For those of you who may take shelter under a rock, Capcom’s Street Fighter franchise has been well and truly rebooted with its fourth release for the series in February 2009. Since then, Street Fighter IV has climbed itself back up as number one beat-em-up on consoles, well, in my book anyway. In true Street Fighter fashion, Capcom has released its Super edition of the series. So what does this Super livery give you, you may wonder, well take off those fighting bandages and let’s find out…
Just like in days of old, for anyone old enough to remember Super Street Fighter 2, you will find another minor instalment for the series, which helps to refine what is already a stellar fighting title. Super Street Fighter 2 was great a great improvement over its earlier brother and with Super Street Fighter IV much of the same has been repeated here.
I won’t go into the ins and outs of Street Fighter IV again; you can read my full review of that elsewhere on Console Monster. In short, you have an army of fighters available to exchange punches with, across many exotic locations. Each character has their own story to tell via their own anime-style intro and exit sequences. Online and Versus is where this game really came into itself, where you can battle against players online via some impressive lag-free fighting.
With Super Street Fighter IV we have pretty much all what its older brother has to offer, but with the main addition of ten more characters. Each new character brings their ‘game’ to the table, some more than others. However not all these new additional characters are new; some make a long awaited return to the franchise since the last time we saw them. New roster additions include: Adon, (from Street Fighter and Alpha Zero), Cody (from Alpha Zero), Dee Jay (from Street Fither 2, Alpha Zero), Dudley (from Street Fighter 3), Guy (from Alpha Zero), Hakan (New), Ibuki (Street Fighter 3), Juri (New), Makoto (Street Fighter 3), T.Hawk (Street Figther 2 and 3).
The two new characters, Juri and Hakan, bring fresh new humour and gameplay to the series. South Korean Agent, Juri, is a provocative and silky character but has a set of powerful kicking moves which can also be used in-air, this all results in Juri covering some good distance thanks to her long legs.
Turkish wrestler, Hakan, is the second new character to Super Street Fighter IV, and adds another comedic element to the game, just as newer characters Rufus and El Fuerte did previously. Hakan covers himself in oil, as you do, which makes his body slippery, giving him an edge as he can slide around the arena as well as launching his opponents into the air by squeezing them through his oiled bear hugging arms.
With ten new characters added, it raises the total roster of playable characters to thirty-five - plenty to get your teeth into. Gameplay wise, you’ll find the usual array of fighting modes, from story, versus and online. I was disappointed to see the same anime style character intros and ending movies used during story mode. The intro of the game has such a great art style, with some small elements also appearing in the game, and it is sad to see this style not carried through to the storyline sequences. But we are not here to watch fancy movies, we are here to fight, so what is that like? Well, new to the series comes additional Ultra moves for each character, however you can only select one of the two Ultras available to you when choosing your character.
A welcome return to the series, for me, is the barrel and car bonus stages as seen in Street Fighter 2. This allows you to rack-up your overall score with the addition of some well-placed kicks or punches to car body panels or some rolling barrels. Both have been well executed using the new Street Fighter IV art style and helps to break up the storyline gameplay, as it did in Street Fighter 2.
New online game modes round off the remaining new features that can be found in this Super edition of the series. Team Battle brings up to 8 player tournaments online. There is also a new Replay Channel that allows players to view saved replays submitted by other players around the world. This is a great showcase of player’s skills in the game, and it’s a good way of see how each character’s strengths and weaknesses are against particular players without having to be too involved yourself. You can also view like-minded onlookers who may also be watching these videos, giving you the option to chat away or maybe setup a bout or two between yourselves.
All-in-all Super Street Fighter IV is a welcome addition to the series that fine-tunes and tweaks what is already a world-class beat-em-up title, though it is debatable whether you should buy this edition if you already have the earlier edition. If you are a regular online player, most dedicated players will flock over to Super and you should definitely follow suit, even if it’s to start off a fresh slate in rankings. If you are a casual player who has already exhausted what Street Fighter IV has to offer, then you will not find much extra here to warrant a purchase. However Capcom knows this and has priced this title under the usual full retail price, making Super Street Fighter IV a thoroughly recommended purchase if you have yet to lay some punches in this fourth edition of the series.