The King of Fighters 2002: Unlimited Match


STORY:  In terms of plot, KOF 2002 Unlimited Match does not have a story and was developed as a "dream match" featuring characters from all previous installments of The King of Fighters.
REVIEWThe King of Fighters 2002: Unlimited Match is an enhanced version of KOF 2002 first released February 26th, 2009 for PlayStation 2 in Japan and on November 3rd, 2010 for Xbox Live Arcade. The main enhancements of KOF2002: UM include a new soundtrack (composed by Yasufumi Fukuda, Makoto Asai, Teruo Konishi & Two-Five), new playable characters over the original KOF2002, many gameplay tweaks, new Desperation Moves, new 2D/2.5D stages, Color Edit Mode, online match support, and brand new cut-in character artwork appearing during super moves.


KOF 2002: UM character selection screen.

A new character known as "Nameless" was also introduced in KOF2002: UM, taking the place of K9999 (who was really a rip-off of Tetsuo Shima from Akira - and SNK didn't want to get sued). For the record, Nameless fights very similarly to K9999 even though he has completely different animations. Most returning character updates are subtle, but hardcore players will notice some brand new hard-hitting Desperation Moves (which look better than ever thanks to the new cut-in artwork). The new backgrounds of KOF2002: UM are some of the best in recent times and feature a ton of classic character cameos.

Tons of character cameos in backgrounds.

The King of Fighters 2002: Unlimited Match features a whopping 66 playable characters (the largest roster of the series)! Of course, this also includes alternate versions of some characters, such as: The Kyo clones, "Nightmare" Geese Howard, SVC/'98UM Geese Howard, KOF '99 Robert, and KOF '99 Sie Kensou. The original console version of KOF 20002: Unlimited Match also includes a NEOGEO port of the original King of Fighters 2002 and a Gallery featuring character illustrations and more.



Page Updated: October 25th, 2023
Developer(s): SNK Playmore
Publisher(s): SNK Playmore
Artwork by: Hiroaki
Platform(s): Arcade, PS2, PS4, Xbox Live, PC
Release Date(s): Feb. 26th, 2009                PlayStation 2
July 9th, 2009                    Arcade
June 24th, 2010               PS2 - Tougeki Version
Nov. 3rd, 2010                Xbox Live Arcade
Jan. 24th, 2011                 Arcade - Final Version
Feb. 27th, 2015             
Feb. 8th, 2021                 PlayStation 4
Characters Nameless, Kyo, Iori, Benimaru, Daimon, Terry, Andy, Joe, Leona, Ralf, Clark, Kim, Chang, Choi, Ryo, Robert, Takuma, Athena, Kensou, Chin, Mai, King, Yuri, May Lee, Mature, Vice, Yamazaki, Blue Mary, Billy, Yashiro, Shermie, Chris, K', Maxima, Whip, Vanessa, Seth, Ramon, Shingo, Kula, Angel, Bao, Foxy, Jhun Hoon, Lin, Heidern, Li Xiangfei, Hinako, Kasumi Todoh, Goenitz, Rugal, Omega Rugal, Orochi Chris, Orochi Shermie, Orochi Yashiro, Geese Howard, Krizalid, Zero, Original Zero, Igniz

kofum-1.jpg (309293 bytes)kofum-2.jpg (200053 bytes)kof2002um-nameless-screenshot.png (545325 bytes)kof2002um-kula-screenshot.jpg (99845 bytes)

Featured Video:

Related Games: The King of Fighters 2002, KOF '98: Ultimate Match, KOF Collection: Orochi Saga, KOF '94, KOF '94: Re-bout, KOF '95, KOF '96, KOF '97, KOF '98, KOF '99, KOF 2000, KOF 2001, KOF 2003, KOF XI, KOF XII, KOF XIII, KOF XIV, KOF XV, KOF: Maximum Impact, KOF: Maximum Impact MANIAX, KOF: Maximum Impact 2, KOF: Maximum Impact Regulation A, KOF: Neowave, KOF EX Neo Blood, KOF EX2 Howling Blood, KOF R1, KOF R2, Garou: Mark of the Wolves, SNK Vs. Capcom Chaos

Gameplay Engine

 8.0 / 10

Story / Theme

 8.0 / 10

Overall Graphics

 7.0 / 10


 7.0 / 10

Music / Sound Effects

 8.5 / 10


 6.5 / 10

Art Direction

 9.0 / 10


 9.0 / 10

Options / Extras

 8.0 / 10

Intro / Presentation

 7.5 / 10

Replayability / Fun

 7.5 / 10

"Ouch" Factor

 7.0 / 10


 9.0 / 10


 8.0 / 10

 Review based on PS2 (Japan import) version     


Final Words:

KOF 2002: Unlimited Match offers a ton of replayability and fan service for old school fans and veteran hardcore players alike, boasting a huge roster and new ways to play classic characters of the long-running series. In essence, KOF2002UM is still pretty much "the same 2D KOF" that fans have been playing for decades. For hardcore players, it's a timeless game with tons of team possibilities, fun combos, and new tech to try out. On the other hand, KOF2002:UM definitely lacks the graphical prowess and "flash" of more modern 2D fighters. 

Despite looking "aged" as a 2009 / 2010 fighting game, KOF 2002: Unlimited Match gives traditional 2D fighting fans a throwback to an older time... a simpler time... and is no doubt one of the definitive 2D experiences / remakes of the "classic KOF formula" if there ever was one. Personally, I didn't enjoy playing KOF2002:UM for any long period of time. (I miss my Garou: MOTW team from KOF2003, for one.) However, I do absolutely love the amazing character artwork in this game drawn by the legendary Hiroaki Hashimoto, along with the awesome roster and cool stages filled with cameos.
~TFG Webmaster | @Fighters_Gen  

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