Game Reviews

The King of Fighters-i 2012

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The King of Fighters-i 2012

Fighting games are always iterative. They'll add a few numbers and maybe a word or two, chuck in a couple of extra characters and a few gameplay tweaks, and call it a new release.

So it's no surprise to see The King of Fighters-i 2012 strutting its way into the ring, with its extended roster and extra modes. For once, though, this is a title that's more than worthy of its spot on the App Store - a new challenger that improves on its predecessor in every singly way.

More kings and queens

The first thing you'll notice is that the number of fighters has more than doubled, from 14 to 32, with two extra scrappers available as paid DLC. It's an embarrassment of riches, and SNK fans will be in heaven.

The button controls remain the same, with Kick, Punch, Special, Evade, and HD all arranged at the bottom-right of the screen. Combinations of direction and attack buttons perform different attacks, and comprehensive Tutorial and Practice modes let you find the best fighters for you.

Of all the other additions, perhaps the most important is online play. It's not super smooth, but there's scope for the start of an impressive online platform. You can challenge strangers in ranking matches, or go up against Game Center friends for less formal bouts.

Fighting in the streets

There are plenty of single-player options, too, with Single Fights, Team Battles, Challenges, Time Attack, and Endless modes, as well as the training mentioned above. Collectible art cards, multiple difficulty settings, and in-game achievements mean there's to plenty of reason to come back time and time again.

Throw in local multiplayer over Bluetooth, the ability to record, save, and share your best matches, and a drop dead gorgeous hand-drawn art style that really brings the game's characters to life and you're left with an impressive package.

Right now, the only weak link is the occasionally laggy multiplayer, but if SNK can get that fixed then this is a fighter that no iOS gamer should be without.

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The King of Fighters-i 2012

A brilliant revamp of the original that ups the ante for iOS brawlers, King of Fighters-i 2012 is only let down by its slightly laggy online bouts
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