Various characters fight against each other on teams or by themselves. The final boss is Rugal and each character that defeats him has its own unique ending. Two players can also compete against each other.
The next game in the series is similar to The King of Fighters ’94. Like as before, a player must pick a team of 3 fighters then face other teams before reaching the bosses. However, instead of picking a pre-set team of three, there is now the option to pick anyone from any team opening up many possible combinations. This game properly kicks off the Orochi storyline in King of Fighters.
All fighters from the last game return with the exception of the USA Sports team (Heavy D!, Lucky and Brian) who have been replaced with Team Vengeance: Iori Yagami, Eiji Kisaragi (from Art of Fighting 2) and Billy Kane (from Fatal Fury series).
The bosses of the game are Saishu Kusanagi (Kyo Kusanagi’s father) and an Orochi-powered version of Rugal, called Omega Rugal.
Play as the bosses: When the game asks you if you want to edit your team at the character select screen, select “YES”. Then, press and hold Start, and do the following command sequence twice while holding Start: Up B, Right C, Down D, Left A. The selection boxes for Saisyu Kusanagi and Omega Rugal should appear.