Written: 8.15.08 Acquired: 3.1.06 Status: Cart only Price: $2.99
Dev: Now Production
In 1991 SNK released a 2-player arcade game that seemingly took elements from Street Fighter II, giant monster movies and the WWF. The results were a bit mixed, but more than a few arcade goers enjoyed the simple cheesy monster mayhem. After all, what can beat heaving a giant sweaty gorilla headfirst through the Tokyo Tower? It's gotta be a damn short list. SNK saw fit to release a sequel the very next year. SNES fans would get the game 2 years later "I CALL THIS... ATOMIC NOOGIE!"
Before we go any further I do have a confession (!) to make. Back in early '94 I was reading a GamePro magazine at Target. I saw a King of the Monsters 2 preview at the back of the mag. It was only about a quarter of a page -- not even that, more like one fifth. Anyway, I was so hyped to get my hands on the upcoming Super Nintendo port that I actually ripped the page out of the magazine and walked out of Target like nothing ever happened. I was only ten at the time and desperate you see. I remember spending that afternoon just studying the tiny KOTM 2 preview for a good 20 minutes or so in my room. I have long lost it (the GamePro preview I mean), and perhaps it's fitting that I have
The moral of the story is, errr, uhhhh... isn't it enough that I've confessed?
*breathes deeply while rubbing forehead* That felt SO good to get out of the way
[You're SICK. Is everyone on dope?! -Ed.]
God Bless the SNES. You see, my old town, love it still though I may, never carried King of the Monsters 2. I looked everywhere, but it was hopeless. Not ONE lousy arcade hall had it. I read the preview in EGM and it was killing me to play it. After all, I loved the original. Nope, I would have to wait until June 1994 to finally play the game. I'll never forget the first time [Neither have I -Ed.] but alas, I'm getting ahead of myself again
Let us then travel back to the years 1991 and '92...
KING OF THE MONSTERS
An innocent trip to Safeway along with my dad and brother in '91 saw my first exposure to the original arcade game. My bro and I were locked and engaged as our dad stood in that long line. That night a love and bond was forged. It was one of the first arcade games I ever played, and the first one I ever beat. The next year, 1992, it came out for the Super NES. It was also the first video game I ever bought without my brother having his say. Back then, like many other kids, we were lucky if we received two new games a year, so it was a very big deal any time we did come away with one. It's too bad though that the port was rather subpar. What made the arcade so fun and charming was MIA in the SNES port, though I still had an odd fascination for it. Would SNES-owning KOTM-loving fans be vindicated in ROUND TWO? Let's find out... Hope ya didn't like Poison Ghost, Beetle or Rocky too much...
I'll never forget that December evening at the mall in '92 and how I was able to convince my mom to buy me the game. It was a minor miracle in its own right, and one of my fondest gaming memories
I remember sitting back to admire the mall Santa. I was too old for that by '92, but I still believed in the magic of Christmas. For me, Christmas will always be about caring, giving, the spirit of Santa... and King of the Monsters
Yep... it was a time of MIRACLES and MONSTERS
JUNE 1994... JACKPOT CITY AT GAME HUNTER!
June '94 was one for the record books. In my old town there was a small little diehard gaming rental store called GAME HUNTER. Every kid in my town knew it was the place to rent games. It carried nothing BUT games. No film crap, no posters of blockbuster movies adorning the walls, none of that lousy nonsense. Just good ole fashioned video games (and anime). Everything from 8-bit NES to Neo Geo and in-between. And of course, they were perhaps most well-known for their selection of import titles. Keep in mind that back in the early-mid '90s, IMPORT did not mean just another version of a game but rather carried a strong aura of mystique
On a lazy Saturday afternoon in June 1994, my dad drove me and my old best pal Nelson to Game Hunter, as per usual. However, that day turned out to be one of the defining moments of my SNES career. It was right there that Nelson and I nearly fainted, when we saw perched high on the top shelf Fighter's History for the Super Famicom! Nelly and I loved the arcade, and we had NO idea we would see it there that day. It was like finding a hundred dollar bill in your jacket. We just looked at each other flabbergasted. What a gorgeous sight to see the import version sitting there, with the US release months away! "WHY SO SERIOUS?"
If that weren't enough to wet our appetite, right next to Fighter's History was MuscleBomber! Better known to most gaming fans of the mid 90s as SATURDAY NIGHT SLAM MASTERS. It was another arcade game that Nelson and I loved; we sure as hell poured our fair share of quarters into the cab at the local GOLFLAND. Nelson and I grew up as big fans of the WWF. Slam Masters captured that crazy circus of a world quite well, with its almost larger-than-life wrestlers that seemed to have stepped out of some colorful, zany, violent comic book
"Pinch me, Steven. Seriously, pinch me"
My eyes wide like the Grand Canyon, I was practically speechless. There we were, just two ten-year-old boys slobbering like hungry dogs looking at a fine piece of meat
Saturday Night Fever!
And then, there it was. Right next to Muscle Bomber, which was right next to Fighter's History... KING OF THE MONSTERS 2! I think that was the precise moment where I fainted. All those years searching countless arcade halls for a cab only to be denied, on this day my quest would end. For those of you who have readMemories of Renting, you know I often did the dirty work of renting the games my brother wanted, because at a certain age he became too shy and/or lazy to go rent games on his own accord. That day I said "SCREW IT!" I can't remember what he wanted me to rent, I just knew seeing King of the Monsters 2 changed everything
My dad picked the KOTM 2 box off the top shelf. "You sure this is what Kevin wants?" he asked
Hey, these were bold and reckless times. And I was a bold and reckless guy
And so was Nelson. He rented Fighter's History and I rented King of the Monsters 2. I could only rent one game, and so could he. We agreed to split time that weekend with both games. Hooray for best friends eh? Epic gaming weekend for the ages
Moment of truth time. My bro Kevin rushed the door as usual to see if I had delivered the goods or not. When he saw me holding King of the Monsters 2, Kevin snapped. I guess he was really looking forward to whatever game it was he instructed me to rent, or maybe, it was moreso his knowing that I had disobeyed his orders; little bro upstaging older bro. Or maybe a combination. Whatever the case, he TRULY lost it. So badly that I had to jet off to Nelson's to give Kevin time to cool down. Hell, he even threw my Crash Dummy action pal, Spin, at me. The nerve of him....
After we arrived back at Nelson's place, we put the incident behind us best as two ten year old boys knew how: we played video games. We started off with Fighter's History for a good while. I remember really liking it and thinking what a very faithful translation of the arcade it was, which I had spent much time with in '93 and even parts of '94. To this day it's a translation that holds up
But then... it came time for the Main Event. Finally, I would get to experience King of the Monsters 2. Long story shorter, Nelly and I had a blast trying to destroy all the ugly alien monsters together. About 3 hours later, Nelson and I went back to my house to find cooler heads had indeed prevailed. Kev gave KOTM 2 a go and he ended up liking it a lot. That weekend the 3 of us rotated turns on Fighter's History and King of the Monsters 2, glued to the TV set like zombies
As for Game Hunter, it sadly went by the wayside by the time the 32-bit era hit its stride. Its service wasn't always all that hot, either. Still, I'll always look back on GH with nothing but fond memories. It earned a cult-like legendary following in my town among my gaming friends, and its grand import selection shall forever resonate with a part of my being. Thank you for the memories, Game Hunter. It was an innocent and great era... my wonder years I SALUTE THEE, GAME HUNTER!
Playing import versions before US release FTW!
"WHO IS THE ROBOT MONKEY?"
Last month, two five-year-old twins restored my faith in humanity. This summer I taught some public speaking classes to young children, young as five even. I know, insane that such youngsters have to even grapple with public speaking, but hey, times change don't they? To read more about this rather incredible tale, if you haven't already: Who is the Robot Monkey?
You mean Mechani-Kong? Oops, wrong one...
... a deadly and evil Alien race has crashed the party... winner takes all!
[Wait... lemme put on my zoo animal party hat -Ed.]
DESTROY ALL MONSTERS!! King Famardy awaits...
"THE GOOD GUYS"
The roster stands at just three. A little bit disappointing, considering the original gave you double the choice. Sorry to all the Poison Ghost, Beetle and Rocky fans out there... these guys are nowhere to be found. It's just Super Geon, Atomic Guy and Cyber Woo!
THE BAD GUYS
Six different parts of the world you'll need to romp and raid. At the end of each short level awaits a big, bad and ugly monster for you to tango with. Trust me, none of these guys will ever win a beauty contest!
There are a couple bars to pay attention to. Your own, the boss' and your power bar. When you have fully charged your power bar you can unleash a vicious attack
As you see, the later the boss, the badder he gets. Some of the bars can be a little bit intimidating, ya
OTHER (CREATURE) FEATURES
Charge your power bar by holding L. You cannot move or attack when charging, so of course, you leave yourself wide open to enemy attack. With two players, it's a lot easier to have your buddy entertain the boss while you charge up, or vice versa. On your own though? You better pick your spots
As the old saying goes: Charge wisely
Just like the original, grappling is still the main point of attack. You still gotta toggle back and forth like a mad man all the while cursing and hollering like a raving mad lunatic. Trust me, it's a lot more fun that way
Unlike the first one, here it seems the victor of a grapple isn't random but actually awarded to the one who toggles faster. What a concept!
New to the KOTM universe is the ability to block. By simply pressing R, you can thwart the opposition's blows. It's a welcomed feature and adds some strategy to the fold, particularly in the two-player game
Formerly a (mad, mad) scientist, Guy transformed during an experiment gone wrong (or right...) when the Monsters first appeared in 1996. Ambitious, he was trying to discover ways to make the human body immune to radiation. Well shit, look at him now. See kids, ALWAYS practice safe science. Surviving the ruckus of the original war, Astro Guy evolved into Atomic Guy -- stronger and faster than before. Master of lightning, fireballs and fashion!
"Just remember, I'm the SEXY ONE!"
The Megaton Thunder is my favorite in all of the game
Atomic Guy's version of SHOCK THERAPY! [*slaps forehead* -Ed.]
Rumor has it, the scientist was a wrestler in his younger days...
... as the form on his Front Suplex is worthy of a standing ovation from the greats of professional wrestling
A splendid "show-off" move, and damn effective too
Height: 367 feet tall Weight: 132,000 tons Advantage: Power
Ahh, everyone's favorite Godzilla knockoff, or at least, mine anyhow. It doesn't move as fast as the other monsters but damn if it isn't strong. Like Atomic Guy, big Geon too has evolved. Now he's Super Geon, folks. Equipped with sharp spikes, fangs, claws, and most important of all, one very nasty disposition, Super Geon is ready to tear down any obstacle in his way. Looking more like FIN FANG FOOM in part 2 than Godzilla, this dragon beast can make the earth quiver with one of his mighty Earthquake leaps
"No scent of a rare Chinese herb can put ME to sleep!"
The Geo Sword is pretty wild!
Still, for Geon, nothing compares quite like frying the opposition to a crisp!
Of all the monsters, Woo underwent the most drastic change; as in the original he was an overgrown gorilla but here he is mechanical. No one knows for sure how he came to be in this state, but rumor has it he was assembled by the government as a top secret weapon. Some say the original Woo is dead and that this is something new altogether. Whatever it is, it has broken free of wherever it came from and is ready for battle! "MEGATRON AIN'T GOT NUTTHIN' ON ME!"
Rocket Punch is kind of a wash, but the other two are pretty cool
My favorite grapple attack with Cyber Woo... oh yeah that's just plain nasty
Ray Gun is simple, but sometimes the greatest pleasures in life are just that: simple. Observe
You can just see Green Boy thinking "OH ****"
Now THAT'S gotta hurt
Ooooh... icky. What is he -- wax?! The death sequences are pretty gnarly
Talk about "sleeping with the fishies" tonight eh!
"THANKS A LOT FOR LOSING!"
ALIEN BOSSES AND STAGES
HUGE FROGGER American City
The entry soldier of King Famardy's line of defense. Huge Frogger looks really nasty, but he's a bit of a wimp, especially when compared to the other monsters. Don't overlook him though, as he can teleport, emit laser rays from his ugly mouth and scar you with his razor sharp elbow horns. He's also got the biggest feet of them all and if you're not careful, he'll smash your face in with them! He loves to laugh at your expense too, the bugger. When he reveals his face it's apparent why he hides it behind that huge mask
The game opens with Famardy's messenger giving you the ol' pep talk
Next comes Frogger for a brief scrimmage, after which he'll teleport and await your arrival at level's end, the wuss
Excuse me, are we in Wisconsin?
[I'm sure as hell glad you didn't forget the 'M' there -Ed.]
WATCHING ME... AND I HAVE NO PRIVACY!
*throws hands up* Here we go again folks!
IT'S ON LIKE DONKEY KONG
Look at the size of those knockers, no, not those kind, sheesh
[Nice seeing ya be mature for once -Ed.]
You know what they say about monsters with big feet don't cha?
[Oi! Spoke too soon -Ed.]
They don't call him huge for nothing
Now there's a face only a mother could love, huh?
Ole Frogger makes quite the mess all over American City (what a name eh?) when you're done kicking his ass from pillar to post. I'd hate to have to clean up that pile of goo. Kinda reminds me a bit of Poison Ghost here actually. I'm still upset they left him (and Woo, when Woo was just Woo) out of the SNES port. Surely the SNES could have handled it. Damn lazy porters, Genki [Let it go, man, let it go -Ed.]
THIS LAND IS MY LAND... THIS LAND IS... MY LAND!
EIFFLELYTE French City
Great original city names so far, eh? Well this guy is quite the piece of work. Disgusting tissue-y mass with an alien brain sucking on his face. Nice design. The second soldier of King Famardy, as expected he's a bit tougher and deadlier than Huge Frogger was. You'll discover Eiffle has freak-ish strength; able to lift you high up and pound you into the ground several times over before you can scream 'Uncle!' With the ability to stretch his limbs, he can strike from almost any distance. Once he is defeated, his blobby brain will detach from the body and it's a brand new ball game! BATTER UP!
The messenger has another "original" message for you!
Also new in the sequel is the ability to uproot tall buildings and structures. One can guess what this may entail
Super Geon with the wind-up...
This little green guy is my favorite non-boss enemy. He reminds me of a cross between Capcom's Firebrand and SNK's Gen-An! Kinda cute... in a repulsive sort of way...
[That's what I say 'bout the wifey -Ed.]
And that's why you sleeping alone tonight!
You don't gotta tell me twice!
The Eiffel Tower is an awesome landmark, isn't it?
In tonight's bone-crushing, teeth-jarring epic war, it's Super Geon vs. Eifflelyte! Come one, come all!
[Put me down for 50 on Brain Face -Ed.]
Eiffle can stretch with the best of 'em. I'd hate to have to give that guy a hug
His legs are fair game too. Look at him. What an abomination of a creation... gotta love it!
Here's his freak-ish strength on full display, as he slams poor Geon into the canvas repeatedly with the greatest of ease
[HA! Get those fifty smackaroos ready, kid! -Ed.]
Are you serious? What kind of an editor-in-chief are you?!
[The kind that takes cash only! -Ed.]
OUCH, Super Geon takes a big bite out of crime with this painful-looking grapple move
[Wait, I changed my mind, Super Geon is my call -Ed.]
That's not fair now, come on
[Fair is a 4-letter F word, pal! -Ed.]
Monsters have needs too ya know
[I like it medium-rare myself -Ed.]
One of the best leaping attacks in the business!
Don't celebrate prematurely, the Brain would like a word with ya!
Shades of ALIEN huh? It's trying to claim your body as the new host! Shake it off, and then blow it to Hell and back. Talk about a headache!
CLAWHEAD Grand Canyon
Bogun. F'N Bogun from Ultraman. That's the first thing I thought to myself when I first saw the brilliant design that is Clawhead. I mean, just look at it. Hands for feet. Mad eyes lurking in the mouth, horns and two faces that have clearly been struck numerous times with the ugly stick. Now there's a monster! This two-headed menace guards the Grand Canyon with malice and ill intent. It can spit a web of destruction at you, as well as leap into the air at an alarming velocity. Quite the nimble sucker. And wondering what exactly is hiding in that hideous mouth of his? Find out when Clawhead unleashes his secret attack. Kill him and you're halfway home!
What's got six eyes, two horns and a black heart?
I love the pseudo-Western feel Stage 3 evokes
Hey -- IT'S YOU OR THEM BUDDY!
[In college we played Whac-A... uh, nevermind -Ed.]
I just love the animation on this. Your monster rocks it back and forth a bit in order to dislodge it. Whether a skyscraper or a tall boulder, it's oddly satisfying... though I'm not sure why tearing out this huge boulder causes an explosion like such, but it's all 'good in the hood' as they say
Bad wisdom teeth memories, anyone?
Even better than the pulling out animation is the satisfaction you get from heaving it at whatever target you see fit!
So make sure you check the entire landscape
Good ol' Washington, Jefferson and Roosevelt (Theodore -- not FDR)... Mount Rushmore's nicely depicted here in the Grand Canyon stage. (Sans Lincoln, oddly enough). Of course, in real life Mount Rushmore is found in South Dakota, not in the Grand Canyon, so one can assume the Grand Canyon here is simply a generic name, rather than an actual representation of the real McCoy
Can ya guess what is lurking inside Mount Rushmore? ... you got it! LINCOLN HATERS!
If you answered "Clawhead"... then you sir are officially a certified genius! Ha, tell that to the feds why don't cha!
I know I know, this move was shown earlier, but it looks best on Clawhead. You can actually see his flesh being torn out... ouch
From the dark depths of his vile mouth Clawhead emits a deadly web-like projectile
"GET OVER HERE!"
As I said earlier, Clawhead may appear a bit clumsy [Hey you try having hands for feet -Ed.] but he's quite a nimble sucker. Without warning he soars through the air, looking not unlike Cyber Woo's Hurricane Attack. Great detail on the back there eh?
That's game... NEXT!
BEETLE MASTER Desert
You gotta love the developers at SNK when they made this game. American City, French City... by stage four they clearly said "f*ck it" and named it simply Desert. At any rate, you find yourself halfway to King Famardy, and this bugger is out to make sure you don't get one step closer. Remember the messenger? The repugnant brain that spouted out all those original, creative threatening messages? But then immediately scurried away? Well, now it takes a stand. And to help it take that stand, it employs the hideous body of Beetle Master. Think Krang from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. When weakened, it gets all hot and tempered, sort of like Hwa Jai from Fatal Fury fame. Sorry folks, Beetle Master has no relation to Beetle Mania, though like Megalon, Master loves to attack his foe by burrowing underground. He's got a nasty purple laser ray too. Oh, and if you say his name at night three times, he'll appear out of thin air and eat you whole. No kidding. Kiddies, don't try it "LONG LIVE KING FAMARDY!"
Keep moving, as it tries to suck you up... cool stuff
Amid all the swirling chaos of the sand constantly moving you toward their death pits, land sharks whisk along in formation. If you don't act fast enough, they'll knock you down and you'll find yourself sliding toward the nearest sucking pit. Then it becomes a battle of pushing A quickly enough to recover in time before the jaws of life snatches you up, literally and, pardon the pun
"I'm pressing A as fast as I can, GOD DAMNIT!"
Once you're in, there's no escape. The Gapurin is always hungry and waiting at the helm for its next meal. This equals the loss of a life automatically. Bummer, dudes
Anyone up for a game of Twister? Well, in King of the Monsters 2 you've no choice! It'll transport you to the second section of... DESERT!
We're not in Kansas anymore... well no shit!
And hey, around here, the uglier the better!
"Oh yeah? What'cha gunna do, playa? Yeah, run away again!"
[F*ck Kevin Bacon, gimme Michael f'n Gross! -Ed.]
"Sorry pal, I don't swing on that side of the fence. But if it's a sandworm killing machine you lookin' for, you barked up the right tree. For two hundred and fifty thou a pop, I'll incinerate every last one of 'em this side of Perfection!"
[Uhh, we're not in Perfection. Also, it was a joke -Ed.]
"Oh, sorry I jumped the shark there. It's just, you know, I'm looking for work right now. I mean, have you seen 100 Million BC? Which, by the way, is available at all fine video retail stores right this minute!"
[Alright, SECURITY! -Ed.]
We love Michael Gross, really
Just when you thought it was safe to go back to the desert...
Finally, the Messenger shuts up, and puts up!
Descending into the pyramid, it explodes into a billion pieces as Beetle Master, Beetle Master, Beetle Mas -- oof! [Sorry, I didn't want you saying it a 3rd time -Ed.]
As I was SAYING *rubbing head*, Beetle Ma, uh, rather, Beetle MAN breaks free and the fight is on! I'm requesting HAZARD PAY for this!
"Beetle Boy, tell me how does my ass taste!"
From its sinister belly it emits a laser ray of death. Don't let the feminine color fool you, this ain't no Kumbaya, mate
Beetle Master gives new meaning to the phrase:
"For God's sake man, USE YOUR FRIKKEN HEAD!"
The stinger is no joke. Lifting you up like a toy car, he injects you with poison
When things get too hairy he'll seek shelter beneath the surface...
... and resurface by trying to pull you down under!
Shades of Megalon, no? Megalon was most likely the source inspiration of one, Beetle Mania, from the original King of the Monsters
Now you've pissed him off!
Quite reminiscent of another SNK brawler, eh? This is it, the final push. Beetle Master is reeling. Now is the time to deliver the knockout punch!
Once his exosuit so to speak is destroyed, the Messenger will charge you with all his itty bitty might. It's a quick romp, and a messy one too!
Until the very bitter end...
SACK EYES Sea Bed
Forget ole Snake Eyes, it's all about Sack Eyes! Now none of the monsters will be winning any sort of beauty contest in this lifetime, but Sack Eyes truly takes the cake. He is one FUGLY, repulsive MF'er. And tougher than a 2 dollar steak to boot! If his looks don't kill you, his offensive skills will. His squalid face is the stuff nightmares are made of, and that throbbing red blob around his neck is as dangerous every bit as it is unsettling
Tell 'em, Geon, it's all REAL here!
Press B here repeatedly to swim safely across these chasms. It's a nice little detour from walking and jumping around in the previous stages. Even though it's way too short, I love going through this Sea Bed level. It's also arguably the most unique stage in the game, and does well to make me feel like I'm actually 20,000 leagues under the sea
Where's Michael Phelps when ya need him?!
Look at all those lovely bases to rip apart. Perhaps you'll find icons of aid, or at the very least, have something to throw at all the minor baddies floating around
Hmmm, what could possibly be lying inside that enormous rock? Let's examine the matter, shall we?
Surprise surprise, it's SACK EYES
His throbbing, disgusting, veiny blob of a neck isn't just there for decoration. He can form a giant fist with it and pound you senseless!
Now that hurts just to look at it. Get too close and the git will violently stab you in the privates with his special needle friend
Sack Eyes can also lock you up in a solid wall of ice... not very fun, and oh-so-cold
Nope, we have never seen Godzilla like this before...
He can also blow you up to look like those Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade balloons!
LAVICUS Lava Zone
Lavicus. What can I say about this git? He's King Famardy's right-hand man, er, monster, so you better believe he's tough as nails. As the last line of defense, anything less would be disappointing. With two players he's not too bad. By yourself? Good luck. He terrorized my gaming group back in the day with his incredible endurance, cheap tricks and all-around badassery. He's got a vacuum-like move where he sucks you in, chomps on your body, and then spits you right out like you were yesterday's garbage
Just how tough is he? Hell, there is NO stage. You just fight him right away. The game makers must have thought, "Why delay the inevitable ass-whupping? Let's just feed them to Lavicus out of the blocks"
Best to get it over with...
Lavicus' Lava Zone is absolutely eye candy deluxe. It's simple, but therein lies its wicked effectiveness. The lava flows along as the monsters duke it out. Jump up on the hill if ya like, or settle the score right there in the bright scorching molten lava
He sure is. Cheap, too. Good luck
The fire hurts, but not the lava. Only in video games, folks!
KING FAMARDY Hide-Out
Congrats! You've made it to the last stage. Famardy is the ruler of this Alien race of monsters. Fatter than Santa, and not nearly as jolly, he is quite the sight for sore eyes. He moves around a lot faster than one might anticipate, and has a host of tools he can use to decimate you. Kill him, and the world is yours as King of the Monsters. Die, and well, what do you care? You won't be alive to find out!
Not SO fast though...
[What, no insult to Beijing? -Ed.]
These weird flying creatures operate just like the land sharks do in stage four. Super Geon doesn't seem so amused, does he?
After a brief traipsing, guess what? Famardy? Ha, you wish. Nope, it's the most annoying age-old video game cheap trick in the book:
Yes, I'm afraid you'll hafta go through all of them again, one at a time. Yes, even Lavicus. Fun, no? Hey, it was an arcade quarter-muncher to start off with remember...
Thankfully, in-between each victory you're given a supply of power ups and such. Little L's for small health recovery (like soda pop from beat 'em ups if you will), large L's for, surprise surprise, mucho health gain (like BBQ chicken), P's for leveling up, and if you're lucky enough, the odd 1UP will crop up here and there. However, there is a bit of a catch. There's only enough time to grab two, so pick the best ones. With two players, each player nabs two and clears the field
That gruesome voice can only belong to... KING FAMARDY!
If you thought his front side was unattractive, you oughta see his back side! Great details, especially the scales. You also got to dig the twisted touch of the alien's feet protruding out of Famardy's back. That can't be too healthy now can it?
He has a multitude of various projectiles to throw your way; this one blowing you up like a big balloon a la Sack Eyes
Talk about the roar of a lion
Geon's Geo Sword is a very cool special move. Out of nowhere a gigantic horn grows on his head, he rips it off and then uses it to pierce the heart of his victims. It lasts for a few seconds, or if you prefer, you can chuck it by pressing Y, ace!
Come on now, get a hotel you two
Wait, this clearly ain't consensual! Famardy gives new meaning to the phrase "Open wide"
[I've said that a "few" times in my day... -Ed.]
If you get caught in this vicious trap, kiss it bye bye. It's vile, it's raunch and it's more than a bit disturbing. Damn, what a way to go
I love the game's wacky sense of humor, too. After all, as with the giant monster movies, part of the charm lies in the camp value... just ask any Godzilla fan and they'll tell you the same. Whenever you have rubber suited monsters prancing around miniature cities, there will always be a little camp value to it. Honestly, we wouldn't want it any other way
[Where 'cha park the car, Dick Tracy? -Ed.]
Awwww, poor King Famardy has gone limp under duress
Just like a summer blockbuster, it's never over 'til it's over. At the very end you have a brief set amount of time to destroy all these little gits, OR ELSE
Hard to believe it all comes down to some midgets, eh?
If successful, you're blown sky high. Now kick back and enjoy
Yeah yeah yeah, now tell me what I've WON!
On the other hand, bitter defeat
"Hey bro what you have this morning huh?"
"Just the brand new Burrito Mega Supreme Deluxe, #2 on the menu"
"I think we 'bout to have a #2 here..." "Perhaps we already have.."
See what you've done now? We can't do anything but pray and wait until January 20, 2009, and it's ALL BECAUSE OF YOU, PAL! ....Ahem, and now, time for the GOOD ending
*cough* See the uh, game last night? Yeah good game.. -Ed.]
THE REAL ENDING
It is... until KING OF THE MONSTERS 3 anyhow...
TWO TIMES THE FUN
Though I still miss the bedlam of the two vs. two mode in the original, it's a hoot to team up with a buddy and take out the computer alien bosses one at a time. It lends a certain strategy you don't get when playing alone. It is a short game, but damn fun with two while it lasts. There's nothing like taking turns charging your power bar, and then having your bud block while you attack from behind. All's fair in love and war, baby! Too bad though there isn't an option for you and a friend to take on two alien bosses at a time. Now that would be pretty wicked indeed. Instead we get three options, 1P vs. CPU, 1P and 2P vs. CPU or the ho-hum 1P vs. 2P mode, which plays a bit like the SNES King of the Monsters port, where it's just you and a buddy trying to win 3 out of 5. Unfortunately, you cannot control the alien boss monsters in this mode, which is truly a shame. Honestly, it's a rather disappointing standard throw-in home option. The 2P vs. CPU mode is definitely where the fun is at
The SNES ad used the Americanized King of the Monsters depiction, stating that you're a 120 foot tall monster, ripping chunks off the bad aliens who have come to rule the earth, and Mom wants you to set the dinner table? Not the best ad ever, but it's definitely got some cheese to it. Although Super Geon looks more like regular ole Geon (seriously, compare the US KOTM SNES box cover, they look virtually identical!) while Atomic Guy was somehow made from being "cool" to being flamboyantly, well, you know. Oddly enough, for the Genesis ad the Takara boys used the original Japanese design. The Genny ad is very simple. I liked how they kept the original design and didn't "Americanize" the monsters. Instead, they actually look like they do in the game, what an original concept...
Speaking of Genesis, it should be noted that the Genesis port of King of the Monsters 2 was vastly different from the arcade, which the SNES port mirrored. In the Genesis version, it's a 1-on-1 brawler essentially. That's pretty cool because it gave gamers something different, and though I never played it, I heard it's pretty good. Select from 9 monsters (all except King Famardy) and duke it out with special moves being executed via a clever combination of Street Fighter II and Mortal Kombat-like motions. All the trademark moves of the monsters from the arcade were transferred over, with some moves reimagined. The stages are the same as in the arcade too. This port reminds me of my childhood fantasy game "MONSTER FIGHTER" which was alluded to in King of the Monsters
On the Genesis ad, to the right was a little section that mocked the B&W Classifieds found in any ole newspaper. I actually sent in a request for my own King of the Monsters 2 key chain! I remember how excited I was the day it arrived in the mail. Sadly, I lost the darn thing over the years, but I'll never forget the innocence of that summer, and what it was like to be a 10-year-old boy growing up in suburbia 1994. And hey! Remember when stamps were actually 29 cents? [Bah, I remember when they were 11 cents -Ed.]
WHAT THE CRITICS SAID
EGM's DARE TO COMPARE, issue #60, July 1994
The SNES translation didn't win any end-of-the-year awards or anything, but critics mainly agreed it was a great port job (that sounds a bit wrong..) considering the hardware limitations of the ole 16-bit SNES compared to that of the mega-arcade power that was the Neo Geo
EGM:7, 7, 7, 8
That Saturday afternoon June of '94, I realized my dream when I finally got to play King of the Monsters 2. I'm not quite sure if I liked it more than the first one, but I know I had fun. And that's what video games should be all about: fun. King of the Monsters 2 is filled to the brim with bright and bold colors. At times it is a visual feast. One look at the game and you know, without a shadow of a doubt, that it's a Super NES game circa '94. The monsters animate well, appear just as gruesome monsters oughta appear, and the moves are a treat to the eyes. Atomic Guy's Megaton Thunder is a crowd pleaser every time. The giant monsters are intricately detailed as are the stages you wreck. It is this believability of the behemoths that makes it work, and makes it fun
Now in the street there is violence... rock down to Electric Avenue!
Of course, there's more to a good game than great visuals. As for the sound, KOTM 2 has some solid, rockin' tunes which really help add to the whole B-Movie feel of the game. Sound effects are a bit hit and miss though. Some sounds are out of place or oddly altogether missing. Where's the sound when my guy is crushing small buildings? What's up with the fact that jumping on water sounds the same as when I'm jumping on the ground? So with the good there is some bad. As for the gameplay, it's more sound than the original. This time, it really seems like the person who toggles the D-Pad faster actually wins! I do miss the 2 versus 2 tornado tag team mode, but I welcome the ability to block as well as the mode where you and a buddy tackle the alien bosses one at a time. Having only 3 monsters to select from is disappointing, but on the bright side, unlike the original, their grapple moves are exclusively theirs. Only Atomic Guy can perform a front suplex, while Super Geon makes good use of the spikes on his back as he heaves his foe five hundred feet in the air, the poor victim crashing down on a bed of nails. Ouch!
I also enjoyed how you gotta march through each unique stage, ranging from cities to Grand Canyons to even an underwater sea bed where a mutated aqua slug resides. The stages are damn short though, but the main focus here of course is on the seven boss monsters. The minor enemies you deal with as you romp through each level present minimal threat, but it's still a blast to strike down foul land sharks, wretched one-eyed freekazoids and what have you. And don't forget the human forces, either. They're back from the original once again trying to reclaim their land, with jet fighters, tanks and the "THUNDER HAWK 2" which fans of Toho's GODZILLA films will instantly recognize as a SUPER X clone. And of course, along the way there are various power ups as well as bad ones; like the BOMB icon (to keep you on your toes), the Power Down icon, and the Roulette where you're taking a chance with whatever icon the game decides to give you
No one will ever mistake King of the Monsters 2 as one of Super Nintendo's very best, but it serves its niche well as a creature feature. SNES fans got the shaft with the original, but here is redemption. I'm not sure which I prefer, the original or the sequel, but as ports go, they nailed it this time. Yeah, the game is rather incredibily short, and you can only choose from a scant 3 monsters, but man is it fun to look at and even more fun when playing with a like-minded bud. It's hard to believe it's now been more than 14 (!) oppressive summers ago that Nelly and I shitted our pants when we saw the import version of this game sitting high and pretty on the top shelf at Game Hunter. The exuberance surging through our ten-year-old bodies, and the sheer thrill of finding this unexpected gem before us, it was the perfect way to kick off what was one of the last great summers of my youth... my childhood. I guess I'll always remember King of the Monsters 2 most of all for that innocent summer day in June of 1994... I'm also happy to say that it's a pretty solid little two-player romp. If you love wanton monster mayhem, this is among the BEST on the SNES (in that class, albeit a small one). Speaking of which, its unique atmosphere may provide for a nice break from the norm. After all, how many Super Nintendo games allow two players to simultaneously rip a city apart as well as a tissue-y mass with a brain sucking on its face? Really, nothing else needs to be said. Because if that ain't quality, sir, I don't know what is