A space monster comes down to Earth and begins terrorizing the planet. This creature appears to have a striking resemblance to King Ghidorah, a monster created by the Futurians that attacked Japan last year, and was given the same name as a result. Humanity must now put their trust in Godzilla and hope he will come to their defense to battle the new King Ghidorah before the Earth is destroyed.
Due to the success of 1991's Godzilla vs. King Ghidorah, Toho initially considered producing a direct sequel to the film, featuring a version of King Ghidorah from outer space, similar to the character's Showa incarnation. Ultimately, Toho decided to instead revive one of Toho's other most popular monsters, Mothra, and ended up producing the film that ultimately became Godzilla vs. Mothra.
- The Return of King Ghidorah shares the title with an unmade early draft of Godzilla vs. Gigan. Aside from the title, the two films are not related at all.
- Additionally, King Ghidorah's Counterattack, one of this film's alternative titles, is also the name of a Zone Fighter episode.
- According to an interview with Koichi Kawakita conducted in 1994, this film wasn't made because a recent poll showed that Mothra was the most popular kaiju among women, and that it would have been "too easy" to bring back King Ghidorah again.