SNK Gals’ Fighters is a one-on-one fighting game that was originally released on the Neo Geo Pocket Colour in 2000. It has now been ported to Nintendo Switch and is available to purchase from the e-Shop. It was released for Nintendo Switch on 29th April 2020 to celebrate the game’s anniversary. The game was developed by Aicom and published by SNK. SNK are a well known company that was founded in 1978. They are known for being involved in a vast number of different fighting games. With the recent releases of SNK Heroines and Samurai Shodown, a blast from the past with SNK Gals’ Fighters couldn’t have come at a better time.
Fight for Victory
SNK Gals’ Fighters has a solo arcade mode and a 2-player versus mode. There is also a training mode where you can practice your moves. When playing the game in arcade mode, you will choose your fighter and take on the rest of the characters in stages. As you fight through the stages, you will also win items that you can use to give you an advantage. You will need to use these items carefully and strategically for the more difficult fights. When you have defeated the other characters, you will then face off against a final boss. After defeating the final boss, you may have the option to unlock new characters until you’ve collected them all. If you do not unlock a new character, you get a unique ending and story for the character you have defeated the boss with.
The versus mode gives you the opportunity to play against your friends and family. There is nothing better than taking down one of your loved ones in a brutal one-on-one fight. During the versus fights, you can use the items you have earned in solo mode. You can also change the settings of the fight to make it more interesting. Be warned, if the person you are playing against is one of those people who like to bash all of the buttons and hope for the best, then they may have the upper hand. I have found that the best way to defeat your opponents in SNK Gals’ Fighters is to just attack with everything you have. You don’t have time to stop and figure things out because the game as a whole is quite fast-paced and chaotic.
Learning to Fight
Each character in SNK gals is completely unique. They all have their own looks, styles, weapons and abilities. There is a manual in the options menu, unfortunately, this manual doesn’t really provide any real instructions on learning how to perform the special moves. I would definitely recommend utilising the training mode to get a feel for your chosen character. This is because when you are playing the solo mode, the AI will definitely know all of their character’s special moves, and that can make things quite difficult for you if you only know how to punch and kick.
If the solo mode starts to become too much, you can change the difficulty through the options menu. The basic moves for each fighter are A to punch and B to kick. You can use these along with the directional buttons or analog stick to try out different attacks.
Because SNK Gals’ Fighters has just been ported to Nintendo Switch, it has that retro game feel. The actual game screen is a small box in the middle of your screen. Surrounding the small box is an image of the Neo Geo Pocket Colour. You can customise this image and change the colour of the console. You can also zoom into the image a little bit to at least make the actual game portion of the screen slightly bigger. Even though this layout makes the game feel and look very retro, I kind of struggled with the size of the image. With the zoomed in option, it made things a little bit easier, but my eyesight is quite bad, so this wasn’t ideal.
SNK Gals’ Fighters Overall
SNK Gals’ Fighters offers players a blast from the past retro fighting experience on Nintendo Switch. It is great fun when fighting against the family, and the game as a whole is very fast-paced and chaotic. The main issue with the game is the layout. As I mentioned, I struggled with the actual game portion of the screen being too small, even when zoomed in. Luckily, with Nintendo Switch you can just play through your TV. Another issue with the game is the fact that you have no inkling of how to use the characters’ special moves. You have to kind of figure these out for yourself, which can be very difficult to do. Because the game has been directly ported to Nintendo Switch, the movement and attacks are slow and a bit sluggish. With that being said, it think it’s quite normal for such an old game to be quite difficult.
SNK Gals’ Fighters is fun to play, addictive, infuriating and crazy but simple all at the same time. It would have been great to see the game changed slightly when ported to Nintendo Switch. I would have loved to see a bit more depth to the game. More detail with each character’s story and better graphics but sticking to the retro theme would have given this version a bit of an edge. Even just a list of special moves for each character on the options or pause menu would have also been a good addition.
Platform: Neo Geo Pocket Colour, Nintendo Switch
Release Date: 27th January 2000 (Neo Geo Pocket Colour), 29th April 2020 (Nintendo Switch)