Heroes of Old….

Respecting your IP….
Hello there KOF fans, this is El Penny with another column on the KOF scene. 
Looking back through the generations in KoF. I’ve often asked myself, does SNK really know how powerful their own characters are in their storyline?

As KoF started in 94 it began as a cross-up between Art of Fighting and Fatal Fury. Both probably some of the best fighting games in SNK catalog prior to KoF. However, as good as an example of fighting games that Art of Fighting was, the engaging story it had somehow fell short. It went from a story of two friends saving a kidnapped sister to a joke team in the KoF series later on, and even in Art of Fighting (in the endings) most of them were jokes of the story it built upon.

Art of Fighting team (or Kyokugen, whichever one you want) kept its joking storyline within KoF until KoF 2000, it was then that it was starting to get interesting, but again fell short.

Now, looking back at the evolution of Fatal Fury the original King of Fighters tournament, we have come to expect the Fatal Fury team to be a strong team, given its legendary member Terry Bogard, captain of that team in all KoFs. What we in the west side of the hemisphere saw as the Ryu of KoF, given its backstory with Terry, always felt short no thanks to the school boy and main character, Kyo Kusanagi.

Kyo’s story evolved well from 95, but I personally always found it hard to believe that a high school boy would be able to take on a tournament as big as KoF was supposed to be, in my mind I always thought Terry a legendary fighter with plenty of story in him would have had a stronger presence in the story. It wasn’t actualy until I recently read the KoF XIII stories where I started to find some respect for Kyo.

It’s been a trend from SNK to change main characters from Terry, to Kyo to K’ to Ash. I always had the impression that they were always making the previous lead less powerful and less important to the story.

As SNKP is now trying to reach wider audiences in the western market, let’s remind them that although we like their stories, we want resolutions (at least I do). When is Rock entering a KoF? Or for that matter the rest of the Garou cast?  When is Andy finally getting married or coming out of the closet?

I always looked at the Street Fighter saga and saw that they always kept Ryu as their lead, no matter what new or interesting characters with back stories came to the game, they always kept that intact. Should we be asking for more respect to the characters that have represented the KoF franchise?

I liked the SVC Chaos crossup of Ryu and Kyo, but always felt that it would have been more proper to have Terry vs Ryu, and with all these new leads with almost every 3 KoFs or so. IF there was another crossover game, would Ash or K’ be the rival character to whoever the crossup is against?It’s just a thought that I have.

Interesting facts:

Growing up playing KoF in the arcades for some reason Robert was the most popular character with kids under 10 from 94-98.

KoF was so popular in Mexico during the 90s that Kyo could have probably been the most popular vieogame character, even over Mario.

Just like Cole is going to be an exclusive character in the Vita version for Street Fighter X Tekken, I always wondered what it would be like to have an out of the blue KoF character in Street Fighter IV (given that its programmed by Dimps – mostly Ex Fatal Fury staff) and Kim always comes to mind, a boy can dream.

No SNK presence in SBO this year worries me for the fighting game community, but I’ll save that for next week’s column.

And Now for my weekly top 5-
This week, I’m featuring Sam from Monterrey Mexico. A quick backstory on him, he’s from Monterrey Mexico. And has traveled to El Salvador, and Colombia. I’m currently finishing up an interview with him about his KoF experiences in those countries and in Mexico. So stay tuned when that gets published, his top 5:
Kof 2002
Super Street Fighter 4 AE
Marvel Vs Capcom 3
Tekken 6
Guilty Gear XX Accent Core

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