Super Street Fighter IV (X-Box 360) Riv , 2010/04/28 21:13
12 characters added to the original Street Fighter IV roster coupled with easier controls and a more "Street Fighter II" atmosphere to the game.
You mean to tell me I can't import my earned titles, icons, and even achievements from the old version of the game to the new version? All that time playing Street Fighter IV is now wasted and pointless.
Hakan, the new wrestler character who covers himself head to toe in oil. They should have just given us Mike Haggar. At least he doesn't lube up before his fights. That's like the gayest thing you could do.
"Super Street Fighter IV is Capcom's apology for Street Fighter III and IV, complete with the digital equivalent of make-up sex." --Riv
Street Fighter. If there is one game that I can say throughout my life has been an integral cornerstone in my gaming career, it's the Street Fighter series. I think back to my younger days in the Bronx, where you couldn't go to a pizzeria, video store or laundromat without finding a Street Fighter II console and at least 5-8 teenage kids jamming away on the buttons spending quarter after quarter. It was the game you kept your lunch money for, didn't eat for and then played all day after class. It was the "IT" game in the arcades and if many wars in this world were fought over religion, over women, I'd like to think many street wars were fought over fuckin' Street Fighter II. Corner traps and "cheesing" were grounds to fight somebody. Hell, I can't even remember how many fist-fights I got into with my best friends Courtney and Jose back in Skyview in the Bronx over us beating each other in Street Fighter. After kicking each other's asses in the games a lot of the time we'd end up kicking each other's asses in real life...
Those were the days. That was REAL gaming.
Street FIghter didn't end with Street Fighter II. It led way to SUPER Street FIghter II, Super Street Fighter II TURBO, and of course a really appalling movie of Street Fighter II starring Jean Claude Van Damme (which also the movie was so atrocious that it killed Raul Julia), a VIDEOGAME of said movie, which was even worse, and eventually several prequels in Street Fighter Alpha 1, 2, 3, various versions of those games, a few crossovers with the X-Men and the Marvel Universe, Tatsunoko, a third (rather unmemorable) game with three variations of its own, and countless animated films over the years. Oh and I forgot about the second live-action film, which I dragged The Crust to see against his will. Come to think of it maybe I really DID deserve to have to sit through appalling Long Shadow movie he sent me several weeks ago.
Street FIghter's star really started falling around the time Street Fighter III was released, getting a lot of negative reaction for having eliminated many of the Street Fighter II favorites - also not helping was the Tekken trend meaning that 3D fighting was starting to come into its own. Capcom attempted to remedy this by making some Street Fighter 3D games called the EX series, but they fell far short of earning the gold and garnering the success of their hit '90s classic. Additionally the loss of popularity of arcades in North America and the advent of online gaming was starting to make those large crowds gathered around the arcade machine wither and falter until arcades themselves seemingly ceased to exist. We said our goodbyes to Street Fighter as Capcom focused more on Mega Man and Resident Evil franchises.
But then one day out of nowhere Capcom decided it was time to bring back the big boy. It was time for a huge return, bigger than McDonalds bringing the McRib, or KISS going on the final, final, final, final WE MEAN IT THIS time tour. It was time to put Street FIghter back into the limelight, and in 3-D only this time they'd do it right... or so we thought. Street Fighter IV was released and while initial expectations were high, lackluster new characters, an unforgiving control scheme only allowing for the most precise of motions, and some really lackluster endings, along with an SNK-style unbeatable boss really only left a bad taste in people's mouths, kind of like unwashed vagina. I mean don't get me wrong - Street Fighter IV was a BEAUTIFUL looking game - but again if it were a beautiful woman it still didn't wash it's vagina and this was quite a problem. Disappointment set in until the announcement of Super Street Fighter IV and once again Capcom wanted your hard-earned dollar. But is it worth it?
With an MSRP of $39.99, which is $20 cheaper than the price of a brand new Xbox 360 or Playstation 3 title, I have to say FUCK YES. In fact this took Street Fighter IV's good start and elaborated on it, almost perfecting the formula. I would have to say Super Street Fighter IV is Capcom's apology for Street Fighter III and IV, complete with the digital equivalent of make-up sex. Now it does have a few short-comings remaining but we will get to that later.
For starters, SSFIV hits you with a brand new intro with a remix-chain of popular Street Fighter character themes and a beatifully animated intro. You won't find that really boy-bandish "Indestructible" song (not to be confused with or even compared to Indestructible by the band Disturbed) in the intro to SSFIV as you did in its previous fetal form. I must admit that Indestructible by the Next Door actually grew on me in a K-Fed-Popozao way. The game provides a small but available bonus for those with Street Fighter IV save data in the form of additional costume colors unlocked. While it's a meager little thing, I would have opted for it carrying over my records, earned titles, earned icons, and other Street Fighter IV extras. It's unfair, but so is life. It kind of reminds me of old NES games that used to crash and erase save data.
Super Street FIghter IV visually doesn't look that much different from the previous title but doesn't need to - the graphics are perfect as they are - a 3-D game but with 2-D stages. Sorry you Tekkenites - you won't find side-stepping here but it's Street FIghter and it's old school gameplay-wise. The big difference is we have a whopping 35 playable fighters, 12 of which are all-new for this title. Only 2 of those 12 are all-new characters but Street Fighter has always relied on character loyalty and old favorites as opposed to new characters. I'm pretty sure for example man Sagat fans rioted at their local Gamestops when Street Fighter III was released with ol' one-eye nowhere in sight.
Here's a brief rundown of who's back and better than ever in SSFIV.
Deejay and Thunder Hawk (Super Street Fighter II) - the only two Super Street Fighter II characters who didn't make it back for Street Fighter IV finally return now. Initially believed to become DLC players for the original fighting game, Capcom opted to just expand from there and add additional characters as well:
Ibuki, Makoto and Dudley (Street Fighter III - 3rd Strike) - three of Street Fighter III's most popu... two... okay, only Ibuki is really popular; Makoto is an Akane Tendo from Ranma 1/2 rip off, and Dudley is pretty much pointless with Balrog in play. As you can see though, Dudley doesn't really give a rat's ass what I think.
Personally I would have opted for Yun and Yang, or Axel but I'll take Makoto or Dudley - hey at least it wasn't Oro the Stinky Old Man, or that one character that looked like a walking wad of semen:
Yeah, THAT guy. Seriously Capcom, WHAT THE FUCK? And you wonder why Street Fighter III is considered a bomb.
Cody, Guy and Adon (Street Fighter Alpha 3) - Final Fight's Cody and Guy make another appearance here, although I cannot understand why the hell Cody is STILL in jail after all this time. I prefer the guy-in-jeans-brawler version although I'm sure that's an unlockable costume. Adon's a nice addition to the series as he was one of the favorite sons of the Street Fighter Alpha series and adds a nice change of pace.
And finally we have the new characters:
Juri - an evil martial arts chick in ass-less chaps. Unfortunately she follows the trend of looking like an SNK character that seemed to start with Street Fighter IV's new additions to the game - but she's cool enough seeming that you won't mind. At least she doesn't keep running back and forth to go to the bathroom during her special moves like El Fuerte.
Hakan - A Turkish Oil Wrestler... umm... ok? Seriously? A guy who looks like Mike Haggar only with metal hair, a bad dark red sunburn, and who LUBES HIMSELF UP FROM HEAD TO TOE BEFORE FIGHTING? This might be the gayest thing ever. Who the hell designed this character? And what in the holy hell is Turkish Oil Wrestling? TAKE IT AWAY, WIKIPEDIA!
Oil wrestling (in Turkish: yağlı güreş) is the Turkish national sport. It is known sometimes as grease wrestling because the wrestlers douse themselves with olive oil. It is related to Uzbek Kurash, Tuvan Khuresh and to Tatar Köräş. The wrestlers, known as pehlivan (from Persian پهلوان or pehlevān, meaning "hero" or "champion") wear a type of hand-stitched lederhosen called kisbet (sometimes kispet), which were traditionally made of water buffalo hide, but now also of calfskin.
Wow, and you thought American Professional Wrestling was gay; at least they don't douse themselves head to toe in fuckin' lube!!!
All in all new characters are still a welcome addition... even if one of them greases himself up for anal. Fortunately every character also has their distinct theme back when playing their rival; a trait only several characters in SFIV-vanilla had, and was missed; some of the Capcom stage themes for the Street Fighters are highly memorable and it almost seems a crime to have included characters such as Vega and Fei-Long without their trademark tunes. This soundtrack really makes up for it, and you'd almost think Dudley's remixed Street Fighter III theme was the sole reason he was included - that song makes you want to get up and dance even if you're like me and hate dancing. The hip-hop style version of the Final Fight intro which has become Cody's theme is also pretty impressive, and overall the soundtrack and trademark themes get you even more into the game and the fight at hand.
The story mode has also been somewhat refined and a new animation studio was hired to take on the opening animation and endings so that you didn't end up with half-ass crap like Balrog implying he plans to molest a wounded child in his ending.
I don't know whether to be pleased or somewhat creeped out that the above ending has NOTHING on Balrog's new ending in this title in terms of "Did he really just say that to a kid?" But I'm not going to spoil that particular surprise for you.
Unfortunately Challenge Mode is back with a vengeance in this game, trying to force you to painfully string together Medium Punch, Medium Punch, Kick, into Guile's finishing super move. Fortunately however it saves on a move by move basis, so you won't have to do an entire set of four just to get to the one move you cannot master over and over again with losing the previous four you did. And to make the pot just a little sweeter, the controls in this game feel more fluid and forgiving than the controls of its predecessor, even on playing with the standard fighting-game-unfriendly 360 pad I was still able to pull off the vast majority of moves and combos with little to no trouble, although I'm sure this will feel even more natural when I decide to dig through my controller drawer and pull out my Street Fighter Fightpads. A comfortable control scheme is never a bad thing, and Street Fighter IV was painfully lacking in that.
Other nice little easter eggs are included such as various characters and signs, references to Capcom's old titles in the background of many of the new stages and backdrops. Every one of the returning characters has a new, second selectable Ultra Art, reminiscent of selecting your Ultra Combo in the Street Fighter III series, which adds new depth to the game as well, concerning about what move your opponent intends to make his trademark and if and when he's going to unleash his (or her; I'd like to believe chicks other than my sister play Street Fighter), furious vengeance upon you.
Possibly one of my favorite minor add-ons to this game is the return of the bonus stages involving breaking cars and barrels from Street Fighter II proper. While it's so minor and seemingly insignificant it is a welcome piece of nostalgia and a nod to those who played it old school in the arcades and on Super NES.
Possibly one of the biggest changes is that Seth, Street Fighter IV's naked antagonist final boss, who was ridiculously overpowered to the point that you had to spend hours fighting him on easy just to try to beat the game, has been balanced out a bit more to the point he is actually beatable on a normal difficulty level and as harmless as my grandmother on the easier modes. To be honest I leave it on easy mode just so I can beat Seth over and over again with absolutely no chance of him winning so that I can have balance in the world for the almost six hours of my life wasted trying to beat him with El Fuerte in the previous title.
Payback time, motherfucker!
M. Bison is the true ruler of the Street Fighter universe.
All in all, this game righted many of the wrongs of the past, much like Scott Bakula travelling back in time in Quantum Leap. It's a game that brings back the feel and the excitement, the true atmosphere of Street Fighter that felt like it was missing in several half-ass attempts by Capcom over the past several years. SSFIV is definitely worth a pick up if you're a die-hard fan who felt a bit ripped off by Street Fighter IV, and it's a great pick up for those who haven't even bothered to pick up Street Fighter IV but had been considering it. It'll almost bring you back to those glory days at the video store or laundromat. Now if I can figure out a way to get a bunch of people to crowd around my Xbox 360 and yell "OHHHH SNAP" every time someone hits a super and put quarters on the TV screen while going "I GOTS NEXT," and get into fist-fights every time someone "cheeses" someone else, it'll be just like the good old days.
I guess cursing other players out on X-Box Live with the online play will have to do, but it's just not the same.