The Way of the Exploding Fist++

The Way of the Exploding Fist was released on the Commodore 64 in June 1985. It's one of the best fighting games of all time and all modern fighters owe a massive debt to this game.

Screen Shot Screen Shot

COGS Version

How can you improve on one of the best 2 player fighting games of all time? Easy.... make it 4 player!!! As well as adding the extra players, The graphics have been updated for modern 16:9 TVs/monitors and allow the game to scroll. I've tried to make the game play and feel as close to the original as possible. Parallax scrolling, you can never have too much parallax!


  • Press A Button to start.
  • Each additional player presses their A Button to join.
  • To add CPU fighters, press B Button.
  • Up changes your fighters robe colour while waiting to play. Down makes them crouch so you can work out which one is you.
  • Left and Right changes the CPU fighters skill level. You can see this by the CPU symbols. The more, the better the fighter.
  • Press Start when everyone has joined to start the fight.
  • Esc twice in quick succession will quit the game.

The moves are exactly the same as the original

For more info about using controllers and keyboard see Controllers

Game Modes

  • If there are 2 fighters, the game plays much like the original. The first person to make a hit wins the round and the fighters reset. First to 6 points wins.
  • If there are more than 2 fighters, it's more like IK+. The fight continues until one fighter has 6 points.

What's Coming?

The game is fully playable with the most iconic background but I'm working on new features:

  • More backgrounds. All the other backgrounds will be updated and added. I'm liking the idea of each background corresponding to a different game mode....
  • More game modes. Currently there are 2 game modes. Other potential game modes:
    • Last man standing. All fighters start with 6 points and are out when they lose them all.
    • Team battles. Each player picks a team and your attacks only work on the other team.
    • Single player against multiple bad guys. Bruce Lee style.


Windows x64macOS x64Linux x64Linux Arm64
Windows Download LinkmacOS Download LinkLinux Download LinkLinux Download Link

Version History

The version is stored in the CogsApp.cogcfg file.

Version:                 0.7.2R
04-Nov-220.7.1RIntial, multi player only demo.
05-Dec-220.7.2RAdded CPU players and classic game mode.
07-Dec-220.7.2P1Patch: Fix low punch. Add missing lib for Pi Ubuntu.
12-Dec-220.7.3RFrame rate fix/improvements.


Windows x64

  • Copy the ExplodingFist folder out of zip file. I create a Games directory in my home folder but anywhere will do.
  • Run the ExplodingFist.exe from the ExplodingFist directory.
  • Windows will usually pop up a "Windows protected your PC" window. This is because COGS is a brand new site.
  • Select "More Info" and "Run anyway" to run the game. You won't need to confirm again.

Windows Warning


You'll need to get your terminal out to install on macOS. I'll look at creating an application bundle but for now you'll need to go geeky. Download the zip file to a appropriate place. I create a Games dir in my home dir.

    cd Games
    xattr -c -r ExplodingFist
    cd ExplodingFist

macOS Frame Rate Issue

There seems to be an intermittant framerate issue on some macOS machine. Occasionally the game starts but seems to miss frames and generally run poorly. Quitting and restarted usually sorts it. I'm investigating the cause.

You can run the game windowed, which seems to solve the problem:

    ./ExplodingFist -w720


Unzip the download:

x64 (Intel)

cd ExplodingFist

arm64 (Raspberry Pi)

cd ExplodingFist

I've tested COGS and Exploding Fist on a Pi4 running Raspberry Pi OS and it works fine with no slowdowns. It should work on a Pi3 but I've not got one and they are unobtainable at the moment. If it is running slowly, setting the refresh rate down to 30 Hz might help. Let me know how it runs if you try it on a Pi3.

Linux Versions

So far, I've tested COGS on Ubuntu, Fedora, Ubuntu Mate and Pop OS. It works fine on these but there's a lot of Linux distros out there. Let me know if you're using a different distro and are having problems.


Frame Rate Issues

There were frame rate issues related to vSync that caused the game to run too fast. These should now be fixed in the latest version. This should also make the game run much better on slower hardware.


To uninstall, just delete the ExplodingFist directory.


If you have any problems installing or running the game, please let me know.