roomrunner's Super Street Fighter IV (PlayStation 3) review

no new challengers allowed

If I can explain Super Street Fighter IV briefly, it would be a very fun looking playground set, only with no building instructions and a large percentage of useless equipment.  I've been playing videogames for over 20 years; and while I admit I do not have a competitive personality, I feel I'm well rounded and adaptive to many genres.  The level of play gap is the fighting genre's greatest flaw, but I was lured in by SSFIV's nostalgia factor and colorful cast of characters. 
 
Never in all my years have I come across a triple-A title with so little guidance given to the player.  There is a Training mode, but don't be fooled.  It's just a dummy for you to hit and practice your move executions on.  There is no tutorial, or even tips on what your character brings to the match.  No overview on what your moves do, or when to apply them.  I still to this day do not understand what a "cancel" or a "cross-up" is, or what benefit it brings to the fight.  
 
It's pathetic how lazy Capcom is with one of its most recognizable franchises.  How hard is it to provide a brief 10 minute crash course for each character?  Simple freeze frames and text boxes to inform me how and when to apply moves, then letting me try it for myself is all I ask.  Instead they waste budget on animated non-sequiturs in Arcade mode that are of no relevance.   That is if you can even make it to the pointless endings even on easy mode.
 
After memorizing the movelist of a couple characters best I can, I gave online a chance.  Even bigger waste of time than Arcade mode.  After a dozen "unable to connect with user" errors, you may get lucky enough to start a fight.  Unfortunately, the matchmaking is a complete joke, and despite your request to match only with same skill level players, you'll end up facing a B grade Ryu with over a thousand points and some quote like "yeah I'm gonna combo forever!"  The match will last 8 seconds, and you've learned nothing.  Back to the menu!  If you're masochistic enough to try again, you'll face pretty much nothing but Kens and Ryus, who do the same hopping around and upper-cutting, or jump-kick sweep move over and over again.  You might as well be playing a robot. 
 
So there you have it.  30-something characters, you'll only see 2 of them online 80% of the time doing the same moves,  ad nauseam.  Yeah, I suppose I could put in the hundreds of hours it takes to learn and then execute how to counter-attack those things, but to what end?  To say I am better at doing a 5-second combination of buttons over and over again than some random kid online?  No reward. 
 
I don't need to assume that 99% of the GB community who reads this will take issue with just about everything I've said; so I'm sorry I don't like your game.  I am not very good at it, I'll admit; but Capcom feels totally unwilling to guide me in any direction.  It's like trying to teach someone a language by just giving them a dictionary.  Zero context.   
 
Yeah, I often wiff moves, and can't perform an ultra facing right.  That's on me.  I can spend the hours and hours until I have trained my fingers to nail it every single attempt, but then it's an eternity of figuring out when is the right time to apply it.  No training dummy will tell me that.  Capcom dropped the ball here.  This is an incomplete and unrewarding game with absolutely no guidance given to a newcomer.  If you do manage to find a way to be successful at it, you will have narrowed down the experience to about 10% of the assets the game has to offer.  At $30 and a gift card with purchase, I have no buyers remorse for this, but the time wasted is something I will never get back.

3 Comments
Posted by King_Bonzo

I think you've gone way over the top with the hyperbole in this review. Also the skill matching thing is avoided by going through arcade with on-line"interruptions" enabled on your own level. That way people will be approximately at the same place like you being D they may be D+. Just mentioning in case you still have the game. 
 
Incidentally I can't do Ultra's facing left, but I never found them necessary to be competitive

Posted by Roomrunner

I sold it months ago, but I guess that would have been nice to know.  Although, it sounds like yet another thing that the game should have told me.  I also don't see how to play with other people in your skill level, you'd have to play by yourself in the hopes that somebody comes over to join in.  Hardly social, or logical.  Imagine something like that in a real life.  "Instead of striking up conversation with people at this party, I'm just gonna stand against the wall and wait for someone to talk to me."

Posted by JRizzo101

I know exactly what you mean in this review. I bought the game several months ago and spent countless hours looking up information on forums, watching combo videos for characters I wanted to play as, and learned as much vocabulary for the game as possible (cross ups, mix ups, FADC etc...) I went into training mode to hone my execution skills to the best of my ability I even did random fights against the computer to learn how to fight every character. Results: I went through 5 characters trying to find who i was good with (eventually having the most success with Ryu) losing most of the time untill i found Ryu where I won a little above 50% of my fights, However the game has horrible input lag online and I still don't know enough to win consistently because people always seem to know a bit more than I do and how to keep me down and under pressure (I thought I had a good zone game to) I can't keep my player points above 500 for a long time and my execution compared to an average to sub par street fighter player are crap (can't FADC to save my life). I have put so much time and effort into this game and I feel ripped off and all of my working knowledge about street fighter has come from outside sources like iplaywinner.com and shoryuken.com. It would have been nice if the game taught me how to do anything but I guess Capcom doesn't give a shit about getting new fans just pleasing the hardcore ones that have played street fighter since the original street fighter II came out. So, was it worth all the time for a game that's popularity is dying from street fighter X Tekken answer: no.

Other reviews for Super Street Fighter IV (PlayStation 3)

    Its the Battle of the Century! 0

        Street Fighter IV not only brought back the legendary franchise to amazing success, it made fighting games famous again as the community is now as strong as it ever was before. It was only a matter of time when Capcom decided to expand upon what the original game started by adding more of everything while balancing out what was in before. Super Street Fighter IV is that answer as a significant upgrade and enough to make the vanilla game obsolete. All the additions from the ten new characters...

    3 out of 3 found this review helpful.

This edit will also create new pages on Giant Bomb for:

Beware, you are proposing to add brand new pages to the wiki along with your edits. Make sure this is what you intended. This will likely increase the time it takes for your changes to go live.

Comment and Save

Until you earn 1000 points all your submissions need to be vetted by other Giant Bomb users. This process takes no more than a few hours and we'll send you an email once approved.