King Of Fighters Xiv  Tagged Articles RSS Feed | King Of Fighters Xiv  RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network Why you should be excited to play The King of Fighters XIV Thu, 05 May 2016 05:25:20 -0400 Jeffrey Rousseau

The new King of Fighters XIV (KOFXIV) will be releasing on the PlayStation 4 this August with great anticipation. To be frank, it's a title no fighting game fan should miss. The latest installment of the longtime series is a marquee release for a number of reasons. But before discussing why KOFXIV is a necessity, we'll discuss the history, characters, and core design behind the series as a whole.

What is KOF?

This SNK Playmore (at the time SNK) series emerged in 1994 with the release of KOF '94. The driving force of its development was to create a game that would incorporate their most popular franchises. So SNK took characters from the Art of Fighting, Fatal FuryPsycho Soldiers, etc and placed them into a "dream match" fighter. 

KOF '94 featured a story of an enigmatic mogul's invitation to fighters across the world to fight in a tournament with a hidden agenda. After its success, all titles afterwards have retained the same narrative design. Over the years, the story has expanded to three sagas and many more characters.

Why is it such a big deal?

When the first game was released, its core gameplay was entirely new. KOF was the only fighter to feature 3v3 system. At the time of KOF 94's release, most fighters of the 1990s only followed the one on one structure.

This team battle format lead to a larger degree of planning and strategy. Image is something to consider while playing -- whom will I place first, center, and/or last? This is of course, in addition to the information players have to consider normally during matches. Demanding, nerve-wracking and thrilling? Absolutely. This was met very positively by critics and fans alike.

When you also include that KOF is a highly technical 2D fighter that asks for perfect execution, it requires players to be at their best.

Characters for anyone and everyone

Another reason why KOF is so unique among fighters is their pool of characters. Fighters of the series are often designed to be flamboyant to a degree. Flashy fighters aren't new to the genre, but it's rare when a series also manages to present a spectrum of archetypes. The series' fighters have been martial artists, socialites, mafia members, pirates, pop idols and so on and so forth.

In keeping with the theme of challenging the world's best, fighters are also quite diverse.  With teams from Mexico, Korea, South America, and more, it's rather difficult to not find characters with relatable backgrounds. Fans were never in short supply of finding favorites -- be they evil, fashionable, and or stoic.

Why should KOF XIV succeed?

Fighting games of this console generation have been subject to scrutiny for a lack of features, small rosters, and lackluster netcode. Even Street Fighter V suffered from these ills. KOF XIV on the other hand, has seemingly addressed the aforementioned. (Could this be a sign that KOF is taking SFV's throne?)

It features a robust number of fighters counting in at 50 (31 veterans and 19 newcomers). This sheer size will require quite the investment of time to build teams, find new favorites and master the game's mechanics. After all, who doesn't appreciate a large number of choices?  

KOF XIV is reported to have a vastly improved netcode, as SNK has dedicated a lot of time for the online player experience. It goes without saying that playing online for fighters is of the highest priority. So it remains to be seen if online will be smooth upon launch. 

The blueprint for success is quire apparent and undeniable. The fighting game community has a lot to hope for with the SNK's promises. If KOF succeeds, fighting game fans will send a very positive message -- we demand titles with a deluge of content, a large cast, and a lot to learn.

Is it time for the King of Fighters scene to overshadow Street Fighter? Thu, 05 May 2016 05:05:58 -0400 Cresta Starr

Street Fighter V is now easily one of, if not the best, fighter on the scene right now. But is it possible for King of Fighters XIV to become the better fighting game over Street Fighter V? The release of SFV was plagued with disasters for fans and Capcom alike. The lack of single player content, a scarce character, roster and a plethora of other problems left fans feeling ripped off -- like they had purchased an incomplete game. Now that SFV is has gotten better, is it too little too late?  Can the die-hard fan base of King of Fighters make this title finally rise to the top?

SFV release nightmare

Fans of the Street Fighter franchise were more then excited for the release of Street Fighter V earlier this year. Even though at launch SFV looked pretty, one of the biggest flaws in the game was the lack of single player content. There was no "CPU VS" mode and no standard arcade mode. There was a survival mode that players could play, but it was limited to single-round battles with non-standard fighting conditions applying as well. Basic features like spectator mode for multiplayer lobbies and character-specific combo challenges didn't even get patched in until March of 2016. All because Capcom wanted the game to release in time for the Pro Tour.

Street Fighter V also is not available on the Xbox One, which made fans very unhappy. Because it's is only on PlayStation 4 as far as consoles are concerned, all of the online play was relegated to the PlayStation network. This made online play super unstable, due to the influx of players. Bad networking codes made matters worse. It was almost impossible to play within the first few days of release. It got so bad that Capcom producer Yoshinori Ono issued an apology to players.

The Capcom Power house

After a series of patches and lots of DLC, SFV has bounced back with a vengeance. At the largest fighting tournament each year, the EVO Championship Series, SFV had over 4,000 entrants. Other smaller tournaments had to put a cap on SFV registrants so other games could be played.

Nostalgia and the fact that fans had to wait 8 years for a game made them stick with SFV through its rocky launch, and they've mostly remained faithful to it since.

Then a wild The King of Fighters XIV appeared...

At the other end of the fighting game spectrum, there is The King of Fighters franchise. This traditionally 2D Fighting game has has a crazy strong fan base, but it's not as mainstream as Street Fighter is. One of the main issues with KoF was that many people complained that the game wasn't easy to learn or get into. SNK Playmore heard the cries of the masses and wanted to make a more appealing game for KoF 14. The staff also wanted to make a game that would be as popular as their other hits, like The King of Fighters '98 and The King of Fighters 2002.

For KoF 14, SNK Playmore pulled out all the stops and even got the battle designer from the wildly successful Street Fighter IV, Yasuyuki Oda. He had previously worked for SNK R&D Division 1, which included staff members from the Fatal Fury and the Art of Fighting series. Now he is the director of The King of Fighters XIV to help transition the 2D models into proper 3D ones.

With over 50 playable characters upon release, KoF 14 is coming out with a more complete game later on in August of this year. And from what we hear, it's a must-play for fighting game fans.

So, is it possible for KoF 14 to overshadow SFV?

The King of Fighters XIV is a game made for the people. The die hard fans of the game series are in for a real treat when this game releases later in 2016. Newcomers will have their choice of characters and gentler learning curve to make it more accessible to all players.

But even with all that said, the popularity of Street Fighter V right now is out of control. Plus the DLC business model for SFV will keep players interested indefinitely because of the desire to get the latest content. Again, because of how iconic Street Fighter is, The King of Fighters would be hard pressed to really compete with this household name. And while KoF 14 is an extremely well put together product thus far, many in the fighting game community view the game as too niche, at least here in America.

The Street Fighter V hype is very real, and The King of Fighters XIV may be a close second when it releases -- but not number one.

How do you feel? Do you think that The King of Fighters XIV has a real chance at becoming more popular than Street Fighter V? Or do you feel as if that will never happen? Feel like there is anything being left out? Sound off in the comments below and let us know what you think!

SNK Playmore set to release The King of Fighters XIV on August 23 Mon, 25 Apr 2016 15:22:49 -0400 Jeffrey Rousseau

Today, SNK Playmore announced that The King of Fighters XIV will be releasing in America on August 23. The announcement was made via a set of new trailers featuring all 50 characters available at launch. 

The trailers also focuses on new characters, including Team China's Shun'ei (whom is integral to the story) and Nakoruru from Team Another world. The gameplay trailer highlighted some of 14th entry's features, including a story mode, a training mode (online and offline), an online vs mode, and an art gallery.

SNK Playmore has also changed their company logo back to SNK, and introduced the new company slogan -- "The future is now." SNK Playmore's decision was two fold; they wanted to return to their business image they held during the years of the Neo Geo and they also it to be more appealing  to the global market where SNK is more recognized than SNK Playmore.

Fans can look forward to slugging it out in 50 different ways with The King of Fighters XIV on August 23.

ATLUS jumps into the ring as publisher for The King of Fighters XIV Wed, 13 Apr 2016 16:05:04 -0400 Jeffrey Rousseau

ATLUS has announced that they will be publishing The King of Fighters XIV (KOFXIV) stateside.  It's important to note that this isn't new ground for ATLUS as they published KOF XIII in 2011. Developer SNK Playmore initially revealed they were developing the new title in late 2015. Since this announcement, they've been releasing trailers periodically to introduce their roster of fighters for the 14th installment.

The King of Fighters series began in 1994 with the release of KOF '94 for arcades and the Neo Geo console. The series was featured characters from SNK's respective franchises fighting in a cross-over title. After KOF '94 was well received, the series saw yearly releases until 2003. SNK Playmore introduced HD sprite work with the release of KOF XII in 2009. 2010 saw the release of The King of Fighters XIII, which was the last game to feature 2D sprite designs.

This new entry will feature 50 fighters, a new story arc, and a party battle mode that can support up to 6 players to fight online. KOFXIV is scheduled to release in 2016 -- let's hope the wait isn't that much longer