Saturday, April 16, 2011

King Of Fighters XIII - console release soon (?)

Not much news recently about KOF XIII console release until today:

Gunsmith @ Orochinagi has translated a recent interview with Frionel in which he gives some info about the upcoming console release of KOF XIII.It seems that Playmore will have an official announcement soon so keep an eye out :)

You can read the interview here 

Later edit: For various reasons Orochinagi took down the interview - here is a saved copy :)

"KOF 13 was released last summer in Japan, where version 1.0 was at Tougeki, and then 1.1 was released to fix bugs. There weren’t any balance changes, just bug and infinite combo removal. There was a rumour that Raiden would be weaker in 1.1 but this was not the case. Now everyone is playing 1.1, even in the US. The question is, will it be released on console? For all the other KOFs it was announced quickly but for XIII, we heard nothing. The reason why we didn’t get an announcement is because today SNKP have a strategy of “all or nothing”. When they were working on XII, which wasn’t finished, they released it because there were commercial issues at stake with another game company resurrecting a huge fighting game saga (which I forget the name of  ).

KOF 12 was an extremely ambitious project by SNKP, where they decided to use 2D and offer a rich and interest fighting experience, while staying in traditional 2D with a quality of pixel art never seen before. And it’s a very risky proeject because of the cost of developing an animated frame by frame, pixel by pixel game. It is far more expensive than developing a 3D game, where you create models and just add textures. The challenge was simple: keep KOF in 2D but attract a new audience and a new youth which would lead to the “re-birth” of KOF.

Today SNKPlaymore has a simple strategy. Their goal is not to replace SFIV or other big titles like that. They have their own niche market, and within that niche, their own niche of fans. They want to focus on these fighting games players; focus on the hardcore. In Japan, when you tell people you play KOF, you might as well tell them you’re mentally disturbed. SNKP want to keep that type of niche fanbase while attracting more of the mainstream without trying to dethrone SFIV because they know KOF just won’t appeal to that mass audience.

The problem was that if Capcom released a new version of SFIV when XIII was released on console, SNK would be left headbutting the wall – SF wouldn’t give KOF a chance – Capcom is a marketing steamroller. There isn’t one fighting game that can rival SFIV in terms of sales. It’s just impossible. Everyone can take advantage of the sales of SFIV for the fighting scene in general but they can’t compete with it. So the plan for SNKP was to make sure the release of XIII didn’t coincide with any other fighting game release. Because of that, SNKP wouldn’t say anything at all before Capcom announced SFIVAE – which they have now done, so now it is safe for SNKP to announce XIII. I believe it will be released before the end of 2011. Anytime from Summer onwards. I believe it will contain extra features that are not present in the arcade and there will not be any balance changes. I believe there will be exclusive content such as characters, stages, music, things like that.

And there is very good news regarding the netplay. For those who already played it in arcade, they know there is a ‘reduce lag’ option*. I have heard this will be present in the console version. The feedback from testers is that the lag input option is better than SFIV’s. SNKP understands that the game’s success may well depend on the netcode. So yes, KOF XIII is arrriving and official news will be coming very very soon, now that the threat of SFIV interfering has passed. At this time of year, nothing can get in the way, so keep checking the usual sites and you will get info.

One last thing, I play KOF 13 in Paris Arcades and it seems the game is the most played there. Why? Because it is magic. It’s hard to define with words but SFIV players are jealous when they see us playing this game."


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