Written by  :  Mumm-Ra (410)
Written on  :  Oct 15, 2004
Platform  :  SNES
Rating  :  5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars

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The legendary fighting game may be old, but never dated.

The Good

Street Fighter II made history. Released for the Arcades in 1991, it turned the heads of players all over the world. They would forget TMNT, Final Fight and any other hits of the past to concentrate the attention in the most sophisticated game ever. All other fighting games before this one (including the first version of Street Fighter) were either primary or action-like (such as Double Dragon or Final Fight).

The revolutionary Street Fighter II brought unique characters, detailed graphics, big sprites, elaborated moves, smooth animation and involving sound. Then somebody would inevitably do the question: is it possible to do a game conversion? To which console?

Well, the next year the game was released exclusively for Super NES. Would be enough to say that this sole release rocketed the console sales? Or that Super NES only became a real challenge for Sega Genesis (in terms of sales numbers) because of this game? Or that Sega would invest millions of dollars in game production just to make its 16-bit console attractive to the costumer after the development of Street Fighter for its rival?

I'm not exaggerating. Nobody would ever imagine such a good Arcade translation could be done. Street Fighter II for SNES was more than a faithful conversion: it was nearly the same as the Arcade.

Technically, the game was perfect. Excellent in every aspect. Grand. It was the first 16-bit game to consume 16 Megabits of memory (not considering the Neo Geo ones), what guaranteed its superb quality. No other SNES or Genesis game could dare to compete to this one.

The quality of the graphics had no precedent. The sprites were not only big, but beautifully designed and carefully animated. Even the clothes of the characters followed the move of the wind (for a 1992 game, it was almost a miracle). The backgrounds were rich and animated, and they moved following the characters.

The sound quality was also awesome. Every stage had its own music, which became more intense with the victory of one of the players. The sounds contributed to a realistic impression of the game, as it was common to hear the voices of the characters.

Outrageous graphics and sound, but what about gameplay? Well, that's the best part! No other game had ever made such use of Super NES 6-button gamepad. The Arcade Street Fighter II used 6 buttons (3 for punches and 3 for kicks, of different intensities) and so did the SNES version. The combination of buttons generated new and special moves. The control, although easy, was complex and brought an unprecedent variety of moves to a game. And there were 8 characters available, each behaving differently. They were all balanced: there was no character much better than the other, it would depend on the player's preferences.

What else? The game was not too difficult and not too easy. There were 10 levels of difficulty so the player could choose the most adequate.

The Bad

The game is perfect in almost every aspect and has no major problems. Just some minor ones.

First, Capcom could have included a cheat to allow players control the four bosses.Everyone wanted to control the bosses as Street Fighter II Champion Edition hit the Arcade. But there was no option or cheat for that.

The action could have been a bit faster. There is some slowdown. This is a problem with the Super NES slow processor and not with the game itself. But it irritates sometimes.

Also, the bonus stages were not the same. Capcom substituted the cool "barrel" bonus stage for the somewhat boring "bricks" bonus stage. It does not spoil the game, but the original bonus stage could have been kept.

It can also be said that the Artificial Intelligence (AI) is not very, uhu, intelligent. But so was the Arcade. Indeed, Street Fighter II had a good AI, but the gamers could sometimes predict the opponent's move. And that would make it easy to win the fights.

The Bottom Line

TRUE CLASSIC. If this game is not perfect, I don't know what could be.