|Mode(s)||Up to 2 players simultaneously|
|Arcade system||Neo Geo (54 Mbit cartridge)|
Original Super Sidekicks
Published in 1993, the original Super Sidekicks (known as Tokuten Ou, "Goal-Scoring King" in Japan) was SNK's first soccer video game. It features 12 teams divided into two groups which compete for the "SNK Cup" (the main differences between teams is their formations on the field):
- Group A: Germany, Italy, Spain, England, Mexico, Japan
- Group B: Argentina, Holland, Brazil, France, United States, South Korea
The players' team plays against all the others in their group, then it goes into an elimination tournament's semifinals and then the final to win the cup. There was also a hidden feature in the game, which wasn't documented, and affects a single player game. During a free kick for the CPU if the player has tapped button A for player two, the CPU performs a short-shot, while pressing the button A performs a longer kick.
One noted mistake was that Spain's kit would actually resemble Portugal's. Portugal would not be in the game until Super Sidekicks 3.
Super Sidekicks 2: The World Championship
Published in 1994 (Japanese title: Tokuten Ou 2 - Real Fight Football), the sequel corrected most of the flaws in the original's design, including the ability to switch players' control during the game, a smaller goal, and no more long shots taken (in Super Sidekicks 1 the simple long shot was sometimes too long, leading into a throw-in situation). It increased the number of teams to 48 and divided them into 6 geographical "regions" (new teams underlined):
- Europe A: Italy, England, Spain, Holland, Switzerland, Norway, Turkey, Ireland
- Europe B: Germany, France, Bulgaria, Sweden, Russia, Greece, Belgium, Romania
- Americas/Oceania: United States, Mexico, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras
- Asia: South Korea, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan (as Republic of China), China, Iran, Hong Kong, United Arab Emirates
- South America: Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Colombia, Bolivia, Uruguay, Peru, Ecuador
- Africa: Cameroon, Morocco, Nigeria, Egypt, South Africa, Côte d'Ivoire, Guinea, Zambia
When you start the game, you go into a "Regional Qualifying Round Final" against another team from your region. After beating it, your team goes into the World (Cup) Tournament, in which you are grouped with three other countries in a round-robin. After winning against all of them, you go into an elimination tournament: the quarterfinals, semifinals, and the final for the World Cup. This type of tournament thus is more reminiscent of the real-life World Cup. If a match ends in a draw, you also have the option of replaying a full game, go to the penalty kick tiebreaker, or play a sudden death (golden goal) game (the golden goal feature was not present in the original Super Sidekicks).
All subsequent Super Sidekicks games followed the same design and gameplay as Super Sidekicks 2.
Super Sidekicks 3: The Next Glory
Published in 1995 (Japanese title: Tokuten Ou 3 - Eikoue no Michi, "Goal-Scoring King 3: Path to the Glory"), the third game features 64 national teams divided into 8 regions:
- Europe A: Italy, Holland, Switzerland, Norway, England, Turkey, Portugal, Poland
- Europe B: Germany, Spain, Ireland, Belgium, Romania, Denmark, Wales, Czech Republic
- Europe C: France, Sweden, Bulgaria, Russia, Greece, Austria, Hungary, Finland
- Africa: Nigeria, Morocco, Cameroon, Egypt, South Africa, Zambia, Côte d'Ivoire, Guinea
- Americas: United States, Canada, Guatemala, Mexico, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Puerto Rico (replaced Honduras), Panama
- South America: Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, Bolivia, Uruguay, Ecuador, Peru, Chile (replaces Paraguay)
- Asia A: Australia, New Zealand, China, Taiwan, Iran, Vietnam, Iraq, Singapore
- Asia B: Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Japan, U. A. E., Hong Kong, India, Thailand, Malaysia
The World Tournament mode is the same as Super Sidekicks 2, above.
The new features in this game include naming the player scoring goals for his team and keeping score of how many goals he scores during his team's use by the player. Alongside the "Top Teams" ranking which serves as a high score table for teams, there is a "Top Scorer" table for individual players. The name and use of scoring players is random.
The second new feature include regional tournaments, in which a team (from any region) can enter a tournament within its own region or other regions. This is good for those players who like a particular team but don't want to be facing the same opponents every time, as they would if they played the World tournament. Championships include World Tournament (FIFA World Cup), Europe Tournament (UEFA European Football Championship), South America Tournament (Copa América), Americas Tournament (CONCACAF Gold Cup), Africa Tournament (African Cup of Nations), and Asia Tournament (AFC Asian Cup).
- Croatia replaced Poland
- Scotland replaced Wales
- Yugoslavia replaced Finland
- Tunisia replaced Guinea
- Jamaica replaced Panama
- Paraguay returned and replaced Bolivia
However, the game played and looked exactly like the original Super Sidekicks 3. Even the goal animations remained unchanged.
Once again, SNK failed to get official FIFA license and featured fake names. However, some reflect actual players. Roul represents Raúl of Spain, Dahlgren represents Martin Dahlin of Sweden, and Klinger represents Jurgen Klinsmann of Germany.
One note is that in Neo Geo Cup 98, teams face teams of their group in the 1998 qualification instead of regions in the game. For example, if you choose Spain, you will face Yugoslavia. However, some are inaccurate. Like if you play England, you face Scotland. And if you play as Brazil, you have to face Uruguay before the World Tournament. But Brazil qualified automatically.
The game was also re-released as a part of SNK Arcade Classics Vol. 1 on PS2, PSP and Wii.
The Ultimate 11: SNK Football Championship
Published in 1996 (Japanese title: Tokuten Ou - Honoo no Libero, "Goal-Scoring King: The Flaming Sweeper"; despite the international title, it is still considered the fourth game in the series. Sometimes the game is known as Super Sidekicks 4 due to the fact the game is 4th in the series), it features 80 national teams divided into 8 regions:
- Europe A: Italy, Spain, Portugal, Wales, France, England, Ireland, Scotland, Northern Ireland (as North Ireland), Iceland
- Europe B: Germany, Sweden, Belgium, Denmark, Austria, Holland, Switzerland, Norway, Finland, Croatia
- Europe C: Bulgaria, Russia, Turkey, Czech Republic, Romania, Greece, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Israel
- Africa: Nigeria, Cameroon, Zambia, Côte d'Ivoire, South Africa, Egypt, Morocco, Zimbabwe, Tunisia, Algeria
- Americas/Caribbean Sea: United States, Canada, El Salvador, Panama, Guatemala, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, Jamaica, Honduras
- South America: Brazil, Colombia, Bolivia, Paraguay (returns from Super Sidekicks 2), Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela
- Asia/Oceania A: Saudi Arabia, India, Iraq, U. A. E., Iran, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait, Uzbekistan
- Asia/Oceania B: Australia, China, Taiwan, Thailand, New Zealand, South Korea, Japan, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Singapore
The players scoring the goals are still named, but individual scores are no longer kept. The regional tournaments have been eliminated and replaced with alternate mode the SNK Football Championship, which is the game's namesake, an elimination tournament in which your team can select any one opponent from any region to play (similar to fighting games in which you face another character after beating a previous one until you reach the boss). The last region you play is the deciding match. If you're good and can make a lot of goals on your opponents, you can play a hidden boss team called the SNK Superstars, which features characters from SNK's fighting games as players (you can tell them when their names are called, as during fouls).
It's in the basic game play where The Ultimate 11 has its most deciding improvement. Teams now have a charge bar (similar to the one in fighting games), which is charged depending on how long you can keep the ball under your team's control. When the bar is fully charged and flashing, if you're near the goal, you can take a shot that is virtually unblockable, depending on the opposing team. Teams are "ranked" from 1 to 80 mirroring their real-life counterparts.
The Ultimate 11 was one of the few Neo-Geo games to feature a corporate sponsor: Akai.
- NEO GEO GAMES CROSS REVIEW: 得点王. Weekly Famicom Tsūshin. No.332. Pg.26. 28 April 1995.
- Super Sidekicks 2: The World Championship at the Killer List of Videogames
- Super Sidekicks 2: The World Championship at GameFAQs
- Super Sidekicks 3: The Next Glory at the Killer List of Videogames
- Super Sidekicks 3: The Next Glory at GameFAQs
- The Ultimate 11: SNK Football Championship at the Killer List of Videogames
- The Ultimate 11: SNK Football Championship at GameFAQs