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Street Fighter returns
on 11 July 2009
This game seems almost to have come out of the blue to make a surprise appearance on the PC. It is the latest in the long-running series and was very well received in it's original console format.
The developers have done a good job of porting the title over to the PC, and it should perform smoothly on only a mid-level system or better. There are plenty of options to configure the setup to suit your hardware. However you cannot use your mouse to operate the menus, you have to instead configure your gamepad first to mimic the buttons of a 360 controller.
Once into the game you will find a highly polished title. The graphics are beautifully drawn in a stylised fashion and the backgrounds are full of life. It will look great if you run it on a big monitor.
There are several play modes available. Arcade mode sees you fighting through a series of opponents, Vs mode allows you to fight one-off matches against a friend or the CPU, and there are Training and Challenge modes to hone your skills with.
There are 25 characters in the game in total. Only 16 are available at the start, 12 of them classic:- Ryu, Ken, Chun Li, Blanka, E.Honda, Guile, Zangief, Dhalsim, Balrog, Vega, Sagat and Bison, and 4 new ones:- Rufus, Crimson Viper, Abel and El Fuerte. You have to beat arcade mode with certain characters to unlock the remaining fighters. The extra characters are:-
Cammy - beat arcade with Crimson Viper
Fei Long - beat arcade with Abel
Gen - beat arcade with Chun Li
Rose - beat arcade with Bison
Sakura - beat arcade with Ryu
Dan - beat arcade with Sakura
Akuma - beat arcade with all the above and then once more
Gouken - beat arcade with all the above and then once more
Seth - beat arcade with all 24 of the other characters (!)
The gameplay will feel very familar to anyone who has ever played a Street Fighter game before, although the new characters add some extra variety. The game doesn't have the depth or realism of something like Virtua Fighter 5, but it offers frenetic, highly playable arcade action with plenty of over-the-top special moves.
Onto the negative:- The subject of the difficulty of the final boss in arcade mode has been much discussed elsewhere. This personage is nigh-on-impossible to beat in even the easiest difficulty mode. He has all the other characters' best moves plus many cheap super moves of his own. If it wasn't necessary to play Arcade mode to unlock all the characters then I wouldn't even bother playing this mode as this final character almost ruins it.
The game is probably at it's best anyway when played against a friend, or online.
In conclusion, if you are a fan of the series or of the fighting genre then this PC version will be very welcome, and it would be nice to see more fighting games released on the PC in future.