Can you go another round? Sure-you-can:
‘Street Fighter II‘ is one of those titles that gets ported to pretty much any console imaginable, new or old. It’s a solid game and one well deserving of this almost ritualistic homage, but your mileage is going to vary with the Nintendo Switch port based on how recently you’ve invested in one of these re-releases. Read on to find out what’s new with “Ultra Street Fighter 2: The Final Challengers“.
If you’ve been a gamer for any length of time you’ll have played Street Fighter II before. It’s a 2D fighter that uses plenty of special moves and snazzy supers to really define each character in its large roster. Each character plays wildly differently, and you can expect to constantly be surprised at just how far this aging system can be pushed in terms of individual expression.
But as I said, you’ve played this before – right? What’s new here is what’s truly intriguing. For a game that’s nearly thirty years old, it’s ridiculously exciting to see some new faces in the character select screen. It’s what most vets will be picking up this re-release for, but it’s a bit of a shame that these two new characters are, visually-speaking, little more than palette swaps of Ryu and Ken – two classic fighters who have seen no shortage of clones over the years.
Evil Ryu and Violent Ken (!) have different movesets than their nice, well-mannered counterparts, but I would have gone absolutely nuts to see some of Street Fighter’s newer characters retconned into this game. I would have loved to see a pixellated Juri Han kicking her way to victory, for instance, but no such luck.
I’m sure these new characters will mix up a meta that has been pretty static over the decades, but I’m not a good enough player to see their true potential. I stuck with long-time favourite Chun-Li and enjoyed the classic modes on offer here. There’s also a new, highly talked about first person mode called ‘Way of the Hado’ and it strangely makes sense on a Nintendo system. It amounts to a motion-controlled exercise in silliness as you hadouken and shoryuken your way through mobs of bad guys leading to a very tough fight against a M. Bison with an affinity for warping. It’s ultimately a throwaway mode that you’ll have a laugh with and quickly forget about thanks to its inaccurate controls, but it’s a neat addition anyway.
Whilst Way of the Hado will be quickly forgotten, USF2’s other unique selling point is a huge reason to pick this version up over any other (or double, triple or quadruple dip, depending on how long you’ve been buying Street Fighter II). As a brilliant local fighter – one that’s simple enough for anyone to pick up and have a good time with – USF2 benefits greatly from the Switch’s portable nature, allowing you to cart the system anywhere, split the joycons and get a game on with friends on the go.
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