Review and Screenshots by Tony
We all know that Fatal Fury started life on the Neo Geo. I must admit, when I first saw this game in the arcades, I was very impressed to say the least. It had huge colourful sprites, lovely backgrounds and it had something to totally distinguish it from Street Fighter. The ability to jump between two planes at will. This was a concept never seen in any other fighting game at the time. Also, lets not forget that two players could team up and beat on the computer opponent. So here we have a review of the Sega Genesis port (Mega Drive if you live in Europe or Japan) by Takara. This port is generally an accurate port. Although it has lost some colour, a bit of animation and two characters in the process. But let's take this one step at a time.
The Genesis port looks quite nice actually. Of course there are missing frames of animation compared to the Neo Geo version, but otherwise the game is vibrant and colourful for a Genesis game. There is quite a bit of background animation, but there are some nice touches from the Neo Geo version that were taken out of this port. One in particular is the train that passes by on Duck King's stage. However, there are some nice graphical touches that have been retained in this port. The storm on Tung Fu Rue's stage (with the added rain effect when you get to round 3) and the lightning storm on Geese Howard's stage. These stages certainly add to the atmosphere of the game. Cut scenes were retained in this port as well. While they are not identical to the Neo Geo version, they are there to lead you through the story.
The music in the Genesis port is quite faithful to the Neo Geo game. They are actually pretty good considering that the Genesis sound chip is not that great. I truly enjoyed listening to the music from Raiden's stage and Geese Howard's stage. Great stuff. The sound effects while not that great, they are still quite good. The voices in the game are just ok. You can tell what the character's are saying when they execute their special moves, but the voices suffer slightly from that "scratchiness" that most Genesis games have. Despite these flaws, the sound is still better than its SNES counterpart both in sound effects and voices. The Genesis port even includes cheering in Michael Max's stage and Richard Myers stage after a round ends and the winner is declared.
If you have played the Neo Geo version, this port plays almost exactly the same. The major gameplay element that was retained from the Neo Geo version was the divided playing fields. This gave you and your opponent the ability to jump between the two planes which created a different style of play for anyone who was used to the traditional linear playing field in other games of this type. This feature was
omitted from the SNES version making it an inferior port. However, not everything is perfect in this version of South Town. You can't team up with another player and take on a computer opponent and two characters are missing that were in the original game. Hwai Jai (The Thai Boxer) and Billy Kane (The guy with the big stick). This also means that their stages are not available in the game. Also, little gameplay quirks such as the ability to hit your opponent into the crowd or jeep in
Michael Max's stage are gone. Plus, some special moves are done differently from the Neo Geo version. Bonus stages are non-existent too.
But despite the missing characters, (Probably due to the lack of Megs. I think the game was only 12 megs on the Genesis) Takara did compensate in that the other selectable characters will challenge you between fights number two and four. For example: You are Terry Bogard and you are moving into fight number two against Duck King. You will square off and when the announcer says "fight!", Joe Higashi or Andy Bogard will challenge you to a match. After you defeat him, than you will fight the Duck King. Other than these differences the game plays pretty much the same as the Neo Geo original with the three button layout (Punch, Kick, Throw).
Fatal Fury was the first Neo Geo game I ever played (and owned). Despite its flaws it's still a very good game and port. This game is certainly dated, but Fatal Fury will always have that nostalgic feeling that I love. The Genesis port also has some different touches that might be worth checking out. For one, the characters that are missing in this port can be found hanging out in the background. Hwai Jai can be seen in Duck King's stage and Billy Kane is seen in the background on the far right corner of Richard Meyers stage. Also, adding the selectable as enemies into the game was a cool idea. If you don't have the Neo Geo original and want to play some old school Neo Geo fighters, Fatal Fury is still a pretty cool game. This port is certainly a better choice than the even more flawed SNES port.
Here you see Hwai Jai in the background watching the fight.
Choose your character.
The two playing fields are intact in the Genesis port.
This is one of the cut scenes from the game. Geese looks pretty pissed off.
The cool rain effect on Tung Fu Rue's stage.
Here is Joe Higashi challenging you before a battle.
This is a close up of Billy Kane in the background of Richard Meyers stage.
This cover looks much better than the crappy looking
U.S Neo Geo cover that's for sure.
Collection | Master
List | AES
Price Guide | MVS
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