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Fatal Fury Special doesn't really fit anywhere within the storyline of the Fatal Fury universe. It was conceived not as a true sequel, but as an update to Fatal Fury 2 with more characters. FFS brings to the table a total of fifteen playable characters, including all eight characters from FF2 as well as some old friends from the first game. The gameplay though is exactly the same as in Fatal Fury 2.
The two line fighting system from Fatal Fury 2 makes a reappearance in Fatal Fury Special. Each stage has two planes, the foreground plane and the background plane. Characters can freely move and fight between the two planes. Most of the characters' techniques are meant for fighting opponents on the same plane, but each character also has one attack that sends an opponent from the same plane to the other plane, and one technique that simultaneously jumps to the other plane and attacks.
Whenever a character's health bar drops below a certain threshold, that character goes into desperation mode. The character's health bar starts flashing, and he or she is now able to unleash desperation moves. Each character has one desperation move in addition to his or her range of standard and special techniques.
Characters new to the game include Duck King, Tung Fu Rue, Billy Kane, Axel Hawk, Laurence Blood, and former Fatal Fury 1 and 2 bosses Geese Howard and Wolfgang Krauser. After the character selection, players can also select which of the game's characters to start the first round against. ~ Kyle Knight, All Game Guide