Even hardcore fans of SNK fighting games probably have a hard time keeping up with the company's flagship series. Nevertheless, it still proves to be incredibly popular, particularly in Japan, and the latest game is being readied for release on PlayStation 2. We had to fight through a little bit of a crowd in order to get to play King of Fighters 4: Maximum Impact Regulation A, but after a little bit of pushing in line we were able to get a few bouts in.
The game itself is set to offer a roster of 41 playable characters, all of which have a selection of four costumes each. It also offers an assortment of game modes, and we managed to spend time with the practice and time-attack modes. The main menu also offered options for versus mode, a jukebox, and the network match. We presume that the last option will offer some sort of online play, but considering that this was the preview build, it was impossible to try it out.
The fighting itself takes place in 3D arenas, and the game's use of magical and sometimes outlandish characters makes it feel like it's much more tailored to Japanese audiences than Western ones. Compared to something like Virtua Fighter, KOF4 feels much less precise and technical, and perhaps a little less rewarding as a result. Nonetheless, it looks pretty good for a PlayStation 2 game, and while the enemies are pretty difficult, the game is still easy to get into.
We'll have more for you on King of Fighters 4: Maximum Impact Regulation A if and when the game receives a Western release date.