Art of Fighting 3
Last Updated: 3/24/2010 Developer(s): SNK Publisher(s): SNK Platform(s): Neo Geo, Neo Geo CD, PS2 Release Date(s): March 12th, 1996
May 11th, 2006 ( PS2 - in Art of Fighting: Anthology)
May 15th, 2007 ( PS2 - in Art of Fighting: Anthology)
Characters: Ryo, Robert, Rody, Kasumi, Wang, Lenny, Karman, Jin Fuha, Sinclair, Wyler
Related Games: Art of Fighting, Art of Fighting 2 , King of Fighters '96, Samurai Shodown 4, Kizuna Encounter, World Heroes Perfect, Mortal Kombat Trilogy, Street Fighter EX, Street Fighter Alpha 2, X-Men VS Street Fighter
Gameplay Engine 7 / 10 Story / Theme 7.5 / 10 Overall Graphics 8 / 10 Animation 8.5 / 10 Music / Sound Effects 8.5 / 10 Innovation 7.5 / 10 Art Direction 8 / 10 Customization 4 / 10 Options / Extras 5 / 10 Intro / Presentation 8.5 / 10 Replayability / Fun 6 / 10 "Ouch" Factor 6 / 10 Characters 5.5 / 10
7.8 / 10
Review based on Arcade version Final Words: More heart seems to have went into AOF3's quality animation & graphics than character designs this time around. Personally, I'd rather go back to AOF or AOF2 for the character rosters alone. AOF3's roster really doesn't define what the series is all about, and feels incredibly lonely.
The overall "sluggish" feeling of the gameplay is still evident, but there are some cool aspects to enjoy. No doubt, Art of Fighting was a respectable fighting game series by SNK, and it went out with a bang. The Art of Fighting series might be dead, but thankfully many of the classic characters have crossed over to many other fighting games over the years. ~TFG Webmaster
STORY: In Art of Fighting 3, the storyline changed focus from the Sakazaki family to Robert Garcia. Robert disappears to search for an old childhood friend, Freia Lawrence, and he tracks her to Glass Hill, Mexico. The game's boss, Wyler, seeks Freia to complete a powerful elixir, which was created by both his and Freia's fathers. This drug affects users in a similar manner as the potion in The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.
Heeey, where's the rest of the gang? :(
REVIEW: The third and final installment to the Art of Fighting series introduced an entirely new cast of characters, only bringing back the two main protagonists of the series, Ryo Sakazaki and Robert Garcia. AOF3 highlights all of the elements that defined the Art of Fighting series in the past... the brand new character sprites were among the biggest 2D video game sprites to date, and featured uncommonly fluid animation for such large sprites.
Following in tradition with the prequels, AOF3's visuals are something to behold. The elaborately designed hand drawn backgrounds mesh nicely with the large characters, and the scrolling effect used in the first two games returns and is notably smoother than before. AOF3 also presented some of the smoothest animation to appear in a 2D fighting game to date.
Kasumi represents that Todou-style!
AOF3's gameplay was also taken to the next level, featuring a brand new combo system and some new gameplay systems. The new Spirit Bar limits the use of special moves, as each special will decrease the meter. As each character's "spirit energy" drains, their special moves also look less and less impressive and do less damage. Spirit energy can be recharged by holding down specific buttons, but recharging leaves players open for attacks.
An Ultimate Knock Out is now possible, and occurs when players finish their opponent when 10% or less of their life remains. This allows them to perform a Desperation Move, which results in an Ultimate KO that immediately leads to winning the whole match, not just the single round. The new combos system compliments the gameplay nicely, and also speeds things up a bit (which the series needed). Overall, AOF3's gameplay is the deepest and probably best of the series.
"Gimme your lunch money... tubby."
Although most of the moves and animations look excellent, some of the "collision detection" actually doesn't make much sense. For example, Robert's spinning backfist "launches" the opponent straight up into the air. That's a technique that should simply knock down or stagger your opponent, not send them flying 10 feet into the air. Otherwise, the fluid movements of the characters and the variety of moves they can perform is impressive.
AOF3's "new generation" roster is slightly disappointing, since many fan favorites are missing in this installment. The new characters don't really manage to "take the place" of some of the classics, and simply don't have the lasting appeal that the original cast did. This is probably the biggest downside of AOF3... that character selection screen in particular has a rather "lonely" vibe. Where's Yuri & Takuma? Hell, it would even be great to see that fat asshole biker, Jack, make a return. I guess they wanted to wipe the slate clean and offer something new, but if there's one thing AOF3 is short on, it's characters.