Something very special from the Arcade Archives this week, as Hamster takes time out from its recent Namco obsession to deliver not only a Tecmo title, but a fun, silly, and particularly obscure one at that — Available to download now on PS4 and Nintendo Switch its forgotten fighter Angel Eyes!
Released to Japanese arcades in 1996, Angel Eyes — or to give it its full title Tōkidenshō Angel Eyes — is a super cult 2D fighter that was renowned for sporting an All Anime Gal cast of scrappers. A selection of fun character tropes, including a school girl, a volleyball player, a kunoichi, an arrogant “ojou” woman, and a young girl with a giant teddy bear (predating Enchantress by several decades), fight it out in cute ‘n’ colorful action, set against the backdrop of some equally strange locations, such as a fun fair, and a medieval castle!
Check out the cute ‘n’ crazy carnage in the video below, courtesy of YouTuber Colmarr.
Angel Eyes, despite its seeming irrelevance, had some surprisingly prescient ideas. Not only is it one of the first-ever “all women” fighting games, but it is also one of the first 2D fighters to feature a heavy slant on juggles and air combos. Perhaps its funniest and most bizarre mechanic, however, is reserved for the so-called “reverse combo correction” system, which actually increases damage the longer a combo goes on — rather than scales it back. And thus, players with one or two fairly solid combos can find themselves taking down their opponents in a manner of seconds.
You thought Street Fighter V was “three mistakes to death”? Try “one mistake to death”!
Despite its simplistic nature and dopey mechanics, Angel Eyes is, understandably, not without its charm. Though it would receive a JPN PlayStation point in 1997, the series would quietly disappear into the annals of fighting game history. Still, it’s lovely to see it again. And, as opposed to a lot of the Arcade Archives releases, Angel Eyes is a title that actually requires archiving, due to its obscure, rare nature.
Angel Eyes is available to download now on PS4 and Nintendo Switch, priced at around $8.