The game releases for this month just keep on coming. In just a couple of days, we will see the return of a beloved franchise, King of Fighters. King of Fighters XV is releasing on the Playstation, Xbox, and PC. I have had the privilege to play this game for the past week, and I am here to tell you if King of Fighters XV is worth your money and time in this already busy month.
I will start by saying this, if you are a fan of the fighting genre, King of Fighters XV is a game that you’ll enjoy. Now, if you play fighting games casually, like me, King of Fighters XV is a harder sell. I enjoyed my time with KOF XV, but I don’t know if I will go back to it without updates. At least not in the near future. King of Fighters XV is a really cool fighting game. Unfortunately, lack of material and outdated menus hold it back from being one of my favorite fighting games.
Gameplay & Graphics
The first thing you will notice in this game is how pretty everything looks. Every character looks amazing. Every stage feels like it’s been pulled from an anime show and all of that is accompanied by an awesome soundtrack. Stylistically, King of Fighters XV is one of the best fighting games I have tried in the last couple of years. Fortunately for King of Fighters XV, the art style matches its combat. The combat in this game is fast and there is something here for those that are trying to master combos. One of the things that I noticed during my time with this game, is that combos felt like they were easier to pull. To some that may be a turn-off, but not for me. With just a couple of button combinations, I was pulling some flashy moves that made me feel like a pro fighter.
In King of Fighters XV, you have two options to options to test your combat skills: 1 v 1 or 3 v 3. If you try 3 v 3, this will not be like your Marvel VS Capcom, or Dragon Ball Fighters, instead of you swapping characters in and out you will swap out characters after your character’s life has been depleted. Then it’s time to bring the next fighter. I am not a big fan of this game mechanic, but there is no way to change this, at least not yet.
King of Fighters XV features a story mode, a versus mode, online mode, and training mode. Now, this may sound like a lot but it’s not. The story mode can be done in less than an hour and the story is really not that great. Now, I know fighting games tend to have short story modes, but this one just felt way too short for my liking. If you decided to just skip the story mode you really wouldn’t be missing much. Here is where my biggest problem with King of Fighters XV lies. All these modes are pretty much the same and unless you are wanting to play this game on a competitive level, there’s really not much here for you to try.
I was able to play some online matches during my review and the network connection was great. I never felt like there was a delay between my combo inputs and my character’s response. However, the online mode, in my opinion, is the one that needs the most work. For starters, choosing your own team is super tedious. It took me about 5 minutes just to figure out how to choose characters for online matches. To do this task, you have to go inside a menu, inside of the online mode.
In online mode, in order to choose a new team after a match, you have to go all the way back to the main menu. You should be able to choose characters before matches, or at the very least be able to go back to the online mode menu. The fact that King of Fighters XV hides choosing different characters behind all these menus makes me almost not want to try different characters online. It’s a shame because finding the perfect team combination and playing with different characters is an area where King of Fighters can truly shine.
Flashy Fast Fighter
King of Fighter’s combat is flashy, fast, and responsive. It is one of the best-looking fighting games in a while. Unfortunately, the lack of content and archaic menus and systems hold it back from being a must-play game. Unless you are wanting to get this game to join a competitive scene, there’s really not much to try at the moment. If you are a die-hard fan of fighting games you will fall in love with this game. The competitive online modes will keep you coming back match after match. Currently, I don’t see how a casual player will want to stick around for more than a couple of hours.