Street Fighter X Tekken: Preview and First Thoughts

So, we’ve all heard about Street Fighter X Tekken by now, it’s been out for a little bit and people have gotten a decent sense for it, so how about a preview. To start, I’m going to mention that Street Fighter X Tekken really has no plot, we are given a loosely tossed together story about a meteor deemed “Pandora” that reacts to conflict around it, that’s it, this is the reason the Street Fighter and Tekken universes are merged; however, this is not terribly surprising because in the Street Fighter and Tekken universes separately there never really has been a solid story; usually in Tekken Heihachi Mishima or one of his ancestors (or most recently a dragon composed of all the evil in the world, (sigh) Tekken what has happened to you) tries to release some evil or take over the world, typical villain scheme. On the Street Fighter side it’s typically Master Bison (M. Bison) who is trying to take over the world, consistently, but keep in mind, to keep us all confused, as in many fighting games every character has their separate stories and endings that typically do not correspond to the main story, so no one really knows who has ever won in these tournaments. In Street Fighter X Tekken Capcom has brought back M. Bison as the main villain for the Street Fighter side, but has brought back a classic well-loved final boss for the Tekken side, Ogre. This is nice because while this character has no real interesting back story he is not another incarnation of Heihachi, he has his own unique move set, and he’s not cheap as Hell much like Jinpachi from Tekken 5 and the all-encompassing evil dragon from Tekken 6.

So, now that we have a loose plot and know who the evil main characters are, how about we go on to the part that most people care about, the character list. Altogether there are fifty-five characters to choose from, almost rivaling the legendary of the character list of Marvel vs. Capcom 2 ranking in at fifty-six, so already this is promising, but prepared to be let down horribly. Seventeen (yes, that’s not a misprint) characters are DLC ONLY AND FIVE OF THOSE CHARACTERS ARE AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD ONLY FOR THE PS3 AND PS VITA! For the record, that’s EIGHTY-FIVE DOLLARS, that’s twenty-five more than the game itself, just for downloadable characters, and that’s assuming they are all five dollar downloads, god forbid if a few are ten. However, Capcom recently announced that they would be releasing bundles of the characters for thirteen dollars on the 360 and PS3 and twenty dollars on the PS Vita, this significantly lightens the blow, but it still adds up to be twenty-six dollars, which is quite bit just for a few extra character stories, but I am admittedly not a strong believer in DLCs, I miss the good old days when everything was already on the disc you bought. A final note on the characters, every single one of them speaks in Japanese, which is a little strange because some of the characters in the game are known to be American, and usually this distinction is made, in both series. However, all cost aside, this is already a glaring problem for two groups of people, those that own an XBOX 360 and those that do not like to spend money on DLCs. All horror-show DLC costs aside though, here is the final character list, DLCs included:

Street Fighter: Ken (Street Fighter), Ryu (Street Fighter), Zangief (Street Fighter II), Rolento (Street Fighter Alpha II), Rufus (Street Fighter IV), Ibuki (Street fighter III), Hugo (Street fighter III: 2nd Impact), Dhalsim (Street Fighter II), Poison (Street Fighter III), Sagat (Street Fighter II), Cammy (Super Street Fighter II), Chun-Li (Street Fighter II), E. Honda (Street Fighter II), Abel (Street Fighter IV), Guile (Street Fighter II), Juri (Super Street Fighter IV), Vega (Street fighter II), Balrog (Street Fighter II), M. Bison (Street Fighter II), Akuma (Street Fighter Alpha) DLC: Sakura (Street Fighter Alpha II), Blanka (Street Fighter II), Guy (Street Fighter Alpha), Cody (Street Fighter Alpha II), Elena (Street Fighter III: New Generation), Dudley (Street Fighter III)

Tekken: Kazuya (Tekken), Nina (Tekken), Asuka (Tekken 5), Lili (Tekken 5: Dark Resurrection), Heihachi (Tekken), Kuma (Tekken 2), Paul (Tekken), Marshall Law (Tekken 5), King (Tekken), Marduk (Tekken 4), Hwoarang (Tekken 3), Steve (Tekken 4), Bob (Tekken 6), Julia (Tekken 3), Yoshimitsu (Tekken), Raven (Tekken 5), Jin (Tekken 3) Ling Xiaoyu (Tekken 3), Ogre (Tekken 3) DLC: Lars (Tekken 6), Alisa (Tekken 6), Bryan (Tekken 3), Jack (Tekken 2), Christie (Tekken 4), Lei (Tekken 3)

Extra DLC: Mega Man, Pac-Man, Toro, Kuro, Cole

So, that’s the character list, now on to the other most important part of this game, the gameplay, particularly the super moves. The gameplay seems fine and move alright, from the gameplay videos I’ve watched all of the characters seem to play just fine, though to me there’s still one glaring factor, most of the Street Fighter characters have ranged attacks of some kind, and all of them have super powers, whereas almost none of the Tekken characters have ranged attacks (save Kazuya’s laser attack if they keep that in) and relatively none of them have super powers (save Kazuya, Heihachi, Ogre, and Jin). This seems like it would cause a problem and tip the scales in favor of the Street Fighter characters every time. On the other hand, Capcom has given all the Tekken characters their own super special moves, unfortunately these range from anything awesomely cool like Steve’s machine-gun punch super special to extremely uncreative like Marduk’s “tackle-you-to-the-ground-and-repeatedly-punch-you-in-the-same-fashion” super special. The special meters seem to function like classic Street Fighter special meters and have three level tiers, this means you can insert a one level super special into a combo or blast your opponent with three level super special. It appears that the switch action functions like it did in Tekken Tag Tournament with the battle ending with only one character’s defeat, but one thing different in this scheme is the tag-in, tag-out super special combos. The other major difference is that Capcom has incorporated a gem system that allows you to upgrade your favorite character outside of combat, I assume this applies only in story mode or a special mode online, but does not affect local versus combat. Last, but not least, another new element Capcom has included is specific paired story lines, for instance Ryu and Ken and Kazuya and Nina have specific storylines when played together that garner a new ending unlike if they are playing with someone else separately.

Final Thoughts: Overall, I think this game could prove to be interesting, definitely worth a try, but definitely not worth the sixty dollar price tag, especially with the DLC characters costing a minimum of twenty-six dollars altogether. The new concepts are an interesting touch and I like the idea of giving Tekken characters their own super specials. The gems are an interesting touch, but immediately put some people at a disadvantage because the pre-order from Gamestop came with nine free gems that cannot be acquired through any other means, unless Capcom releases them all as DLC later. There’s a nice compilation of characters, at fifty-five, it’s quite a bit to choose from. The graphics look nice, they have the same look and feel to them as Street Fighter IV and Marvel vs. Capcom 3, though I am a little upset that you cannot pick whether you want to fight in a 2D environment or a 3D environment, which was originally promised. Downsides aside, don’t let the cons of this game scare you away from playing it because it looks like it will prove to be a pretty solid fighter, maybe not worth the price tag, but definitely worth a weekend rent or at least a purchase at a bargain or used price.

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