I'm reviewing this game based on my knowledge of 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99 and 2k...
...and it's the best KOF I've played.
The sprites is not designed at 1080p and there is noticeable blurriness if you play at that resolution. Well this is a fast-paced fighting game anyway so most likely you won't even notice it unless you're doing practice or customization or just staring at characters at select screen which have unlimited time. Not a bigt problem but could be nice it they have re-worked the whole sprites but I guess even SNK Playmore have limited development time and most likely won't even translate to additional sale and I understand them.
Tight control and well-balanced characters. Based on experience I can just pick random character and play it and I'd still have fun beating someone. New comers have to go through the tutorials which is oky but not good. They could have done a better job at it though.
What is most disappointing is the lack of character rooster. I mean the rooster is huge already but the game was released in Steam last year so a character DLC would be nice but so far no news about this. It's pity that great characters such as Mary Blue, Chizuru, Shermie/Shermie Orichi, Chris/Chris Orochi, Geese, Nakoruru, Ryuji, Kyo's parody Shingo, Kasumi and so many are not featured in the game. SNK Playmore should really concentrate on this latest game and just release well-balanced characters like what Capcom does to Ultra Street Fighter IV's outfit DLCs but at a fair price.
But thank you SNK Playmore for reviving one of my favorite character Mature in this game, she's a merciless character. Mature in 96, 98, cvs2 have nice costume though :D: but this one is not bad and even her stance is well-suited considering she uses claw technique.
One of the things I miss most is the concept character artworks featured in the past games. Browsing through the whole artwork gallery is fun just to see concept characters that didn't make the cut and also some very funny and hilarious artworks like the one with Iori Yagami holding a mallet with the attempt to drive a stake to Kyo's poster with Kyo standing not far and shivering cold(? I might be wrong in this since I haven't played any KOF games for a long time so let me play the old game and see if I can fetch this particular artwork). They could have just bundled all the artworks of the past games and featured it in this game.