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Platform

Xbox 360

 

Genre

Fighting

 

Publisher

Ignition Entertainment

 

Developer

SNK Playmore

 

ESRB

T (Teen)

 

Released

July 29, 2009

 

 

- Awesome animation

- 3 vs. 3

- Good fun for fans of King of Fighters

 

 

- Mostly unplayable online

- All that awesome animation can't make up for the lack of features and bare-bones menus

 

 

Review: Tekken 6 (360)

Review: Fight Night Round 4 (360)

Review: Metal Slug Anthology (Wii)

Action Figure: Vanessa (King of Fighters)

 

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King of Fighters XII

Score: 6.5 / 10

 

king of fighters xii          king of fighters xii

 

King of Fighters is a great example of uneven development. (At least, development as I understand it.)

So much love, care, and attention was put into animating and painting King of Fighters XII that I guess there just wasn't time to make online play run less like a jittery jackrabbit (though the patch seems to have made this more stable) or

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include more than just the very basic fighting game modes or create attractive menus or fix some of the hit boxes so clearly landed hits actually count.

King of Fighters XII's fighting looks so good, I'd put it against heavy hitters like Street Fighter, Tekken, Soul Calibur, and DOA. There's something nostalgic about the 2D "flat" animation and rich The-World-as-Seen-by-Japan backdrops that

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twinges the part of my brain that holds my memories of the local arcade. Playing side-by-side with a human opponent to complete that arcade feel is really the only way to play King of Fighters XII.

Unlike a lot of fighting games, having an arcade stick doesn't feel necessary. I think that has to do with with the 2D perspective. At any rate, I didn't feel like the gamepad got in the way of the experience. I could still pull off those "critical counters" and Guard Attacks that competitors thrive on.

There are bigger problems with King of Fighters XII, but why omit one of the characters that King of Fighters/Fatal Fury is known for, Mai Shinranui? The Bogard brothers are here, along with Athena Asamiya, Kim Kaphwan, Leona Heidern, and Ryo Sakazaki and a long list of other recognizable names for long-time fans of the King of Fighter XII. But what about Mai?

 

king of fighters xii          king of fighters xii
 

King of Fighters XII doesn't even attain fan service levels -- there's nothing in the way of extras or anything special about the game aside from the sterling presentation of the actual fights -- so it's hard to even recommend it on that level; even a "fans of the genre" summation is tenuous. I love the animation and look of the game and some the technical fighting aspects, but there's not much else.

- D.D. Nunavut

(January 29, 2010)

 

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