Fighters' Impact (Import) Review

Most players won't miss much if they simply sit this one out.

The import fighting game genre is a weird grab bag of titles. Aside from the major titles, which are almost always released here in the US, there is an eclectic mix of 2-D and 3-D fighters that never makes it across the Pacific, usually because these oddballs fall into a niche that their publishers or distributors thinks is way too narrow for the game to achieve mainstream success. Fighters' Impact falls right into that narrow niche. That is to say, it's an interesting fighting game that features lackluster character design and some strange combo mechanics.

The only distinguishing feature of Fighters' Impact is its combo system. All of a fighter's moves readily run together, and that means as long different moves are executed, the combo keeps going. If a duplicate move is performed, the character "overheats" and is stunned for a brief moment, and therefore ends the combo. But as long as you can keep mixing it up and using different techniques, it's very possible to run strings of 15-20 moves. Another interesting side note is the "Style Select," which you choose before each fight. Each fighter (with only two exceptions) has three different styles, each of which constitutes an entirely different costume and set of moves.

Graphically, Fighters' Impact holds it own. The polygonal characters look reasonably detailed, and the backgrounds look nice. The most interesting graphical feature is the abundance of light sourcing, though it's only used in some of the levels. In the city stage, for example, cars constantly drive by, bathing the fighters in their headlights, and occasionally, police lights. The sound is also quite good, though the main attraction is the post-match speech, which includes "Weak, weak, weak! What a weakling!"

Fighters' Impact is yet another game that fighting game fiends will get a kick out of. But most players won't miss much if they simply sit this one out. It's an interesting game, but contains nothing so extraordinary that it warrants importing - or a special order.

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Jeff Gerstmann has been professionally covering the video game industry since 1994.

Fighters' Impact More Info

  • First Released 1997
    • Arcade Games
    • PlayStation
    Most players won't miss much if they simply sit this one out.
    Average Rating7 Rating(s)
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    Developed by:
    Polygon Magic
    Published by:
    Taito Corporation, Square Enix
    Fighting, 3D, Action