Oh, Street Fighter, you sassy little madame. The script here on Games Revisited is that we revisit (see what we did there?) older games to see if they still play well now. Well, spoilers, SSF2 absolutely does. So refined and silky smooth is the fighting engine that it’s almost a moot point for me to say it. Look at any fighting games on your shelf. No Street Fighter? Bin those, they don’t exist. Hell, how else do you explain a game getting so many remakes and re-releases that it’s most recent update was in 2017?!
Oh yeah, money.
It was for money.
Raul Julia M Bison, leader of the un-intimidatingly named Shadaloo organisation, has organised the World Warrior tournament; pitting the best fighters int he world against one another. Possibly in the streets – we’re awaiting confirmation. It’s unclear in the original version of the game, but we now know that his plan all along was to brainwash all the combatants and use them as world dominating kung-fu super soldiers. Which is pretty rad.
Generally speaking, all SF games have held up pretty well, but this being the Super version, we’ve got a little extra spit-shine on there. It’s a little bit brighter, the frames run a little more smoothly, and the stages are chock-full of little touches to make the whole world feel more alive. And the music is, simply put, some of the most iconic gaming music of all time. Don’t believe me?
I will not be swayed on this.
Broadly speaking, SSF2 and it’s counterparts are all considered to be multiplayer gems. It’s what ‘winner stays on’ was made for. The single player arcade is fine*, but it doesn’t hone your skills quite as well as smashing your stupid brothers shit face in because he’s lame and likes things like being popular, and approaching the opposite gender. Loser.
As I stated earlier, it’s an incredibly refined engine, with no broken or unblockable super moves and a short window to block any attack which gives the game almost endless replayability as you learn every little facet of your chosen fighter until you’re Rain Man the ninja. And therein lies further beauty – everyone has their favourite character. Be it you were drawn to them aesthetically or you tried them out and found them to be a good fit, everyone generally gravitates towards a certain fighter; allowing for hours of mate battering banter. Especially when they main Dhalism. My first version of Street Fighter was OG SF2 for the Amiga 500 (you couldn’t even play as Balrog), and playing as Dhalsim was ostensibly as much of a sin as playing as Oddjob in Goldeneye.
The Super variant wins major bonus points with the addition of Fei Long, Cammy, T-Hawk and Deejay as playable characters, adding years to the lifespan of a game that people had already been playing for a handful of years. It also smoothed off some rougher edges regarding the power of a few special moves, and gave some of the older characters new special moves. This is the days before the blight that is DLC, so this was a huge deal.
*It’s obviously better than fine, but you played this for years for the multiplayer, let’s be honest. Oh, and the car smashing bonus stage, which remains the most heckin’ fun.
They should teach Street Fighter in schools. Hell, it’s what I did instead of going to school most days anyway, and look at me now! (Dramatisation: Games Revisited is a non-profit website, and it’s authors are kept in a giant vat of gelatinous blue goo, providing them sustenance, oxygen, and imbuing a sense of entitlement so that they think what they think about Dig-Dug actually matters). Sick bro!
SSF2 remains a standard bearer in the fighting game genre, with enough depth to it’s gameplay and variety to it’s roster, that it still beckons to be dug out for an old school Street Fighter session even to this day. I can honestly say that I’ve been playing it on and off for over 20 years. it’s simple enough that newcomers can jump in at any time, and deep enough that you’ll smash their faces off in seconds for being so impudent.
Oh, and in case you were wondering SSF2 main : Zangief. And yes. I’m shit.
Righto, back in the goo.
- Wonderful, versatile roster
- Still looks and sounds tremendous
- With patience you can spend a lifetime mastering it
- The franchise was DLC before DLC
- Slightly daunting for newcomers – It’s easy to pick up and play, but if you fight a pro as a rookie, you may never pick up again
- Trying to actually pull off moves as vega