Well kids, they day finally came. We can now enjoy our own fighting tournaments for Street Fighter IV in the comfort of our own homes. Now I have been playing this game for the past few days and I will say that this is the best Street Fighter game I have ever played (Disclaimer: This doesn’t include the Marvel VS Capcom franchise, as MVC2 is still the best fighter). Everything from the character design, balance of fighters, animation style and the attention to detail for the background alone make this a fantastic game that everyone should pick up if you own a Xbox 360 or PS3. The single player campaign is fun as usual with a interesting enough story to keep you involved. Plus there is a high level of replay value for single player campaign as you need to go through multiple times with different characters to unlock all the fighters. Now the best part of course is the multi-player, both on and offline. Playing on the PS3 there is an option to install the game on your hard drive, thus eliminating load times. This makes the game play just like how it would in an arcade setting, instant fighting and retribution if you lose comes quickly as you are not waiting for the match to start with load times (the install should be available on the 360 as well with the new NXE, but I can not confirm). Online play is done very well as Capcom allowed users to see the connection rate of an opponent before starting a match. This helps out quite alot when you are playing a fighting game and can not afford any lag whatsoever. Unfortunately there are a few minor downsides to the game. These mainly come from having to do so much to unlock everything. Now as I stated above you have to do the single player campaign to unlock all fighters, which isn’t that bad because it gives you the option to learn how to fight as some characters you may not have used in the first place. But if you want to unlock all costume colors, phrase plates and character icons for your online profile, that is where the work comes in. You will be required to go through numerous time attack, stamina and combo challenges to get all these rewards. Now they are not bad as it gives you many of easy to difficult challenges for a single player, it just becomes tedious after a while. The final gripe is that there are no online tournaments available to participate in. Street Fighter II HD Remix had the ability to do elimination tournaments, but for some reason that was left out of SFIV. Hopefully tournament fighting will become available in a future patch. Basically there isn’t much bad to say about this game, it is a good ol fashioned Capcom fighter with the 2D feel and what more could you want then that. Now we just have to wait till they upgrade to a new Marvel vs Capcom franchise…..one can dream. So enjoy the game, hit me up on the PS3 (my gamer tag is scotthall187) if you wanna fight and see how Zangief can truly dominate.
video courtesy of gametrailers.com