Street Fighter Collection 2


Review by Matt Paprocki



Graphics: 9

Sound: 9.5

Gameplay: 9

Overall: 9

streetfightercoll21ps1.png (33613 bytes)Capcom released the first Street Fighter Collection as an underwhelming package with no real extras and two variations of the Street Fighter II legacy. While the games included were in every aspect flawless, the whole "collection" part was seemingly left on the cutting room floor. Thankfully, with the second, single disc installment, Capcom has packed this edition with the first three games in the series and a decent amount of extras to keep hardcore fans satisfied.

Playing through the first iteration of Street Fighter II is an incredible visit back to the days of rows upon rows of arcade machines lining a hall and lines forming out the doors. Playing it now reveals major character imbalances, easy dizzies, and gameplay that feels too simplistic. However, it still works. Even after 12 years, this game still has "it."

SF II Championship Edition allowed players to take control of the bosses from the first game and had same character battles for the first time. The gameplay softened up a few characters to make is more balanced, but remained pretty much unchanged from it's predecessor. SFII Turbo sped the game up, added some new colors to the characters, tons of new moves, and again balanced the characters making this one the best on the disc.

streetfightercoll22ps1.png (32591 bytes)Each of the ports remains pretty much intact. This is the only home version of the game to feature the foreground palm tree in Sagat's stage (in the first SFII), all the bonus stages, and every animation. Though the infamous "Handcuff" trick with Guile is gone, the red fireball glitch is in there. It's great to play through each game in succession to see how each version was changed ever so slightly until the code was perfected. Only the most devoted Street Fighter fan will find something missing, and the errors are minimal.

Beating each of the games once reveals some new extras in addition to the already included bonuses. From the start, players can view some fantastic art galleries (featuring lots of pics from Super SFII which makes it easy to believe that this was planned for the first Collection) and get some gameplay tips. Be forewarned that these so called "tips" are absolutely useless unless you've never played one of these games before.

As mentioned above, beating each version of the game unlocks a new sound track (taken from the 3DO version of SSFII Turbo but does enhance a few voices and background sounds also) and even more artwork, including conceptual sketches. Beating all three games unlocks an extremely cool versus mode which allows you take different versions of different characters from different games into battle. For example, you can take the overly powerful Guile from the first SFII into a fight against the much weaker Guile with additional moves from SFII Turbo. This creates some very interesting match-ups and will keep most players intrigued.

Getting this new multi-player mode unlocked could be a problem. Even on the easiest setting, Bison is the definition of "boss" in each game. These are exact ports and this proves it. Taking him on in an actual arcade would easily cost $4-$5 thanks to his ridiculously cheap tactics, so even the most dedicated fighters will have issues. While Bison is the most obvious problem, be prepared for more cheap moves too. Blanka can now pull off his rolling ball attack while walking forward, Guile has no need to charge for the sonic boom, and Ken seems to have no delay after a dragon punch. Anyone who popped dollar after dollar into one of these machines should have fond memories of these tactics. There are a few load times issues too, but after a little bit of play time, you should become accustomed to them.

These three games are far and away the most accurate ports of Street Fighter ever conceived for a home console. Though it's mind boggling as to why this is the second collection considering the first has the final two installments of the series, this is by no means a problem. While the games may not seem all that different to a casual player, rest assured that the minute changes to each game can get highly confusing to a hardcore player. This is definitely a collection that you can't go wrong with. Arcade perfect graphics, some of the best video game music ever conceived, pin-point control, and memories that could never be repeated make this a game that any self-respecting Street Fighter fan MUST own.


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Last updated: Sunday, October 16, 2005 02:16 PM