Generally favorable reviews - based on 53 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 43 out of 53
  2. Negative: 0 out of 53
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  1. Mar 4, 2022
    KOF XV is an excellent game for fans of the series as it offers great visuals and a deeper fighting system. However, it will hardly win the hearts of newcomers because of its steep learning curve.
  2. Feb 21, 2022
    King of Fighters XV delivers an excellent fighting game that will appeal to beginners and pros alike. Instantly accessible, the training tools will allow players to go as deep as they like on learning mechanics. Beautiful and deliriously fun - if every game in the series has been as good as this one, I've been missing out.
  3. Feb 18, 2022
    Living up to its title, King of Fighters XV is a fantastic slice of 3D fighting action. Don’t worry if you’re not a long-time fan, there’s enough to get you started here. A massive cast of brawlers, plenty of styles to choose from, and a host of fighting modes make this worthy of fighting fan’s collection.
  4. Feb 13, 2022
    While the single-player offerings are decidedly paltry, the game's tweaked and revised mechanics along with its superbly gratifying presentation deliver in spades with an impressive roster that will only get stronger over time with at least 12 characters coming to the title as DLC. It is then that the lack of single-player content stings ever so slightly more, but with the incredibly smooth online experience offered by the title's rollback netcode, players will find plenty of reasons to return again and again.
  5. Feb 11, 2022
    It may be more initially intimidating to genre newcomers than, say, Guilty Gear Strive or Dragon Ball FighterZ, but being fun to pick up yet challenging to master is the hallmark of any great fighting game. It’s part of the appeal, even, and when you take the consistently deep gameplay of KOF and combine it with greatly improved graphical presentation, solid rollback netcode, and mechanical changes that allow for more player freedom, you get something that truly does “shatter all expectations” as the tagline implies.
  6. Feb 11, 2022
    King of Fighters XV is a delight. It feels like a new dawn for a legendary series, and I am genuinely excited to try out some of the future DLC characters that are on their way over the course of the year.
  7. Feb 11, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV is as good as it gets and feels like a complete package even at launch. Sure, it may not reinvent the wheel for the genre, but it perfects its unique gameplay formula and easily offers the best character roster the series has ever seen. With robust online options, deep gameplay systems, and stellar and stylistic presentation featuring unforgettable music, this is one fighting game that will be in regular rotation on any gaming platform. What was once innovative in 1994 succeeds at feeling just as new and exciting in 2022.
  8. Feb 11, 2022
    Pack your bags for South Town - KOF is back. The deep and stylish gameplay that put the series on the map is back and better than ever, and the inclusion of rollback netcode ensures this dream match never ends.
  9. Feb 11, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV is a knockout entry in SNK's flagship fighting game series. Smartly building upon the foundation of its predecessor, it ups the ante in subtle yet meaningful ways that should satisfy even the most discerning fans of the franchise.
  10. Feb 14, 2022
    It's a clear improvement from KOF XIV. This installment establishes itself as one of the most complete, accessible fighting games, without sacrificing its essence.
  11. May 7, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV improves on what was presented in its predecessor, especially the graphics and the online netcode. However, the absence of some classic fighters is notable. And mechanically speaking, don't expect anything too different from KOF XIV.
  12. Mar 17, 2022
    Taking up the basics of the KOF XIV game system (which was a superb mix of the best 2D episodes), KOF XV never disappoints in terms of gameplay, with a depth rarely equaled. You obviously have to like the offensive game (quite the opposite of Street Fighter) and like this great mobility as well, which makes everything go very quickly.
  13. Feb 21, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV is a fantastic new entry in SNK's beloved series that builds on XIV with some excellent gameplay, great visuals, superb music, and robust online. It is however let down by the offline modes.
  14. Feb 14, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV is the greatest release in the series rich history. With its fluid and deep combat, veterans can compete in thrilling and intense battles. However, SNK has also included numerous elements that make the game accessible to support newcomers to the franchise. Whilst there aren’t many unlockables, the game shines in the arena, making this a necessity for fans of the genre.
  15. Feb 11, 2022
    This new entry is not an attempt to revolutionize the series, but to improve it, and it does succeed at that.
  16. 85
    SNK has finally delivered another King Of Fighters worthy of the modern era. Not only have they rectified past errors, they have refined the experience to be the most functional and accessible that King Of Fighters has been for years. With a polished graphical presentation, generous amount of content, and online play that works at the standard required, fans of the series can be very happy with this offering. In many ways, King Of Fighters XV is merely a tidier version of its predecessor, and whilst there's nothing wrong with that, you could still argue the series still has some ground to make up in the fighting scene. However, it is certainly a big step in the right direction, and a great Fighter for fans to sink their teeth into.
  17. Feb 21, 2022
    KOF XV is a heck of a fighting game that spans a massive, rich history. Personally, I would have loved a bigger focus on local play, and less-to-no focus on online multiplayer, but I get that it’s 2022 and fighting games can’t survive that way. As is, the local, offline offerings are pretty slim; fun, and serviceable, but pretty slim. Netcode and presentation are solid. I thought the graphical choices SNK went with for KOF XV were great. All-in-all, there’s a lot to like about this release. I’m not sure what SNK plans for paid DLC, but suspect there will be more than thirty-nine fighters in the roster when it’s all said and done. At release, KOF XV is technically sound on all fronts and fun to play. It’s great to see this series still getting serious attention from SNK, and hopefully the fighting community will be moved to support this classic franchise.
  18. Feb 13, 2022
    It makes me feel like I never left KOF behind, to begin with. I am ready to start my journey in fighting games once again and live to fight another day.
  19. Apr 7, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV may not be the best fighting game of the current generation of consoles, and it may not have the best graphics or visual style ever seen in the fighting game market, but it is certainly a fun game that will give fans enough reason to kill the nostalgia of the good arcade times. Its classic and new characters do the trick to bring lively and fierce disputes above all, especially with online modes that work and will make the battles pay for many hours.
  20. Feb 25, 2022
    Although in some respects it seems firmly stuck in the past, KOFXV is a nicer, tighter version of the previous edition with surprisingly good online mode.
  21. Feb 25, 2022
    The visual style is really great and that is complimented by excellent physics together with the almost sublime gameplay. The roster is also very extensive and the feel of the franchise is no different in this new installment that every fan of the genre should play. Do take into account that the presentation in itself is somewhat simplistic and the content outside of the fighters is somewhat disappointing.
  22. Feb 17, 2022
    KOF XV is pretty great, especially at launch. It is responsive, it looks great, and it offers a large roster of characters. I would have liked more to do on my own. Especially since I’m a big fan of the characters and would like the Story mode to have more… well, story to it. But SNK clearly put a lot of work into getting it right, and it shows.
  23. Feb 17, 2022
    There’s still room for improvement but this is the best King Of Fighters has been for many years, with enough new features to please both veterans and newcomers.
  24. Feb 16, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV is the return of a long running franchise, yet feels like it was just invented yesterday. A perfect blend of older and newer elements that make it the most pleasing overall package that fans haven't gotten from this franchise since the 2D pixel art days. The king has returned, and it's going to rule for a while.
  25. Feb 16, 2022
    A noticeable upgrade from its predecessor, King of Fighters 15 provides another classic SNK experience with some added changes that make the game feel new without making it feel drastically different. It’s a safe move, sure, but it preserves what makes the game such a classic arcade experience and still manages to provide newcomers something to help them ease into the technicality the series is known for.
  26. Feb 15, 2022
    King of Fighters XV marks an excellent return for the series, modernising it at nearly every turn. While we await a story that’ll finally do justice to the characterful roster, it stakes a claim to SNK’s past with an eye firmly on the future.
  27. Feb 14, 2022
    It’s a shame that The King of Fighters XV doesn’t have some of the modes we’ve come to expect as standard now in fighting games, but thanks to its large roster of fighters and solid mechanics it still impresses. Its team-based battles differentiate it a little from the competition out there, and on PS5 it looks and performs beautifully. So, if you’re on the market for a new fighting game, you should definitely give it a look. Especially if you plan on mainly playing against others online.
  28. Feb 14, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV is accessible for newcomers, but at the same time, it adjusts some fighting mechanics so that the experience feels more aggressive. You'll enjoy it the most while playing online or with friends.
  29. Feb 13, 2022
    KOF XV is a great game, but it lacks a bit of courage, that spark capable of revolutionizing the series. I don't expect a Copernican revolution like it was at the time of KOF ‘96, but SNK will have to come up with some new ideas for the next chapter.
  30. Feb 13, 2022
    It is not a revolution, but a good evolution of the good things from XIV, well equipped with improved visuals and rollback netcode to make sure it finds its way in the fighting community.
  31. Feb 11, 2022
    SNK keeps doing fighting games in its own way and it's the best choice for The King of Fighters.
  32. Feb 11, 2022
    A good sequel to the historic saga, a robust and fun fighting game, although still with clear room for improvement.
  33. Feb 11, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV represents SNK’s strongest efforts to reignite the flames of its most prestigious franchise. With fantastic fighting action, a compelling roster, splendid visuals, and revamped online options, KoF XV is a treat for both series veterans and the fighting game community at large, though newcomers may still find themselves dizzied by its myriad mechanics and steep learning curve.
  34. Feb 11, 2022
    King of Fighters XV set out to “shatter all expectations” and met most of them instead. While a slightly hollow presentation sets its crown crooked, the game’s core is a solid engine and a diverse roster that will warrant longterm play.
  35. Feb 11, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV still feels left in the past when it comes to its single player offerings, but what it lacks in ambition, it makes up in solid fundamentals and great netcode that make the online experience the best the series has ever seen.
  36. Feb 11, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV is a deep and articulated fighting game that requires time and dedication to be mastered but that can provide great satisfaction. The roster is rich and varied and the technical sector is rather pleasant: we are facing one of the best exponents of the genre currently available on the market.
  37. Feb 11, 2022
    It’s not perfect, it’s not easy to learn, and there are some characters missing that I feel are must-haves. However, a solid visual redesign, good netcode, original and returning music, a great collection of fighting mechanics, and a wide offering of tutorial and training tools make King of Fighters XV feel like one of the strongest entries in the franchise yet.
  38. May 11, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV is far from the perfection, but it has more highs than lows. The roster is huge, the mechanics are better and gameplay is pretty fun. But the visuals are not on the same level as the main games of the generation and the Story Mode is really bad. So, if you just want to fight with your friends and have a good time, go for it. But if you want a deeper experience, this ain't it.
  39. Mar 8, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV is among the best entries in the series, but it somehow feels stuck in the 90s. There are great multiplayer possibilities on one hand, and bare-boned single-player content with lack of motivation on the other.
  40. Mar 6, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV is great game with awesome animations and deep systems, but it lacks beginner friendly, or any form of, learning tools to let newer players get in the game.
  41. Feb 21, 2022
    Excellence in gameplay, quality online mode, smooth execution... all the ingredients are there in this new generation fighting game! Fans of the latest installment should be thrilled, but we can't help but have some reservations about the art direction, content, and lack of life and inspiration in the sets. The King of Fighters has always been a franchise with a certain vibe, and it's perhaps a bit too generic to open up to the masses.
  42. Feb 16, 2022
    KoF XV doesn’t make any radical changes to the past 14 titles, instead opting to refine and improve, making it easily the best title in the franchise but one that plays it safe just a little too much.
  43. Feb 16, 2022
    In a world where competitors like Mortal Kombat 11 and Guilty Gear Strive are making great strides in presentation and content, it’s hard to feel like KoF XV is keeping pace. It’s still an excellent fighter and KoF is one of the most reliable franchises out there. However, for an installment that promised to ‘shatter all expectations’ in the publicity leading up to launch, the final product seems content to barely meet them — a real shame since the fighting is still some of the best out there.
  44. Mar 18, 2022
    With its familiar, deep gameplay and recognizable characters, The King of Fighters 15 is an obvious success for fans of the franchise. However, in terms of accessibility and presentation, this new part is not convincing enough to stand out from the competition. The game will therefore not gain many new souls.
  45. PLAY
    Mar 7, 2022
    It’s a good beat-’em-up, but there are many great ones you could be playing instead. If you’re after a little bit of SNK nostalgia, though, dive in. [Issue#12, p.86]
  46. Mar 3, 2022
    Fighting game fans can't really go wrong with King of Fighters XV — a sequel that doesn't shy away from the technical depth of its predecessors. It's obviously still early days, but it feels like SNK has improved upon King of Fighters XIV in all of the ways that matter. Better visuals, expanded mechanics, and, perhaps most importantly, smooth online netcode make for fighter that's hard to fault — even if it's lacking the cutting edge of its peers.
  47. 70
    I do admire the developer's desire to maintain the arcade fighter tone and aesthetic in King of Fighters, and I'll forever be a fan of this series as long as they keep dropping Athena into it. The team at SNK are no doubt working on more limited budgets than the big guns, and with the absolute focus on esports in the fighting game space it's no surprise that they've made that a near-perfect experience, even as they've stripped almost everything else out of the game to make that happen. However, there's no way to paper over this; people who do like fighting games in single player or local multiplayer are going to be left feeling very cold, though. Colder than Kula, even. And that's disappointing.
  48. Feb 21, 2022
    For a lot of fighting game fans, The King of Fighters 15 is exactly what they’ve been looking for - a no frills fighter that focuses on its mechanics and doesn’t hold the player's hand. In a generation where most games in the genre have five-hour campaigns from day one, it’s an admirable stance to take. As much as I love how KoF 15 plays and looks, I can’t help but miss the bells and whistles that are expected. If you’re looking for a fighter that shrugs off that expectation, then the King of Fighters 15 is absolutely for you.
  49. Feb 16, 2022
    Most King of Fighters veterans and newbies looking for a new title to dive into probably won't care that KoF XV isn't shaking up the fighting game paradigm. It delivers fisticuffs that overflow with a unique style and personality unlike that of other fighting game series, and that's more than enough to satisfy a lot of players. The King is back, and personally, I'm glad to see SNK swinging strong yet again.
  50. Mar 7, 2022
    The King of Fighters XV seems to be extremely loyal to its philosophy by not making much effort to make the experience more appealing to a wider range of fighting players, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing, but if you are looking for another Mortal Kombat or Street Fighter, you’ll probably be disappointed.
  51. Feb 22, 2022
    What’s important is that King of Fighters remains an exciting fighting game in XV. Visual style aside, the roster continues to be full of varied characters with interesting movesets, and the underlying mechanics make its matches fast-paced, explosive, and great to watch or play.
  52. Feb 11, 2022
    While King of Fighters 15 might not have the appeal of games like Mortal Kombat 11 or Street Fighter 5, its complex web of systems provide a satisfying time when they are fully mastered. The story is rather generic and there’s a distinct lack of modes, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a lot to unpack when taking the fight to your opponents.
  53. Feb 11, 2022
    KOF’s resistance to any grand story arc defies the pressure being applied by its rivals. Minimal solo options and routine online duels don’t reinvent anything either. This isn’t laziness on SNK’s part, however. It feels more like a focus on maintaining the design philosophy that the player base has loved all along: potent character design, instantly identifiable team play, and off-the-wall plotlines.
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  1. Feb 11, 2022
    It's far from the standard quality of the best chapters of the KOF saga but works well in his playability. The roster needs some classic characters. Has roll-back netcode.
  2. Feb 11, 2022
    The true test for The King of Fighters XV is going to come in the days ahead, as the game gets into the hands of the general public and we see how everything fares both online and in far larger pools of player-vs.-player matches. For now, I’m excited for KOF XV. Its gameplay feels solid, its roster is satisfying, and its overall visual design once again does the series justice. I just hope all of those things hold up once the real fight begins.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 70 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 48 out of 70
  2. Negative: 17 out of 70
  1. Feb 17, 2022
    Extremely fun and flashy game. Been loving it since the start and I just cant stop playing it and I enjoy it more every time. Such a massiveExtremely fun and flashy game. Been loving it since the start and I just cant stop playing it and I enjoy it more every time. Such a massive improvement over 14 and it fixes a lot of issues players had and the UI is just overall alot cleaner and so many QOL changes and it's just a well made game! Music is excellent and the game even allows you to choose songs from every king of fighters game and some other series such as Fatal Fury or Metal slug and more! Full Review »
  2. Feb 16, 2022
    Great graphics, gameplay and history but some famous characters are missing like Kim kaphwan.
  3. Feb 18, 2022
    Other than wishing there was a tad bit more single player content, the game is phenomenal and delivered every other aspect. So happy for SNK.Other than wishing there was a tad bit more single player content, the game is phenomenal and delivered every other aspect. So happy for SNK. For casual players, I understand if you were wanting more solo content, but those who mainly play online; this is a must grab. Full Review »