Hm, two days ago the update/bugfix hit. Maybe it made the save incompatible?
I didn't update the game (don't have installed galaxy and didn't install any patch manually), so I'm guessing that it was something with game "in general".
Probably the fact, that I've exit the game in the moment when've lost first life (not all, just the one).
Oh, ok. Considering it only happened once, it also can't be your Antivirus, as is described in another thread.
Might be. Since I've never saved/loaded, I can't even compare.
/edit: Or you might have selected a different difficulty by accident?
The only thing that could have been done better is increasing the fighting stage when opponents are around. There often isn't much space to move around and enemies like to walk out of punch-/kickable territory at times. Additionally, while I'm not sure if the same enemies always drop health...if you punch/throw them out of bounds, it's impossible to pick those up.
(Died three times on those flies + bat boss already. Bat boss flying above the water and easily dodging any attempts to hit it makes it so hard. The knockback also hurts because you will pretty much always fall into the water which means 1/3 of your health is gone. And well, I'm going 1CC or bust, so I've never made it past it so far.)
Ah, thanks for the warning about out of bounds pickups and the small stages. Like you, I'll be going for a 1CC, probably trying out F.Norris first (I tend to prefer the agile/ fragile character).
Got my 1CC (Gal - Ending B) in the meantime by the way (with 3 full lives left, 4 if count the extra one via points at the very end). Just wish I was able to play the game more but the PS2 dpad does make my thumb hurt after two pretty much complete runs.
/edit2: Once you 1CC, the game definitely becomes easier. Only 1CC'ed since and just finished my last run (normal) with 9 lives left.