There were many arcade classics that most of us remember from the 90’s including Street Fighter II, Mortal Kombat, Tekken and many others. During the early 90’s fighting was probably the most popular genre next to platform gaming. There were so many fresh fighting titles almost everywhere which made each game in arcade centers and home consoles very exciting. While Capcom had the Street Fighter series SNK had the Fatal Fury series which originated in 1991. Fatal Fury Special was developed and published by SNK in 1993. As many people know Fatal Fury Special was the third installment in the series and was released for multiple home consoles following its debut.
Fatal Fury Special was released for various consoles including Neo Geo, Neo Geo CD, Sega CD, Super Nintendo, and even TurboGrafix-CD. It would eventually be re-released online for Xbox Live, Virtual Console and eventually for the Android along with the iOS. Similar to many fighting games of the early 90’s Fatal Fury was challenging, exciting to play and had a high replay value. Similar to some King of Fighters arcade games Fatal Fury Special provides you with a basic button tutorial on how to play the game. Fatal Fury Special includes at least fifteen characters including Andy Bogard, Gesse Howard, Kim Kaphwan, Mai Shiranui, Terry Bogard, Joe Higashi and others. Players also have the opportunity to fight around the world in various stages in the countries of Germany, Spain, Japan, Thailand, China, Italy, etc.
The designs for each stage is fantastic and the gameplay is very innovative for a 2D fighting game. Some people would argue that the in game mechanics for the Fatal Fury Special is what made this game unique along with its predecessors. The ability to move on different parts of the screen made the Fatal Fury games appear more realistic than other 2D fighting games. Seeing that games like Street Fighter II and Mortal Kombat were very popular at the time some of the features of Fatal Fury 2 & Fatal Fury Special made both titles stand out more in terms of gameplay. Fatal Fury Special was an awesome arcade game to play but if many people had a preference on which version comes close to the original they would probably argue in favor of the Neo Geo port. The Neo Geo was very expensive because it could easily process arcade quality games that were impossible to do on other consoles such as Sony PlayStation or Super Nintendo.
Even though, the Super Nintendo did receive a port of Fatal Fury Special it pales in comparison to the Neo Geo version in terms of quality. After Fatal Fury Special was released GamePro had scored the Neo Geo version a 4.5 out of 5 starts. The score GamePro had gave the Neo Geo version of Fatal Fury Special was probably the closest to perfection that any other port of this game had received. When it comes down to fighting games Fatal Fury Special would definitely be considered an underrated classic from the early 90’s.