Stream Status




Wow, so many sticks coming out in the coming months! There is a Street Fighter IV set being released in Japan by HORI that are now up for pre-order on Play-Asia. They come out February 12th, same day that Street Fighter IV drops in Japan.

What is strange is that the 360 version is essentially a Fighting Stick EX 2 while the PS3 version is a HORI Real Arcade Pro. What that means really is that the 360 stick has a stock HORI stick and buttons and the PS3 version has a Sanwa stick and Hori buttons. So the joystick is much better in the PS3 version and over all the build quality of the HRAPs are much better than the Fighting Stick EX2. I suppose it is because there are less 360 owners in Japan but I am still surprised they do not give people an option for both systems.

Anyway, both sticks to my knowledge are good candidates for modding and they both have Street Fighter IV art on the tops so if that is your thing you should check them out!

Street Fighter IV Fighting Stick for Xbox 360

Street Fighter IV Fighting Stick for Playstation 3



Consistency in Game play (Part One)

Anyone who has been playing for years and years, attending many tournaments, gatherings and events at the arcade can safely say they have had good days and bad days. Over the years I've talked with a lot of different players about their experiences with fighting games and it seems like one of the hardest things to achieve is that certain level of consistency.

With that being said, I've also seen a lot of people come and go in the scene and this is probably somewhat related to the ability to play consistently or lack there of. There is even a  thread on SRK right now labeled "I give up..!" where people are detailing their frustrations with trying to play competitively.  Those of us who stick around have a certain "bounce back" factor that allows us to keep playing all these years regardless of how well we are doing.

Lately I've been looking at my own game, studying videos of myself and just taking mental notes in general on why some days I play well and others I lose to things I shouldn't lose to. I've narrowed it down to a handful of factors although I am sure there a lot more. One of the main things is state of mind, but the mind is a tricky thing that can be hard to predict so all I have to say on that is "expect nothing, be ready for anything."

I'm sure there are a ton of articles and threads detailing similar aspects of playing fighting games but I thought I would give my own take on things. I labeled this as "Part One" in that I may extend this sometime down the line, but these are my initial thoughts.

Click to read more ...



A couple new HORI sticks are right around the corner, the Hori Real Arcade Pro 3  (PS3) and the Hori Real Arcade Pro EX (360). Both sticks are fitted with a Sanwa stick but come with stock HORI buttons, so they are not full Sanwa but the buttons can easily be replaced. The actual joystick is what usually has the most impact on gameplay in my opinion anyway.

The two sticks are essentially the same but the 360 stick costs about 30 bucks more than the PS3 one. I think it could be because of Microsoft's licensing fee's or maybe the included headset jack but it's anyone's guess really.

The two sticks are available for pre-order on Amazon and I'm not sure you will be able to pick one up at your local GameStop or similar retailers. The PS3 stick comes out December 29th and the Xbox360 one drops early February!




Do you live in Japan and want a chance to win a Tatsunoko VS Capcom T-shirt and calendar? GAMEWATCH is in the holiday spirit it seems and is running a contest right now on their site where you can win both. They picture the EXAR joystick as well but I don't think that is part of the contest. What a tease! As mentioned, you have to live in Japan to be eligible so the rest of us who live anywhere else in the world are out of luck!



I found this on GAMEWATCH a little earlier today. SNK-PLAYMORE posted on their site that there is going to be a KOFXII location test in Osaka on the 20th and 21st of this month. The Premiere Event that went down a week or two ago apparently had the "final version" there so I doubt we will see any new characters but we can always hope. Many people feel that some staple SNK characters are missing but really we may have to wait until the next installment to see more additions to the roster.




When I first approached Street Fighter 4 some months ago, I passed right over Chun-Li thinking "there is no way she is as good in Street Fighter IV as she is in Street Fighter 3: Third Strike, she is way past her prime!" That may be true but that does not mean you can't put the hurt on your opponents with her in this game.

Here in Bay Area we've had a couple Chun-Li players pop up here and there demonstrating how frustrating it can be to play against her and I thought to myself "why not share this knowledge with the rest of the world?" So we're back with another installment of top level "IV" strategy with the only person who can explain Street Fighter in a way that everyone can understand, Lil' Shoto.


Is Lil' Shoto too fresh for you? If that's the case be sure to check out our super white, super tight Street Fighter IV Move List and Strategy section for more ways to beat down with Chun-Li!



I've been meaning to post this up for a while since so many fresh videos hit, especially fighting game videos. If you don't know already, NicoNico is essentially a Japanese YouTube site. The thing is you have set up an account to watch the videos and if you don't know Japanese then you're pretty much out of luck! Well, there are instructions written up by NeoGAF member sp0rks on how to set up an account if you were so inclined.

Personally, I'd rather not have to log in each time I want to watch a quick Street Fighter IV movie so instead I use a redirector provided by old school fighting game news site, MadMan's Cafe. They also provide links to top videos and latest additions to NicoNico!




Order Today from Play-Asia!After what feels like hundreds of blog posts, watching many many YouTube gameplay videos, and seeing the earliest version of the game at EVO2K8 I almost can't believe the game comes out tomorrow in Japan! Well, according to some people it's already out at certain locations in Japan but as far as I know the "official" release date is tomorrow. Anyway, for those of us who cant just walk into a store and pick this up, I checked and it looks like they are shipping the game as of today. Keep in mind you will need a Japanese Wii to play this or have some other means of playing import games on your Nintendo Wii.

Also, if you're in need of a joystick for the game EXAR has released a joystick also available through play-asia.

As I mentioned earlier it looks like some people have already got their hands on the game so some new videos have surfaced over the past day or two. Below is the intro movie for the game, so don't watch it if you want to save the surprise for when you get your own copy of the game!



Just last week details emerged on the European Street Fighter IV CE and today we received news about the North American release. Not too much has changed except that Ryu figure will be packaged with the PS3 version and C.Viper in the 360 version! In the European version, you get both figures in one package regardless of which one you buy unless something has changed.

One thing, I was curious about the DLC that was mentioned in the European release and it appears to be 5 downloadable costumes. Whether they are the same as the arcade costumes has yet to be seen!

Personally, I am going to save my money and pick up the Tournament Edition stick from MadCatz for 360 and I might pick up the Prima strategy guide if it turns out to have some things I don't already know about as well. The SFIV CE in my opinion seems like a lot of fluff and as I mentioned before it would be worth it if it was pre-packaged with a stick and strategy guide.

Anyway, here are the full details and link to the games and joysticks!

Content for PS3 Version:

* A Blu-Ray Bonus Disc with HD 65-minute full-length Anime movie and promotional trailers.
* CD Soundtrack
* Collectible Figurine: Ryu
* Udon/Prima Hint book
* Downloadable Content: 5 Alternate Costumes.

Content for Xbox 360:

* A Bonus Game Disc with HD 65-minute full-length Anime movie and promotional trailers.
* CD Soundtrack
* Collectible Figurine: C. Viper
* Udon/Prima Hint book
* Downloadable Content: 5 Alternate Costumes.




With the game coming out this week (in Japan of course!), it looks like this is the final trailer to be released by CAPCOM for Tatsunoko vs. Capcom. Some pretty ill Baroque Combos in this one so check it out!

The game comes out December 11th, so if you haven't already, you can pre-order both the game and the new joystick by Exar from



The SDTEKKEN crew posted up a bunch of new Tekken news over the past week. One major piece of information is it looks like NAMCO is considering console exclusive characters for the release of Tekken 6: BR. It's really anyone's guess who it could be but I can't be the only one who hopes it's not more Star Wars characters!

NAMCO always creates the best trailers for their Tekken games and this one is no exception. MarkMan posted up the new trailer on his Youtube channel earlier so check it out below:



Street Fighter IV Ultimate Blanka Guide feat. Lil' Shoto

We've been playing a lot of Street Fighter IV up here in NorCal and we have some pretty respected Blanka players that frequent the arcade. We know that not everyone has access to the game right now, so we've decided to put together another guide on iPlayWinner that will give you the ultimate insight on how to control this beast so you'll be ready when the game drops!

Blanka can be real tricky in the right hands but there are a couple things you should know when playing against him as well. Whether you are trying to pick up Blanka, or you have a tough time playing in battles, don't worry because Lil' Shoto will give you everything you need to know in this audio clip!

Check it out!


Although not as thorough as Lil' Shoto's audio guide, be sure to check out our Street Fighter IV Move List and Strategy section for more Blanka tips!



Apparently this is just for Europe and Australia right now, so who knows if we will get the same thing here in North America. It packaged with two figurines, the anime on DVD and mini-strategy guide. Although this is probably a safer bet for the masses, I personally  think a stronger LE would be a MadCatz stick, the game itself of course and full Prima strategy guide.




Japanese gaming publication Famitsu reviewed Tatsunoko vs Capcom giving it 8's across the board. This is seemingly a good score but has translated the article saying that most of the reviewers said the game felt "flat". They mention that a lot of the matches would always result in unending exchanges of Barouqe Combos (extended custom combos that drain your recoverable lifebar) between two "reasonably skilled players". 

Overall in my opinion the review of the game is pretty meaningless. Until we have a bunch of top players go at it for a while we wont really know the depth of this game. At the end of the day I think most people agree the game looks fun and are happy to have another VS title hit the scene.

The game comes out in Japan December 11th, so if you haven't already, you can pre-order both the game and the new joystick by Exar from

Famitsu also released a couple new game play videos which you can check out below:



A poster on Gametrailers of all places has uploaded some scans and information from the newest issue of GAMEPRO. Thanks to Ultima on SRK for digging this up.

A couple details I thought were interesting:

-Home Console will receive Several Extra characters.

Not sure if this is in addition to what we have already seen or just compared to the current arcade roster. There are scans of the roster included in the game and Rose is nowhere to be seen so maybe they are still working on the final cast for the game.

-Ono hints were going to engineer the home version of the game so you can actually play in arcade mode and you can turn on a function that would allow matchmaking in the background, so you could just have someone jumps in the game exactly as they would at the Arcade. The function can be configure to ranked or player matches or quick warm-up rounds.

I think this is a pretty cool feature even though I rarely play arcade mode with fighting games. It would be nice if you could enable this while you are in training mode so you can hop into a match while practicing combos during the downtime.



In-Depth Street Fighter IV Sagat Strategy feat. Lil' Shoto

So anyone who has played Street Fighter IV will tell you Sagat is a very deep and technical character with a steep learning curve in this game. With so many people coming up to me and asking "Why is it so hard for me to win with Sagat in Street Fighter IV?" I decided something must be done. I asked fellow Street Fighter IV training partner Lil' Shoto to break down Sagat's game piece by piece for anyone who is looking to pick him up.

Hope this makes your life at the arcade much easier!

Take a listen:

If "reading" is more your thing then be sure to check out our Street Fighter IV Move List and Strategy section.


Arcadia Magazine: Umehara Daigo Kumite

Earlier last week I posted up the Street Fighter IV arcade rankings which placed Daigo as the #1 player in Japan. Well, it looks like in the newest issue of Arcadia Magaine there is a DVD that has put Daigo to the test in an all out fight to the death (okay maybe that's a little overly dramatic) with some of the other top ranked Street Fighter IV players in Japan. Over all he dominated, but Sagat player Mago had his number this time around. Mago is ranked right under Ojisan as the 3rd best player in Japan and if you're wondering why check out this video from a couple months ago.

Here are the results, and once again thanks to Reno for posting this up on SRK:

Umehara vs Inoue: 2 - 1
Umehara vs. Itabashi Zangief: 3 - 0
Umehara vs. Fuudo: 3 - 0
Umehara vs. Joe: 2 - 1
Umehara vs. Nemo: 3 - 0
Umehara vs. Mago: 1 - 3

I'm going to try to make it out to Japantown here in San Francisco to see if I can find the newest issue that contains this DVD. It's currently all sold out on but keep checking back for a restock!



Wow, I know this was only back in August but it sure does bring back some memories. This is the EVO2K8 trailer that dropped on today highlighting some of the best moments from this years event. Being there for John Choi's victory in both Super Turbo and CVS2 was something I'll never forget. So much happened at EVO this year and it really marked the end of an era for games like Street Fighter III and CVS2. Personally it represented a new beginning as I realized I'll probably be doing this fighting game thing for years to come.

EVO2K9 will be madness with all the new games and EVO2K10 will be unlike any other Evo since everyone will be on another level by then. Until then, peep the video:



I've been too busy playing Street Fighter IV over the weekend to do a proper update here, but in my absence looks like the KOFXII Premier Event went down over the weekend with out a hitch. Here are a couple links with all the updates: posted some new images showing Duo Lon who has been added to the roster earlier this week. posted a bunch of new videos and images form the event along with a rundown of the Critical Counter system that is found in the game.

Video showcasing the Critical Counter system thanks to Cyberfanatix YouTube Channel. Check their channel for more match videos from the event.

After reading up on the system, if I understand it correctly you enter a Critical Coutner state when intercepting special moves from mid to close range with a strong or medium (normal?) attack. This allows you to chain together "whatever moves you choose" (custom combos?) or if you time it right perform a Desperation Move (super).




Thanks to Reno for these current rankings of the top 10 arcade games in Japan. While US players complain about the gameplay system of Tekken 6 (in NorCal anyway) the game shows no signs of slowing down in Japan. I have no doubt when Bloodline Rebellion is released it will be one of the best selling fighting games of all time.

In regards to the other games, I'm having a hard time recalling the last ranking but I think SFIV (my current favorite) and VF5: R swapped places this time. Also, I think BalzBlue just came out so we will have to wait another month or two to see how well the game is received over there.

Here are the rankings:

1. Tekken 6 - 308.2pts. (-)
2. Mobile Suit Gundam: Gundam vs. Gundam - 264.9pts. (-)
3. MELTY BLOOD Actress Again - 224.3 pts. (NEW)
4. Street Fighter IV - 204.6 pts. (-)
5. Virtua Fighter 5R - 183.1 pts.(-1)
6. Guilty Gear XX Accent Core - 164.7 pts. (-)
7. Arcana Heart 2 - 124.1 pts. (-1)
8. Fate/Unlimited Codes - 110.7 pts. (-)
9. Mobile Suit Gundam: Federation vs. ZAFT II - 84.6 pts. (+1)
10. Dondonpachi Daifukkatsu - 81.3pts (+1)