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Retro Fire

Written: 11.21.12
Acquired: 3.7.06
Status: Cart only
Price: $10

Pub: CapcomAugust '93
Dev: Capcom10 MEGS

The first Final Fight game made a giant splash in the arcades. It was later ported to the SNES around Christmas 1990. It was fairly butchered, though, as it stripped away the 2-player co-op mode and Guy was nowhere to be found. In 1993, Capcom released a sequel exclusively for the SNES. Guy and Cody were both gone, but now there was a two-player co-op mode. Did Capcom strike gold here, or were they simply looking to make a quick buck based on name value?  Let's find out...
ROUND TWO... (FINAL) FIGHT!  [Har har -Ed.]


Today marks the Super Famicom / Nintendo's 22nd
Anniversary. And what an AMAZING 22 years it has
been. 22 years later and this system is still delivering
the goods. Happy 22nd B-DAY, Super Nintendo!  ^_^

I still recall vividly to this day my very first experience
with the SNES. Coincidentally enough, it involves the
first game in this Final Fight franchise. In addition to
spirits, or at least, a young child's overactive and wild
imagination. Sit back, my friend, and listen to the tale

                                                                               Happy 22, and here's to 22 more!

I was a wee eight years old, on vacation with my family and friends. You know, back in the good old days when folk had time, my family formed
a strong friendship with four families. Together, between the 5 of us, 10 parents and 16 kids, we had some of the most legendary sleepovers in the history of such. 11 boys and 5 girls, ranging from birthdates of 1977 to 1987. Growing up, those were my brothers and sisters. They truly were

In December '91 the parents wanted to go skiing at beautiful Lake Tahoe. We rented out a HUGE cabin where all twenty-six of us stayed. It was INSANE, needless to say!  And one of the guys, Tommy, brought along his newly acquired hot Super Nintendo. He lugged three games with him: Super Mario World, F-ZERO,
and yes, Final Fight.

It was a vacation trip that haunts me, even still to this very day...

One Sunday morning I woke up to an empty cabin, with weird odd noises coming from the house in every which direction. Then I tip-toed downstairs timidly and yelled out the names of my family and friends

No answer... except for the hissing of the house.
I felt a chill creep up and down my spine. Some thing was not right...

As I made my way to the kitchen, I found a note on the fridge written for me
                                       Cabin was FREEZING!  Some thing just didn't feel right about it...

It was a note from mom. It went something like this:

The rest of us got up early and decided to go out for breakfast. We'll be back soon. You had a very long night last night and I want you to get the extra rest. Make for yourself some Honey Nut Cheerios, and don't watch too much TV


All alone in that hissing cabin with demonic-looking hallways...

Ever feel a presence in
the room with you?  That someone, or something, is watching you?  That's how I felt on that cold, dreary December morning of '91. But being eight years old and resourceful, I believed spirits would never mess with me if I had the radio or TV playing  -- any kind of noise. I believed they only attacked those who were 'alone.' So I watched a WWF show for a while. Then I spotted Tommy's Super Nintendo lying on the floor. With no Sunday morning cartoons on TV, I decided to fire the ole Super NES up. I started with F-Zero, and then played Final Fight, up until my family and friends came back. Yes, part of me was ecstatic to see them again, as I was no longer alone with this cabin from hell, but something funny happened during my playthrough with the SNES... it made me forget about ghosts and spirits, and instead transported me to the future of video gaming, where you could snap a guy's neck in two and soar 200 feet across a race track suspended high above a futuristic city -- all in stunning graphics and sound. I never looked back

That magical moment where you knew shit just got serious!

                                       Family, friends, F-ZERO and Final Fight made Christmas '91 rock



It's out with the old and
in with the new. But of course, they kept around one staple in the form of rugged Mike Haggar. I miss Cody and Guy, but hey what 'cha gonna do?

They really made Haggar extra big for the sequel!

                                                       He's usually billed as 6'7" but not so here...

Did anyone like Maki?  I mean, I guess she was OK. Forgettable

                                              [Tenant at Haggar's home?  Sounds a tad shady... -Ed.]


You'll spot ole Chunners hanging out in the first stage, set in Hong Kong

You'll also catch Guile later on in the game if you watch closely

But sadly, weapons in Final Fight 2 are more of
a negative than positive. There seems to be a split second or so delay in the commands, and I seem to do better anyhow when fighting with just my bare hands. The sound effect for the weapon is also incredibly weak. Tsk

                                             Definitely not up to standard Capcom Super Nintendo par

It now spins and is a lot more fluid looking than in the original

                                         Give Capcom props. They never ever milked a series *rimshot*

Yeah but he was even nastier in the JP version as he came fully equipped with a deadly meat cleaver

Damn American censors...

                                         It comes at the expense of a little health, but it can be priceless

Ahh, Andore and Abobo have always been two of my favorite beat 'em up baddies. I associate that big beefy goon who's stronger than the drones, but not quite up to boss level, as the 'Andores' of its game. Every beat 'em up needs an Andore clone!

And he looks GREAT in his second 16-bit outing. How menacing!

Indeed I do! Punch, punch, press up and punch. It is an instant three-hit combo that can protect you and at the same time dish out some extra minor damage to the baddies. Brilliant!

                                         There's no need to grapple, and you can do it after one punch

I absolutely love it. Adds a nice touch to these type of games. You're walking along, looking for some ass to kick, and you see some goons just loitering around. Sometimes you can even sneak in a hit or two before they come to their senses. Good stuff

Really, what is a beat 'em up's worth without a scene like this?

                                                 "MIKE HAGGAR DON'T PLAY THAT NONE, PUNK!"


The second boss, big bad Freddie, is a mountain of
a man on steroids. I just love how the first three bosses in this game are the classic traditional big, beefy beat 'em up variety

                                       Hey, isn't that just Zangief spliced with some Guile?  Hmmmm....

You have to show them that you're really not scared
You're playin' with your life, this ain't no truth or dare
They'll kick you, then they beat you, then they'll tell you it's fair
So beat it, but you wanna be bad

Just beat it, beat it, beat it, beat it!
No one wants to be defeated
Showin' how funky and strong is your fight
It doesn't matter who's wrong or right


Somehow, destroying this car just doesn't feel sweet or satisfying. The Street Fighter games and the original Final Fight did it one hundred times better

                                               It didn't help that the weapons lacked "impact" as well

Smash smash smash rinse and repeat. Perhaps this is simply Haggar's life calling

The Incredible Haggar strikes yet again

Click here to accompany the following: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOqk_q4NLLI


Ah, you gotta love Twisted Sister. Their cult song "We're Not Gonna Take It" became something of a rebellious cry for teenagers and young adults in the '80s with its never-say-die mantra. It was the unofficial official anthem of a generation more than twenty years ago, and, quite frankly, in some circles today it still is

                                                               "WE'RE FREE, WE'LL FIGHT, YOU'LL SEEEE!"


[Um.... COULD WE?  -Ed.]

Sorry. Ahem

Moving on to stage three, Holland, and a brand new fighter in Carlos Miyamoto. He has a nice little back roll toss that can really take out the competition

Sweet!  Carlos gets cookie points for style as well. It's quite a hoot tossing those fatties into the bad guys

What's nice about Holland are the various mines scattered throughout the stage. It helps give the game some more variety. All in all, this is probably my favorite stage in the game, due to the mines and the end boss... wait
til you get a load of him

                                        Everyone thinks they're a leader. Let's see what happens next...

Sometimes you just can't blame the leader. Good help is hard to find these days... [I'd know -Ed.]

Mines have no prejudice. And no remorse

They told him don't you ever come around here
Don't wanna see your face, you better disappear. The fire's in their eyes and their words are really clear
So beat it, just beat it

You better run, you better do what you can
Don't wanna see no blood, don't be a macho man!

                                        22 years of SNES greatness, and 25 for MJ's BAD. Not bad, eh...

Yes indeedy. Bratken leaves ya with quite the impression. At 6'7" and 434 pounds of muscle, he is a psychotic overgrown boy who loves to play with toys. To have Bratken join the gang, he was bribed by being locked in a room filled with toys. Now he's bored and wants to get out. Don't let him see you or he may think you're a teddy bear [Uh oh-Ed.]

It's too bad the rest of the game wasn't as intriguing as this bit

Love his, ahem, smashing entrance, but sadly, not the best animation. Dude is a bit stiff... probably from being cooped up in the room like that, no?

                                       I guess for some folks Halloween is year round [You'd know -Ed.]

Our warriors find their way to lovely England. This nice looking night stage includes a roaring train brawl... a classic beat 'em up staple. Very original...

[Yes she can. I can personally attest to that, myself -Ed.]

Surprise surprise: Maki is the quick-but-weak one in the group. But, she can handle some wood and
do fancy tricks like such

                                       Smashin' barrels while performing cool tricks: all in a day's work

OK it's not very original but hey, it's still fun. I just love how Andore looks when he's being thrown. As you might know by now, I love the little details in video games. Seeing his big ol' carcass flying around the screen like that is real sweet 'n satisfying

This section probably exhibits the game's best looking part

Seriously, they would make the Japanese kamikaze pilots proud

                                       Y'kno something, some folks just can't get out of their own way...

It truly is. The rest of the game possesses this odd, desolated, bleak feeling to it, but this stage is nice with its city life backdrop

I'm just a sucker for a night time city backdrop with lit windows

Darn, I was wondering if Capcom would go for four straight big and beefy bosses, but Philippe, the strange looking demon clown, is a lanky agile little sucker

                                            I never liked this guy. After Bratken I was expecting... more

This is a damn hard bonus round. I always mistime it and get caught with my hand in the cookie jar...

Props to you if you can break all the barrels in the time limit

Onwards to stage 5 where we find ourselves in Italy smack dab in the middle of the day. I said earlier nothing's as sweet as tossing fatty Elick into
a crowd?  Scratch that. Andore takes the cake

                                       Preferably the blue variant of Andore. Don't ask. I'm odd like that

Way before Epic Beard Man... oh wait, if only.
Too bad. Carlos missed
out on his chance to
become a legend and a household name. Some folks are simply ahead
of their time and were
born in the wrong era

"Oh well, at least I got my 15 minutes on RVGFANATIC.com..."

This is a particularly hazardous space as you don't have a whole lot of wiggle room!  Forget the 2x4, it's not too effective

                                            A beat 'em up where weapons suck?  That... well... sucks...

Capcom made a few boo-boo's with the SNES port of the first Final Fight, and one of them was taking out a stage that featured Rolento at the end. I guess in their quest to make things up, or make money, Rolent came back

Love the shadows on him. It really looks damn good in motion

Rolent's the swiftest of all the bosses. The more damage he takes, the quicker the grenades come. You're dodging, weaving, bobbing, and trying to catch his ass at the same time. By far the most interesting boss fight in the game. I also enjoy the gorgeous backdrop. Love how the sky has that foreboding jade green look to it. It fits in well with the explosive action on screen

                                        Well, you can't deny this was a nice little nod to Final Fight fans

Our final stop... Japan.
The Land of the Rising
Sun. And, apparently,
the Land of the Rising
Haggar. Hmm. I'll leave
it there for you to digest

I always suspected something fishy about that Haggar character...

Andore was obviously a spin-off of the old WWF attraction, the 7'4" 500 pound "8th Wonder of the World" Andre the Giant. Andore got a nice little makeover for the sequel

                                       I cried when Demolition beat Haku and Andre at Wrestlemania VI

I hate this guy!  He blocks a lot of your attacks and is a terrible nuisance to beat

'Sup with his name, Jony?  Er, no offense to any Jony's out there

Carlos is so tough that his sword is mostly for show. He's not afraid to whip it out though in a tight spot

                                         Just in time for Thanksgiving, too!  Perfect timing, Miyamoto

But ah, if only it were that simple. With Belger rotting away in some ditch, the head honcho here is a weird looking dude that goes by the name of Retu

Pretty lovely entrance for an otherwise forgettable final boss

Trash talk ensues

Meanwhile, Tung Fu Rue hangs precariously in the air. Oh did I say Tung Fu Rue?  I'm sorry. I meant Gen Fu. Er... Genryusai

                                                       "Hey BARBIE -- THAT CAN BE ARRANGED!"

Oooh, a dramatic ending to a rather dull final fight, pun definitely intended

Well, at least it's more decent fan service on Capcom's part!

Time for a flashback...

                                       The last blow in Final Fight sends Belger packin' out the window

The infamous final two lines from the 1978 John Carpenter classic movie, HALLOWEEN. Speaking of which, I had a chance to catch that film in a real theatre... Halloween 2012*

Capcom has produced more sequels than most horror franchises

Tough way to spend a Saturday night, eh?

                                                      Talk about a fall from grace... [Oh dear -Ed.]

Mike Haggar is... Mr.
El Capitan Obvious

Final Fight 2?  Or was that Rush Hour 2?  Hmm

Fear not, Belger fans. He would later return to the series as Cyborg Belger in NES' Mighty Final Fight, and finally in the 2000 polygonal Saturn fighter, Final Fight Revenge

                                                 It's a hell of a dramatic way to go out. Points for style

Final Fight Revenge is a bit of a controversial game. It goes for a pretty penny and opinion on it is fairly divided. Personally, I could never sell my copy because the game is a true guilty pleasure for me. It's an interesting piece of gaming (or at least Final Fight) history for me, and I love the fact that Capcom took their Final Fight characters and made it into a Saturn fighting game in the year 2000. Just a bit of an oddity if
ya ask me!  And that only adds to its guilty pleasure
Best of all, Final Fight Revenge features... ZOMBIE BELGER!

Final Fight 3?
  Naaah, Capcom would NEVER milk a franchise for more sequels and money, right

                                                     See you guys for the FINAL FIGHT 3 review...


Final Fight always had the neatest continue screens. Here, the water rises as the
clock ticks down. The closer it gets to 0, the quicker the water rises, in addition
to our character's frantic pleas for help. It's brilliant in its barbaric simplicity...
and you know deep down there's a small sick and twisted part of you that's
curious to see what happens when 0 strikes... not that you do it, though...

Ah, it's sadism at its best (er, worst?)

                                        We can use your "secret twin" for part 3. Explains the ponytail...


Final Fight 2 received mixed reactions. Oddly enough, despite being previewed twice by EGM, it was never reviewed. However, in EGM's bi-monthly affiliated side publication, Super NES Buyer's Guide, the game received ratings of 85%, 85% and 92%. Diehard GameFan, notorious for handing out high scores like ketchup packets, was split with their thoughts on this sequel. FF2 garnered scores of 70%, 78%, 84% and a whopping 93%. The 23% differential makes it one of the biggest scoring discrepancies in Diehard GameFan's history. If GameFan was the nice grandpa, then Super Play Magazine was the strict P.E. teacher you had in junior high. They gave Final Fight 2 a humble mark of 75%. Most fans seem to agree that the sequel is on the ho-hum side and, overall, just not that good. It simply got too repetitive, too fast...
[Can you do that to my man Steve as well?  Pretty please?  -Ed.]

                                                                  TWO LITTLE TWO LATE??

Interesting note about the 2 player mode here is that you can hit your buddy, but it doesn't waste the normal amount. A fun little trick is clubbing both your comparde and the boss, because you can hit your friend repeatedly without them falling over. If you catch a boss during this beatdown, the boss too does not fall down. Your friend takes very little damage per hit, but the boss will take normal damage. You can easily abuse this system but it requires convincing your friend to take the blows. Somehow, they never seem too keen about doing that... there's also a code to play as the same character. Press Down, Down, Up, Up, Right, Left, Right, Left, L, R at the title screen. Final Fight 2 offers four difficulty levels. The easier ones are a joke but Expert is downright brutal, with enemies requiring a bajillion hits before they die. But you will only get the "full" ending if you can beat it on Expert. On a final note, there is some text in-between stages, but no pictures to go along with them. It reeks of lazy programming and lack of attention to detail


Sequels are a funny thing. Movies, books or games. Some people don't want a sequel to somehow 'mess things up,' while others do not mind because at least they will always still have the original. I fall in the latter group. If a sequel blows, oh well. It just gives me another option in that series to play, and if I don't like it at all, there's always the original to fall back on. Final Fight 2 was one of those sequels that my brother and I highly anticipated back in '93. While the 2 player mode option is nice, the rest of the game falls a little flat. There's nothing particularly lousy about Final Fight 2, but it just lacks that 'soul' that made the original so fun and endearing. It really feels like a direct-to-video kind of sequel. You'll beat it and forget all about it 30 minutes later. Obviously, Capcom went through the motions here and it shows
Not a horrible sequel, but sadly somewhat bland and uninspiring

That's not to say it's a bad game. Just that it's kind of a disappointing sequel. On the bright side, the visuals are pretty solid, aside from some stiff animation and lifeless backdrops. The 2 player mode is devoid of slowdown. On the down side, the music and sound are below Capcom par, weapons are essentially ineffective, the two new fighters are sort of lame, and the end boss is rather forgettable. I'd definitely advocate for any diehard SNES beat 'em up fan to include this game in their library, but it's far from the best example of its ilk. Still, it's a nice little slice of gaming history to have -- the very first Final Fight sequel that came out exclusively on the SNES. So while it lacks the polish and punch you would come to expect from a firm like Capcom, there's no denying that beat them up fanatics will still find some fun along the way. But for non fans or very casual fans, you're much better off sticking with a brawler like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles in Time. In a nutshell, Final Fight 2 is forgettable... yet I'm glad it came out, but I'm disappointed with how it came out. Hey, maybe they'll get it right on the third try. I hear third time's a charm!

Graphics: 8.5
Sound: 5.5
Gameplay: 6.5
Longevity: 5.5

Overall: 6.5

August '93 was a busy time for ole Capcom. In addition to their 10-meg Final Fight 2, they also released their major hit, 20-meg Street Fighter II Turbo. The cameos are almost like a subliminal message... but not like they needed to convince you to buy SF II Turbo!
Street Fighter II Turbo... ahhh... NOW THERE'S AN EPIC GAME!

                                                             *Here's my ticket stub. I kept it coz I'm sad like that