It may be a handheld game from the late '90s, but there's a solid fighting system in King of Fighters R-2 and genre fans should check it out if it passed them by the first time around. It may be a tad pricey given that it's lacking in the sort of special features many other retro releases get these days, but gameplay's where it counts and in that respect we have no complaints.
If you are of a younger age and are more accustomed to modern fighters, King of Fighters R-2 may very well seem a little bland in comparison. With that said, there is far more under the hood of the game’s simple yet pleasing exterior. While King of Fighters R-2 happens to be a decent fighting game in its own right, whether it holds up or not is really beside the point. For me, I see it as yet another source of gaming artefacts contained in a portable museum. Like a slice of wonderful nostalgia pie sat in the window of a cakeshop of gaming history.
Overall, I think that this might be my favorite re-release on the Nintendo Switch so far. King of Fighters R2 has a fun fighting scheme, features unique and fun personalities renown for the series, and preserves most of what made King of Fighters great — cool moves to pull off during fights. If the screen size could be fixed, we would be golden.
Excellent-sized rosters, and even with only two buttons available the developers have done a great job in making each of them feel distinct to play with. This is particularly important with King of Fighters, because you're choosing teams of three, and that melting pot of different combat styles and proficiencies is core to the KoF experience. R-2 manages to maintain that, and so playing around with the many characters to find your ideal set of three is still the big learning curve within the experience.
While I’m certainly hoping to see further Neo Geo Pocket Color games eventually come to the Nintendo Switch, maybe pick from a different genre for the next release. KING OF FIGHTERS R-2 is still decent for what it is, but only big fans of 2D fighters need to experience it on the Switch.
For what is a simplified and chibi-fied version of The King of Fighters '98, this is pretty neat. There are better alternatives in the world of retro game collections, though. In other words, since this has more of a collector's value, if SNK had included a few more titles from the Neo Geo Pocket Color, it would be a stronger recommendation, as this is somewhat too pricey for what's on offer.
SummaryMix it up in COLOR with King Of Fighters R-2 now on NEOGEO Pocket Color! Get SKILLS in the MAKING Mode and create your very own custom-made character! You can also play two-player VS. MODE battles and trade SKILLS using the NEOGEO Pocket Link Cable! 14 characters to choose from including 2 new characters make King Of Fighters R-2 H-O-T!