Welcome to The Pink Appreciation Station, where I get to show my weird obsession over a character nobody knows about in an unliked video game!

I think I went a bit overboard here, but I decided it was time the internet know more about this underrated character.

Sprite Rips

What follows is a collection of every frame of animation of Pink. A lot of her lower body in these frames are NOT normally visible in-game - I was able to rip them through some fuckery with MAME's cheat engine, without even having to resort to piecing things together with the tile mapper! Lucky me.

Warning though: I've decided to leave the images as being somewhat large vertically, so there's a lot of scrolling to be done on this page. As mentioned before, the lower half of this sprite is cut off and not fully viewable (since you can't crouch in boss rooms), so it's safe to assume that nobody else (outside of the SNK team that worked on the game) ever got to see the full body images of everything. And I think they're worth sharing.

Mouseover the images if you want some more explanation on what each frame is, yada yada yada.

The Mystery of the Changing Panty Color

We've established the fact that when Pink kicks you in the face, you get a free first-person view of her white panties. Quite a surprise to anyone that even bothered to play the game that far... but guess what, there's an even more obscure secret lurking inside the game. If you're playing the game on a Japanese system, things can potentially get even more surprising. Instead of having only the basic white color, the game chooses the panty color randomly (?!) from 5 possible selections!

No, seriously. I'm not joking here. I wouldn't lie about something like this.

Standard white! (booooring)

Pink! (living up to her name, ohhh I get it now)

Purple! (sure, why not)

White... with red polka dots! (Yes, polka dots. Now you KNOW someone at SNK was having too much fun with this...)

And finally, red with yellow polka dots! (because one polka dot variation was not enough, obviously!)

Yes, this seriously happens. God knows why they decided this little feature was too scandalous for the US and European markets... I mean, it's not like they actually censored the animation or anything. Still, it just goes to show that someone at SNK really loved Pink in all her high-kicking glory too if they went to the trouble of putting in different panty colors for a boss that most people would never play long enough to even see in the first place. To this day I still don't know how the game decides what color is chosen, it appears to be completely random. It certainly isn't determined by score or experience or anything like that. BTW, the best way to get these different colors in-game is to die and use a memory card to save on the 14th floor (preferably after beating the knife boss)... if you save on the 15th floor, when the memory card is loaded it will always select the plain white color. Weird! Or if you're playing on an emulator, save state before entering the elevator that takes you from floor 14 to 15.

But anyway... if ANYBODY out there knows what causes the game to select a certain panty color (and I know that's a long shot), PLEASE let me know! It's most likely random, but the fact that they put this in at all has always made me wonder if there's something more to it.... and it annoys me that I still don't know the answer.....

Unused Animation Frames

Now this is interesting. There are 4 frames in the game that were drawn for when Pink is knocked all the way backwards in one of the "wide open" areas with the up/down corridors. But... since the boss room is an enclosed area, it's impossible to knock her all the way backwards. Thus, these 4 frames can't be seen at all in the game regularly, but they were all drawn and finished in the case that they COULD be used.

And hey, whaddya know! When knocked all the way backwards, it results in ANOTHER pantyshot (although the sprite would be scaled down quite a bit making it more difficult to see, in these pictures she's scaled up to the size where she's right in front of the player).

Here's the rest of the colors, of course. Strangely enough though, the extra polka dot colors don't show up properly in these frames - the white with red polka dots is identical to the regular white, and the red with yellow polka dots is just a solid red color. Perhaps they realized these extra frames weren't going to be used and didn't want to bother marking polka dots? Just a guess...

One more thing discovered when looking through all the frames of animation - you know that strange-looking "hurt" pose? It seems that there's supposed to be three frames of animation for it, making for a "breathing" animation.

I've since confirmed that there are other enemies/bosses that were supposed to have animations like this too, although you'll never see all the frames - you'll still only see one frame very briefly before they go back into their side-walking animation. I guess they planned on having full "wounded" animations like the one above in their attack routines, but then scrapped them for whatever reason.

Long before this page was on the internet, there was a webpage out there that briefly contained some info about Pink, and even a few pictures! A long-time internet buddy who wishes to remain anonymous ran a parody gaming news/review website called Joyshtick. One section of the site had some interesting random tidbits about real games though - a section called "Stupid Gaming Facts".

Unfortunately the page has been lost to the sands of time, but I do remember this much - one of the first Stupid Gaming Facts added to the page back in 1996 was actually about Pink, saying something to the effect of "Did you know that when the female boss in the Neo-Geo game The Super Spy kicks you, you can see her underwear? But then again, who actually bothered to play the game that far in the first place?".

And accompanying it was a few pictures. I may not have saved the webpage, but I saved those pics! And those pics have survived since then across several computers and hard drives. They're not much to look at now but keep this in mind - in 1996, there was no such thing as Neo-Geo emulation yet. Not many people owned capture cards for taking screenshots, so being able to grab images like this was a rarity.

Like I said... simple stuff. Unfortunately, the Stupid Gaming Fact section was phased out when Joyshtick relaunched later on, although a gallery of Pink pics was retained for the Mean Screens section of the site. I actually ended up sending some updated screenshots to replace the above ones since by then the Neo-Geo had been emulated so it was easier to get clean screenshots. This was the internet's one and only source of Pink-related media... but then the site was later closed for good, so for the last decade or so there's been no place to find this stuff. I know this entire page in general seems like overkill, but I'm trying to make up for all this time that the internet has been lacking in this information!

This concludes (for now) my overly-detailed look at an unlikely boss character in a game a lot of people hate. But that's what really gets me about this whole thing - in a game where enemy sprites are reused over and over and you end up fighting practically a literal rainbow of masked terrorists, you have only one female enemy in the entire game, and she's placed practically right at the end where most players would never reach her. She had frames of animation drawn that would never appear in the game normally, and a potential surprise for Japanese players if they played through the game more than once. Imagine if Pink had been a boss encounter much earlier in the game, or if they chose to recycle her sprite and have her as a frequent enemy / midboss, in varying colors... I think it would have broken up some of the monotony.

But alas, wasted potential. Wouldn't it be great if she showed up as a playable character in something like a sequel to Neo-Geo Battle Coliseum? I mean hey, if they can bring back something like Cyber-Woo from King of the Monsters 2, why not go with some even more obscure characters from the Neo-Geo's history? Oh well, dare to dream...

In case you forgot, there's still one more floor left of this game.