aka: Arcade Archives: Renegade, Ghetto, Kunio-kun The World: Nekketsu Kōha Kunio-kun, Nekketsu Kōha Kunio-kun
Moby ID: 15682
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Conversion (official) Included in See Also

Description official descriptions

This is the scrolling beat 'em up by Technos which started the Kunio / Nekketsu High series. The original takes takes place in a Japanese city, whereas its western version named Renegade is set on the mean streets of Brooklyn. This conversion later produced unofficial sequels Target: Renegade and Renegade III: The Final Chapter. You must venture through to meet your girlfriend, and then rescue her from her kidnappers. This is split into five levels, taking you through the subway and the docks as well as some inhospitable streets. A wide range of aggressive moves are on offer, including headbutts, kicks, punches and flying kicks. Much of the game's violence is depicted in a fairly tongue-in-cheek style, with an element of attempted humour along the way.


  • くにおくん ザ・ワールド ~熱血硬派くにおくん~ - Microsoft / PlayStation Store Japanese spelling
  • アーケードアーカイブス 熱血硬派くにおくん - Japanese Switch / PS4 spelling
  • 热血硬派 - Simplified Chinese spelling
  • 熱血硬派くにおくん - Japanese spelling

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Credits (Commodore 64 version)

Artwork by (European release)
Programmed by
  • Imagine Software



Average score: 60% (based on 38 ratings)


Average score: 3.3 out of 5 (based on 83 ratings with 2 reviews)

Obvious source of Double Dragon and The Combatribes

The Good
I'm reviewing Nekketsu Kouha Kunio-kun, not the westernised Renegade. So you play the role of Kunio, high school student and street fighter. The opening strongly resembles Marian's capture at the start of Double Dragon, one of the gang members punching out a friend of the hero, backed up by gangmates, but in this game the friend is a red-headed schoolmate of Kunio and he isn't captured. Kunio runs after the attackers to avenge his friend and this happens at the start of every stage, each time a new gang attacking. I like the idea of the hero defending his friend, supposedly bullied because of his red hair, a change from "rescuing the girl".

So the game is clearly Technos practicing their idea of a street fighting, beat-'em-up game, which they would of course practice again the following year to great success with Double Dragon and again in 1990 with The Combatribes. Nekketsu Kouha Kunio-kun actually resembles The Combatribes more than Double Dragon in that the fighting is around an "arena" rather than while progressing rightward through a scene and in that you face a new gang in each stage, but it also resembles Double Dragon II in that the attack buttons perform either punch or back-kick, depending on the direction you're facing. So the overall idea of the game is good I think, it's fun having cartoonish, Japanese teenage gang fights.

The Bad
I found the difficulty a huge problem. When your life bar runs down and you're beaten, you have to start the stage again, but if you're too careful, you fall afoul of the strict two-minute time limit and have to start again. So I think the game too quickly demands too much speed and accuracy. Another issue is that you can't jump towards an enemy and hence can't launch a flying kick towards them, you can only perform a stationary, "defensive flying kick".

The Bottom Line
Fun, but needs to be hacked so that you have more time to complete each stage ;)

Arcade · by Andrew Fisher (697) · 2019

A fine masterpiece of an arcade conversion.

The Good
As a fighting game, Renegade for me ticks pretty much every box needed to be a great one, in fact it stands out as one of the finest fighting games on the Spectrum.

It's a conversion of an arcade game by Technos which was much more popular in Japan. The arcade game was a bit of a confusing mess control wise, thankfully however the controls are much simple here and are quite effective.

The graphics are nice and up to the usual Spectrum standards. The character sprites and the level designs are very well designed and replicates the arcade game well. The music is really good and sets up a good atmosphere...unless if you bought the Hit-Squad budget release like me where the music was removed...bah!

The Bad
There's not a whole lot wrong with this game actually, but one thing rather bothering is that the controls, though much easier to manage than the arcade game, still have a habit of turning on you. Sometimes when you go for your jumping kick, he doesn't, leaving you a sitting duck to get hit when you land, especially in level four where you die with one hit.

Also, some of the graphics prove to be too complex for the humble Speccy, for instance level three's boss Big Bertha looks less like a big, angry woman and more like a badly designed robot with a bad case of depression...probably realises her fate.

The Bottom Line
Renegade is an excellent arcade conversion and so much better than the arcade version. Well worth a look.

ZX Spectrum · by SpecMaster (2241) · 2013


German index

On February 27, 1988, Renegade was put on the infamous German index by the BPjS. For more information about what this means and to see a list of games sharing the same fate, take a look here: BPjS/BPjM indexed games.

Japanese release

The original Japanese version (Nekketsu Kouha Kunio-kun) was the first title in the Nekketsu / Kunio-Kun" series which always revolve around the Nekketsu highschool and it's gangs. As such the Japanese Renegade has all characters dressed in school uniforms, and the backgrounds include schoolyards and other recognizably Japanese locations. The graphics were all re-drawn to fit into the "street fighting gangs" theme that was so popular at the time for the foreign releases however.

ZX Spectrum versions

There are two versions of the game: 48K and 128K. The latter is an enhanced edition that contains an additional level, in-game music and a shoulder throw manoeuvre.


  • ACE
    • October 1988 (issue #13) - Included in the Top-100 list of 1987/1988 (editorial staff selection)* Commodore Format
    • July 1993 (Issue 34) - Modern Classics: Beat-'em-ups
  • Computer and Video Games
    • May 1988 (Issue #79) - Golden Joystick 1988 Award: Third in category Game of the Year
    • May 1988 (Issue #79) - Golden Joystick 1988 Award: Runner up in category Arcade Game of the Year* Power Play
    • 1987 - #3 Best CPC Game '87

Information also contributed by Zovni


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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Martin Smith.

Nintendo 3DS added by GTramp. Wii U added by Michael Cassidy. Nintendo Switch, Xbox One added by Rik Hideto. Antstream added by firefang9212. PlayStation 4 added by Sciere. Thomson MO added by Hervé Piton. Apple II added by Kabushi. Wii added by gamewarrior. DOS added by gamer p. NES, SEGA Master System added by Katakis | カタキス. Arcade added by rcoltrane.

Additional contributors: Shoddyan, chirinea, Sciere, Xoleras, Patrick Bregger, mailmanppa, Rik Hideto, li zhen, Jo ST, FatherJack, ZeTomes.

Game added November 29, 2004. Last modified July 3, 2024.