The Neo-Geo Pocket Color has seen a bit of a resurgence thanks to the Nintendo Switch. Once the rival of Nintendo’s own Game Boy Color, the NGPC was a highly-regarded portable in the late ’90s/early ’00s that offered up 16-bit graphics and a lot of detail for backgrounds while focusing on lush animations and more simplistic sprites for many of its games. The end result was a distinct style for the device’s games that has spilled over into fangames thanks to sites like itch.io encouraging creators. The first NGPC release on Switch was Samurai Shodown 2, which you could only get for quite some time by pre-ordering the latest Samurai Shodown game on the platform.
While that was a cool bonus, it was also clear that the work being done for that port wouldn’t just go towards a pre-order bonus, and now you can get that game alongside King of Fighters R-2. The first stand-alone NGPC release on Switch was SNK Gals Fighters, which we enjoyed quite a bit. SNK’s fighting games always had their own feel compared to Capcom’s, and their fine-tuned gameplay and quick action was retained in portable form. The Switch is a natural home for these games as there are already a ton of SNK classics on the platform thanks to not only the ACA NeoGeo games, but also the newly-released Samurai Shodown Neo-Geo Collection. The latter remains one of the best compilations ever made – with not only arcade-perfect versions of games, but also a previously-unreleased version of a game and tons of music and art to keep you glued to the screen outside of the fighting action.
The pricing on these NGPC classics remains impressive at only $8 per game. King of Fighters R-2 was in rarified air as it was a portable game of its time with not only smooth action for a fighting game, but also allowed you to tailor-make a version of an existing fighter to your liking. Its roster of 23 characters was also impressive, while Samurai Shodown 2 offered up a level of high-quality weapons-based fighting that you simply didn’t see on the go in that era unless you had a Sega Nomad and could play the Genesis version of SamSho on that. These portable gems can get a second chance at getting the love they deserve, and hopefully they do well so we can maybe get games like the SNK and Capcom crossover games on the platform as well. Both King of Fighters R-2 and Samurai Shodown 2 are available for purchase via the eShop now.