly acrobatic and scarily brutal lead, Tony Jaa, into stardom, with people comparing him to other martial arts movie legends such as Bruce Lee, Jet Li and Jackie Chan. The massively successful film was then followed by two lesser-known sequels in 2008 and 2010 that transplated the action to the 15th century. As well as starring in and co-directing these, known lamp-post hater Tony Jaa also starred in the popular Tom-Yum-Goong (a.k.a. The Protector or The Warrior King), where he rescues his elephant...yes, his elephant.
With a new Ong Bak movie supposedly in the works, Thai developer Studio HIVE are now working on a game that will act as a 'Thai-in' (sorry) to the film. The game, titled Ong Bak Tri, will be a '2.5D' side scroller featuring intense fighting, free-running and quick-time action events.
The game's creators are keen to stress that it will stay true to the franchise's roots:
One of the most important goals for Ong Bak Tri was to deliver an authentic Ong Bak experience. Tony Jaa has lent his likeness to the game character and the development itself was closely accompanied by the great minds behind the movies, in particular the movie director, Thossaporn Poonnart, and the original creator and master choreographer, Panna Rittikrai.We've also got a selection of screenshots to accompany the announcement, showing our favourite shin-kicker running, fighting and meditating:
Ong Bak Tri is due for release this winter. The game is currently confirmed for PC, with console and smartphone versions also in the works. However, we still await confirmation on whether this will include Xbox 360.
We don't have them yet, but we'll publish a story as soon as we pick up the Ong Bak Tri: The Game achievements.