The King of Fighters EX: Neo Blood
REVIEW: The King of Fighters EX: Neoblood brings SNK's trademark series to Nintendo's Gameboy Advance. Neo Blood introduces a new story scenario that takes place between the Orochi Chapter and Nests Chapter of the series. 18 characters, 2 bosses, and 10 strikers make up the total roster... pretty impressive for a handheld fighter in 2002. A newcomer, Moe Habana, also makes her first appearance in the franchise. NeoBlood features a decent mode selection as well, including: Team, Single, Survival, and Practice. You can also challenge a friend in VS mode via GBA link cable.
While it's nice to see a traditional KOF game make an appearance on the Gamboy Advance and translate fairly well visually, the controls are on the stiff side of things. It's playable, but more than likely you'll be whiffing moves that you tend to pull off a lot easier using a regular controller or arcade stick. NeoBlood features a striker system based on KOF '99, making the gameplay a bit more dynamic than the traditional 2D fighter. However, the overall gameplay just isn't quite as sharp as it is on the NeoGeo (or other consoles). There are also a few weird glitches and infinites.
Haou Shoukou Ken!
Visually, as one might expect, NeoBlood doesn't offer anything groundbreaking on the GBA, but the 2D sprites translated fairly well to Nintendo's small screen. While the sprites look decent, unfortunately, they missing quite a few animations. The drop in animation quality is easy for any returning KOF player to see, and is one of this version's most noticeable flaws.
Last Updated: 1/8/2011 Developer(s): SNK / Sammy Publisher(s): SNK Platform(s): Gameboy Advance Release Date(s): January 1st, 2002 ()
August 23rd, 2002 ()
Characters: Moe, Kyo, Benimaru, King, Mai, Clark, Ralf, Leona, Geese, Iori, Terry, Joe, Andy, Ryo, Robert, Takuma, Yuri, Kasumi
Related Games: King of Fighters EX2 Howling Blood, King of Fighters R1, King of Fighters R2, King of Fighters '94, King of Fighters '94: Re-bout, King of Fighters '95, King of Fighters '96, King of Fighters '97, King of Fighters '98, King of Fighters '98 Ultimate Match, King of Fighters '99, King of Fighters 2000, King of Fighters 2001, King of Fighters 2002, King of Fighters 2002 Unlimited Match, King of Fighters 2003, King of Fighters XI, King of Fighters XII, King of Fighters XIII, Tekken Advance, Guilty Gear X: Advance Edition, Street Fighter Alpha 3: Upper
Gameplay Engine 6.5 / 10 Story / Theme 7 / 10 Overall Graphics 7 / 10 Animation 6 / 10 Music / Sound Effects 6.5 / 10 Innovation 7 / 10 Art Direction 8.5 / 10 Customization 6 / 10 Options / Extras 5 / 10 Intro / Presentation 6 / 10 Replayability / Fun 7 / 10 "Ouch" Factor 6 / 10 Characters 7 / 10 BOTTOM LINE
6.7 / 10
The first "real" release of a traditional King of Fighters game on to a handheld platform didn't turn out too bad, but there was certainly a lot of room for improvement. SNK built upon their GBA series with the sequel to NeoBlood, King of Fighters EX2 Howling Blood. ~TFG Webmaster