Asuka 120% Excellent: Burning Festival (Import) Review

All-girl fighting games haven't seen the light of day in the US.

by

Though they're quite the rage in Japan, all-girl fighting games haven't seen the light of day in the US. And when you consider games like Asuka 120% Excellent, you won't have any doubts about why. While Asuka is a cool game in some ways, it's way too out there to achieve any kind of American mainstream success.

The game takes place in a high school, and each girl fighter champions a different club. There's representatives from chemistry, volleyball, biology (she fights alongside her frog), tennis, baseball, gymnastics, and more. The backgrounds also reflect this club motif, and they range from a lab to a volleyball court. Each character has a collection of special moves, several of which appear to be directly lifted from the Street Fighter series (in fact, most characters have a dragon punch of some kind). The special moves are very easy to do: hit down to forward, down to back, or down twice, followed by a button. But the game's fighting mechanics are where things start to get a little strange: It's like the custom combos and alpha counters from Street Fighter Alpha 2 are always on. The action is very fast, and hits can block other hits - making it possible, for instance, to punch fireballs out of the air. So if both characters unleash a multi-hit attack at the same time, the hits will bounce off each other until one of them finally gets through.

The graphics in Asuka scream 16-bit. If it wasn't for the game's generous use of speech and music, this could easily be mistaken for a Genesis game. The backgrounds look dull, and on the whole the game looks very washed out. The sound effects are a mixture of slaps, bumps, and yelps; the music is acceptable, though some of the tracks are a tad too peppy.

In the final analysis, this game presents an interesting diversion for American hard-core fighting game fans. But those with only a passing interest in the genre won't understand why anyone would even think about playing a game that looks this pathetic. Asuka 120% Excellent will hold your attention for a few days, but it will get old very quickly. Unless you can find an outlet that rents import games, you'd be well advised to stay out of this schoolyard scrap.

The Good
N/A
The Bad
7.1
Good
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Jeff Gerstmann has been professionally covering the video game industry since 1994.

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Asuka 120% Excellent: Burning Fest. Excellent More Info

First Release on May 09, 1997
  • PlayStation
All-girl fighting games haven't seen the light of day in the US.
7.1
Average User RatingOut of 16 User Ratings
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Developed by:
Fill-In Cafe
Published by:
SCEI, Family Soft
Genres:
Action, Fighting, 2D