Review by Scary Mika

Reviewed: 10/26/01 | Updated: 10/26/01

Is Capcom ever going to...

...loose their ''Lazy'' label?
Maybe but not with this game. Has Capcom's laziness gone too far and is it acceptable to see how they use the same old sprites over and over again if it's a good game? I think it is a good game but the obvious flaws really hold it down. Why do I think so? Read on...

Initial impressions
I was really excited when I finally received my own copy of the game called CVS2. I had the pro version of part one and I was really looking forward to see if they had fixed the issues that really weighed the first one down. Capcom are known to use their games as stepping stones however and seldom you get to see one of their games reach it's full potential before the third incarnation.

The good things are that they fixed most of the major issues to create a good and solid fighting game. Certain issues remain unresolved and they brought new annoyances up along with the new stuff.

Gameplay 7/10
I was really disappointed by the first game's controls. Some moves are just impossible to pull off and some seem to really need a jump or roll in order to be performed correctly stay reliable. I like the way that you can actually train to be able to perform certain moves but they really should follow SNK's examples and what they did for the DC versions of KOF 98 and 99. A good thing is that the anti air's in this game has been severely weakened which add's a lot of technical play to it. Good move.

On the good side of this Capcom added 4 new grooves and they all play well. C groove and S groove are the one's from the first installment but with new names, while P groove is one similar to the way you play in SF3, A groove plays alot like V-ism from Alpha 3. On SNK's side there's N groove which works like KOF's Advanced mode and finally K groove which is a hybrid of Garou's system with JD's and Samurai Spirit's anger bar.

Graphics 7/10
No no no! Capcom has used their Alpha sprites long enough! Can't they just redo their characters like they did with the shotoclones, Bison/Vega and Chun-Li? And Morrigan! She hasn't changed since 94! It's more than ok in the Vampire games but she just doesn't fit in here! I didn't mind the reused sprites in the VS series I thought Capcom were smart then but this has gone to far! Shame on you Capcom.

The SNK characters and the few Capcom characters that were remade are what saved the game from the trashbin this time. They all look very good and detailed as you had hoped and there's not much more to say about them. The effects are still cool to watch but nothing astounding. The artwork is a mixed bag too ranging from excellent to horrible.

Sound 7/10
Another seven. Annoyingly generic sound effects and not much you didn't expect. What saves the game this time is a few really cool theme songs and new announcer which I actually like alot, still it doesn't help this game to become anything more than slightly above average. And and Cammy's awful awful voice is enough to bring this grade down at least one notch, but that wouldn't be fair so I will settle with a warning this time. But they better make up for it in their next game...

Characters 8/10
Well above average. Like everything in this game it's a mixed bag but at least it's more good than bad this time around. I really don't like Kyosuke, this incarnation of Rolento and especially not the Leona-could-have-been Maki. Bringing Haomaru, Athena and this version of Chang + Choi were all good ideas however. Rock I can understand but he is too much of a mainstream to fit in this game that already has too many of them.

What saves this from another seven however is the fact that they fixed the characters up alot. Some of the characters (like Chun-Li, Mai, Terry, Joe and Ryo especially.) have never played this good and it's good to see as how all characters finally got their complete set of moves back.

Plot 8/10
I was surprised by this. The little plot development there is was actually very good and the alternate finals and plots around them (there are five of them) really lift this section up. I don't want to spoil anything for you so I'll move on. What stops this from getting a higher grade is that you have to get the best final match in order to get a good ending, meaning you get an ending for your character but even then it's just text which is a shame but understandable in way.

Innovation 7/10
Uh I really had a hard time deciding on this one. Capcom finally decided to bring some more of SNK's really great ideas into play but it feels like cheating be able to both roll and super jump in C groove since Capcom never really bothered much with such innovations before. Also messing with the K groove wasn't the best idea. The ability to create your own grooves is pretty cool and innovative so I guess this part is saved by a good point too. Also the GPS system is balanced out well, it was terrible in part one. Still nothing beats KOF Evolution's point system in innovation and fairness.

Rent or buy?
Well Capcom never makes any real bad games. They are fair at worst and so could this title be. It is a little less than you want to expect and really you are much better off with the DC versions of KOF 99 Dream Match and Guilty Gear X if you are looking for really solid and balanced fighting matches. So I say rent this one first, it just might be the blast of your life but you really can do better.

Rating:   3.5 - Good

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