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Another year, another KOF. Additions this year come in the form of slightly improved graphics and sounds, new moves and a new game mode. Gameplay is much more plot-driven, as you have middle-bosses that can change depending on what team you select. In addition, there are several special endings which are only shown when certain "Edit Team" combinations are selected.

As of The King of Fighters '97, you can play in either the Extra or Advanced game modes. Extra Mode is the typical AOF/KOF scheme, in which your power gauge fills up as you defend yourself or charge yourself up. The new Advanced Mode, on the other hand, only allows you to charge your gauge as you perform special moves and attacks, similar to the Street Fighter series. Extra allows one to sidestep attacks while Advanced allows the character to roll past and dodge attacks; Advanced also allow a character to perform a potent "Super Desperation Move" (or SDM) at any time provided the character has at least two full bars of charged energy stored. In contrast, SDMs can only be performed in Extra when a character has less than a quarter of their health left.

New characters include the New Face Team, the Fatal Fury Outlaw Team (featuring the KOF debut of "Blue" Mary Ryan and Ryuji Yamazaki, and the return of Billy Kane), and Kyo's pupil Shingo Yabuki. In total, The King of Fighters '97 sports 29 separate characters (without counting the six Orochi-related boss characters, which are all accessible via a secret code).


The King of Fighters '97 Neo Geo Kim Kaphwan uses one of his kickin' moves (Neri Chagi) in Orochi Iori, but he was fast to block it.
The King of Fighters '97 Neo Geo Benimaru Nikaido's SDM Raikou Ken hit-surpasses Orochi Shermie's move Yatanagi no Muchi in a flash!
The King of Fighters '97 Neo Geo Chris performs his Strong Punch in an attempt to hit Ryuji Yamazaki, but he uses the SDM Guillotine!
The King of Fighters '97 Neo Geo Due to Shingo's defensive position, Yashiro Nanakase's DM Final Impact will not cause any problem...

Promo Images

The King of Fighters '97 Screenshot
The King of Fighters '97 Screenshot
The King of Fighters '97 Screenshot
The King of Fighters '97 Screenshot

Alternate Titles

  • "拳皇97" -- Chinese spelling (simplified)
  • "KOF '97" -- Informal title
  • "ザ・キング・オブ・ファイターズ '97" -- Japanese spelling

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

There are no reviews for the Neo Geo release of this game. You can use the links below to write your own review or read reviews for the other platforms of this game.

Critic Reviews

The Video Game Critic Mar 15, 2009 A- 91
Digital Press - Classic Video Games Sep 14, 2005 9 out of 10 90
Defunct Games Feb 22, 2004 B 75


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Before the game was released SNK held a contest in Japan to select one lucky girl who would voice Kyo's girlfriend: Yuki. The contest lasted a whole day and included talent events and stuff like that. Now, where in the hell can you find Yuki in the game talking? In the special ending you get if you play with the "Weapons of God" team (Kyo, Iori and Kagura) She appears in a b&w picture at the end and says a line....

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Terok Nor (26230) added The King of Fighters '97 (Neo Geo) on Mar 03, 2005
Other platforms contributed by Fred VT (27025), Corn Popper (69566), mars_rulez (28889), yenruoj_tsegnol_eht (!!ihsoy) (2630), Sciere (502177), Zovni (10666), Foxhack (18793), Kohler 86 (7977) and Kabushi (196619)