Friday Fight Time – Too Much Street Fighter
- March 20th, 2010
- By MogKnight
Super Street Fighter 4 will be showing its way to Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 in about a month’s time (April 27th in NA regions). A lot of fighting game fans out there are waiting for this update on the original Street Fighter 4. Though, I’m pretty sure there a lot of people out there going “Well… why not just make Street Fighter 5?”
Oh how little you know…
Capcom’s Street Fighter series tends to be criticized for the reasoning of releasing all these different Street Fighter games with what would seem to be very little difference. I mean, there’s like a crapton of Street Fighter 2 releases. Lets see, off the top of my head…
Street Fighter 2
Street Fighter 2 Champion Edition
Street Fighter 2 Dash
Street Fighter 2 Special Champion Edition
Street Fighter 2 Turbo
Street Fighter 2 Hyper Fighting
Super Street Fighter 2
Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo
Super Street Fighter 2 X Grand Master Challenge
Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo Revival
Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo HD Remix
Hyper Street Fighter 2: Anniversary Edition
Whew boy… sad part is, I know what’s different between every single one of them. Given that we have a lot of different systems at the time (Super Nintendo, Genesis and TurboGrafx-16) and there were a bunch of re-releases and ports being tossed around, we have a ton of Street Fighter games being tossed around here with many different labels. So, what the hell? Why have all of these games back in 1992 and not have a Street Fighter 3 until around 1997? That and why have all these other Street Fighters outside of Street Fighter 2?
Lets look at Street Fighter 2 in depth here, since the first Street Fighter is nothing to write home about. Street Fighter 2 was originally released in the arcades in 1991. It was known as “World Warrior” or WW. This version lets you pick from eight characters. The original characters (or the World Warrior characters) are Ryu, Ken, Chun-Li, Blanka, Guile, Zangief, Dhalsim, and E. Honda. The game also featured Balrog, Vega, Sagat and M. Bison but they were not playable characters. You also could not have mirror matches, so no Ryu vs. Ryu or Chun-Li vs Chun-Li. This ended up being a pretty popular game as it was a competitive game that is very refined and very responsive for its time. Capcom knew they had something big here. The thing is, if they were to go straight from Street Fighter 2 to Street Fighter 3 and expect to have the same response, it would be pretty hard to do so and keep the game different to say that it’s actually Street Fighter 3. There were features that players wanted in Street Fighter 2 that could be improved on and there were quite a bit of bugs that existed (oddly enough, most of them are circled around Guile… silly magic throws).
Instead, Capcom made an upgrade to World Warrior, which was called Champion Edition in the US and SF2 Dash in Japan. This added mirror matches and bosses as playable characters, along with a few tweaks made to older characters and no more Guile shenanigans. A lot of people were happy and it ended up being a great upgrade to the original game, it was also a free upgrade if I recall correctly. Unfortunately, this caused some problems as the game was very hackable. You started seeing versions of Champion Edition where fireballs starting going really fast and homes onto the opponent. Spinning Pile Drivers could be done in the air. Charge characters didn’t need to charge to do moves. These hacked versions are generally known as Rainbow Edition or Kouryu Edition. These are pretty crazy hacks and if you got the chance to play one of these, you’ll be mildly entertained.
Capcom realized that the original Champion Edition was pretty slow, especially compared to these hacks that overclocked the game speed. Capcom decided “Hey, lets learn something from these hacks… and make it so that they can’t easily hack our games too!” Hyper Fighting (or Turbo) was born and the game speed was faster. More character tweaks were made and it was all good.
Now, lemme stop right there for a second. We already went through 3 different versions of Street Fighter 2. If I remember correctly, these upgrades were free of charge straight from Capcom. Some people might find these upgrades to be kinda redundant, it’s still the same game after all. I like to see it like this. Imagine you’re playing something like… Counter-Strike or World of Warcraft. There are patches that balances out the game, there are expansions that add more content but the game is still Counter-Strike or World of Warcraft. A lot of times when you talk World of Warcraft with people and talk about a specific version, usually you mention what version patch it was (such as 3.3 or 3.1 or 2.2 or whatever). A game like Counter-Strike has 3 main versions out right now: 1.6, CZ and Source. This is all really what Capcom was doing but they weren’t giving their upgrades version numbers but rather full on titles. A lot of arcade goers at the time, especially very casual players, aren’t going to be all picky with the version numbers. You’re gonna hear people that are like “I like Turbo more than Champion Edition” and everyone will know what they’re talking about and if if someone doesn’t understand it, it’s easy to explain.
Moving on, Capcom recently made a new arcade system called the CPS2, the original Street Fighter 2 game ran on CPS1. This means that Capcom can start a new slate… well, they sorta do. Super Street Fighter 2 was introduced and 4 more characters were added: T. Hawk, Deejay, Cammy and Fei Long. Characters got new animation, a cleaner sound, cleaner graphics, it was a new coat of paint to the old Street Fighter 2 game. The thing is that even Capcom kinda acknowledged that it’s getting a little bit redundant.
Finally, Capcom made Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo or Super Street Fighter 2 X: Grand Master Challenge in Japan. Without having to lose your breath trying to say the whole title, we just call this Super Turbo or ST. This was the “final” version of Street Fighter 2 that was totally a different beast than what Street Fighter 2 was. It added new mechanics such as super moves, throw softening, overheads and even added a new character based off of a hoax: Akuma or Gouki in Japan. This version of the game was very popular and would close out the Street Fighter 2 series until way later. Unfortunately, this game never really had a true console release until way later and even then those ports would be seen as far from perfect.
Note that these are all arcade releases, I haven’t even touched the console ports at all and that would be something that would make this post extremely large. Which is why… I think I’ll finish those up next time. But, there are 2 notable releases I will mention: Hyper SF2 and HD Remix.
Hyper Street Fighter 2 was released on consoles first and was also released in the US in the Street Fighter Anniversary Collection with Street Fighter 3: Third Strike. This version of the game is for all intents and purposes a slightly updated version of Super Turbo but allows you to pick versions of characters in the older Street Fighter 2 games. So you can play Champion Edition Ryu vs Super Turbo Ryu and CE Ryu would have all of his properties just like you were playing CE. However, this is also a slight upgrade and not so much ST with added bonuses. Some characters were changed every so slightly and it’s not an exact port of ST.
Then comes Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo HD Remix or STHD for short. STHD features 1080p graphics, music done by OCRemixers, updated sprites and backgrounds and a “remixed” version which features characters with tweaked properties. Most people would say that this version of the game goes far beyond what is expected and some people would mean that in a bad way. Remixed mode tends to be looked a little bit down upon, mainly because some characters end up getting nerfed or there are just a bunch of weird shenanigans that people feel that some characters did not need. Still, this game is still being played at tournaments and some people still enjoy the game for what it is, especially as the absolute final version of Street Fighter 2.
And there you have it. I just burned a lot of your time, feeding you with the origins of Street Fighter 2 and why there are so many releases. Sometimes, you just want to make a game perfect… and that’s why a company steps in and fixes it. I’d say that’s a good move. Super Street Fighter 4 will be an upgrade that we will have to pay for but with what is added, changed and everything, it might as well be considered a totally different game than Street Fighter 4. This isn’t really so much like Street Fighter 2 to Champion Edition. This is more like Street Fighter 2 going into Super Street Fighter 2 and that was a huge jump. Next Friday: More Street Fighter talk and maybe even a video. Peace~