Street Fighter Alpha 2, Super Nintendo, Capcom, 1996,

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THEY’RE REVIEWING A STREET FIGHTER GAME! IT’S HAPPENING! LIGHT THE BEACONS, SOUND THE HORNS, GENTLY HELP YOUR GRANDMA DOWN THE STAIRS!

I had a bit of a moment there. So Street Fighter is slightly divisive for us here at Games Revisited. I (Craig, the one with the beard) absolutely adore beat-em-ups, and, in truth ,the very first game that ever made me go ‘holy shit, I’mma play these things forever’ was the original Street Fighter 2 on my old Amiga 500. And I mean O.G. Street Fighter 2 – you couldn’t even play as Balrog, and nobody likes Balrog. Jamie (the one with the worse beard) doesn’t really see their appeal and tires of them very quickly. And he kills puppies with hammers.

In a nutshell, I’m right and Jamie is a puppy smacking scumlord. But I’ve shied away from reviewing SF2 because there’s so many different versions, and I honestly couldn’t decide which one I considered truly definitive. So instead I’ll be looking at Street Fighter Alpha 2, which, in the interest of objective journalism, was at one time my absolute favourite game in the whole world.

Presentation

So to be fair, this is the SNES version of SFA2, whereas I owned my copy back in the day on the PS One. SNES to PS One is unequivocally a bit of a jump, and as such, the downgraded SNES version is a bit…fuck ugly. It’s not an inherently bad looking game, but when you see the smooth cartoony models and animations in the higher-res version, the pixel-y muffled-sounding SNES version is just a shade underwhelming. But that’s just this version, if you google screencaps of the PS1 or arcade versions and you’ll see that this game looks bloody lovely when the system allows for it.

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Mmm. Smudgy. I had to double check this cap to see if it was from a GBA port. It’s not.

Story

The Alpha games act as prequels to Street Fighter 2, which explains why Ken refused to get a bloody haircut for this game. Whippersnapper. It’s actually proving pretty difficult to find the actual plot for SFA2, so I’ll paraphrase and assume I’m correct like most of the internet.

Punch Akuma. The End.

Gameplay

Oh dang. So whilst I know in my heart of hearts that SFA2 is a fantastic game, the SNES port is just a bit rubbish really. Whilst the bare bones are clearly Street Fighter down to the marrow, the comparative limitations of the SNES really hamper your ability to enjoy the game.

New features in the SFA series include super combos (now a vital mainstay of the Street Fighter series) and alpha counters, which allow you to spend a little of your super combo meter to dish out a swift little dig to the plums after successfully blocking an attack. Both of these are inspired additions to the series, as evidenced by them being omnipresent ever since. SFA2 in particular gains custom combos, wherein you can activate a timer gauge and dish out any attacks you choose before the timer runs out to create a custom combo. Personally I found these naff back in the day and still do now. It’s just…not really anything, is it?

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One of my favourite Street Fighter rosters. Rolento is the business. And Dan. Always Dan.

Even with these improvements however, SFA2 on the SNES is plagued by choppiness and slowdown, in particular when you unleash a super combo or do anything that requires the game to perform above the status quo. Considering these are the unique selling point of the game, it’s less than ideal.

There’s still fun to be had here, particularly in multiplayer, but you can’t shake the ever present feeling that you’re playing the beta test for an unfinished game. *insert joke about Street Fighter Beta because I’m so, so clever*.

Overall

Such a shame. I loved SFA2 back in 96, and I’m still fairly convinced that I do now – and I was SO looking forward to sinking my teeth back into it’s steroid-y flesh. It introduced several key components to the long running series, features a diverse and interesting roster, and possesses a unique cartoon style from it’s sister series. Unfortunately, the SNES version is something of an unloved stepchild, featuring graphical limitations and unforgivable slowdown. A great game suffering from a bad port, and the coffee revels of the Street Fighter franchise.

52%

Pros : It’s just a little choppy, it’s still good, it’s still good. Great diverse roster, should look amazing.

Cons : Knowing that there are different, better versions of this game out there but I spent an entire day playing this one. The fact that I suffer from slowdown myself now.

Back In The Day

Pretty succinctly put up there, but SFA2 was released to critical acclaim in the arcades, as well as on PS One and the Saturn. The SNES version was considered slow and clunky 21 years ago, so in retrospect, I should’ve read this information first.

 

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Aladdin. Capcom (1994) Super Nintendo

The only real fight in the Great 16bit Console War me and my mates had was between Aladdin on the Megadrive and Aladdin on the SNES. So forget your Crash Bandicoot vs Super Mario 64 as that wasn’t a contest. Forget Last of Us vs whatever toss Gears of War shite XBox360 had, and forget Sonic vs Mario. The only thing us “90s kids” actually cared about was Aladdin or Aladdin.

And with that, Aladdin on the SNES. Continue reading

Donkey Kong Country 2 : Diddy’s Kong Quest. Rareware (1995) Super Nintendo

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The absolute titanium balls on Rare, eh? Given creative control of one of Nintendo’s most beloved mascots in Donkey Kong, Rare proceeded to take the proverbial mile, creating it’s own lore and characters for the first game. A smash hit, it allowed them even more creative freedom – to the point where they made a Donkey Kong game WITHOUT DONKEY KONG IN IT. I like to think that Rare at this point was being run by nihilistic anime edge-lords. How else do you explain Kiddy Kong? Continue reading

Top 15 Light Gun Guns

I love Light Gun Games, but what about the guns themselves? are they any good?

Well wonder no more, for I have gotten my hands on as many as I can and played as many games as possible with them,. So here is my none definitive list* of best Light Gun Guns. I will rate them on the following:

  • Comfort: How comfortable is the thing to hold: Too heavy, feels cheap, awkward?
  • Game Support: All the ergonomic design in the world won’t make up for having one game released for it will it?
  • Value for money**: This is surprisingly multifaceted. Games are covered on their own section but one great game doesn’t make a £50 gun a good investment, and do you need to buy other add-ons to make it work?
  • Does it actually work?: Simple really, but does the gun hit what I am pointing at? Some games worked off grids so if you’re in the same post code you’ll hit. Some are ultra accurate and to hit the exact same spot twice in a row you need a sniper rifle and a tripod.
  • My Rating: Perhaps the most important aspect, do I like the gun. Does it annoy me, do I rush to play that console because the gun is such a pleasure to hold? Or would I rather sodomise myself with the gun than actually use it as a gun.
  • Overall: The previous points are all scored out of 10. This is me trying to add up numbers to achieve an overall figure.

I will only include “main” guns that were released in the UK that I can get my hands on, they can either be first or 3rd party guns but they need to have sold more than three guns. So that weird ultra realistic Chinese import you had and loved doesn’t count, or the JAP/US only guns. I don’t do imports, but if you have one let me know and I’ll consider adding it.

* I am not including consoles that have wooden panelling or on-screen displays that make the NES look ultra Hi-Def.
** Where prices are stated the UK price is based on what I consider reasonable on eBay, the US is rounded up or down. Conversion based on exchange rates in May 2017 Continue reading

The Addams Family. Ocean Software (1992) Super Nintendo

One of the challenges of attempting to review Retro Games is the ability to take off your own nostalgia glasses. Just because you loved a game when you were 8, doesn’t mean that you have to still like it. And just because you thought a game was good, doesn’t mean it wasn’t a steaming pile of Sonic Adventure.

I think I first played the Addams Family game in early 1993 at a mates house, and while the memories were good, the game is not. Continue reading

Final Fight 2. Capcom (1993) Super Nintendo

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I didn’t really like Final Fight on the SNES, it was too hard, lacked multiplayer,and suffered weird censorship issues. It also felt a little hollow when compared to Streets of Rage or Streets of Rage 2.

With Final Fight 2 we have a two player option and some new characters, and less pointless censorship. So does that make Final Fight 2 better than the first one, and where does it rank amongst it’s peers? Continue reading