Street Fighter, widely known as the greatest fighting game, has been transported to the world of three dimensions, on Nintendo's 3DS. Bringing the graphical style of the recent SSF IV, and the classic Street Fighter gameplay and characters, along with some 3DS only features, this game has a lot going for it. Does the game translate well to the 3DS?
Starting up the game, you will be presented with an awesome opening video, with some amazing effects and graphics. The main flaw, is that it isn't in 3D. The innovation of the console is wasted thus far, but it is only a video. The actual game can be played in full 3D, and looks great. The classic characters are brought to life in a way that has never been done before, and they look awesome. Because the graphics aren't necessarily realistic, they are perfect for the handheld console.
The special and ultra combos look excellent in 3D
There are a few modes to play, the main one being Arcade. This is the story mode, and each character has their own story, which will play out on different stages and against different fighters than the other characters. The story is presented in an beautiful anime style, and it's clear that a lot of work has gone into them. The stories are a bit vague and not entirely necessary, but they do provide some motivation for playing through with each character.
The actual fighting has been simplified a lot, compared to Street Fighter games of the past. On the touch screen are four buttons, two of which need to be earned in each fight. These are super and ultra combos. Previously you may have had to press buttons in a ridiculously complex manner and order, but now you just tap the screen. New players will appreciate it, but veterans of the series may find it takes away a lot of difficulty, especially in player versus player matches. The other two, available all the time, are special attacks. Stronger than normal attacks and definitely more dramatic, it is too tempting to use these more than intended.
There is an awesome level of detail on every character and stage
There are also standard versus matches, and then online and local multiplayer fights. An interesting and pretty cool feature is the 3D versus mode. It is made especially to utilise the 3D effect in an awesome way. Instead of a straight side view, it is instead from a 45 degree angle to the fight. So the left character is extremely close to you, and the right character is far away. It looks great and is fun for a while, but seems like more of a demonstration of the 3D feature than a fully fledged mode. It is also quite hard to play in this view as the distance between the characters is harder to judge. In the standard game, the 3D is still pretty good. The characters stand out, as does the HUD, and the stages look great. Cars, people and animals stand out from the background, and give a real illusion of depth.
SSFIV 3D Edition is no doubt a great game. Addictive, stylish, nostalgic, fun. It's hard to say what it lacks, but it doesn't feel as complete as Dead or Alive: Dimensions. The fights aren't as smooth unless you have some serious skills. And perhaps that's the problem. It has a dedicated fan base, and it seems like this elite group will get more out of the game than a casual player. The touch screen buttons are a great first step in the right direction however, and the appeal is already broadening.
by Louis Gardner