The King of Fighters 2003

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The dawn of a new chapter in the King of Fighters legacy and the 3rd saga for the famous SNK fighting series. King of Fighters 2003 was developed in-house by SNK-Playmore (unlike King of Fighters 2001 and 2002, which were done by EOLITH Co.). The game marked the beginning of the new saga, the Neo-Orochi saga, and featured the biggest gameplay tweak in the history of the series. For the first time ever, KoF matches were governed not by team competitions of one-on-one fights, but rather 3-on-3 tag matches (though, the home version of KoF 2003 did feature the traditional 3-on-3 team matches as well as singles fights). Finally players could freely swap between their team's characters on the fly and even perform tag combos (as well as designate a leader whom would be able to perform a super move that is exclusive to the team leader). This gameplay element would also be found in The King of Fighters XI and appears to be the new standard of team gameplay in the KoF series.

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Game Mechanics

Basic Strategy

Advanced Strategy

Tier List


K', Daimon, Ash

Mid-Top Tier:

Benimaru, Jhun, Malin, Iori, Kim, Terry, Yamazaki


Gato, King, Shen, Kyo, Ryo, Billy, Chang, The Griffon, Hinako, Robert, Shingo, Mai, Chizuru, Clark

Low-Mid Tier:

Kusanagi, Athena, Joe, Yuri, Leona


Ralf, Whip, Maxima, Mary

Game Versions

The Characters

New "Hero" Team

Fatal Fury Team

Art of Fighting/Kyokugenryu Team

Japan Team

Women's Team

Korea Team

Outlaw Team


Ikari Warriors Team

Schoolgirls Team

Solo Entrants


Final Bosses