|It's nice to have what seems to be an accurate port of the first Last Blade; the only one I had before this was the Japanese PS1 version, which was cut down for that system, although it has some nice extras.|
This PS2 compilation has both Last Blade arcade fighting games, with online play in Japan via the KDDI matching service. Arranged soundtracks are selectable for both games, and an English language option is available within each game, once you launch it from the main menu--the games themselves seem to be pretty straight ports of the Japanese ROMs--the home versions, I guess, since Training and Time Attack modes are available. Oh, blood remains on and red even with English selected.
Oh, that was another thing: if I remember correctly, the PS1 version didn't have an English option, so I couldn't read the great win quotes. No problem in that department here, yay!
On the other hands, the ports disappoint in a couple ways, particularly in view of SNK's stellar ports recently. First, the game doesn't support progressive scan, which is a bummer. Second, there are no in-game move lists--hafta keep the lush manual handy. This isn't too surprising given that these ports are pretty much straight conversions of the ROMs, but still, it's a bit of a let-down.
The Arranged soundtracks have some nice high bitrate re-orchestrations of the original music, although they sometimes lack the punch of the old synthesized NeoGeo sounds.
Load times in each game are stellar. There's a tiny pause between characters in Time Attack modes, and a bit of a load time when first starting either game, but aside from those instances, you really don't see any load times here.
Most importantly, each game plays just as smoothly as the arcade versions, as far as I can tell. I'm not all that |337, so it could be that there are slight timing differences from the arcade versions (see entry 927), as some pundits would argue, but heck if I can point them out to you. Oh, and mega import shop NCS even accused the ports of dropping frames of animation. I can't say I noticed that either; but again, I'm not about to stomp over to my MVS-having friend's house and demand a side-by-side comparison. They play just great as far as I can tell.
Nostalgia tempts me to prefer the DC port of LB2... But come to think of it, I don't think that one had an English option either--except for in the North American version, which didn't have blood. So maybe this PS2 version really is the best port. Hm! Just wish it had progressive scan...