Art of Fighting 2
Last Updated: 12/29/2012 Developer(s): SNK Publisher(s): SNK Platform(s): Neo Geo, Neo Geo CD, Super Nintendo, Wii Virtual Console, PS2 Release Date(s): February 2nd, 1994 (/ Arcade)
May 11th, 2006 ( PS2 - in Art of Fighting: Anthology)
May 15th, 2007 ( PS2 - in Art of Fighting: Anthology)
July 28th, 2008 (Wii Virtual Console)
Characters: Ryo, Robert, Jack, Lee, King, Mickey, John, Mr. Big, Takuma, Yuri, Temjin, Eiji, Geese
Related Games: Art of Fighting, Art of Fighting 3, King of Fighters '94, Fatal Fury Special, Street Fighter 2, Street Fighter 2: Champion Edition, Street Fighter 2 Turbo, Super Street Fighter 2
Gameplay Engine 7 / 10 Story / Theme 8.5 / 10 Overall Graphics 8 / 10 Animation 6.5 / 10 Music / Sound Effects 8 / 10 Innovation 8.5 / 10 Art Direction 7.5 / 10 Customization 5 / 10 Options / Extras 7 / 10 Intro / Presentation 7.5 / 10 Replayability / Fun 5.5 / 10 "Ouch" Factor 6 / 10 Characters 7 / 10
7.3 / 10
Review based on Arcade version Final Words: AOF2 presented some of the same unique elements found in the first game, but overall didn't quite match up to Capcom's SF2 series in terms of gameplay and popularity. Sad to say, even though AOF2 offered more actual "new" content than the newer iterations of Street Fighter 2, SF2 still dominated in the gameplay department, and was far more successful.
The widespread hit that was Super Street Fighter 2 came out the same year as AOF2, so a lot of AOF2's potential success was diverted to yet another new version of SF2. And I'm sure most arcade managers would've rather spent their cash on an "instant moneymaker" like SSF2 over the lesser known AOF2 any day. Even so, props to SNK for sticking to their guns and continuing their unique spin on things. ~TFG Webmaster
STORY: "Mr. Karate, the undefeated martial artist, was revealed as Ryo's missing father, Takuma Sakazaki. 10 years ago, he knew that Ronnet's death was intentionally planned by someone. Fearing that the rest of his family would be targeted if he stayed, he disappeared. However, 10 years after Ronnet's accident, he learned that an organization had targeted his daughter Yuri. Learning that Mr. Big was behind this, Takuma was forced to work with him. However, Mr. Big's ambitions were foiled by Ryo, Robert, and King's revolution, the latter being one of his former subordinates. Yuri and Takuma safely returned home.
A year after Yuri's kidnapping, while Ryo was training in the mountains, he received a letter. The letter was an invitation for a new tournament in Southtown. Fighters from every corner of the town were gathering there. It was a test to decide who was the "strongest"... a tournament for the chosen and for the real fighters. The strongest of the strong, each aspect applies to the dragon and the tiger. Southtown would be split in twain by their instincts.
However, this event was only the beginning for a certain man filled with ambition. "King of Fighters"... the birth of a man's legend and the prologue for an even greater story." Art of Fighting 2's story is set a year after the original. Geese Howard, a rising star in Southtown's criminal underworld, calls fighters to the city for a new tournament, "The King of Fighters".
Finally, tackle story mode with ALL characters!
REVIEW: By 1994, SNK was gaining popularity in the arcade business. They were also trying its best to keep up with Capcom's ever evolving Street Fighter 2 series, now with Champion Edition, Turbo, and Super editions dominating the arcades. SNK elected not to join the trend and rehash the original Art of Fighting recipe. Instead, they actually created a sequel from the ground up, presenting all new backgrounds, redrawn character sprites, and all new stages... pretty much the opposite of what Capcom was doing. It was a bold move to start practically from scratch, and hardcore fans definitely appreciated the effort.
Interesting strategy Yuri...
As a fan of the first Art of Fighting, I was pleased with the gameplay updates and the game's new features. My favorite upgrade is easily the fact that all characters were now selectable in the regular Arcade/Story Mode. Each character has their own unique storyline & specific interactions with other characters. Having unique character-specific dialogue in a fighting game was definitely unique at the time, and allowed the characters to become more fleshed out.
While most characters that returned look the way they did in the original AOF, many of them acquired new appearances. For example, Mickey & John got haircuts, and Lee Pai Long now fights in a pretty generic Kung-Fu robe (and looks fat). The changes worked in a few cases, but unfortunately not in others. Sadly, many characters in AOF2 just don't look as "cool" as they did in the original AOF. All of the fighters from the first AOF made their return with the exception of Todo. New characters Eiji & Temjin attempt to balance out the roster, and for the most part they succeed at doing so. Takuma is also playable for the first time (which was pretty epic if you followed the storyline of the first game).