If you ever wonder why arcade buttons didn’t work, it was probably something like Samurai Shodown at the root of the cause. In the midst of weapon combat, the title offered clashes where two characters were fighting back and forth for control… and to live. To win, the player needed to rails on the button furiously. At least, that’s what the game indicated.
Developer Gregg Tavares recently revealed that the code was never implemented for the button presses. The game randomly awarded one player the victory no matter how many times the buttons were pressed. Tavares was responsible for the 3DO port of the title (amongst other things) and noticed the lack of proper coding then.
The information does make you wonder about other Neo Geo titles. One of the most notorious was Three Count Bout, a hardcore wrestling title that was more of a traditional fighting game. Central to the game was a grapple system that almost certainly awarded the bodyslam or piledriver to the CPU. The AI was vicious, but possibly for the wrong reasons. Other contenders? King of the Monsters 1 & 2 for sure.