Virtua Fighter 2 Review - Screenshot 1 of 2

Virtua Fighter 2 remains one of the best one-on-one fighters in the history of videogames. When it was originally released it destroyed the competition, and even today (after three updates) hardcore fans feel that Sega has never really bettered the classic brawler. But before you all get too excited, this isn't the superb Saturn version but the rather less impressive Genesis/Megadrive port.

Released when the Saturn version was thrilling gamers worldwide, this 16-bit version is a brave attempt to shoehorn the gameplay of the 32-bit version into technically primative 16-bit hardware. The game is no longer 3D but 2D, and this move causes all kinds of problems. The gameplay of VF2 is supposed to exist in three dimensions - taking one away renders much of the previously available tactical brilliance impossible.

Virtua Fighter 2 Review - Screenshot 2 of 2

Graphically the game is nice to look at, but the sprites animate poorly (possibly because they've based on the 3D originals) and the gameplay never really challenges Super Street Fighter II (the Genesis fighter of choice) in terms of speed and control. Almost all of the moves are present and correct which is a triumph in itself, but you probably won't want to play the game long enough to discover them all thanks to the sloppy and clunky controls.


VF2 on the Genesis is something of a mistake. Some might even call it a cash-in. However you want to view it, there's no denying that it's a game you should avoid. If you really must have a one-on-one fighter on the VC, stick with Street Fighter II, or wait for the upcoming SF2 Turbo.