It appears someone enjoyed Lil' Shoto's Chun-Li guide so much they uplaoded it to YouTube and of course it's getting a ton of positive feedback. With over 6k views at this point maybe I can convince Lil' Shoto to make another slapper for everyone to enjoy.
Tekken 6 has reigned supreme in Japan for months on end, but this month is a bit of surprise: Arc System Works' BlazBlue has taken the #1 spot. This should answer peoples questions on whether or not BlazBlue would ever be considered a "competitive game".
Tekken fans shouldn't be too upset though, both the vanilla version and Bloodline Rebellion are still in the top ten. The two rankings on my personal favorites, VF5: R and SFIV haven't changed much from previous months.
Thanks to MarkMan from SDTEKKEN for the updates. You can purchase a copy of the March issue from Play-Asia.com.
2. Tekken 6: Bloodline Rebellion
3. Mobile Suit Gundam: Gundam vs. Gundam
4. Virtua Fighter 5R
5. Street Fighter IV
6. Melty Blood Actress Again
7. Sugoi! Arcana Heart 2
8. Tekken 6
9. Tatsunoko vs. Capcom (NEW)
10. Guilty Gear XX Accent Core
Oichi from NeoGAF posted some photos and information about Japanese arcade games receiving a price increase at certain arcades. He mentions most games are going from 100 yen to 120 yen per play, or about a buck-fifty in US dollars. Although bad news for those who play in Japan, this still doesn't make me feel any better about paying 75 cents to play Street Fighter IV here in San Francisco!
Evo2k.com updated their site with the full game list and location for the largest tournament in North America. Of course Street Fighter IV makes an appearance, but a couple surprises: Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike is a 2v2 tournament and Tatsunoko vs Capcom is an invitational exhibition tournament only! Beyond that, Marvel is still in the mix and Guilty Gear returns this year.
I had personally been pushing for a 3rd Strike team format since last year to make the game fresh again at tournaments, so I am very happy they are setting up a 2v2 format. Although I'm sure there will be a good mix of top tier characters, having a 2v2 format will surely make things much more interesting this year. On that note, anyone need a Makoto for their team?
Gamestop updated their site with the official rules and prizes for the Street Fighter IV tournament they are hosting where you have a chance to win a Street Fighter IV arcade unit (I thought this was only for the pre-orders) and be automatically entered into EVO2K9. Not bad right? Well, sure, except for one small detail: you are forced to use a Xbox 360 pad to play.
Not being able to use your own equipment in a tournament like this should make the results interesting. Either way, this is worth checking out considering what is on the line.
One other detail mentioned in the rules, EVO2K9 will be held in Las Vegas, NV on July 17th-19th.
Most of us will have to wait till later this year to play this on console, but arcade operators in California and Tennessee have taken the initiative and upgraded their Tekken 6 units to Bloodline Rebellion just a month after the game has come out in Japan.
1211 N Grand Ave
Walnut, CA 91789
Game Galaxy Arcade
5252 Hickory Hollow Parkway
Hickory Hollow Mall next to the Food Court
Antioch, TN 37013
Thanks to SDTEKKEN for the update on these locations. I'll be sure to post more if other arcades decide to go through with this upgrade (SF State Rack-N-Cue where you at!?).
Also, if you're curious about the install process, there is a video that shows what these arcade owners have to go through to perform the upgrade.
Gamewatch published an article just yesterday showcasing the different modes and options in the console release of Street Fighter IV. Most of the shots go over aspects of the console version that most of us are pretty familiar with at this point, but as far as I know they have the first screen shots of the online matchmaking portion of the game. Much like other games, green bars indicate the signal strength between you and your opponent, and it sounds like you will have the choice of playing Ranked Matches for Battle Points or just player matches where nothing goes on your record if you win or lose.
The game drops Feburary 12th in Japan.
Anoop at adriansang.com posted up a translation of what is going on in the screen shots. He mentions he isn't sure what the "private" option is in online match making, but I assume its so you can invite people to your lobby without random people entering on their own.
Nohoho posted Battle Poing ranking from August '08 until early January '09 a couple weeks back, and as you will see Daigo has been dominating ever since the game came out. So five to six months into the game, there are still a few Sagats ranking in the top slots, namely Mago and Ojisan boy but over all it's a good mix of characters.
The console release has been rumored to also use a Battle Point ranking system for online matches, although there is no way it will be as accurate as an actual arcade ranking system (no lag at the arcade for one). It will be interesting to see if the top North American names end up at the top of the list or if it will be a mix of somewhat familiar names with a bunch of new faces beating out more well known players.
Beyond that, one has to wonder if competitive players will opt to continue to play at their local arcade or if they will put just as much time into battling it out online. With so much information on the game floating around these days, that is really one of the last questions on peoples mind at this point: how seamless is the online play? If its just as good or better than HD Remix's then people will probably put a bit more faith in the online rankings, but we will have to wait and see.
Looks like a patch for the numerous bugs in HD Remix is in the works which is great news for those of us who still play the game frequently. I've read a bunch of threads since the game came out documenting the bugs, but honestly I figured they would sweep a patch under the rug thinking that no one would care once Street Fighter IV came out. Thankfully I've been proven oh-so wrong by JimmyRey, the games producer, who although wont go into details about the patch, say it's for sure coming.
AKSYS GAMES announced Guilty Gear Accent Core Plus is finally coming to North America for PS2, Wii and PSP today. According to the press release, this version of the game includes two more playable characters Kliff and Justice, along side some new single and multi-player modes. I'll post updates as they come.
Gamespot posted up all the alternate costumes you can download for the console version of Street Fighter IV. If you've been following the arcade version for sometime, most of the costumes are nothing new, but they do showcase Cammy, Gouken and Fei Long's alternates. Fei Long is of course a homage to Bruce Lee, Gouken's looks very similar to Gouki's and Cammy's is very similar to Jun and Juli's outfits from the Alpha series.
Keep in mind that all alternate outfits are only available through paid downloadable content.
Thanks to dfyb from NeoGAF for the screenshot!
This video showcases all the alternate outfits in Street Fighter IV.
So, over the weekend I received a tip that although Tatsunoko vs Capcom wont ever see the light of day in North America, there is a possibility of the Tatsunoko cast being replaced with a Marvel cast and distributed in the states as a new Marvel vs Capcom game using the TvC engine. I'm usually not one for rumors but I personally would not be surprised to see this.
Why you ask? Aside from a head honcho at Marvel saying something a long the lines that he would love to see a new Marvel vs Capcom game and it could be coming sooner than we think, one should note that Mortal Kombat vs. DC has already sold close to 2 million copies world wide. At this point CAPCOM would be insane not to release a new versus game considering the amount of hype around both the Street Fighter and Marvel franchises. If a MK vs game can pull in those kind of numbers, a new MvC game should easily surpass that world wide, maybe even in North America alone.
Again, this is only a rumor but knowing CAPCOM, how much they like to extend the life of their franchises and gameplay systems and the current state of the gaming market, even if they haven't considered this option at this point, they should.
So lets be honest here, VF5:R is getting stomped in Japanese arcades by Tekken 6 and other games. There are reports of the game receiving very little to no love at certain locations as well. All this doom and gloom before anyone else outside of Japan has even able to play the game!
Well, looks like there is some good news after all. LA_Akira on VirtuaFighter.com posted that SEGA is listening to everyone's request for VF5:R on console, so keep sending in those requests. He mentioned that there will apparently be a major conference for SEGA discussing the games to be developed over the next two years and heavy interest for VF5:R may play a part in having them seriously consider bringing it to console.
If you haven't already submitted your request, you can click this link and fill out the 3 fields. The first field is your e-mail address, second field is the topic and the third is your comments.
This was sent over to me a little earlier today from Colorado top player and tournament organizer, Half-ro. It appears Gamestop is running a promotion that when you pre-order Street Fighter IV, you have a chance to win an official Street Fighter IV cabinet. I don't know much else beyond that, but I am wondering how it will be set up in that the arcade units are meant to be linked to another unit within the same arcade. I doubt they would give away a single player arcade machine so really the main concern is this the original arcade version or an updated version with all the new characters?
Also, Gamestop related, looks like they are going to be throwing in-store tournaments a week or two after the game drops. Not many details are known at this point, the main one being: can we use an arcade stick or will we be forced to use a controller attached to a kiosk?
I'll post up more when I find out more details, but according to this email posted by "ohgee" on SRK you will also have a chance to win an arcade unit (not Street Fighter IV) by playing in the tournament.
Street Fighter 4 Tiered Tournament Program:Our tiered tournament program has been such a success that we are bringing it home to a title that was born for tournaments! Street Fighter 4 will be a perfect partner in our quest to bring the biggest tournaments to our players.
Approximately 160,000 customers will have a chance to compete in a nation-wide, ladder up tournament for a chance to win a Street Fighter Classic Arcade System!
2-21-09: Round 1 Tournaments in approximately 2500 Stores.
2-28-09: Round 2 Tournaments in approximately 270 stores.
3-14-09: Round 3 Tournaments in 16 stores.
Participating stores will be provided with tournament kits that will include all signage, brackets, rules and winner's certificates. In addition, all participating stores will receive prizing. This tournament will be supported with in-store signage, call-outs on our website, and targeted emails. Although reservations in stores may seem low at this moment in time, we expect the reservations to increase substantially prior to launch.
Just for clarification, you have to pre-order the game after the 26th of this month to be eligible. Rules from the site:
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. Sweepstakes begins at 12:01 a.m. Eastern Time ("ET") on 1/26/09 and ends at 11:59 p.m. ET on 2/17/09. Sweepstakes is open to legal residents of the 50 United States and the District of Columbia age 13 or older at time of entry. You are automatically entered in the Sweepstakes when you preorder Street Fighter IV at a GameStop location or from this website. To enter without preordering, complete this entry form and press the submit button. If you pre-ordered Street Fighter IV before 1/26/09 you will not be automatically entered in this Sweepstakes and you will have to enter by using this entry form. Void where prohibited. See Official Rules for details.
Thanks to PimpWilly from SRK for the heads up.
Not to say that other Street Fighter games aren't, but it's becoming pretty apparent these days that you can get away with playing pretty much anyone in SFIV, rack up some victories and even win tournaments if you know what you're doing. After hearing about Iyo's victory with Dhalsim over RF's Sagat at the Japanese Nationals Tournament, seeing Vega and El Fuerte do serious damage to "top tier" characters in SoCal and then to find out a Honda placed second at the same tournament I have to wonder if this trend will continue over the years.
Months and months ago I commented that a lot of tournament results were pretty varied with different characters all over the place, thinking that the game was just too new and over the course of time this would change. Well, the game has been out over 6 months now, and people are playing at a relatively advanced level already and not too much has changed. This is pretty refreshing after years and years of playing Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike and going to tournaments that were essentially nothing but Ken and Chun-Li.
Virtua Fighter 5 is one of my favorite games, and this is one of the main reasons I enjoy playing it so much. Not only is there a lot of depth in the game itself, but you end up playing against so many different characters, it really forces you to think about the game a little more than just a handful of match ups. You really have to be prepared to run into any character and know they can easily beat you if you don't understand what they are capable of.
Compare that to some other games, where the strong characters in the game are so much better than the low tier and average characters, you don't even really have to know the match up if you play a top tier character, you can simply just dominate with your game plan. This doesn't make the game bad or any less fun to play at it's core, but I know I am not alone when I say that having the opportunity to play against a ton of different characters with different strategies can only make a game more enjoyable in the long run.
Hopefully the console release of Street Fighter IV with all the additions to the roster does not screw with the balance the original arcade cast, but we will have to wait and see. 26 days to go!
California Regionals has come and gone over the weekend and I must say it was the most eye opening and enjoyable tournaments I've ever been to. Held at Denjin Arcade in Simi Valley CA, players from not only California but literally all over the world (Korea, Hawaii, Oregon, Arizona) showed up to flex their skills in virtually every 2D game that is still played to this day.
Over 4 months of Street Fighter IV training, a chance to play some of the best players in the country and take home the trophy in the Battle for California 5v5. There was a lot going through my mind as I made my trek out to Oakland Airport on BART. So many variables in an event like this, so many possible outcomes and really that is probably what keeps me coming back to tournaments like this year after year. Here is the 3 day break down of the event from my perspective.
Ok, so there has been alot of talk around the web with how the PS3 load times in between matches are longer than on the 360 version of the game. The following video was the cause of all the hub bub.
For four amazing Street Fighter-filled hours, Capcom's event staff threw an underground party at a location open only to those who RSVPed by special invite. The room was filled with a myriad of PS3s with matching HD TVs, each playing the latest version of Street Fighter IV, complete with its new edition of characters. There were even a few stations with Street Fighter HD Remix. The very fabulous Viewlix cabinets also made an appearance, while each PS3 was outfitted with all the new controllers from MadCatz. That's right, that includes the new MadCatz Standard and Tournament Edition Fight Sticks, as well as the Fight Pads and various HRAPs. They even had pizza and a (pretty good) live DJ.
The official Street Fighter IV FightStick Tournament Edition is back up for pre-order on Amazon.com. They have been sold out/unavailable on Amazon for a couple weeks now, so if you haven't already pre-ordered one, now is the time to do it!
Click the product links below for the pre-order page for both the stick and the game itself.
This is the footage from last nights special where Richard Li, MAGUS1234, A_Rival and myself were able to sit down and take a closer look at the console version of SFIV. It was a lot of fun and there is a lot of questions answered in this session so check it out!