The King of Fighters 2006 Stats and Records

No Stats I’m afraid :I

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The King of Fighters 2006 Review

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It’s time to look at a King of Fighters title! I actually haven’t played too many of the games in this series, but enough at this point where I have a good grasp of the series. Aside from the new PS4 one I played the first Maximum Impact and 2 of the GBA titles. This one is probably the most plot heavy game that I’ve played and that’s not saying a whole lot since it’s just a bunch of Arcade modes like most of the old fighters. The plots do get pretty out there though and I hope that they actually got to finish.

The general plot is that the King of Fighters tournament has been revived. However, this time Geese and Duke aren’t the ones pulling the strings. Instead, an alien warrior is the one who has devised this tournament and he wants to take over the body of whoever wins it. Many fighters enter for various reasons. Terry and Rock decide to check it out because they figure a villain is probably running it so they can make sure that nobody gets hurt. K’ and two other operatives check it out because they figure it might give them a lead as to who has been kidnapping famous scientists from around the world. Another alien warrior has entered so she can put a stop to his plans. One android was payed by the alien to eliminate everyone while another has entered for ice cream. Almost every character has a reason to enter while others have absolutely none so the writers stick them in arcade mode without an actual story. That is incredibly lazy if you ask me though so for the future everyone better have a role.

Naturally this can get repetitive if you decide to beat the game with every character though. There are over 30 after all and for the most part they only get 2-3 cutscenes each so you aren’t going to gain a whole lot compared to the 14 battles that you have to win as each character. You get the opening cutscene, an ending cutscene, and then 2-3 mini cutscenes for the final fight. These can definitely be pretty interesting though and I didn’t expect all of this talk about aliens. The game hints at an impending invasion from the rest of the aliens. I somehow get the feeling that this hasn’t happened yet in the games as it probably would have been a big deal, but it did make this game feel a lot more epic. I prefer a general story mode to character stories whenever possible but at least these were pretty interesting. I’d say that over half of the characters have a good reason to continue on with the tournament.

There was once a time where I would try to beat the game as every single character, but now I just beat it with enough characters to unlock everyone. In this case that number was 14 so it was a decently long campaign. There is still a lot of replay value here though like unlocking all of the stages and costume colors. I don’t care too much about the colors, but the stages would be fun to go for. Collecting them all involves completing all of the missions though which would certainly be very difficult to accomplish. That would buy the game a lot of time as well and it’s not as if the price is too high at this point so it’s a good purchase.

The graphics are pretty solid. The character models are on point. I’m not sure what system they use for it, but it seems like a similar style to the old PS2 Naruto games as the actual models are thrown right into the cutscenes which makes them run smoothly. I also imagine that it makes it easier to add a bunch of cutscenes than if they had to animate them all individually. It works pretty well. Then the soundtrack is also good. It’s a little limited since I don’t have too many of the stages, but the ones that we do have sound pretty good to me. On a technical level this game is on point.

Naturally this is the kind of game that is at its peak when you play multiplayer. Going up against a computer is fun enough of course, but fighting another person really lets you see how far you’ve come. Can you land those easy bake combos on someone who knows how to block? That’s the real question. Each character has a good array of normal attacks and special abilities. I believe each character may have around 5 special attacks or maybe even more. There are a lot of control options here so I wouldn’t be surprised if the game has a really high skill ceiling. You can move up and down the map to an extent to dodge attacks and also use a super speed roll. Button mashing doesn’t work as well as in Street Fighter because not every attack is meant to lead into a combo so sometimes you’ll just trap yourself in lag if you use a slow attack. It does make you think about your best course of action though. By the way, since I didn’t really mention the gameplay style earlier, it’s a 2D fighter like Street Fighter. I’m sure you picked that up by now, but just a heads up in case it wasn’t clear.

Overall, This is a pretty fun fighting game. King of Fighters is still a step behind Tekken and Street Fighter for me as far as the actual game series and story goes, but it’s solid in its own right. Perhaps it would move higher if I actually played more of the games. I am pretty interested in the PS3 titles that came to America and I think I’m missing 2-3 PS2 ones as well. I still don’t think it will ever rise to be the top fighting game series or anything, but I am glad that the series was recently revived on the PS4 and hopefully it will continue strong. The more fighting games the better after all. It’s a rather somber thought, but among by 114 video games on the backburner I don’t think I have any fighting games left. That’s actually pretty scary, but shows how that genre is slowing down compared to the others. It’s probably because one game can last a while so there’s no need for sequels. Just look at Street Fighter V or even FighterZ now. I doubt either of those will get a sequel because they will probably last for a long while.

Overall 7/10

King of Fighters XIV Review

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The hype behind this latest installment in the King of Fighters series was definitely impressive. After Cashcom decided to release a very barebones rendition of Street Fighters, this was KoF’s chance to quickly show the fighting game community how it’s done. It does not dissappoint as there is a lot of content here to keep you satisfied without having to wait months for extra features. While SF V still wins with its final package and simply having the more interesting characters/smoother gameplay, King of Fighters holds its own and the series has come a very long way since the old PS2 title that I played.

The story mode is like the classic fighting game titles. Each team has an ending, but there is a story sprinkled in as well. Every character shares the same opening and then the big event where a cosmic being by the name of Verse shows up. You learn a little bit about Verse from some of the character endings, but either way, he means business! Taking him down is definitely going to be difficult, but the King of Fighter heroes are up to the task!

Some of the story endings are lacking a little. Since every team has an ending, it makes sense that not all of them would be hits. I mostly enjoyed the ones that delved into why Verse shows up and the ones that foreshadow events in King of Fighters XV. The ones that are more about day to day life like having a buffet at a bar or talking about animal names are a little less interesting. It’s partially due to the fact that I don’t know the cast too well yet though. I’m sure that they’ll get cooler as I pick up more of the games and get used to them. The story segments that the characters share is always pretty epic though. I do hope that these endings go somewhere though. There are a lot of hintings at plot twists and such which involve Verse, but if this never pops up in KoF XV, then it’ll be a bit of a waste.

King of Fighters did a great job with the soundtrack. The theme when Verse shows up is really good and I also like the main theme of the game. I can’t really tell what the singer is saying to be honest, but the beat is good and the liveliness of it all fits the game rather well. The stages also have good themes which is a must for a fighting game since you will be hearing them quite often. Likewise, the graphics are also very sharp. The cinematics that are present look very good and the character models are all on point. It’s all very clear and the actual gameplay will keep reminding you that this game is current gen. The interface and menus are also very good and I would have liked something like that for Super Smash. I’m still not crazy about the way that the menus work in that title. KoF XIV is similar to the PS3 in that sense as everything feels very new and modern.

Now, let’s talk about the actual gameplay. It’s a classic 2D fighter where you have standard attacks and power moves. You’ll want to throw, roll, and block as well. There is a lot of depth to be found in this title. If you aspire to be a world class player, you should expect to spend a lot of time in the training room. I’d say that the game has even more options than the various Street Fighter games. There are a lot of different ways to attack and dozens of variations so it will likely be overwhelming as you try to memorize the moveset from all of the characters. It’s easy to pick up as a beginner and hard to master, which is a good balance. I definitely like the gameplay, although I would put it under Street Fighter and Tekken. I think what holds it back a little is just that the character models are a little slower. Tekken makes up for this with how much damage you deal per hit. The fights in King of Fighters will always take a little longer. The 3 on 3 default mode is always a lot of fun though and if you’re going to have a long fight, then it may as well be in style.

I haven’t gotten a chance to test my skill against any actual players yet, but I’m sure that a free PS+ weekend will be occurring soon so then I’ll be sure to go online. I’m confident that my button mashing skills and experience with fighting games should serve me fairly well. After you’ve played story mode, you can also head to the Trials and Tutorials. Survival Mode is also at the ready. The tutorial mode goes very in depth and teaches you all of the concepts in the game. It can be difficult towards the end, but you’ll be glad that you played it. For a game this complex, you will need to actually think about what you are going to do. Button Mashing is heavily discouraged based on how it is set up, although you can make do if you know how.

The trophies seem tricky, but a little more achievable than some other fighting games like SF IV or SF V. I got a decent amount of them, although it’s a fairly low amount if you look at the game on the surface. A lot of the trophies are online based so I can’t really go for those quite yet. It helps add to the replay value that is found here. As this is a fighting game, that means that the replay value is automatically infinite. Whether you play locally or with friends online (If you have PS+) the gameplay should never get old. This is the kind of game that you can have fun playing for hours and hours on end as you try to improve your skills and rank. Grabbing all of the illustrations, movies, and sounds should also take some time.

Verse made for a good original villain here. I hope to see him return although I definitely want God Rugal as well. That guy was awesome in the old games. Terry was about as cool as I’d expect him to be and Kyo seems like a good main character as well. I’m still not sold on Iori, but maybe he’ll get cooler as he goes along. It’s pretty neat how there is a Freddy Krueger parody here as well and even a guy who looks rather similar to Ryu. The ice character is also cool since having someone with super powers is always pretty neat. As it stands, I do think that the cast is more interesting than Virtua Fighter. If we get more stories as the games go on, maybe it’ll continue to pass other video game series as far as the cast is concerned.

Overall, This game is certainly worth the full price. It has a very large cast so many of your favorites should be here and finding a character who fits your play style should come naturally. The graphics and soundtrack are solid as well. The only weakness in the game would be the story to an extent, but I still did like the animated cutscenes and ultimately, you’re playing the game for the gameplay more than anything else. If the new Super Smash could be a big success without a story, there’s no reason why King of Fighters can’t do the same. I definitely recommend checking this game out and then we’ll see if you ultimately agree that Terry Bogard is the most intense character in the game.

Overall 8/10

King of Fighters Maximum Impact Review

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King of Fighters has always lagged way behind Tekken and Street Fighter for me. None of the characters are particularly interesting and it has always felt like a Street Fighter game, but with all of the iconic characters replaced with randoms. I’m sure that later games have helped to give all of them some personality and backstory, but this game definitely doesn’t help their case. I still have a lot of catching up to do with this series though so hopefully the price goes down on some of the originals soon. I went on my big fighting game kick for Christmas, but there will probably be a different theme this year so it could be a while. Well, let’s dive into this title.

First off, one disappointing thing here is the fact that the Arcade Mode is even more bare bones than usual. Characters don’t even get an opening or an ending anymore. That’s essentially the definition of lazy if you ask me. You are only incentivized to play through the game once since every character has the same opening and ending. There is as slight plot at least, but it is still lazy to now give each character something unique. They are all invited to a tournament that is being held by some gangsters. Once you defeat everyone who stands in your way, you defeat the main villain in front of a large crowd and he says that you’ll both meet again…in hell! It’s a pretty hardcore line even if we completely wrecked this guy.

In a way it is good that the characters don’t get a real story though. That’s because your game option settings don’t apply to Arcade Mode so you have to do a best of 3 the entire time. The final level is also very difficult to the point where button mashing simply won’t be effective anymore. You’ll have to end up actually learning the game a bit and even then it should take several tries to finally beat the final boss unless you’re already a pro. I’d rather not imagine myself doing it with every character and I only ended up completing the game with the first two.

The gameplay is your average 2D fighter like with Street Fighter and the other similar games. It does seem like it is very hard to get up in this game though because attacks seem to have very high priority. In the final level of Arcade Mode, forget about even trying to rise. Your opponent will simply slam you back into the turf every single time and his combos can take out half of your life bar or more with a single combo. Something seems off with this and I could see the competitive scene dying instantly for this game. It reminds me of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles game for Gamecube. Of course, that game was a blast and had excellent graphics and a solid soundtrack to back it up. It clobbers this game, but that’s another story.

This is still a solid fighting game. It’s why fighters are so much fun. Even if the characters are not all that likable and there is no real story mode to speak of, the vs mode is what really counts here. A good multiplayer mode means instant replay value and this is the kind of game that is perfect for playing at any random time. You can just turn on the PS2 and prepare yourself for some fun games. Of course, it has less replay value if you’re on your own of course. Still, I guess you could have fun fighting the computers for a while.

I’ll give the game some more props for the fact that it actually has a big opening. Back in the day a lot of games skipped this step or barely did anything with it so that was pretty neat. It unfortunately could not get past the trap of including a little fanservice though so that was pretty regrettable. The dialogue and writing is still as clunky as ever, but at this point King of Fighters is known for that so maybe it was partially intentional at the time. Beyond that, the graphics are pretty good. I’d say that they’re certainly above average for this time period and actually look better than the Street Fighter Alpha games. Granted, that may not be saying a whole lot since those games were quite a bit older.

The soundtrack is very solid as well. There is a solid opera esque theme for one of the stages and there are quite a few tunes. The game did a good job of adding in a lot of variety and this really puts Capcom Fighting Evolution to shame surprisingly. This is definitely one of the highlights for King of Fighters so hopefully the future installments will follow suit in this regard. Just give me some more hype music and we’re good.

Overall, Maximum Impact is a worthy spinoff to the main series. I still think that the games could do a better job of making the character likable and motivated. There’s no real reason to pick someone over another character aside from the all important tiers because none of them have any real personality yet. They all seem like tough guys and gals. Everyone seems to share that trait, but they don’t really have anything else to show for it. Terry’s my favorite character, but that’s really because of the name so I’m not totally sure if that counts. There’s not a whole lot to do here besides multiplayer mode, but that should be enough to tide you over. After all, if you’re buying the game, I assume that multiplayer is the reason for your purchase. Hopefully the series will have more of a real arcade mode in the main titles.

Overall 7/10

The King of Fighters Ex 2 Howling Blood Review

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This is one of those games that has a story behind it! I actually purchased the game quite a few years ago. The problem was that I had to wait until I purchased the first game. It took a while, but I pulled that off about a year ago….only this game would not work. Since it had been so long since I purchased it at Gamestop, I couldn’t get a refund. That was all right, Game Boy Advance games are some of the greatest of all time. They will eventually start to work and I would be ready! Finally, that day came…and I was ready!

When the game started to work I knew that I had to seize my opportunity. I quickly beat the game with the first team. There’s not really much of a story mode here of course as it’s your standard Arcade Mode. It uses a 3 on 3 system (Not at once of course. It’s 1 on 1 and you move on when your teammates are defeated) and there are 21 fighters, which makes for 7 teams. That being said, just about all of the story modes play out in almost the same way. The first game was infamous in that fashion as I beat it well over a dozen times only to see the exact same cutscenes and identical dialogue from the villains. No matter what the new hero would say, the villain would just go on a tangent. I don’t know if it was that similar here, but definitely close to that.

That being said, it didn’t even matter. See, the game had to have the last laugh. The cartridge was in Japanese for some reason and there’s no way to switch the language setting. It’s safe to say that I was mind blown as I could not actually read any of the dialogue in the “story mode.” The game must have been laughing a little too hard as the next time I put it in, the game had stopped working. I could probably try to revive it once again, but there’s no real reason to do so. I got what I came for as I beat Arcade Mode once. There’s little reason to beat it 6 more times, especially considering that the dialogue is in Japanese.

There’s no real replay value here except for just battling computers or hoping that someone else has a GBA with the game. Beating Arcade Mode with the 7 teams should take you about 3 hours or so. The game’s definitely not a long one so you will be done with it in no time! Since it only goes for a few dollars or so in person and a little more online, I’d say that it’s still worth the purchase. Just make sure that your game has the right language setting or you’re toast!

The graphics and soundtrack are essentially identical to the first game. This is one of those games that you could really believe is just a recoloring of the first title as they are that similar. The sprites are just about the same and likewise with all of the combos. I’d say that the graphics have aged decently well and I’ve always been a good fan of the classic sprites. They really made you feel involved in the game and the fast soundtrack makes the fights more enjoyable. The soundtrack isn’t very memorable, but it gets the job done and you’ll be ready to crush the competition!

As for the gameplay, it’s your standard Street Fighter styled way to fight. You can throw out some quick attacks or just more powerful ones that are easier to dodge. Every character has some special attacks and you can also have an ally jump in to help you out when you’re in a pinch. The gameplay is fun and very easy to get used too. It’s hard to picture myself ever going up against experienced fighters in this one though as I find the controls to be a little hard to grasp. It’s a pure button masher for me so I just press everything and wait until I win. If that doesn’t work, then rinse and repeat the process until it does!

There’s not much more to say about this game. As I mentioned, there’s really nothing to do after Arcade Mode except to maybe enter Vs and have a little fun there. Beyond that….it’s basically Game Over. Still, I definitely won’t be forgetting this game anytime soon thanks to the epic story behind it. The game may have had its laughs, but I still managed to beat the game before it powered down again so I count this as a perfect victory. I haven’t played many King of Fighter games at this point, but I look forward to challenging more in the future. I’m always up for a fighting game after all and sometimes trying out a classic with no real gimmicks like this one is the thing to do when you need to get back into the genre! (Of course, Super Smash Bros literally blows the genre apart on its own)

Overall, King of Fighters Ex 2 Howling Blood is a solid game. If you bought both of the GBA games at the same time then you would probably be a little disappointed as it is essentially the same game in a new wrapper. I don’t even think that they increased the character count all that much and it may have even gotten lower. That being said, I certainly haven’t unlocked anyone so there are probably 1-2 more guys to unlock. If you want to play a fighting game from the old days, then this is definitely the title for you. There can be unlimited replay value if you really like the gameplay so it all rides on that. With this game down, it’ll be time to go back to the Legend of Kay and maybe some MnM’s as well.

Overall 7/10

King of Fighters Ex: Neo Blood Review

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The King of Fighters series has never been quite as popular as Street Fighter. It got pushed over to the obscure arcade brawling side along with Virtua Fighter. There are definitely many fans of this series, but it just doesn’t get a lot of publicity anymore. At least the PS3 game is typically in stores. (And I will get to that era someday) I’ve owned the sequel to this game for a long time to I always knew that I’d buy the sequel someday. What I couldn’t have expected…was that I’d be playing over 400 rounds in this game!

Yes, I played over 400 rounds in this title. Shocking isn’t it? Well, there are over 20 characters and you have the typical Arcade Mode for each of them. The matches consist of a best of 5 rounds set so you’re guaranteed to be playing at least 3 rounds for every match. There are 8 battles per character so then you just do the math. 8*3*22= Over 400 Matches. The only problem with the Arcade Mode is the fact that it’s not very well done. There usually isn’t a whole lot of effort plugged into it, but you still expect some kind of opening and ending. There are no openings, but each character does get an ending. The problem is that most of the cutscenes are identical for each character. The dialogue is slightly reworded and it doesn’t even make sense half of the time. The writing can be so bad that it’s funny.

Of course, you begin to tire of the gameplay after the first 200 matches or so. I would actually say that it’s a decently good feat that I was able to complete the 400 rounds without feeling too exhausted. So, I have to give the game some props for that. Unfortunately, Arcade Mode is really the only thing to do in the game. This was in the era before Wi-Fi so I can’t say that I expected a real multiplayer option. Connecting two Game Boys together as a last resort was fun back in the day, but I need Wi-Fi!

The actual gameplay barely needs to be explained, but I’ll quickly reference it anyway. You essentially press your buttons as fast as you can to try and attack the opponent. There are likely combos and other tricks that you can try, but button mashing is enough to win. It’s like Street Fighter, but the gameplay isn’t quite as deep yet. This is a GBA game so it definitely had its limits at the time. The actual gameplay can still be fun for a while, but it’s not a real page turner like Smash Bros.

The soundtrack is pretty good for the game. The themes are pretty catchy although you may find yourself putting the game on silent to tune out the sound effects. The characters yell for every action and that can definitely get old pretty quickly. The graphics are decent. The game uses sprites and the actions flow together pretty smoothly. The sprites could definitely look a lot cleaner, but they do have to be compressed into a pretty small screen. The graphics definitely aren’t bad considering that this is a GBA game. The Battle Network titles definitely show this one up though.

I bought this game for a penny and then I gladly paid the 4 dollar shipping. For this price, it’d be a shame not to play one of the big fighting titles! This won’t make the series begin to compete with the others like Street Fighter and Tekken, but it’s a start. I remember Terry from the olden days of Capcom vs SNK. Terry is my official gamer name across all of my titles so it’s definitely good to see a fighter with the name. I can assure you that he is one of my go to fighters in the game. Assuming that I ever play it again of course.

The problem is that there is no replay value. Beating Arcade Mode 2-3 times will likely be enough for most people. After that, there is only so much that you can do with the game. The rest of the modes are more of the same. There is a team option, but it will just mean that each battle will be a whole lot longer. You can always increase the difficulty to test your limits and to see what the game has in store for you, but that will only buy you a little time at best.

Overall, This was a decent fighting game. It’s basically what I expected, although the score is slightly lower than I had envisioned. The one thing that didn’t come through for me was the Arcade Mode. I expected better endings to be honest and a more diverse experience. Having the same thing happen over and over again can get pretty tedious. The roster of characters is pretty large, which is always great and their attack methods are diverse. I recommend this game to the truly hardcore fighting fans who want to see how the mechanics will work on the Game Boy. The game is going for a pretty cheap price right now so it’s really a steal. I recommend going for it, but if you want more of a lasting experience..get Ultra Street Fighter IV!

Overall 6/10