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November 22 2019

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  Fatal Fury - ©SNK 1991

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Game Stats
1 or 2 player

One On One Fighting

55 Megs
Japanese Name:

Garou Densetsu

Released On:


Reviewed By:
Top Reviews By This Author:
- The King Of Fighters: Maximum Impact (PS2)
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Other Opinions - More Reviews On NG4L:
Review 2 - by Boombada


Well, just in case you didn't already know (hehe), this was the first instalment of this popular one on one beat 'em up, which was seen as SNK's rival to Capcoms Street Fighter, in fact it was the very first Neo Geo fighting game. One interesting thing to bear in mind though is that this game was supposedly in development at the same time as the aforementioned game (although it was released later on), so it actually wasn't the "SFII" clone many people thought it was.


Fatal Fury was also the first one on one beat ‘em up to let you move between two planes of battle (you can dodge up and down). That doesn't sound special now, but back in 1991 it was a new feature; one that also got on some peoples nerves. You get to select from three fighters and you use 3 buttons in game: A for punching, B for kicking and C for throwing you opponent.

One very interesting thing to note is that when a second player joins the game, you can either battle each other in a standard Vs game, or you can actually choose to battle against the CPU in a 2 player co-operative match. This is similar to the "dramatic battle” matches in the Street Fighter Alpha games. This is a really cool feature and it is a shame it isn't used in the other FF games.

Graphics & Sound:

The graphics are decent, if not particularly special, although back in 1991 I remember thinking they were excellent. The sound is not too bad either with the usual fighting game voices and sound effects. There is some nice music in places, which really takes me back to the days when I would play this game before school every morning (it makes those memories come flooding back!).

Listen to some of the music in this game:

Intro music MP3
19 seconds, 237K

The intro sequence music... this is where it all started!


Although when I was back in school I used to pump credits into this machine like crazy, things have obviously moved on and Fatal Fury looks more than average now. Some of the special moves are very unfair, and the computer really likes reminding you of that by constantly kicking your ass with them. So in return you end up resorting to even cheaper tactics to win! It's still fun and worth playing if you are a fan of the series and are nostalgic like me, or even if you are just curious, but otherwise try one of the later entries into the series which are a lot better. Thankfully this series did continue and we got some great games later in the series.

Put simply, this is still a Neo classic and paved the way for many more fighting games on Neo Geo. I still love it because I used to play it so much but like Art of Fighting it is more than a little average now.

Graphics: 6/10
Sound: 6/10
Game play: 5/10
Replay Value: 5/10

Overall Rating: 5/10

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Review by Bobak

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#1 | STE C on April 24 2009 22:17
I don,t disagree with any of Kazuyas comments its a game of its time but its the game that made me want a AES in 92 when i first played it and i always thought it was a better game than SF2. I still play it a lot for nostalgia but its still a great game to me , whilst the animation is stiff its so colourful and looks good even now. Every Neo owner should have it as its a piece of history and still in my eyes a very good game
#2 | NeoGeoGamer2000 on September 03 2012 14:36
Even though the sequels are far superior in my opinion, I still enjoy the first Fatal Fury quite a lot.

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