SNK Characters Sound Collection Vol. 6 -Mai Shiranui-

SNK Characters Sound Collection Vol. 6 -Mai Shiranui- Album Title:
SNK Characters Sound Collection Vol. 6 -Mai Shiranui-
Record Label:
Pony Canyon
Catalog No.:
Release Date:
January 21, 1998
Buy Used Copy


The main appeal of SNK’s fighting games, and their soundtracks, are their strong characters and the themes that accompany them. In the late 90s, the company produced an eleven part series of character sounds collections — each dedicated to a popular character from the Fatal Fury, King of Fighters, and Samurai Shodown series. Containing a mixture of originals, arrangements, and voiceovers, they provided an expansive tribute to each character. The sixth entry in the series is dedicated to Mai Shiranui, the main female idol of the Fatal Fury series and a crossover character in The King of Fighters.


Over the years, Mai Shiranui has inspired quite diverse themes. Her original theme “Flame Dragon God” from Fatal Fury 2 blends traditional and and pop elements to represent a Japanese girl in a modern day setting; the melody is quite alluring, while the unique blend of instruments is well done. Her subsequent theme from Fatal Fury 3, “Wandering on a Piano and Harp Fantasy”, focused more on her traditional heritage with some mesmerising quasi-orchestral soundscapes. By contrast, “Get ‘n Up” from The King of Fighters ’96 and “Always Zooming” from Fatal Fury Real Bout Special focus on the girly side of her character with frivolous jazzy melodies and pop-flavoured backing. While different listeners will prefer different approaches, all these tracks come together to create a surprisingly diverse album.

The arranged renditions of Mai Shiranui’s themes also take a range of approaches. The album features two incredible classically-oriented arrangements — one an extended harp solo that provokes all sorts of feelings, the other a lavish concertino for orchestra and piano. While the original “Get ‘n Up” is somewhat sluggish, the rendition from The King of Fighters ’97 Arrange Sound Trax is tight, with plenty of delightful jazz improvisations and a few feminine touches. “Dear Mai Boy” is likely to be more of a select taste, an idol arrangement written featuring a childish vocalists and some frivolous backing. However, her terrible image song from Fatal Fury Special is thankfully absent here.

As with other albums in the series, this character selection risks boring listeners by focusing on a single character and repeating many of the same themes. But in contrast to its predecessors, there is enough diversity in the originals and their arrangements for most tracks to sustain stand-alone interest. Between the various renditions of his themes, there are also four recollections from Mai, all voiced in Japanese. The release concludes with her screechy voice collection.


As far as character albums go, Mai Shiranui is among the best. SNK weren’t able to offer a consistent depiction of the character over time and this is actually works in the favour of this album, given it ends up being pretty diverse. Nevertheless, it’s still better to purchase the original scores and arranged albums featuring Mai’s themes and hear her depictions in a wider context.

SNK Characters Sound Collection Vol. 6 -Mai Shiranui- Chris Greening

Do you agree with the review and score? Let us know in the comments below!


Posted on August 1, 2012 by Chris Greening. Last modified on August 1, 2012.

About the Author

I've contributed to websites related to game audio since 2002. In this time, I've reviewed over a thousand albums and interviewed hundreds of musicians across the world. As the founder and webmaster of VGMO -Video Game Music Online-, I hope to create a cutting-edge, journalistic resource for all those soundtrack enthusiasts out there. In the process, I would love to further cultivate my passion for music, writing, and generally building things. Please enjoy the site and don't hesitate to say hello!

Comments are closed.

Back to Top ↑
  • Categories

  • Archives

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

  • Recommended Sites

  • Join Our Community

    Like on FacebookFollow on TwitterSubscribe on RSS

WP Twitter Auto Publish Powered By :