Like legions of you have no doubt done already, I went ahead and purchased the Arcade Edition DLC for Super Street Fighter IV. I too was waiting with feverish anticipation, only to totally forget because E3 and then remember later that afternoon. As far as I can tell, my $15 (or 1200 Microsoft points) for this particular purchase went towards 4 new characters, some extra online tweaks, and character rebalancing, as well as the ability to continue to not play Super Street Fighter IV against people who care online (Because really, who is going to still be playing with the home version at this point if they're still playing Street Fighter at all?). However, like many, I take issue with some of the additions this DLC has brought to the table. Let's break it down, shall we?
The charactersHere, you have Yun, Yang, Evil Ryu, and Oni. Clearly, at this point they're starting to grasp for good characters to bring in, despite the fact that there are still more than a few Alpha or SFIII characters left to mine. Starting with the easiest one to pick on: Evil Ryu seems totally unnecessary. While I'm glad that, at the very least, they've managed to make him more than just a palette swap of Ryu design-wise (instead optioning for "totally crazy and out of control evil man Ryu"), he's simply not a very interesting character at all, nor was he ever one. He is, for most intents and purposes Ryu with some of Akuma's moves (and in the case of the hurricane kick, properties of moves) thrown in to make him better offensively. One could go into pointless subtleties like how his cr.Mk has a longer reach or how his ultra 2 totally involves smashing that dude in the face, but COME ON CAPCOM, REALLY? Of all the half-assed characters from Street Fighter (and there are many. They could have put in R. Mika and that would've been only remotely worse), you went for the one that doesn't really offer anything? Of course, the worst part is that he doesn't play terribly since he's pretty much ryu with a teleport, an axe kick, and a raging demon super. Admittedly, he's not as bad as the Kyo Clone team from KOF 2002 UM (Featuring no less than 3 different versions of Kyo, in addition to the regular one), but that action is more excusable due to the "THIS ROSTER IS GIGANTIC" nature of King of Fighters.
On the other hand, we have Oni. At the very least, he seems like a more different character than Evil Ryu. I'm still not entirely sure if I like him though. To say that he plays like Akuma is fallacy, because he doesn't have the demon flip, air fireballs, a teleport or fireballs that travel the entire screen. People say that he kinda plays like a more offensive Gouken? Sure? Maybe? He clearly can do some tricky stuff with those air dashes and that ground pound, but I'm not sure if I really enjoy playing as him, especially over regular 'ol Akuma. Meanwhile, of the two twins, I probably like Yang more because my feeble mind can comprehend what to do with those slashes and that rolling kick. Yun clearly seems powerful though, with the way that even I can effortlessly do far more damage than should be done with that custom combo super of his. I don't especially like either one design wise, but I'll take what I can get. Also dive kicks. Soooo many dive kicks.
I read somewhere on these forums that they didn't so much rebalance Super Street Fighter as they deliberately messed up all the characters who were good in the last one. As far as my personal vested interest goes, I'm somewhat bummed to say that exactly zero of the characters I play/care about have received any significant buffs. Vega, who is probably still my main hasn't really changed (his Ultra 2 isn't as good, basically), but the fact that all the characters who are good at rushing down have gotten better at rushing down doesn't help him very much. Seth has more health (yay), but his dive kick has less priority and he no longer has air stretchy arms, one of his key keep away moves. As someone who enjoys playing seth that way while cackling that they can't really hit me because of my air stretchy arms, this is an unfortunate downgrade. To round it all out, they've thankfully not really changed Bison in any sort of major way, except that now his Ultra 2 motion is charge and therefore harder to input. Standing Heavy Kick still works astoundingly well, so I gotta be thankful for that.
Dude, whatever. I don't use the replay channel. However, since I've been busy playing other fighting games of notable repute, I've gotten a little rusty with plain old Street Fighter. That, or the only people who play Ranked anymore are people who actually know how to play the game. No lie, I saw like 2 Ryus in all the matches I have played so far. Meanwhile, I've seen more Gens than I think I've ever seen, as well as a fair share of Rose and Ibuki (oh great, two characters that I totally hate playing against). All this, as well as a few matches against Giant Bomb's own PixelPrinny has made me realize that: yes, I'm still not great at Street Fighter, am I? And at some point the barrier for entry becomes a little too high and I'm reminded why I don't really play competitive multiplayer games anymore. Of course, you can expect more of me ranting about being unskilled when I talk about Blazblue, probably sometime early next week. That game be hella crazy. And, maybe at some point I'll write those KoF XI and Mortal Kombat Armageddon old game blogs like I've been threatening to do. We'll see.