It wasn't too long ago that Capcom brought the two titan fighters Street Fighter and Tekken together on the PlayStation 3 for smashing fun, now it is the PlayStation Vita's turn. Taking everything from the PS3 version across, it is nothing short of amazing what has been accomplished on the handheld, visually and mechanically. Packing in just about everything a fighting fan can dream of and more.
There is a great feeling you get while dashing about, dishing out blow for blow on your foe while you hold your PS Vita in your hand. Visually, this game has it all. The characters have the classic lick of paint that was around in the previous Street Fighter entry, Capcom has done a fantastic job of bringing the Tekken characters in to fit the Street Fighter vibe. The backgrounds were something that really caught me by surprise, apart from the distraction they can cause, they are excellent at providing varied arenas to compete in. They also include some fun action going on, like dinos beating each other up, and other characters floating outside in space and then being chased by 80s-like-spaceships. This all adds to a great experience when you are thrashing around trying to link combos together to defeat your opponents.
But let's not forget the characters themselves. Capcom has done a superb job in bringing the entire collection of fighters over to the Vita and making them move just as solidly and smoothly as its big counter-part. Gamers are spoiled for choice on who they can choose from in the huge array of over 50 fighters, split between the two universes, including the exclusive characters Cole MacGrath from Infamous, Mega Man and Sony mascots own Toro Inoue and his rival Kuro who cameo as Ryu and Kazuya.
Every fighter has excellent controlling on the system, Capcom has even gone as far as to add in touch controls, which were surprisingly great to use, though they do take a bit of getting use to. You can grab opponents from a right swipe to tapping in one of four areas to piece together your combos. Though if this isn't for you, the physical buttons are there and it handles like it should, fast-paced, adrenaline fueled fighter with solid controls. Pitching gamers against A.I. or other games in a two on two fashion is almost similar to the tag system used with Tekken Tag, but it just adds to the speed and forces you to think on your toes.
The story for Street Fighter X Tekken is perhaps its weakest point, feeling somewhat slung in there to appease those that look for one. It revolves around a strange dangerous cube like object crashing on Earth, located somewhere in the middle of Antarctica. The object, which has been named "Pandora's Box" by scientists, gives off powerful waves of energy when conflict happens near it. So Arcade mode involves taking your favorite characters on a session of figure bleeding fights in order to hopefully claim your prize at the end of the journey. Apart from minor intros from voice-overs with characters there isn't much else. It would have been nice to have something more meaningful to fight for rather than simple fight after fight. But thankfully you can take it online to compete with people from around the world for some awesome challenges. Hopefully you won't get your butt kicked.
If there is one thing that Street Fighter X Tekken does have however, is that it has plenty of content for you to smash your way through, from the arcade, to the story, versus allowing to set attributes of the battles and dive right in to kicking about the A.I. till your heart is content. Capcom seems to have ironed out some of the kinks in network gameplay, enabling you to take on players across the PlayStation Network in either one on one ranked matches, endless battles with winners carrying on to the next round, or even scramble battles, an interesting feature allowing for four players to fight at the same time in teams of two. There is also the inclusion of a replay channel, giving you the chance to watch high ranked players compete against each other or check out how you fair in your own replays and Capcom flings in AdHoc for good measure.
For those that like to test out combos and take on a challenge or two. there is the Training and Challenge modes included. Training simply allows for testing out characters without the constant bashing from the A.I. Challenge gives a host of trials and missions, giving you the ability to finely polish your skills or take on something that requires more than your average button mash.
There is even a customization included that takes full advantage of the front touch screen on the PS Vita, giving you the chance to spruce up the characters a bit from their colour, quick combo and the gem unit. The gem system is one thing that has been highlighted for Street Fighter X Tekken as the new thing that created a difference. It gives you the ability to provide you with some advantages during your endless conquests and every character has something different that they can have access to.
There was something that did jump out at me, and that was the awesome audio accompanying the whole game, from the amazing eye-catching intro with a rock soundtrack, to the upbeat game menu music. Street Fighter X Tekken knows how to fling some catchy music at you, even the sound effects of every punch and kick you thrash out makes every impact feel solid after hitting its target.
One thing is for sure, there is a ton of content to sink into. The exceptional wide range of characters for a fighter, solid mechanics, and visually immersive gamplay will do more than enough to appease gamers. The loading times between matches could use a tweak and the amount of options could possibly scare a few. But Street Fighter X Tekken on the PS Vita is a solid all round fighter that takes the complete package of the PlayStation 3 and gives you more on the go.
-The Final Word-
Street Fighter x Tekken for PS Vita is an all-around fighter that takes the complete package of the PlayStation 3 and gives you more on the go.