A great remake of a NEOGEO Classic
Released on the only affordable Neo Geo by SNK Corporation, on the Neo Geo Pocket Color, Fatal Fury: First Contact launched in 1999 and was a solid entry to the franchise. Whilst this relaunch offers great emulation at a fraction of the price, trying to get the original on eBay will set you back quite a lot. Lucky it’s here on the Switch as a very affordable 2-player action game on the same console, whereas the original required two NGPC consoles and 2 copies of the game.
I still own the original and the very rare camouflage blue Neo Geo Pocket Colour and I have to say, the Switch version is indeed more playable and easy to play for beginners. Offering all the nostalgia, as intact as the original. This console is seemingly the retro choice for hardcore gamers, like myself. Although it is still preferable to play on the original handheld, I did enjoy this version more and I am happy to say that nothing has been lost, except for the limitation of the non-backlit screen of the original – a purist’s preference.
The Joy Con and Pro Controller do a great job of emulating the original controls, while the moves are very easy to pull off without wearing out your analogue stick. I was pulling off combos in no time without any issues of lag. You only use two buttons and the stick/cross key and although I prefer analogue for the most faithful feel, unfortunately it’s missing the micro switches.
The audio does a good job and the 8-bit midi beats are still quite catchy with all their pings.
Graphically I loved the simplicity of the art style, considering the limitations of the hardware at the time – they still do look better on the original’s screen, but the Switch does offer a filter option that lets you choose the skin of your virtual console, naturally I chose camouflage blue. Another great bonus is the addition of the digital game manual – I wish more games would do this. Although this game only uses two buttons with simple gameplay, don’t think that this game is a breeze, there’s still a lot of depth in the gameplay and room for combos with super moves. This game is a lot of fun, especially in 2-player mode with a pro. I loved this game back in the day and still love it now. At least I don’t need a stupid link up cable and two consoles – before the days of wireless gaming.
If you haven’t experienced the Neo Geo Pocket Colour, then it’s about time you did. It’s a classic part of gaming history and you really need to give it a go. There’s something about these games that were unique to the system and never replicated on other consoles. The NGPC had a signature all of its own and will still stand the test of time in years to come.
You can get Fatal Fury: First Contact on Nintendo Switch yourself for just £7.99/$7.99.
Shinobi Ryder is a game journalist for ICUGamer.com and a independent games reviewer for WKDPlay.com. You can follow Shinobi on Twitter @Wkdplay
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