Nakoruru Samurai Shodown
--The website dedicated to all Samurai Spirits fans--~ver5.0~

February Editorial

Has KOF Replaced Samurai Shodown?
by Gerald "Yagyu" Joubert

    I've been a Samurai Shodown fan since game one.  I remember the first time I really got into the game.  For me, Samurai Shodown has produced many positive and awesome gaming memories.  Back then Samurai Shodown was SNK's "big gun."  It was their best and most original game yet.

    That was in '93.  Now is seems Samurai Shodown has taken the backseat to KOF.  It took awhile for this to happen, but this is how I think it went.  Back in '94, SNK released Samurai Shodown 2 and King of Fighters'94.  Although KOF`94 was an awesome game, it was overshadowed by the mighty Samurai Shodown 2.  SS kept it's titled as SNK's undisputed.  In '95, here comes the version of KOF better than the year before to win appraise of many new fans.  In that same year SNK releases SS3, which was good, but it wasn't stellar like the previous game.  In '96 KOF starts its trek to become SNK's premier fighting game.  Though KOF'96 left some '95 fans with bad tastes in their mouths, the overall feedback of the game was positive and left most of its fans starving for the sequel.  This year Samurai Shodown 4 was released, although an awesome game in its own right, it failed to generate the popularity of SS2.  Then in '97, SNK shook up the world with KOF'97, the best KOF game yet.  And what of Samurai Shodown?  SNK decides that this series is headed for new hardware, leaving us with only dreams of SS in '97.

      It would seem that SNK does still believe that Samurai Shodown is still their "go-to" game since they let it be the first game on new hardware, but is it?  Shortly after the sucess of KOF'97 SNK announced that they will keep supporting the Neo Geo for two more years and KOF'98 is already in development.  Now it seems Samurai Shodown has been reduced to an experimental series to test out new ideas for SNK's new crop of 3-d fighting games, while KOF gets its chance to shine and make money. 

    Now I love KOF, and I can honestly see why it would take SS's spot at the top.  It has got the characters, the story, and gameplay backing it up.  It also seems like it is the one series that doesn't suffer from sequelitis, each one is better that the last.  KOF is awesome, but I want Samurai Shodown to get the respect it deserves.  Don't let the series that help make you die in some lame 3-d world.  On the next SS game SNK should go all out like they did for KOF'97.  They should do this out of respect.  Even though SS has passed the torch to KOF, SNK should make the worthy sequel it deserves and not let it be reduced to a second rate fighting game.

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