Capcom is best known for their long-established fighting game pedigree. The Street Fighter series has played a key role in both creating and evolving the genre. One of the most important ways that Capcom has kept a 25-year-old franchise fresh has been by introducing new worlds for their characters to battle against. From the Marvel Universe to other fighting games, Capcom has embraced their competition instead of trying to combat them. Their most recent foray into the crossover is with Namco’s beloved 3D fighter, Tekken, and in Street Fighter X Tekken, these two worlds collide in an epic manner.
Somewhere in Antarctica a mysterious and powerful box, nicknamed Pandora, has crash-landed in the ice and two of the world’s most nefarious organizations, the Shadowloo and the Mishima Zaibatsu, are looking to take control of it. Characters from both the Street Fighter and Tekken universes are teaming up either in the name of good, evil, and themselves in order to harness the power of Pandora, or keep it from falling into the wrong hands.
Street Fighter X Tekken is a hybrid fighting game that pulls inspiration, mechanics, and, most importantly, characters from both games and mashes them up into one awesome creation. While both series have fundamentally different play stlyes, this release leans more towards the 2D Street Fighter world, but it has been rebalanced to fit the Tekken fighters’ styles.
All of the VS. games bring together two unlikely factions in a battle royale, but there’s something extra special about Street Fighter X Tekken. Unlike the VS. SNK games, the source material for these games is so vastly different that seeing them in one place is truly a special thing. Capcom put a lot of time into developing and balancing the gameplay for both Street Fighter and Tekken fans so that, while there is a bit of adjustment, you should feel right at home no matter which game you grew up playing.
Street Fighter X Tekken does a really great job when it comes to customization on almost every level, but it’s the Gem Units that really sets this game apart from other fighting games. By selecting certain gems for each character you can allow them special power-ups during matches if the corresponding conditions are met. For example, if you get hit with two super moves, your character might have increased strength for a short period of time. Picking the right Gem Unit is really dependant on your play style, making each match a unique experience.
Attention To Detail
It doesn’t take too long to figure out that a lot of love went into this game. From the elaborate backgrounds full of Easter eggs, to the character movesets, Capcom really brought their A-game for Street Fighter X Tekken. It’s one of those games that will have you spotting new things months after you started playing it, and for a fighting game, that’s a hard thing to do.
Fighting games have never really been known for their storytelling, and Street Fighter X Tekken is no different. The tale of Pandora helps to explain why the game’s two factions are facing off, but it also makes the assumption that Street Fighter and Tekken exist in the same world. Additionally the cut scenes that depict the story are pretty week, except for the combo endings for the teams on the roster (Ryu and Ken, Chun-Li and Cammy, Kazuya and Nina, etc.).
Why, in this day and age, does it take so long to load a fighting game match? Prior to every match in the game there’s a loading screen that features the combatants of the upcoming match facing each other, and it lingers just long enough for it to be annoying. Other fighting games have conditioned gamers into short loads, but Street Fighter X Tekken takes their sweet time. Fortunately, each match is well worth the wait.
Over the last few years Capcom have almost singlehandedly made it clear that fighting games are back in a big way. With the releases of Street Fighter IV, Marvel Vs. Capcom and now Street Fighter X Tekken, the company that the hadouken built is proving that there are still gamers that like to virtually beat the snot out of their friends. One of the best parts about Street Fighter X Tekken is that it plays distinctly differently than Capcom’s other two fighting games, making it a must-get for anyone who is looking for a new experience, especially one that blends two of the greatest fighting series ever.