Street Fighter IV Review (PC)

by July 18th, 2009

Street Fighter II Super Hydro Fusion Turbo Remix With Rockets On

I have always had a love hate relationship with Fighting games. On the one side, fond memories of battling a friend for countless hours always brings a smile to my face, on the other, I can’t shake that feeling of simplicity, static gameplay and just general boredom of the genre.

Street Fighter IVStreet Fighter IV more than lives up to its name. Playing like an enhanced version of Street Fighter II, fans of the series will feel right at home here. With new content and nostalgic pangs to be felt throughout, the game is very enjoyable indeed. Additions like super and ultra combos add a little more to the gameplay, the focus system also brings a little more depth allowing more strategic options when approaching a fight.

Capcom have also struck a fine balance between new and old characters. Returning for the game are the standards, Ryu, Ken and Chun Li to name but a few, but the game has succeeded in introducing a selection of new characters, none of which feel out of place or poorly implemented, rather playing and looking like a characters created in the series golden years. Capcom’s approach to characters is also refreshing, able to poke fun at them rather than being all gloomy like those serious guys in Tekken (I have just realised they have boxing kangaroos in Tekken, oh well, miserable buggers).

The core fighting gameplay too has been refined, but ultimately isn’t too different from other games of the genre. Where Street Fighter IV does succeed however is in the simplicity of the game. Capcom have taken a step back, refining and improving on core aspects of the genre rather than implementing new and complicated systems like rival games have. The game seems to have been developed with an attitude of do the basics to perfection, and this really shows throughout playing. All of the old moves such as the now hallowed Hadouken feature so fans of the original series will be right at home, flexing evidence of a dozen years of missing out on life.

Many fans will be torn with the art direction Street Fighter has taken. Always an anime inspired game at heart, Street Fighter now looks a little more childish than maybe it’s predecessors looked at the time. With this being said however, Street Fighter IV is one of the more attractive games on the market at the moment, with a great vibrancy of colours and explosive animations, Street Fighter IV is definitely eye candy.

With new content and nostalgic pangs to be felt throughout, the game is very enjoyable indeed

Online play is definitely the best addition to the Street Fighter series of recent years and despite a few issues with performance, this is where the game shines the most. The multiplayer experience being one of the greatest I have played for recent years, gives the game longevity that with solo play, it wouldn’t have achieved. No longer do you need to spend countless hours in a room with increasingly sweaty friends, now you can sit alone, in the dark, muttering to yourself, becoming the media’s image of the common gamer.

Controls on this format was always going to be a problem. The keyboard does not naturally offer itself to this genre and can feel a little strange, I strongly suggest getting hold of a gamepad, the Xbox 360 style pad works well but the D-Pad is awful, perseverance is key to enjoying this title on PC.

My criticism of this game however is that the game plays too much like Street Fighter II. At times it feels as though you are playing one of the many ‘remixed’ versions of the latter rather than a fully fledged sequel, Capcom have added a few new bells and whistles but nothing solid in terms of progressing the series or the genre. This makes it a struggle to justify spending thirty pounds on a game that ultimately was released more than fifteen years ago.

Street Fighter IVThe overall steroid influenced look of the characters also sometimes ruins the image of the series. With every character with muscles looking like a gym going Incredible Hulk, it becomes a little tiresome, Capcom’s art direction appears to have been implemented by twelve year old boys. This however is just a minor complaint, as who would want to see two scrawny guys, go Mano-a-Mano. It just isn’t cool, right dudes?

My own personal gripes with the genre of Fighting games influence my views when it comes to this game. Remaining static for years, it really is time for the genre to evolve, how will it do that? This is something that has stumped developers since the release of Street Fighter II.

Overall, Street Fighter IV is a great game that updates the series, with great characters and some new content, the game more than lives up to its reputation. It some what misses out on the being the classic that Street Fighter II was, as it is at heart the same game, just with a few shiny new clothes on and a rather stylish hat.

The Good: # Great looking visuals; # Nostalgia and new content finely balance; # Multiplayer is ‘the bomb’
The Bad: * Essentially Street Fighter II; * Doesn’t progress the genre in any way; * Characters are imagined by twelve year boys

Street Fighter IV Street Fighter IV Street Fighter IV 

Silver Y AwardSilver Y Award
4 4 / 5
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adam tingle

My name is Adam, I am 18 and I am somewhat of a nerd. Check out more at

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About adam tingle

My name is Adam, I am 18 and I am somewhat of a nerd. Check out more at