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  • Creator Cameo: Several of the people who worked on KI1 slipped their names into different places in the game. For example, programmer Martin Hollis gets a nod in Sabrewulf's stage in the form of a stone with "M. Hollis was 'ere" scrawled into it. Similarly, Chris Seavor gets a bar named after him on the streets below Orchid's skyscraper stage.
    • All the characters in KI1 and KI2, along with some of the cast of KI2013, are voiced by the game's developers. Designer/supervisor Ken Lobb, for example, has been the voice of Thunder in every appearance.
  • Sequel Gap: The last KI game to be released before the 2013 reboot was in 1996, making a seventeen-year gap between the two games.
  • Shout-Out: Eyedol's arcade mode ending is a reference to Blanka's own ending in Street Fighter II. Except it ends a little differently...
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  • Unintentional Period Piece: The first arcade fell into this by advertising for the "Ultra 64" long before it released, especially when sprouting the game would be for it. This was when the Nintendo 64 was still in development, but ran into problems that delayed it, so Rare decided to make a SNES version instead. They eventually did do one on the system for the second game.
  • Urban Legend of Zelda: Quite a few over the years. A popular one claimed that there was a mirror in T.J. Combo's stage that would let the player see Orchid's breasts if she performed her Flasher finishing move in front of it. Of course, no such mirror exists.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • As the arcade version says when the game is beaten, Killer Instinct was originally going to be a Nintendo 64 exclusive, when it was still known as Nintendo Ultra 64.
    • The game was originally meant to have a character customization feature, with players able to set their Power, Speed, and Defense stats, change their default color, and select finishers. A barcode would then be printed, which could be scanned by the machine to retrieve a player's custom character data.
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    • In the original pitch, Orchid was going to a blonde acrobat named Wanda. The roster also included a wizard named Midas and a Bonus Boss, a Thunder God named Tremor.
    • Funky's Flights' theme was originally composed for Killer Instinct, as shown on this video.
    • Many characters had their names changed during development. Cinder had the most changes, going from names like "Pyrotech", "Heat Shade" ,"Meltdown", "Magma", and "Afterburner". Sabrewulf had "Newton" and "Werewolf". Thunder was "King Thunder", Spinal was "Argo", and Riptor was "Toxin". In KI 2013, Kan-Ra's prototype name was "Gauze".
    • T.J. Combo's original name was the much more goofy "Mr. Fist" during production. It's referenced in Cinder's trailer in KI 2013 and it's a fight title that you can unlock by playing Cinder enough.
    • KI2 had a vampire character planned as one of its new entrants, but they were scrapped during development. The character's theme was salvaged, however, and later used during the Count Batula sequence in Conker's Bad Fur Day. The series wouldn't get a vampire added to the roster until Mira's debut 20 years later.
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    • Cinder in the 2013 reboot was originally completely alien in origin and appearance, and was meant to be a more "real" rival to Glacius in terms of backstory. While the team went with the character's original story (a convict turned into a Man on Fire by Ultratech's experiments), some of the alien pitch still remains in his new design.
    • Allegedly, a fully complete version of Killer Instinct 2 was developed for the SNES but never released.
  • Working Title: KI originally went by the name of "Brute Force" when it was first pitched.
  • The Wiki Rule: The Killer Instinct Wiki.
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