SNK is one of those names that, if you’re into arcade gaming at all, is instantly familiar to you. The company built their reputation in the West primarily through their NEO GEO MVS platform, but like many major players, recent years have seen them focus mostly on home consoles with a Japanese arcade release here and there.
To regular readers of this blog, then you already know that exA-Arcadia has taken up their mantle, providing games on cartridges on a multi-game system and making it available worldwide, no revenue share strings attached. They recently made their big North American debut at Amusement Expo 2021, where they made a very strong splash. Now, they are looking to build on that momentum with the announcement that you read in the headline – SNK is joining forces with exA-Arcadia as one of their official partners.
This makes for the biggest partner name that will be developing content for the EXA platform to date, bringing their efforts full circle as brand new SNK games will grace US & EU arcades once again. As some of you might recall, the connection goes deeper than that, as Paul Jacobs, ex-SNK USA boss in the first half of the 90’s, is currently the VP of sales for exA in North America. As a note, this announcement was supposed to have gone live at Amusement Expo, but certain delays took place as SNK has been going through some pretty big changes lately, so things weren’t ready to announce until today.
The first title that they are doing is ironically the “very last” game designed for the NEO GEO MVS – Samurai Shodown V Perfect. This was originally intended to launch on the MVS back in the day, but it was canned and almost forgotten by time, until an interview with Kouji Takaya uncovered an existing copy. That game was finished up and brought to consoles as a part of the Samurai Shodown Neo Geo Collection that was released in the summer of 2020. Now, it will finally be able to come back home to arcades.
SAMURAI SHODOWN V PERFECT represents the ultimate culmination of the original 2D fighting series: 28 playable characters including every boss from previous installments, Overkill techniques, and other new game system and balance changes added between SAMURAI SHODOWN V and V SPECIAL. There’s also further fine tuning and improvements in conjunction with a fleshed-out story for each character to make for a polished game in both single and versus play modes.
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One of those details that you can expect to find is a 4K resolution enhancement, which fits with the official dedicated cabinet release, although anyone running a kit on an older 1080p or 720p monitor will be fine too. Here’s a teaser trailer:
This is just the first of the games that will be headed to the exA with the SNK name, and it’s important to note – this and the other SNK releases to exA will be available worldwide, not just in Japan. Adding a high-profile name like this one to the roster will also mean a wider spread of the hardware out there.
What do you think about this announcement? What SNK games do you want to see released on the exA? King of Fighters? Metal Slug? Crossed Swords?