King of Fighters '95 is the first Neo-Geo fighting game to make its way over to the Playstation. And sure enough, it throws in fighters from the many other SNK fighting games - such as Art of Fighting and the Fatal Fury series. In addition to the normal one-on-one fighting mode, KOF adds a team mode, which pits two of three teams against each other.
King of Fighters' main selling point, and most redeeming feature, is the sheer number of playable characters: 26, including two boss characters. For team battles, players can choose among eight pre-programmed teams, or use the "Team Edit" mode to select any three characters. Another feature that keeps KOF from being a complete Street Fighter clone is the inclusion of Last Resort moves: When a character is near death, new, fairly difficult moves become available. These moves include massive fireballs, super combos, and more.
The graphics in King of Fighters are substandard at best (think "bad 16-bit Street Fighter knock-off"). Though the backgrounds are passable, the characters are very pixellated - their only strengths are their slippery, smooth, lifelike stances and attacks. The characters also lack any star-quality: Players won't find a Ryu, Sub-Zero, Guile, Paul, or Jacky no matter how hard they look. What's worse, none of the characters possess any interesting special moves or attacks. So even with the unusual number of fighters to choose from, the pickings are pretty slim. The sound is also a little drab, though the music is passable and isn't too repetitive. Loading times are terribly long, and occur between every round of a team match.
Playing KOF is like playing a modified Street Fighter II arcade machine; people play it now and then, but never seriously get into it. While a few of the Last Resort moves look neat, they won't hold gamers' attention for longer than an hour. There's no question that this game is better suited for the SNES than for the Playstation.