TOKYO-After putting out games like Fatal Fury and Art of Fighting, SNK combined a bunch of its fighting characters into a little game called King of Fighters. Over the years, KOF developed its own storyline and grew a life of its own, above and beyond any of the games that it took characters from. Now, SNK is seemingly doing the same thing with a new tag-battle game called NeoGeo Battle Coliseum. The game has been out in arcades for some time now, but at the Tokyo Game Show 2005, SNK is showing off a PlayStation 2 version of the game.
NeoGeo Battle Coliseum takes characters from King of Fighters, Art of Fighting, Fatal Fury, Mark of the Wolves, Samurai Shodown, Last Blade, King of the Monsters, World Heroes, Metal Slug, Aggressors of Dark Kombat, Kizuna Tag Battle, and Athena. It also has a couple of all-new characters. This new and often redrawn amalgamation of fighters are selected two at a time and placed into a tag-battle-style fighting game, where you can switch between your two characters at any time.
The character choices in NeoGeo Battle Coliseum are pretty cool, though NeoGeo fans will probably be able to name at least one character that they wish were in the game. Ours? Heavy D!, obviously. But it's just neat to see characters from the World Heroes universe again. And being able to play as Marco from Metal Slug is an interesting and weird addition that you wouldn't expect. The mixture of fighting and non-fighting characters almost makes the game feel like Marvel vs. Capcom 2, which threw in a whole lot of weird characters from Capcom's history.
Graphically, NeoGeo Battle Coliseum looks pretty good on the PS2, though the Atomiswave-powered arcade original does have more vibrant colors. However, the PlayStation 2 version will feature online play and a few extra, though standard, modes, like survival and practice.
NeoGeo Battle Coliseum is expected to be released in Japan later this year on the PlayStation 2. No North American release has been announced at this time.