The King of Fighters ’97 Released 20 Years Ago Today, Let’s Look Back at the Series

Well, this certainly makes me feel old. I was just scrolling through my Twitter feed, and I stumbled upon an interesting tweet by the great @Gameiversary account that mentioned that The King of Fighters ’97 released 20 years ago today. The SNK developed fighting game didn’t make its way to the original PlayStation until 1998 (and that version didn’t even see a western release), but it’s still a huge milestone for what is a beloved installment in the series (even if it isn’t ’98).

It also reminded me that I wrote a huge history piece on The King of Fighters series prior to The King of Fighters XIV releasing on PlayStation 4. So, I figured I’d share that again while it’s timely. Here’s what I wrote about ’97:

Sadly, the Japan exclusive PlayStation versions of KOF games became a trend with The King of Fighters ’97. The big addition here was allowing players to choose between two different playing styles: advanced and extra. The advanced option played more like KOF ’96 while extra was a throwback to the first two games. It was the best of both worlds, and allowed every part of the split fanbase to enjoy it.

Check out the full slideshow below for a quick trip through KoF history:

If the anniversary has you thinking about playing some King of Fighters, you’ll be glad to know that The King of Fighters XIV is current on-sale for 50% off. So, for only $29.99 you can pick up that installment. View other PSN sales from this week here.

Feel free to share your memories of The King of Fighters ’97 in the comments below!