Bore-ryuken! Review

Joe Dodson
Street Fighter Anniversary Collection Info

genre

  • Fighting

players

  • 1 - 2

Publisher

  • Capcom

Developer

  • Capcom

Release Date

  • 12/31/1969
  • Out Now

Platform

  • PS2
  • Xbox

rating

Bore-ryuken!



There’s a word for people who can’t get enough of a good thing – crazy. And if you haven’t had enough Street Fighter by now, you should be locked up. Seriously.

However, if you’re already in the loony bin and dying for more Ryu, we have great news. More Street Fighter recently came out for the Xbox in Capcom’s, ugh, new Street Fighter Anniversary Collection. So take your pills, throw some feces, and get ready for more of the same.

The Anniversary Collection includes two main gameplay modes:

Hyper Street Fighter II (a blend of Street Fighter II, Street

Fighter II Championship Edition
, Street Fighter

II Turbo
, Super Street Fighter II, and Super

Street Fighter II Turbo
) and a port of Street

Fighter III: Third Strike
, which appeared back in 1999 on the Dreamcast.

Hyper Street Fighter II is thinner than Dhalsim on the Atkins

Diet
. There is no

kooky plot to explain the fusion of the five games, and the menus and intros

are the definition of budget.

Once you begin a game and enter the Character Select screen, you are asked to

choose from one of the five game types. You’ll then be able to

choose from any character in that particular game, which means two players

can fight as two characters from two totally different Street

Fighters
.

While it kind of makes sense to include both Championship

Edition
and Turbo due to the old Genesis/SNES rivalry,

only the biggest uber nerds could take a Pepsi challenge with these two games

and not fail miserably, because they’re basically identical. The same goes for Super

SF II
and Super SF II Turbo. For practical purposes,

these five games wind up feeling like three.

Which is a shame, because matching up Street Fighter characters from various titles is an interesting concept that seems to build on the idea introduced in the Vs. titles. I mean, how cool would it be to own someone playing Strider from Marvel

Vs. Capcom
with the original Ken? Instead, you get to kick T. Hawk’s ass with Blanka, or destroy everybody with the ultra-cheap Cammy.

However,

there are some interesting balance issues to take into account as the effectiveness

of various moves wax and wane in different games. For example, in the original

Street Fighter II, Blanka’s jumping fierce is pretty unstoppable,

whereas in Super Street Fighter II Turbo it’s been toned down considerably.

These factors especially come into play during matches against the CPU. Although

the AI is extremely cunning in Hyper Street Fighter II, the weird balancing

issues present the player with a ton of options. Super

Street Fighter II Turbo
‘s

Bison can do nothing against the original Blanka, even though he’s lethal against

any other Super Street Fighter II Turbo character. As a result, if you switch up characters

and play modes, you’ll occasionally be able to find a combination that is unstoppable

against your current opponent.

Even though Hyper Street Fighter II isn’t nearly as ambitious as we would have liked, Capcom was smart enough to include all the portraits, sounds, and endings for every character in all five games. At least they got that part right.

Street Fighter Anniversary Collection also comes with a fully

intact version of Street

Fighter III: Third Strike
. While it’s the most balanced of the three Street

Fighter III
games, it came out in 1999 and just isn’t a very exciting

addition. The game is essentially like all the other Street

Fighters
, but

with a parrying system and many new characters, all of whom are equipped with

unique abilities and brutal Super Art moves.

The parrying system is easy to understand but difficult to master. If you push forward just before a high attack lands or down just before a low attack lands, you will parry the attack and have an opportunity to counter. The counter can be any move in your arsenal, although you only have a brief window in which to execute it before your opponent recovers.

Neither Hyper

Street Fighter II
nor Street Fighter III: Third Strike does

anything remotely interesting graphically; unsurprising when you consider that

these games have barely grown at all visually in fifteen years. Third

Strike
is the best looking Street Fighter game to come

out in the last four years, but only because the Capcom vs SNK games

have had terrible character models. The music in Hyper Street Fighter is

some of the worst I’ve ever heard in a Street

Fighter
game. Even Yanni would be ashamed.

The only real plus for the Xbox version of Street Fighter Anniversary Collection is the fact that it is playable online. Now you and other obsessive-compulsive maniacs from around the world can hop on the interweb and bask in your shared psychosis. There aren’t any real lag issues and jumping into a match is easy, although there are definitely times when it seems like no one is playing this game.

If you dig around the Options menu, you’ll find the full Street

Fighter 2
animated movie. And then you’ll change the difficulty level

and leave the Options menu, because you saw the animated movie ten years ago,

and it was lame.

A deep love of all things Street Fighter doesn’t actually mean you’re crazy, but it can make you that way, especially if it causes you to buy this mediocre package of fighting-game gristle. Yes, it’s online, and yes, it’s still Street Fighter, but by now that doesn’t mean much, as there have been about 100 Street Fighter titles released in the last ten years. This is definitely another one.

REVOLUTION REPORT CARD

2
Rating