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Super Street Fighter IV 3D Edition Review

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On 06/26/2011 at 03:43 PM by Nick DiMola

An impressive, full-scale fighter that holds nothing back.

For everyone, especially amateur fighters looking for an easy way to get into the series.

Surprisingly enough, it has already been a year since I had the opportunity to review Super Street Fighter IV when it released on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. Since then, the once definitive version of the game has been topped twice, once with the game this review concerns, and the other by the Arcade Edition of the game which includes new fighters and a rebalanced roster.

Super Street Fighter IV 3D Edition is essentially the same game you remember from last year, with a few small tweaks to accommodate the strengths of the 3DS. Rather than going through the whole feature set again, please consult my original review for my general feelings on the game.

3D Edition sets itself apart from the original release in a couple of different ways, but only one transforms the experience into something different. As the title implies, the game features stereoscopic 3D, thanks to the special screen of the 3DS. Along with that upgrade comes a brand new camera angle to better showcase the 3D effect.

The over-the-shoulder view doesn’t make the game unplayable, but it definitely isn’t the ideal way to view the experience. While the game looks pretty fantastic and the 3D really pops, if you’re seriously playing a match, the only reasonable option is the straightforward view featured in the original release (and most other fighting games).

While the 3D effect is a nice touch, it has forced a general sacrifice of the moving parts of the backgrounds of each stage. It’s not all that noticeable during matches, but it’s a disappointing sacrifice to have to make, especially considering how great, in fact, the game does look with its new 3D graphics.

My most appreciated change is the ability to more easily perform the special moves each character has with the push of a single button. Mapped to four distinct “buttons” on the touch screen, players can easily activate a special move on command with no effort whatsoever. Furthermore, these buttons can be tied to different moves and customized for each and every fighter, which is unprecedented for the genre.

As an amateur player, this made the experience far more approachable and enjoyable. Rather than fumbling to perform these complicated maneuvers, I knew I could rely on its execution and could more effectively fight knowing that I had the ability tucked away in my arsenal.

The 3DS circle pad made it extremely easy and comfortable to perform the quarter turns necessary to execute the many attacks that require it in the game. Unquestionably, the move to the 3DS improved the accessibility of the title. Without such a high barrier of entry, new players will be able to get into the game and start having fun immediately.

This is counterbalanced to some degree by the fact that the 3DS is a personal console, so only one player can enjoy it at a time. If you desire competition, playing online is your only choice. While it’s excellent that the game includes the online mode, I’d still prefer to take on a local opponent.

Finally, there are some 3DS specific features, like StreetPass figurine battles, that are sure to draw some interest for a given crowd, but with only two (planned) street passes for me at this point, it’s not something I’ve even been able to try.

All things considered, the 3D edition of the game is more definitive than the home console versions, but bested by the new content featured in the Arcade Edition of the game. Hopefully Capcom is able to release that same content on the 3DS, as the improved controls go such a long way to making the game more newbie friendly.

Review Policy

In our reviews, we'll try not to bore you with minutiae of a game. Instead, we'll outline what makes the game good or bad, and focus on telling you whether or not it is worth your time as opposed to what button makes you jump.

We use a five-star rating system with intervals of .5. Below is an outline of what each score generally means:

All games that receive this score are standout games in their genre. All players should seek a way to play this game. While the score doesn't equate to perfection, it's the best any game could conceivably do.

These are above-average games that most players should consider purchasing. Nearly everyone will enjoy the game and given the proper audience, some may even love these games.

This is our middle-of-the-road ranking. Titles that receive three stars may not make a strong impression on the reviewer in either direction. These games may have some faults and some strong points but they average out to be a modest title that is at least worthy of rental for most.

Games that are awarded two stars are below average titles. Good ideas may be present, but execution is poor and many issues hinder the experience.

Though functional, a game that receives this score has major issues. There are little to no redeeming qualities and should be avoided by nearly all players.

A game that gets this score is fundamentally broken and should be avoided by everyone.



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