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Street Fighter Alpha 2 (Windows)

62
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100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.5
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5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Fake Spam (94)
Written on  :  Dec 22, 2006
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  4.6 Stars4.6 Stars4.6 Stars4.6 Stars4.6 Stars

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Summary

A Windows 95 gem forgotten by history.

The Good

It's on Windows 95 and runs swell on a Pentium II at 350 MHz with 64 MB of RAM and an ATi Rage with 4 MB of vRAM. It takes about 400 MB of HD space or so, and the music is all in *.WAV files, so it can be converted to *.MP3 or *.AAC for use on your favorite digital music player.

The graphics are 320x200 at VGA, but that's okay, because Capcom stuck a lot of effort in those graphics, and the game looks great!

Sounds great, too, because QSound is applied to all of the *.WAV music and sound files, and using a Microsoft SideWinder or Capcom's own ProPad 6 is a dream.

There's almost no access time from the hard drive in between matches, and everything's here that's on the Saturn version. Video is used for the intro and a few other tricky points to save the limitations of the majority of Windows 95 PCs at the time (you know, the one your lawyer brother-in-law in his mid-30s refuses to upgrade or give up on, and it doesn't even have USB) so that's forgiven.

The Bad

Still, 320x200? Why? The SNES I can undestand, that's in it's hi-res mode, but that's the low-res mode for Windows 95 by 1998, the year of its release. Windows 95 on my Pentium II system was at least 640x480 in thousands of colors (24-bit mode, 32-bit mode ran my resources dry). When Acclaim and Capcom did X-Men: COTA on DOS, they did right by allowing a 65,000 color mode if your system RAM was 16 MB or more, and that was nice. This is four years later (a long time in a game's life) and there's not even that option. It's not really bothersome unless you've become used to the Saturn and PlayStation's 320x200 modes in 65,000, which comes off sharp. I think Capcom could've just upped it to 32,000 colors at the 640x480 res mode, and it would've looked spectacular.

Also, since most PCs don't have an extra game port, I think Capcom should've included a Y-splitter for two joypad support. But what was I expecting for $19.99? Yes, that was its actual retail price with a little manifesto from Capcom stating how they wanted to put all of their games on PC from that point on (yeah, sure).

The Bottom Line

After being burned by the Saturn in 1995 and the Nintendo 64 in 1996, 1997 to 2000 was the time I turned to Windows 95/98 for my gaming fixes. If more games like this version of Alpha 2 were pumped out by the console companies, I'd be in Utopia. But Final Fantasy 7 sealed our fate on that (not Capcom, these games were decent). If you see it used, I say buy it, but it conflicts with Windows ME, 2000, XP and most likely won't run on Vista if it's on a 64-bit CPU.