Gaming Flashback: Handheld Fighters
Handhelds are not the first place gamers typically look when it comes to handhelds. While handhelds are convenient when traveling, they lack the ability to readily handle multiplayer modes and, in the case of older systems, the lack of buttons can be a hindrance. This isn't the case with every game, and while they aren't the most ideal for competitive purposes, there are a lot of fighters out there that are just as fun on the go as they are in your living room. Let's look at a few fighting games and see just they stack up on the handhelds from the past.
Guilty Gear X: Advance Edition
This entry will likely be a surprise to many, as I can't imagine too many fans of Guilty Gear would remember the Gameboy Advance entry in the series. I picked up this game on clearance some years ago at a local store, and while I went in expecting it to be awful, the game turned out to be surprisingly good. I sunk hours into playing it over the next couple of years, and it is a large part of why I still enjoy the franchise today. It also helps that it is based on Guilty Gear X, so favorites of mine like Millia Rage and Baiken are playable in the game.
Battle Arena Toshinden
It's amazing that this Playstation launch title was able to be shrunk down and put on a Game Boy cartridge, but more amazing is how good the game turned out. Transitioning the game to 2D and borrowing the engine from their conversion of SNK's Samurai Showdown, the game is a solid little fighter and a nice hidden gem for anyone looking to blow the dust off of their old Game Boy for a good, old fashioned fighting game.
Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers
It's always been strange to me that Power Rangers saw as few fighting games as it did. Given the nature of the series, this genre seems like a no brainer. Well, this Game Gear title is likely one on this list that few people have played. Thankfully this game took the high road, and instead of simply being a port of the Genesis version of the game, it received it's own unique features. If you still happen to have a working Game Gear laying around, this one is a great outing, just don't expect to play any multiplayer unless you have two Game Gears, two copies of the game, and a Game Gear link cable.
Bleach: Dark Souls
I'm not sure why this one isn't talked about more when it comes to the DS, because it's an incredibly fun fighting game. A multiplayer fighter that gets pretty crazy, this one is a lot of fun, even for people who aren't fans of the series. If you can get a group of friends around for a multiplayer session, be ready for yelling, because once the Bankais start to fly things are going to get crazy fast and people are going to lose their tempers. A very underrated game and one of the best fighters on the original DS, Dark Souls is an easy pick up.
Ultimate Mortal Kombat
What are some ways you can make a great portable Mortal Kombat title that doesn't involve the PSVita version of MK9? Well, you can start by giving a near arcade perfect conversion of Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3, add in single cart multiplayer, and throw in some Puzzle Kombat just for good measure. If you're looking for your MK fix on your DS, then you won't need to look any further, as this little gem has all the violent action that you'll need, and its the easiest of these games to play with a buddy. If you're an MK fan and own a DS or 3DS and don't have this game, then you are doing yourself a disservice.