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Release year: 1995 | Players: 1-2 players | Developed by Rare
Killer Instinct (SNES)
Killer Instinct is a 1vs1 fighting video game developed by Rare and published by Nintendo for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) in 1995. It was followed by Killer Instinct Gold (N64) in 1996.
Nintendo was taking a hit from some of the members of its fanbase for censoring all the blood and gore in Mortal Kombat (MK). Adding the blood and guts to subsequent iterations of the MK failed to quell the riot sparked by the censorship. To shake off some of the negative backlash Nintendo hired Rare to develop Killer Instinct, a game that was supposed to satisfy the blood lust in teenage gamers.
The early days of the Super Nintendo (SNES) was sort of a golden age for games where pressing a button resulted in a guy getting his ass kicked. However, few games actually had the polish, innovation, and finesse in the execution that made it stand above the crowd of generic beat em ups or fighting games. Killer Instinct distinguished itself as one of the few games that was able to stand out for its amazing gameplay mechanics and, for its time, some of the best graphics on the SNES’ 16-bit system.
Fighting games thrive on the concept of players stringing combos together. The longer the string, the more addictive the gameplay gets. Killer Instinct was famous for being the game where players could string a three digit combo.
It had a unique combo system that when properly used led to an insanely long string. Combo breakers had to be used in order to help balance the fight.
Despite being one of the best fighting games on the SNES platform, Killer Instinct was not without its flaws.
While entertaining and addictive, the game could be difficult to get into for newcomers who would often find themselves constantly being knocked into the ground or juggled around in the air by the more experienced players.
Killer Instincts some of the amazing visuals for its time all thanks to Silicon Graphics, the same team who did the Donkey Kong series. Nevertheless, the game’s graphics had a tendency to push the SNES’ hardware to the limits, which often resulted in a drop in frame rates.
Overall, this game is a must try for any gamer who wants to take a dive into the retro game market and get a taste of one of the best titles the 90’s had to offer.
Killer Instinct has been ported to Arcade, SNES (this version), and Game Boy.