Monday, March 29

Only one man owns me!

That man is Ryu. I'd turn for that iron-fisted wanderer.

With the release of Super Street Fighter IV upon us, I thought it would be a good idea to look at why I'll be picking up SSF4 on day one.

What's old is new again
I never got much face time with Street Fighter III and it's many iterations. I am very strongly looking forward to reacquainting myself with Dudley as well as trying out Ibuki and Makoto. I am also very excited at the prospect of playing as Final Fight combatants Guy and Cody once again. Cody was one of my favourite characters from Street Fighter Alpha 3 and it looks as though he has retained much of his formidable move set. I could never get the hang of Guy. He was a bit all over the place. I do appreciate that his mobility is a strength but with Guy, I could rarely land a hit on my opponents.

I was devastated to learn that both Eagle and Rolento won't be returning, yet I am confident that with an open mind I will find some new favourites from Street Fighters past. I am a bit frustrated that Deejay and T Hawk are making a return though. T Hawk has always sucked harder than a Dyson!

Also of note, Bonus Stages will be making a return. This, of course is not a deal maker but I am sure those of you who have previously played Street Fighter II will be looking forward to beating the shit out of a sedan...or barrels. Whichever inanimate object you hate most, unleash your rage!

What's new
Juri looks mad. She's quick, she's wearing nothing much up top and she strokes your face as she kicks your ass (watch the video above if your knee-jerk reaction is WTF Trit).  I'm glad they're presenting us with an original villain who isn't a super muscular eunuch. My only concern is that she may be too fast. Some of the videos I've seen have left me with severe doubts that my jumping fierce kick, low fierce kick combo will work as well as it used to.

Hakan looks and sounds like a nutbar. Any videogame character who constantly exclaims that "It's time to oil up," has my personal vote of approval. Further to that, his Ultra combo is a ROFLcopter, prepped and able to launch.

Online rejiggered
I played Street Fighter IV online quite a bit. I played over 200 matches on the PS3 and results (skill level notwithstanding) were mixed. Some matches played very smoothly, as though my opponent were in the room with me. In 3 out of every 5 matches (at least) I battled some strong lag. In most cases you could deal, but every now and then I found it unplayable. With the promise of new online modes I am also hopeful that the net code for SSF4 will be far better than its predecessor.

I was a huge fan of the lobby system in Street Fighter 4 as I could play through the single player game and accept challenges concurrently. For a trophy whore like myself, this allowed me to multi-task and led to more meaningful play time. I hope aspects of this system are retained in SSF4.

The heat of battle
Most of all I am looking forward to challenging some old friends to a fight or two. To me, there is no greater multiplayer experience than Street Fighter on the one console in one room.

I don't work for Capcom (wish I did), and you are well within your rights to view this as an advertisement. Please believe however that I am genuinely excited for Super Street Fighter IV and I am confident that it will be one of the better games to be released this year. Below is a video of the final from the Street Fighter IV World Championships. It is honestly one of the most brilliant competitive displays on show. Enjoy!

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