27 February 2005 | poolandrews
Cool but somewhat shallow arcade beat 'em up that's probably rather hard to track down these days.
The generally bigger, badder & better sequel to the original Killer Instinct, this time with smoother more detailed graphics and a better frame rate. Killer Instinct 2 was an arcade machine from the mid 90's. It's basically a 2-D side view beat 'em up where two opposing characters fight it out, using a range of punches & kicks and a whole host of special moves unique to each character. Each character can also perform combos in which a series of moves is performed against the opponent which they cannot block in the normal way, they must use a combo breaker which is more difficult to pull off. The winner is the one who completely empties their opponents energy bar, or after a set amount of time which in this case is 99 seconds has the most energy left. The best of three wins overall. The game can be played either in one player mode against a computer controlled opponent in which the aim is to defeat all of the other characters one by one until you reach the boss, Gargos who happens to be a huge winged gargoyle type monster. Or in a two player mode so you can beat your mate up! The characters are, T.J. Combo who is a strong boxer type and fights in an alley way. Spinal, a skeleton with a shield and sword who appears based on the skeletons from the climax of Jason and the Argonauts (1963) and his stage is a large wooden boat with skeletal rowers in the background. Maya, a busty female Amazonian warrior who fights against a backdrop of an Aztec temple in a jungle. Glacius, an alien who is completely made of ice and can morph his limbs into spikes and fights in front of his crashed space craft. Sabrewulf, a werewolf character with metal arms of some sort who fights in a Gothic castle. Tusk, probably Maya's brother another Amazonian warrior type only this time male, fights to a backdrop of Stonehendge. Jago, a ninja who fights on a bridge. Kim Wu, a Chinese looking female character who uses nunchuckus and fights in a Dojo. Fulgore, a robot from the future who has large daggers on his hands, his stage is a museum. And finally my favourite character Orchid, a busty female secret service agent who has a nice line in skin tight leather cat suits and thigh high boots and fights atop a skyscraper helipad in front of a really cool helicopter. Two characters from the original have been dropped, Riptor who is a Jurassic Park Raptor lookalike and Thunder who was an Indian character who used a couple of Tomahawks as weapons & their absence isn't a great loss. The graphics are cool and are obviously motion captured. In certain stages as the characters walk in opposite directions the camera zooms out which looks cool. Music and sound effects are good too. The main problem is getting to know the moves and combos, you just stand there and get beat by the computer who obviously knows the moves and that becomes frustrating. The time limit is tight as well. Also the characters themselves aren't particularly original, even back when it was first released. Good fun to start with but becomes repetitive very quickly and there are no fatalities this time around, only ultra combos which are cool when you can pull one off but are near impossible to do unless you have lots of experience. Good but limited, I still have fun memories of it down my local.