If there was a lukewarm take to be had about 2020, it was that it hammered home the idea of a retro gaming revival. You didn’t have to look too far to see the results of publishers cashing in on nostalgia: Activision threw out a brilliant remaster of the first two Tony Hawk games and a new Crash Bandicoot, while indie developers made good use of rose-tinted pixels to create numerous odes to the past.
One of the best examples of a retro resurrection was developer Lizardcube’s Streets of Rage 4. A glorious sequel to a trilogy of hard-hitting beat ‘em ups, Streets of Rage 4 didn’t just feel great, it looked the part as well. A fresh art design gave the cast a much-needed makeover, turning the fisticuffs adventure into a gorgeous animated slobber-knocker.
So imagine that eye for detail, applied to other cult favourite games. Lizardcube shared a kickass mock-up for its concept of a Garou: Mark of the Wolves sequel this week, and the end result has me throwing coins at a busted Neo Geo cabinet in my room:
For those of you who are unaware of Garou: Mark of the Wolves and why it’s a cult favourite, it’s because even decades after release it still happens to be a terrific fighting game and the final chapter in the Fatal Fury franchise. SNK dropped it in arcades back in 1999, and while a sequel was planned, it never materialised in this dimension. The game itself still stands as the pinnacle of what the Neo Geo arcade hardware was capable of at the time, and combined with its fantastic pixel art that could give Guilty Gear or Street Fighter 3 Alpha a run for its money, it earned a devoted following over the years.
Fatal Fury was pretty much absorbed into the King of Fighters series in the years that followed, but King of Fighters XIV director Yasuyuku Oda did see Lizardcube’s tweet and jokingly replied to them:
Will a Garou sequel ever be made? Who knows, but I’d happily drop cash on it if it boasted the delightful artwork of the Lizardcube team.
Last Updated: January 20, 2021