When I was growing up, and really developing my then-burgeoning love for video games, I was addicted to fighting games. It was mostly Capcom’s fault; they released Street Fighter II, revitalising arcade culture, and kicking off an era of me-too 2D fighting games that eventually led to a saturated market. There were home ports of all of these games, of course – with decent, but not quite arcade-perfect ports of Street Fighter II hitting the Sega Genesis (Mega Drive, for you local folk) and the Super Nintendo Entertainment System.
Those other fighting games? They also found homes on the consoles of the time, ported to the 16-bit machines as best they could be. If there’s any consoles on the planet that I wanted at the time, it would be SNK’s Neo Geo. The system wasn’t home to just ports of games; because it featured what was essentially the same hardware to be found in the company’s arcade cabinets, they were the arcade games. Here’s the problem though: I could never, ever afford one.
When the system was released, it hit the US market at a ludicrous price of $650 (Which, when adjusted for inflation, is worth about $1000 today, or R14 588 South African Rands at today’s woeful exchange rate). Games for the console were released for upwards of $200 – so if you think consoles gaming is expensive now, just realise that it was decidedly more back then.
Anyway, the system (the arcade and home console) became home to more than just great fighting games, it was also where you’d find great games like Metal Slug, Windjammers, Shock Troopers and so, so much more.
The point of all of this, is that the system was released over 25 years ago – and there’s a Humble Bundle sale that celebrates the system and its rich history. Right now, for $10, you can get yourself nearly two dozen great Neo Geo games.
What makes it especially different this time around, is that 16 of the games make their PC ported debut in this bundle. On top of that, many of the games are playable in your browser, so you can probably play them in the next week or two while you wait for the year to end, as a way to help ease your pain as you struggle with “The Decembers”
Pay what you want for Art of Fighting 2, Fatal Fury Special, King of the Monsters, Metal Slug 2, Samurai Shodown 2, Sengoku 3, The King of Fighters 2000 and Baseball Stars 2.
Beat the average ($9.47 at the time of writing) and you’ll also get The Last Blade, Pulstar, Metal Slug, Metal Slug 3, Shock Troopers, Neo Turf Masters, The King of Fighters ’98 Ultimate Match Final Edition and Twinkle Star Sprites. This middle tier also includes the Neo Geo 25th Anniversary Soundtrack and yes – even more games will be added soon.
Pay $10 or more to receive Shock Troopers: 2nd Squad, Samurai Shodown 5 Special, Garou Mark of the Wolves, Metal Slug X and The King of Fighters 2002 Unlimited Match.
It’s worth paying $10 to get Garou, which was one of the best fighting games released not just on the Neo Geo, but on any system. As per usual, you’re able to split the profits whichever way you like.
You could argue of course, that you could just download and emulate all of these games, and you’d be right – but you’d also be a dick.
Last Updated: December 9, 2015