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Press release: 1996-09-03: Virtua Fighter Kids: New Sega Saturn game is way "a-head" of its time

From Sega Retro

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This is an unaltered copy of a press release, for use as a primary source on Sega Retro. Please do not edit the contents below.
Language: English
Original source: The Free Library


REDWOOD CITY, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Sept. 3, 1996--You'd have a big head too if you were the newest addition to one of the most successful fighting franchises in the videogame industry.

Especially if you were just a kid!

Sega of America Tuesday announced the "birth" of "Virtua Fighter Kids" for Sega Saturn. The mega-hit arcade game in Japan is a sequel (or "pre-quel" biologically speaking) to "Virtua Fighter 2," the best-selling Sega Saturn game.

All 10 "Virtua Fighter 2" characters are in "half-pint" proportions -- except their heads -- which are 10 times their normal size and designed as the child version of each fighter. The result is 20 percent faster action with crystal-clear facial expressions adding more emotion and intense speed to the gameplay.

"Don't let the name fool you -- this game is about more than just kids' play," Ted Hoff, executive vice president, sales and marketing, said. "`Virtua Fighter Kids' is the culmination of years of development on the Virtua Fighter series that enabled us to make this the fastest 3-D fighting game on the market with an eye-catching twist in character development."

Brains and Brawn

"Virtua Fighter Kids" is a direct translation of the arcade game to the 32-bit Sega Saturn videogame console. As Sega's ST-V arcade board is compatible with the Sega Saturn hardware architecture, the contents of the arcade version could be converted perfectly to the Sega Saturn.

While the moves are the same as in "Virtua Fighter 2," the smaller body proportions of "Virtua Fighter Kids" characters give players the ability to create new fighting move combinations.

The "Options" menu lets players chain together various moves and adjust the timing of these moves. Now complex combination moves that previously required multiple directional and action key strokes in Virtua Fighter games can be "programmed" to be activated with one button.

A new "Kid's" mode lets players unfamiliar with the controls of the Virtua Fighter series to perform the appropriate moves simply by pressing the buttons randomly -- perfect for younger children or inexperienced players.

Other new features include a short instant replay during gameplay when certain moves are executed, a new computer graphics opening movie that shows each character in both traditional and "kids" sizes and an ending reward movie showing the private lives of the Kids character.

Virtua Fighter is one of the most popular fighting game franchises in the world, with an animated cartoon series airing on Japanese television, a special limited edition Marvel Comics comic book in the United States and many licensed products based on the fighting characters worldwide.

The Virtua Fighter arcade machines have consistently been among the top performing arcades since the first machine shipped in November 1993. Since then, Sega has sold more than 40,000 Virtua Fighter arcade units; in the arcade industry, any game that reaches 5,000 unit sales is considered a hit.

"Virtua Fighter Kids" will arrive on retail shelves this week. Suggested retail pricing is $49.99. "Virtua Fighter Kids" was the best-selling game in Japan the first week it was available, July 22-28.

For more information on "Virtua Fighter Kids," check the Sega Web site at http://www.sega.com. -0-

Note to Editors: For Sega's past press releases, go to http://www.businesswire.com/emk

CONTACT: Sega of America, Redwood City

Dan Stevens, 415/802-3996

or

Manning, Selvage & Lee

Kelly Fitzsimmons, 213/782-6600 (ext. 235)
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