Review: The King of Fighters 2002 Unlimited Match

by Nathan Dutil

Marcelo Jabulas | @mjabulas – The 1990s were the heyday of video games. Countless genres have emerged from this period. Among them, fighting games, which have acquired a format that continues to this day. And whoever tried to reinvent the wheel did very badly.

It’s no surprise to anyone that “Street Fighter II” was the game that set the rules for rock fighting games. Energy bar, timer, campaign progression, as well as the aesthetic in which the fighter stood out in the storyline. The game was a radical evolution of the first title, from 1997.

SNK, Capcom’s competitor in the arcade market, quickly understood that the path of fighting games had to follow the “SF” wave. And a few months later, still in 1991, she released “Fatal Fury: King of Fighters”, which puts the player in charge of brothers Andy and Terry Bogard, as well as Thai boxer Joe Higashi.

Despite the success, the owner of Neo Geo saw that she could invest in more fighting titles such as “Art of Fighting” and “Samurai Shodow”. Meanwhile, Capcom introduced new editions of “Street”.

But the SNK asset was introduced in 1994, dubbed “The King of Fighters 94”, or simply “KOF”. The game featured fighters from “Fatal Fury” and “Art of Fighting”, as well as non-combat games like “Ikari Warriors” and “Psycho Soldier”.

“KOF” has become a tsunami with versions for a multitude of consoles, as well as almost annual editions. Now debuts on “PS4”. This is an edition with no less than 66 fighters.

The game

It had been a long time since I had played “KOF”. Despite the 98th edition for PS2, he barely remembered the movements of the few characters he used to play in arcades. Common sense always dictates that Terry Bogard be chosen. After all, their movements are very similar to the duo Ryu and Ken from “SF II”.

But it is worth taking a tour of “tasting” the other characters. And the secret is to apply everything you can remember about fighting games. These half-moons command forward, down, up, forward twice, down and forward, down and back, forward and back. Test everything, with punches and kicks one hit will do.

One of the coolest modes is Endless where the player only has one turn. It’s a more dynamic way to fight the huge roster of characters.

In this mode, you can choose the option of random combat. And when you win, your fighter is replaced by another. The coolest part is that if the player is hit a lot in the first fight, only some of the blood will be available in the next.

It’s a cool way to test fighters we usually never choose. And if the friend loses the round, game over.

For those who cannot play with friends in person, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, it is possible to play online. But it’s good to practice first, because the team playing in a net is usually not godly.

Visual

The graphic style of “The King of Fighters 2002 Unlimited Match” follows the pattern of two decades ago. However, work has been done to refine the animations, filters have been applied to reduce aliasing. The result is nostalgic. The dotted pixels have that old-fashioned gaming charm.

However, the superiority of SNK games over other producers is notable. For 25 years, the resolution of televisions, both in arcade machines and in televisions, when the Neo Geo console was on, hid the refinement of powerful Japanese hardware. Now, even with the large pixels, it is possible to see the richness of movement and moving elements.

last word

Playing “KOF” again was a trip back in time. Back in the days when there was an argument over which fighting game was the best. There was the guy who was good at “KOF” and the guy who was addicted to “Street”.

“The King of Fighters 2002 Unlimited Match” is available on PSN for R $ 75.

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