Street Fighter IV Redeems The Legacy!
|ESRB RATING:||T (Teen)|
|RELEASE DATE:||February 17, 2009|
No need to remember which Street Fighter is the latest title. With the previous and non-linear iterations of SF you may have forgotten. No, it’s not Super Street Fighter, or Turbo HD Remix or something with an EX in it. Capcom decided to end the nonsense and went with “Street Fighter IV” to avoid the long winded previous titles. Good Choice. Let’s hope the next one is SFV, PLEASE! With that, times have changed, so you won’t find this Street Fighter in your local arcade, but instead have the convenience of playing SFIV at home. Yes, no mo’ quarters to scrounge up. If you grew up a fan of the fighting game genre, which was Street Fighter II, playing Capcom’s Street Fighter IV will come to you like riding a bike. The basic moves have not changed and all 8, yes 8 original SFII fighters have returned. And for those that maybe forgot the moves, or just need to freshen up, there’s an in-game “moves list” that shows you your players moves.
Street Fighter II is known as one of the greatest fighter games of all time because of it’s innovative control system. With legendary characters such as Ryu, Ken and Chun-Li rejoining the cast of Street Fighter IV, it was inevitable this title would be ranked as a newer generation great fighter game. So let’s pick apart, why this title deserves a space in your already cluttered game cabinet.
Street Fighter IV kept their classic 2D fighting style but incorporated the HD 3D characters and levels. The anime 3D drawn characters look beautiful in 720p HD sets, I know, I’m kinda bummed they didn’t upconvert it to 1080p too. The background and surroundings are well animated and also interactive. The battles are fast paced but high action with commentary during and after rounds. Load times are below average, but SFIV does give you the option to install the game locally for faster load times… highly recommend.
The Arcade mode consists of a best of 3 rounds with 99 seconds each and no tie breakers. While I was disappointed to see there wasn’t a tie breaker option after a Double K.O., Street Fighter has never offered a sudden death match. Many details of SFIV go unnoticed. For one, the characters head during a fight will look up when the opponent jumps up or down when they’re on the ground. Also, many levels are interactive. In one particular level, you can clip the rear propeller of the helicopter during gameplay, ingenious. In SFIV there are two new meters which once you take hits from opponent it allow you to get revenge and the Combo meter to execute an Ultra Combo.
The gameplay graphics, as I mentioned before, are bold and vibrant. I think an overall games’ graphics are important for replay value and aesthetics. The one minor flaw is the in-game cutscenes. SFIV’s cut scenes do not compare to the stories opening theme scenes but resemble an anime look. They are cartoon style scenes that were apparently made for the Japanese voice overs and not the American ones inserted instead. Not terrible, especially if your an anime fan, but it could have been better.
I wish Capcom would have went with a more traditional tournament style load screen. I feel they should have shown the past and upcoming opponents rather than a guessing game. In Street Fighter II, they made it obvious who the 4 bosses were before the final boss of M. Bison. In Street Fighter IV, you matched up with against random opponents, one rival opponent, and the Final Boss. While I’m not too hard on Capcom’s choice of their Final Boss, I wish the character they used, Seth, was more… Street Fighter-ish (resembles Silver Surfer). Seth is a blend of all the top Street Fighters moves. Dhalsim’s Long arms, Zangief’s Spinning Pile Driver, Ken’s Shoryuken, Guile’s Sonic Boom, Abel’s dash, Chun Li’s Thousand Kicks. Defeating him is not an easy task, but an annoying one if you want to unlock all the playable characters.
Online or “Network Battle” is where you will find the most wretched hive of scum and villainy. When you first select it, you’re reminded “for optimal gameplay, it is recommended to play against those with favorable network status”. I tried to join some matches using “Quick Match”, and after several “host full” or other messages not allowing to connect I hosted my own game. (ps3) Unlike other games that show you a total amount of players online, I don’t know why I had a hard time finding a player. On a positive note, once I connected, the latency was zero(0). I did not notice any lag what so ever. One particular option I turned on but was not too fond of, was the ability for an online player to pull me out of an Arcade Mode game for a online match-up. I’m guessing the benefit of turning this feature on, is that your passion is ‘player vs player’ and not ‘player vs cpu’. Why not just wait in the lobby???
All 8 original Street Fighter II fighters returned
Classic Street Fighter controls
Difficult settings allow even the newest players to enjoy
Zero lag online
Unlocking of the characters
Online match lobby’s were hard to join (ps3)
Load times (arcade mode – pre-install of game)
If your a fan of the Street Fighter series, you must pick up this title. Capcom did a great job cleaning up the title, and keeping the gameplay as fun as it was back in the 90’s. With online play (when it works) available, you will always find yourself a worthwhile competitor without putting up your quarters on the arcade cabinet and yelling “next”. Just make sure to choose “Same Skill” level, so you won’t get a continuous barrage of Shoryuken’s.