Review by Shinji

"KOF Gets Ugly, Iori Doesn't Anymore."

SNK's back to their old tricks with the 5th episode of the KOF series. This time they seem to have fallen into the same trap as Capcom's Street Fighter Alpha 3 did; a bunch of Kyo clones are running around and causing havoc amongst the other fighters in this episode. And the clones just get uglier everytime one's made. (Take a look at K' and the endboss Krizalid. :P )

Choppy here and there. But that's the price one pays when playing a game on a ''last generation'' machine. Leona and Blue Mary don't have her ''sit-down'' animations. All in all, anything that should be there IS there.

Some of everybody had to change the way they operate. Iori, without his ''Blood Riot,'' had been given a new super and his old one (The 8 Maidens) lengthened. Robert is now a ''charge'' fighter. Blue Mary and Terry now have ''multiple command'' moves. Mai is in her ''Real Bout'' incarnation. And Kyo himself has to refreshen his attacks, taking a couple from his dad Saishu.

But the kicker is the ''New Characters.'' First is Bao. There are many types of martial artists from China, and a kid with psychic powers had been picked. (Why?) Next is Jhun. A rival of Kim; so why is he ''Mr. Rehab'' instead of the bad guy? Whip joins the Ikari/Army team; the moves she's been given is very wrong. She uses a gun (which gives no damage) and a batton. Maxima replaces Goro as a thrower in the Japan team. The guy's an android. Is that legal? And last is K'. He seems to be the most original Kyo clone to join the fray. The return of Kasumi Todou is nice (although she's only a ''counter'' fighter). And Li Xiangfei hails from ''Real Bout 2'' hoping to kick some butt and fill her stomach.

Worth the money?
If I had to pick between '98 and '99, I'd say '98 because it has more characters. But if you wish to challenge yourself with the new ''Striker'' attack, or you find the characters herein cooler-looking than anything Capcom comes up, this game is for you. Besides, you get to fight in a sewer. Since when else (SFEX's Doctrine Dark) can you fight in a sewer?

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 04/19/00, Updated 04/19/00

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