The King of Fighters '94 is a 2D 3-on-3 fighting game developed and published by SNK
for the Neo Geo
. It's the first game in the continuing King of Fighters
franchise. The idea was to develop a crossover fighting game featuring not only characters from SNK's fighting franchises Fatal Fury
and Art of Fighting
, but also Ikari Warriors
, Psycho Soldier
, and some of SNK's sports games. The story of the game revolves around ruthless arms dealer Rugal Bernstein
, who decided to host a tournament (dubbed King of Fighters) to bring together the strongest fighters from all over the world (though, as we later learn, for a sinister purpose).
The King of Fighters '94 plays like a traditional 2D fighting game, using four buttons (two punches and two kicks). Pressing Light Punch and Light Kick simultaneously performs a dodge, avoiding the opponent's attack. Pressing Strong Punch and Strong Kick simultaneously performs a stronger attack. Pressing Strong Punch from far away performs a taunt. Double-tapping forward or backward on the joystick performs a quick dash.
The power gauge and super moves takes elements from both the Art of Fighting
and Fatal Fury
games. Each player has a power gauge on the bottom of the screen, which can be charged by holding down Light Punch, Light Kick, and Strong Punch simultaneously. Once the gauge is filled, the player's basic attacks become stronger for a short time. Players can also perform a "Super Special Move" either during this state, which consumes the entire gauge, or when their life gauge is 75% empty and flashing red.
Instead of a best-of-three fights between two fighters, teams of three compete against each other in single elimination rounds. (Though some versions of the game allow you to play traditional best-of-three fights between two fighters) The players, after choosing their team, choose the order that the characters will fight. The winner of each fight receives some health back (if needed) and goes on to fight the next person on the opposing team. This continues until all the characters of one team are eliminated.
The King of Fighters '94 allows the player to select from eight different teams, each consisting of three characters. Though these groups represent different countries around the world, there are some teams where none of the character's nationalities match the team's country (most notably Italy, Mexico, and Brazil)
Japan (Japan Team)
Italy (Fatal Fury Team)
Mexico (Art of Fighting Team)
Brazil (Ikari Warriors Team)
China (Psycho Soldier Team)
England (Women Fighters Team)
U.S.A. (American Sports Team)
Korea (Korea Team)