03rd Jan2018

Digital Shorts: ‘World Heroes’ Review (Nintendo Switch)

by Phil Wheat

In DIGITAL SHORTS we review some of the latest video games that are only available digitally (at least in the UK), in a short-form review format. In this edition we take a look at World Heroes, a Neo Geo port available on the Nintendo Switch.


World Heroes is the latest Neo Geo game to be ported to the Nintendo Switch – which has quickly become the PS2 of this generation. I mean insomuch as the console is becoming home to numerous ports from SNK’s system, something which was originally synonymous with Sony’s second console. It also means that, like a lot of remakes/reduxes etc., I’m rebuying titles I already own!

In the case of the new Switch Neo Geo titles it’s mainly because of the ease of picking up the handlheld and playing, rather than digging out a game, hooking up the cables to the TV (which is the biggest pain thanks to the consoles lack of HDMI in this high definition TV era) and then realising that I fancied playing a different title to the one I had put in the PS2! I know, first world problems…

Though to be fair, I have a LOT of the PS2 Neo Geo ports and still haven’t played them – case in point World Heroes. Ported to the PS2 as part of the World Heroes Anthology, and now debuting on the Switch courtesy of the Hamster Corporation’s Arcade Archives, the game is another beat-em up that, along with numerous Final Fight wannabes, proliferated SNK’s console back in the era of Street Fighter 2‘s reign.

As I mentioned, despite owning the PS2 release, I had actually never played a World Heroes title before and was suprised to discover just how very “Streetfighter 2-like” this game really was, even down to having similar move set(s). The big difference in this particular beat-em up is the roster – which features a bevy of fighters taken from history (including the likes of Hanzo, Gengis Khan and even Rasputin), all going head-to-head to determine who’s the greatest fighter of all time! And when you beat the rest of the roster there’s a “big bad” to defeat AND the possibility of replaying the game in death match mode, which adds traps and hazards to the already difficult combat!

It’s safe to say I enjoyed my time playing World Heroes more than some of the other ACA Neo Geo titles – mainly because in World Heroes the fighting is faster and felt alot less sluggish than a number of Hamster’s other SNK ports. However, like a lot of older fighters, the game still feels slow and cumbersome when compared to modern examples of the genre such as the Switch iteration of Ultra Street Fighter 2. But the same can be said of pretty much any older game these days…

It’s not going to set the world on fire (pardon the pun) but if you’re a Nintendo Switch owning fight fan who remembers the Neo Geo with fondness, you can’t go wrong with adding World Heroes (or its final sequel World Heroes Perfect) to your Switch library.


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