- The "Sacred Weapons Team" ending in KOF 97 is made of pure, unadultered WIN.
- Kensou has two in the NESTS saga. If you use him to beat Krizalid in 99, he awakens the Dragon Spirit to save Athena and himself. In 2000, he saves Bao's life after he takes a massive beam from the NESTS Kill Sat and again releases the Dragon Spirit, recovering his powers.
- Come to think of it, for someone who's actually The Scrappy, Bao going Badass Adorable via fearlessly jumping and taking the hit to protect his teammates and Kaoru is pretty awesome in itself.
- Also, Takuma using a single Haoh Shoko Ken to save King via deflecting the same energy beam from the same Kill Sat.
- If you don't fight Kula Diamond, you will see Heidern kick ass and take names via disabling Zero.If you do, Diana and Foxy disable him instead. And in Kula's own ending, she suceeds into dismantling the Zero Cannon... which prompts Candy's own CMOA with her Heroic Sacrifice
- When Ash Crimson saves the day and our timeline, revealing his benevolent true intentions and getting himself Ret Goned, it's pure awesome. And pure tears.
- And in 2001, when K' saves Kula in the Hero Team ending.
- The King Of Fighters 2002: Unlimited Match, the remake of the classic KOF 2002 (and after the deception that was Neowave) is considered a Crowning Moment Of Awesome per-se in the KOF franchise:
It brought back not only all characters from KOF 2002 from the Arcade and console versions (Except for K9999, who was Put on a Bus and replaced by Nameless, a brand new character), but in general, it brought back all characters who appeared during the NESTS chronicles, resulting in the biggest roster in the franchise so far with 52 different characters. (Though you if you want to get technical, it's actually 66 characters, including EX characters, hidden characters, (which have been banned,) and the final bosses. (Which have also been banned.))
It also includes colorful stages with a lot of cameos, contrasting the gray, desaturated stages from the classical KOF 2002 and the lacking stages from Neowave; stages including a beautiful beach in Italy (For the Fatal Fury and 97 Special Team, and Geese), The NeoGeo World (An amusement park for K's Team and Pretty Girls Team), a station in Korea (For Kim's Team and the new Edit Team), some ancient ruins in Cambodia (perfect for the Ikari and Father Teams), a Chinese Restaurant (Fitting for the Psycho Soldiers), a New York street in front of a concert hall (For the Agents and Woman's team note ), The Kyokugen Gym, located in Taiwan (Where you can even spot Gato and Hotaru from Garou: Mark Of The Wolves), a spectacular battle arena in Greece (For Iori Team, the New Faces Team, and Goenitz), a colorful High School in Japan (For Kyo and company), an ominous yet awesome Abandoned Laboratory (for Kyo clones and NESTS lackeys), and probably the best of them all, remastered versions of the stages for the bosses (Including the Skynoah stage for Omega Rugal); Clone Zero's and Igniz's stages are particularly gorgeous and well detailed, specially with their new music.
Speaking of music, the stages have several remixed versions of old songs, as well as new music for some teams. See SNK for more details.
MAX2 final moves make a return, and more visually impressive than before, complete with a Super Move Portrait Attack. Well done, they can turn the tables on a seemingly lost match. Hard to admit, but the NESTS bosses have the best of them all:
- Krizalid's Lightning Disaster involves him expelling all the data of his battle suit in form of lasers that fill the entire screen.
- Clone Zero can catch his opponent into a black hole, where he apparently does a Raging Demon on him.
- Original Zero starts stunning his opponent on place, then, his striker Ron whacks his opponent's soul out of its body, then all the strikers gang up and completely beat it up. The awesome part is, when Ron pushes the soul back to its body, it's when the whole damage is registered.
- Finally, Igniz's Disintegrational Universe: He catches his opponent insde a small galaxy and explodes it, glorious and lethal.
- Some of the MAX2 of the normal characters are visually impressive as well:
- Nameless, for example, Encases his opponent in a huge fire column, while an image of his beloved Isolde appears behind him.
- Kasumi performs an enhanced version of her Chou Kasane Ate super, the amazing part is that she's assisted by her father Ryuhaku for extra power. Once the move is complete, Ryuhaku quickly jumps away as Kasumi looks back in disbelief.
- Mai sets her opponent on fire, all while looking as provocative and sexy as ever before, and sometimes she appears clad in a white wedding dress when completing the move.
- The very best part, if you finish the duel with any of these moves, you get a special picture on the victory screen: Nameless stands there with Isolde near him, Kasumi stands in place smiling as Ryuhaku is behind her, hidden under a bush; and Mai appears in her wedding dress. Awesome, funny... and heartwarming if you think about it.
- Another awesome aspect of KOF 2002: Unlimited Match is, despite it being a Dream Match Game, it actually comes with a plot (an Excuse Plot, but a plot nonetheless), which seems to be centered on Nameless and his story. (It is not referenced or mentioned in-game, but it's in the manual, but that doesn't make it less awesome).
- The previous Dream Match Game, The King Of Fighters 98: Ultimate Match also deserves a special mention, starting with the fact that it's the remake of what some gamers consider it's the best KOF in the franchise!
It brought back not only the whole roster of the original KOF 98 Slugfest, but in general, it brought back all characters appearing during the Rugal and Orochi sagas, which adds up to 43 different characters. (Not including extra versions and the final bosses, which brings it it up to a grand total of 64, technically speaking). Aside of the already known stages, it also included new stages, such as a train station in Hong Kong, the Great Wall in China, and even the dark arena from 96, where you fight Geese Howard and his cohorts Wolfgang Krauser and Mr. Big, the coliseum where the battle with Goenitz takes place; and the Different Dimension stages from 97, where you engage the New Faces Team in their Orochi versions, as well as Orochi himself. Beware, as this time, the bosses really mean business.
Aside of the already known Advance and Extra modes, KOF 98 UM adds a third mode, named Ultimate, which enables the player to combine aspects from the former two modes into something players feel is more comfortable to them (You can choose between Emergency Evade or Sidestep, Dash or make a long step, Charge the power bar by attacking and taking damage, or charging it manually). The Final Edition for PC even made a huge rebalance of all characters, so no, Krauser, you no longer are the lonely Top Tier.
It also took it out of the park by including 3D versions of the stages, as well as an arranged soundtrack for the PS2 (These features were removed in the Final Edition for PC, but that doesn't reduce its awesomeness).
- Krizalid's I Am Not Left-Handed moment. So you beat the first form of Krizalid pretty easily right? Now to show that he isn't messing around anymore, he burns his coat WHILE HE'S STILL WEARING IT! Rugal Bernstein, eat your heart out!
- Ladies and gentlemen, the unthinkable has actually happened. Rock Howard is finally becoming playable in KOF XIV. In a canon game, to boot.
Awesome / The King of Fighters