Xbox 360 Review: “Super Street Fighter IV Arcade Edition”
The Street Fighters have amassed once again to continue their tournament. With S.I.N. out to acquire the powers of all the warriors under the control of Seth, two warriors have made their first stand against the evil, while two have fallen farther to the darkness. Super Street Fighter IV Arcade Edition brings four new fighters to the generation while balancing out the rest. Is the Arcade Edition DLC worth the cost, is it worth a pick-up on disc, or has Capcom gone back to the well too many times?
Street Fighter is one of the lasting legacies of video games, being the preeminent and defining two-player fighting game. While they’ve been known to be a solid tournament play for most, they’ve always strived to refine things. Arcade Edition, upgrading the gameplay by remixing some characters on a technical level, added four new playable characters to the game. Street Fighter II had multiple incarnations, Street Fighter III had three rounds, and now Street Fighter IV has three of it’s own. When Super Street Fighter IV made it’s way to arcade, they added Yun and Yang (from Street Fighter III) and Oni and Evil Ryu.
With these four new playable characters, the rest of the characters had minor tweaks to their strengths and weaknesses. The average game player won’t notice, or likely even care, but the tournament players are the true target for this upgrade. On top of these in-game enhancements, a greatly enhanced Replay Channel allows players to follow favorite players, show off their moves, and watch the greats. Effectively,Arcade Edition is truly a tournament-wide and minded enhancement.
Arcade Edition is a pretty good value when it comes to DLC, and decent when it comes to disc. If you’re looking at characters alone, it turns into 300 points per character, which is actually rather fair when it comes to downloadable characters, especially since they come with intros and endings, not just being character-less characters. The disc release, on the other hand, is slightly harder to justify, as it’s effectively a three-year old game getting a “Special Edition”; if you have the original copies, there’s no real reason to go for the disc. For $40 (and a focus on people who don’t download), bonus costumes would have been a good way to pad out the value.
Yun, Yang, Oni, and Evil Ryu are, stylistically, nothing truly new to the Street Fighter universe. While Juri and Hakan were completely original creations added to the original release of Super Street Fighter IV, these four characters all have their basis in other Street Fighter titles. Yun and Yang join Makoto, Dudley, and Ibuki from Street Fighter III in the title. Evil Ryu and Oni, on the other hand, are heavily based off of previous, darker and stronger, iterations of Ryu and Akuma, both having lost their personal challenges with the Satsui no Hado. While these darker forms do get the most uniqueness they’ve ever seen when it comes to character design (no longer relying on sprites and memory) and actually enjoy new move sets, they’re still not exactly new characters, and from a base standpoint, join Ryu, Ken, Akuma, and Gouken as warriors under the same general martial art. Oddly, they don’t even get Challenges, a good way to learn their moves. It’s a little sad that Capcom didn’t add enhancements from their other fighting games at the time. Shadow fighters from Marvel VS. Capcom 3 would have been nice, and fit well with their Replay Mode enhancements. Even the over-the-shoulder viewpoint from 3D Edition would have been something else to throw in there.
Arcade Edition is almost required purchasing for Street Fighter fans, allowing them to keep up with their competitors. For newcomers, they’d be well off purchasing the disc release. While a lot of the under the hood fixes won’t be noticed by the everyday player, they’re all for the best. The new characters aren’t perfect, but they add measurable enhancements to an already-great title. For Street Fighters, you’ve already purchased it. For general gamers, this is the best version of Street Fighter IV to start with.
Originally written for Platform Nation.