Looking at the pretty boring launch lineup of the games available for the 3DS, you'll be forgiven if you reaction is a bit.....meh! Nintendogs? Meh......The Sims 3? Meh........Super Monkey Ball? Double meh......the games available at the moment are maybe ok, but we've seen them all before. So i'd imagine most new 3DS owners have decided to go with Super Streetfighter IV as one of their early purchases. A conversion of the game hasn't been seen on a handheld console as of yet, so let's jump in and see how it's handled in Nintendo's new console.
Well, it's a big scrap-fest innit? Various warriors from all over the globe have varying circumstances they find themselves in, and decide to travel the world kicking the shit out of people, cars, barrels and anything else that so much as sneezes! There are intertwining relationships between the characters, which takes the form of a kind of Kung Fu version of Eastenders.....all set to the connecting story of some shadow organisation doing something or other.
What I liked:
When Capcom made Streetfighter IV, it redefined the fighting game. Fantastic graphics, timeless gameplay and all in all it's a fantastic package. What we have here is the updated "Super" version of the game, almost complete in handheld form. It's brilliant. The cast of characters is vast, and if you're not a boring idiot that always goes for Ken or Ryu you'll find someone that suits your playing style to a tee. Controls are nice and tight, the analogue nub makes a suitable replacement for a d-pad, although that works just as well. The characters are animated beautifully, literally tiny versions of the characters you get in the 360/PS3 versions of the game....muscles flex, mouths move, fingers twitch....it really is something to behold looking at these characters in action. The backgrounds are done well, with some great backdrops which give a real sense of depth to the locations that you fight in, and the sound effects blast of out the speakers, so there will be no confusions as to what you're playing when the shouts of "Shoryuken!!!" are pumping out. Certain special moves and specials have been mapped to the touch screen, which is handy, if cheating somewhat, but perfect for SFIV novices. There are loads of options to choose from, starting with normal arcade battle and versus modes, to 3D versus matches, online play and a variety of challenge modes. The first two modes speak for themselves, and the new addition is not bad. Played from an almost isometric third-person view, you battle it out as normal but with a more dynamic viewpoint. Online play is tight, and from the few games i've managed to play it's pretty much lag free. Whilst playing through the games and various modes you rack up battle points and collect little figurines, which can then be swapped via streetpass and have them battle it out. On the whole the plus points for the game are right up there.
What I loathed:
Not much. The backgrounds, whilst impressive, are simply static versions of the ones found in the bigger consoles, with fighters in the foreground, some polygonal detail in the middle and then just a flat picture at the back, although I actually can't beat on this too much as it's still impressive it's on a handheld. There is again a certain sweetspot for the 3D effect to look at it's best, and during a hectic fight where your arms are flailing about like a demented baboon it can go a bit haywire. The controls can sometimes let you down, with the slightest lack of precision getting out moves and combos when compared to it's bigger consoles brothers control scheme, the outer shoulder buttons being the worst culprits in getting out some of the more advanced moves.
Super Streetfighter IV 3DS is a fantastic package. It's the full on arcade experience in the palm of your hand, which is an impressive start for games on the system, and hopefully an indication of some of the other quality fighting games that are due. Some minor quibbles about the control scheme and background graphics shouldn't deter you in the slightest from picking up this game. It looks amazing, sounds great, and the online play alone should see you cracking skulls for months to come. Go and get it now....it's the best current game on the system.
Unless you don't like Streetfighter of course, and if so....shame on you.
Super Streetfighter IV 3DS is available now.
Check out my review of the Nintendo 3DS right here!