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Console: Sega Genesis
Year: 1994
RFG ID #: U-040-S-05110-A
Part #: 728301
UPC: 014633072839
Developer: Delphine Software International
Publisher: Electronic Arts
MA-13 (VRC)

Genre: Fighting
Sub-genre: 2D Fighting
Players: 1-2
Controller: Six-Button Controller
Media Format: Cartridge 24 Meg
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Collection Stats:

  • 242 of 7406 collectors (3.2%) have this game in their collection
  • 6 of 7406 collectors (0%) have this game in their wishlist.
  • 3 of 7406 collectors (0%) have this game for sale or trade.

  • Six-Button Controller
  • Standard Controller

Shaq-Fu is for the most part a standard 2D fighting game from the 16-bit era. What it lacks in originality, however, it regains in reputation. Often regarded as the worst video game of all time, Shaq-Fu was released in 1994 for Sega Genesis and SNES amidst a mania surrounding all things Shaq. The game's graphics are some of the best you'll find of the day, and one of the only thing that sets it apart from a myriad of other Street Fighter II clones. Even the Shaq-fu's promoters seemed to know this, as they listed it as the first of the game's "features" on the back of the box. Full text from the back of the box can be found below:

Shaq brings all his awesome skill and size to a multiworld fighting game.

As Shaq, use your lightning-fast shuriken and other martial art techniques to prevail over 11 intensely evil warriors in the enforcement of justice. Or choose any of the 12 warriors and fight head to head. Summon Voodoo's bone shattering earthquake, rebound with Rajah's shockwave sword, or lash out with Sett's terrifying mummy wrap. Scores of secret power moves to discover and master.

  • Awesome animation from the designers of Flashback
  • Destroy your opponent with special power moves
  • Choose Shaq or one of the 11 other inter-dimensional martial artists
  • Tournament, duel, and story modes
  • Battle against the computer or go head-to-head with another player

24 meg cartridge. Handheld versions of Shaq-Fu were also released on Game Gear and GameBoy.


This review refers to the Nintendo SNES version of this game.

Shaq-Fu is a standard one on one fighting game. The premise is pretty simple. Shaq is hanging out at a martial arts school when he suddenly gets sucked into an alternate dimension. There are evil kung fu monsters there and he must defeat them.

People often discredit Shaq-Fu simply because it featured NBA player Shaquille O'Neil. Gamers complain that it was a shameless marketing play to take advantage of the Shaq-mania which was sweeping the nation at the time. But to immediately dismiss a game just because it shamelessly features a pop-icon is close-minded and shallow. Personally, I have found that if one actually plays Shaq-Fu they'll figure out the game is crap for a whole myriad of other reasons.

Shaq-Fu really blows. Now I'm not saying it's the worst game I've ever played, but if I had to name the ten worst SNES games ever, it would be in the list. It might even make the top five. It's crap.

Why is the game crap? Well it's like this: If I made a list of all the qualities I would consider "wrong" with a video game, Shaq-Fu would contain all of those qualities. The controls are clunky. There is no strategy or basis for any of the action. The sound is obnoxious. It's almost painful to play. But the graphics are good.

Oh yes, the graphics are excellent. They are smooth and richly colored. Each animation is gorgeous. They created using motion capture with live actors, and they manage to very accurately and realistically portray lifelike movements. And that brings me to my point about Shaq-Fu. It is extremely obvious when playing the game that the designers sacrificed every other detail of the game for the graphics. For instance: Shaq doesn't just jump when the player pushes the jump button, he goes through a detailed jumping animation which takes a second or two and THEN he jumps. It looks great. Unfortunately, by the time Shaq actually jumps the enemy has already lain the smacketh down upon him. All of the other commands produce similar results.

Trying to do the special moves is even worse. Shaq's projectile move is called the Shuriken. The Shuriken requires the player to press a pretty standard combination of buttons. The combination is toward, back, toward, punch. I discovered (to my horror) that when the combination is entered correctly Shaq will punch, (because the punch button was pressed) then he waits a second, then he starts the Shuriken animation, (which takes a few more seconds) then he actually throws the Shuriken. This is unacceptable. In fact, as a video game player, it disgusts me. The animation may look great, but there is something seriously wrong with a game when I can push a button on the controller and then go upstairs and fetch a drink in the time it actually takes for something to happen.

Shaq-Fu teaches an important lesson about the art of the video game. You cannot sacrifice game play for graphics. Don't get me wrong here. Graphics are important. Modern games like Grand Theft Auto: Vice City wouldn't be nearly as cool without sweet 3-D graphics. But imagine how boring Vice City would be if the developers decided to cut the size of the city down to one block to make room for better models and textures on the disc. That would be a crappy game, like Shaq-Fu.

RF Generation Review Score



Console Reg. Type Title Publisher Year Genre
Sega Mega Drive E S Shaq-Fu Electronic Arts 1994 Fighting
Sega Mega Drive Portugal S Shaq-Fu Electronic Arts 1994 Fighting
Sega Mega Drive Portugal S Shaq-Fu [Genesis Repack, Textbox] Ecofilmes 1995 Fighting
Related Games:

Console Reg. Type Title Publisher Year Genre
Sega Mega Drive E S Shaq-Fu Electronic Arts 1994 Fighting
Nintendo Game Boy U S Shaq-Fu Black Pearl 1995 Fighting
Nintendo SNES U S Shaq-Fu Electronic Arts 1994 Fighting
Sega Game Gear U S Shaq-Fu Electronic Arts 1995 Fighting
Game Trivia:

  • Rated 'MA-13' for 'Mature Audiences.'
  • Shaq-Fu was also released on Nintendo's SNES, GameBoy, and Sega Game Gear.
  • Shaq-Fu was also released in Europe on the Sega Mega Drive.
  • 24 meg cartridge.
FAQ's/External Links:


Fast kick
Power kick, menu item selection
Fast punch
Power punch
Move boost
Character movement, menu movement
Pause game, menu item selection
  • Pressing D-PAD down and A will shield your character.
  • Pressing D-PAD down and back will do a defensive crouch.
  • Shaq-Fu is designed to work with a six-button controller. However, it is possible to play with a standard three-button controller. During fights, you mist hit START to switch between the A, B, and C buttons and the X, Y, and Z buttons. Additionally, to pause the game with a three-button controller, you must hold A, B, and C, and then press START.
Game Credits:

Project Manager: Paul Cuisset
Game Design: Paul Cuisset
Lead Programmer: Thierry Gaerthner
Additional Programmers: Patrick Bricaut, Fabrice Rodet
Lead Graphic Artist: Thierry Levastre
Graphic Artists: Valérie Amghar, Stéphane Aussel, Michéle Bacqué, Thierry Bansront, Grégory Béal, Eric Caron, Michael Douaud, Lauren Dréno, Hervé Gaerthner, Elie Jamaa, Frederic Michel, Christophe Moyne, Olivier Nicolas, Fabrice Tété, Cécile Thomas, Jean-Marc Timert, Paul Tumelaire, Roman Vaidi
Music: Raphaël Gesqua
Executive Producer: Don Traeger
Producer: Jim Rushing
Associate Producer: Greg Suarez
Assistant Producers: Jeff Brown, William Schmitt, John Vilandré
Technical Director: John Brooks
Product Manager: Lisa Higgins
Package Design: Dave Parmely, 13th Floor
Package Art Direction: Nancy Fong
Documentation: Valerie Hanscom
Documentation Layout: Brian Conery
Testing Manager: Al Roireau
Product Testing: Jeff Brown, Curtis Cherington, Brian Enslow, Chip Pobst, William Schmitt, Matt Vella, John Vilandré, Michael Yasko
Quality Assurance: Dave "Kung Fu Grip" Schenone, Stewart "Grasshopper" Putney, Rob Solomon, Dan Gosset
Special Thanks To: Shaquille O'Neal, Management Plus, Leonard Armato, Dany Boolauk, Anne-Marie Joassim, Dennis Tracey, Sarah Smith, David Whittaker
Martial Arts Advisor: Dave Parmley, Shotokan West Karate
Page Credits:

Michael Collins: Page design, HTML code, scans, miscellaneous data, related games, game trivia, overview, game credits, external links, screenshots, instructions.
Eddie Herrmann: Perl script.
The Evil Leon: Review
Keith Brown (Tan): UPC, Rating
aeroc: Cart Size
Razor Knuckles: Subgenre

Last Updated: 2014-08-20 03:53:12
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