( J.J. And Jeff )
game Cover
game HuCard
©1987 Hudson Soft / vol.6
Release : 1987-11-30 (¥4900)
HuCard (2 Mbits) HC62006
Action / Platform game

American Version
Released in America as
( TGX020014 )
Kato Chan & Ken Chan is a comedic side-scrolling platform game by Hudson Soft and based on a popular Japanese variety show featuring Kato Chan (Cha Kato) and Ken Chan (Ken Shimura). The story starts as Kato and Ken, both members of their own Detective Agency, receive an important phone call - a rich man has been kidnapped and the dimwitted duo must figure out how to rescue him. The world of Kato Chan & Ken Chan (or at least in the original Japanese version) is fairly unique and filled with lowbrow and toilet humor, where birds drop turds and toilets refill health. The player can either control Kato or Ken - interestingly, the remaining character will appear throughout the game, sometimes helping the player and other times just teasing him. Both characters come with the same (wacky) abilities - they can kick enemies at close range, jump on their heads or release a lethal flatulent attack. The kick can also be used on parts of the scenery to release coins (they can later be used in slot machines), food items (health) or to open doors or short-cuts that lead to special bonus screens. Kato Chan & Ken Chan consists of six levels, each split into four sub-stages.
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Kato-chan Ken-chan Gokigen TV Katō-chan Ken-chan Gokigen TV was a popular Japanese television show aired from 1986 to 1992 on TBS. It was apparently the follow-up to Hachi-ji Dayo Zen in Shugo! which is considered as one of the most important Japanese comedy show and which aired from 1969 to 1985 - the show was presented by The Drifters, a quintet band founded in 1955 who played songs in rockabilly style. Katō Cha (real name Hideyuki Katō) apparently joined the band in 1962 and began playing drums, and Shimura Ken (real name Yasunori Shimura) joined in 1968 but only became an official member in 1974. In 1986, they both teamed up to create Kato-chan Ken-chan Gokigen TV which became very popular in Japan. The name of the show can be translated as 'Fun TV with Mr Kato and Mr Ken' and it is notable for featuring a segment with funny home videos sent by actual viewers (interestingly, this segment served as a base for several other worldwide shows, including the popular America's Funniest Home Videos!). The PC Engine game tested here is apparently based on a recurring detective sketch called 'Detective Story' and starring the two comedians.

American Version Censure American Version Censure American Version Censure
Kato Chan & Ken Chan was curiously heavily censored and modified when released for the American TurboGrafx-16. First of all, the two characters were renamed J.J and Jeff, one is blond and the other one has red hair and always wear sunglasses. Most (if not all) of the wacky jokes where also removed; when Kato and Ken pee on a lamp post in the Japanese version, J.J and Jeff just relax in the American port, or when Kato and Ken fart to scare a crazy dog, J.J and Jeff use instead a spray-can.

Teaser text from the American version:
You can be J.J. Or you can be Jeff. Either way, you are a wacko detective on a kidnap case who stumbles into some hilarious action. Clues and surprises pop up everywhere. Use your head, your foot (kicking things brings great results) and your secret weapon - the spray-can - on 30 different enemies. So grab some french fries for energy and get ready for action!


Kato Chan & Ken Chan - manual J.J & Jeff - turbografx-16 manual
Click on picture to enlarge

Add your Pov here !

Weird ... wacky ... what other words can best describe Kato Chan & Ken Chan?... That's not to say that it is a bad game, the sprites are fairly large on screen and ooze with personality. No, in fact Kato Chan & Ken Chan is just a weird experience filled with all sort of lowbrow and toilet humor, and if you want to own a copy, I would advise to go for the Japanese version and not for the censored American port as there's not much left there if you remove all the funny and wacky moments the game has on offer. Kato Chan & Ken Chan is a fairly average platform game at its core and this is where the game eventually fails in my opinion - I don't mind the quirky sense of humor at play here, but controls are a bit floaty (characters have an annoying inertia) and later stages are way too difficult. All in all, the game is fun to play just to discover the silly jokes scattered throughout, but they unfortunately don't save it from being a monotonous, incredibly repetitive and average experience...

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