Things you should see.

Posts tagged “capcom

DLC it is for SSF4AE

Was there any doubt? I posted a while back that leaked shots of achievements for a supposed Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition on the 360 suggested the update was coming. The only questions at that time were 1) will it be a disc or DLC update and 2) were any features outside of 4 new characters coming? Captivate has brought about answers to both those questions.

The trailer below leaked out ahead of Captivate’s media embargo until the 12th. Basically, yes, we are getting Oni, Evil Ryu, Yun and Yang and yes there will be new features in terms of online and replays.

What we’re not getting is any further addition to the roster (Alex and Urien fans, like myself, are crying their eyes out now) and there are strangely enough no new stages. To top off the oddity, SSF4AE players will be able to match up against regular SSF4 players so no idea how they’ll manage the rebalancing issues there. 2 versions of the game coexisting perhaps?

My gut feeling is just that this is too little too late. Simply because, like with the original release of Super Street Fighter IV, the community has been aware of these additions for way, way too long. Even now we still don’t know when this will actually hit the XBLA or PSN. I’d written about Capcom’s PR strategy on this topic before. I didn’t agree with the approach then and I don’t now. This had obviously been in the works since at least November. Stringing us along all this time comes off seeming callous at best, downright malicious at worst.

It’s a shame since a release which would have wildly excited me not too long ago has instead left me a tad too indifferent for my liking.

Anyway, check out the SSF4AE DLC Trailer at Metacafe. Most other media outlets seem to have pulled it already, probably at the Capcops’ behest.


Ace Attorney Investigations Impressions

Feeling like I have to get my thoughts on Ace Attorney Investigations out before I settle down with Marvel vs Capcom 3 tonight, I know how it must look. I’m a year behind the curve with this one but as much as I love Miles Edgeworth, the proposition of playing a prosecutor who doesn’t enter the courtroom wasn’t immediately appealing. They may as well have subtitled it Dick Gumshoe instead because that’s all Miles really is here- a detective. And that is not the character at all. Certainly not what I signed up for with a game bearing his name.

To be fair, I really love the Ace Attorney series, and if anything, Investigations has served to reinforce that. I had worried that this pseudo-spinoff would lose some of its validity given that core stars of the main series are largely absent and the narrative exists mostly in a bubble. At the same time I was excited that we would finally occupy the opposite bench and take the role of a predatory prosecutor for a change and go on the offensive. No more putting up with inane witness shenanigans!

Turns out I was wrong on both counts. First off, the story is exceptional. As a standalone entry the writing and characterisation – not to mention the clever intertextuality – are every bit as strong as in any of Phoenix’s outings. Actually taken aback by the twists the story takes and how everything comes together in the final case, I got more out of this one than I thought I would. That said, I still miss my old friends and have been hanging out to see what happened in the aftermath of Trials and Tribulations and with Investigations, I’m left wanting yet again. How many years will it take to shed light on those mysterious in-between years? 5? 6? The bigger problem is Edgeworth himself though.

Miles Edgeworth was introduced in the original Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney as the ‘demon prosecutor’. He was ruthless, unconscionable and forged evidence just to get a guilty verdict. The version of Miles on display in AAI is the palest shadow of this; he’s weak, obsessed with truth and hardly as sharp of charismatic as I remember him. In fact he’s a callous bastardisation of Phoenix Wright who was, at one point, his polar opposite.

Despite the game’s new features and halfway-decent core narrative I can’t forgive it’s blatant trespasses against Ace Attorney lore or cavalier disregard for the many, many opportunities it misses in making what could have been a ‘Perfect Prosecutor’ game. The end result is a malaise of confusion and a profound longing for a true Gyakuten Saiban 5 – what ever it ends up being called in English.

 

Gratitude to rogueymu for the great pic.


Warzard the Fallen

This is my very brief retrospective on Warzard, perhaps the most under-appreciated 2D fighter of all time. A few years back Capcom’s legendary CPS-3 arcade system was finally cracked and opened to emulation by everyone with a 2Ghz Pentium or better. Unlike NAOMI, Atomiswave or some of the other emulation holy grails, the Capcom Play System 3, despite its popularity, only had six games. Three of these were versions of Street Fighter III and two of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure. All of them were ported to the Sega Dreamcast in one form or another but were still pretty rare, due both to small print runs and also the relatively short shelf life of that console. The last CPS3 title, Warzard, or Red Earth as it was known (or unknown) in the West is nevertheless the rarest of them all. It was never ported to anything and, given the suicidal nature of CPS3 boards, is one title you’re unlikely to legitimately find in a playable state anywhere. Pity that, since Warzard was also one of the most unique titles Capcom ever made.

First off the game only has 4 playable characters and this alone was enough to cross it off tournament calendars and nix any longevity it might have otherwise enjoyed. The campaign plays like an RPG with exp, levelling up and learning new moves and so clearly there was a single-player focus in development. Although who exactly Capcom thought it was targeting with a one man progression-based 2d fighter – an extremely crowded category (and by this point mostly a 3d genre anyway) – I have no clue. Although I’ve always liked the idea of a game built solely out of over-the-top boss fights and so I’m happy enough with the design. Thing is, it would have been infinitely better suited to consoles and yet ironically was the one CPS3 game to get shafted with ports. Shame that half the campaign map is unvisited- clearly there was some intent to revisit Warzard with Super / Turbo style upgrades with the obvious proviso that it did well at the arcades. And it didn’t.

Technically, Warzard was to Street Fighter III what Darkstalkers was to Street Fighter Alpha. It was Capcom’s first experiment with the CPS3 and there’s no mistaking that. I suppose that’s why they were willing to let it die out so readily. The zooming in and out that was relatively smooth in SFIII is blocky in Warzard and there are texture artifacts all over the place. Framerates are inconsistent and while animation is generally pretty decent I haven’t seen slowdown this bad since Street Fighter II or half of the original NeoGeo library. Then again the game boasts the largest sprites in any Capcom game and I suppose moving them around was a taxing affair for hardware in the late 90’s. It’s pretty, and there’s definitely some retro charm in seeing 2d graphics chug.

Since this didn’t turn out to be much of a retrospective, I’ll considerately pass you on to Hardcore Gaming 101’s great rundown on the title, its mechanics and a bit more of the background info than I care to recite right now.

In the end it’s with a heavy heart that I have to commit Warzard to the anals of things with potential that went unnoticed due to poor timing, marketing or something else utterly inane in hindsight. Bah. Let’s just watch this full playthrough of Leo’s story mode that I’ve prepared below and be done with it. It’s almost time for Marvel Vs Capcom 3 anyway which essentially invalidates (or justifies, depending how you’re swinging) everything I’ve complained about here. Oh well.


Evil Ryu & Oni: Capcom’s PR Fail

Anyone who gives half a damn about Street Fighter will probably have heard of the revelations this last week. Evil Ryu and Oni were confirmed in the arcade version of Super Street Fighter IV after a code got out that enabled them for play. The news made the rounds and even found itself on the front page of Destructoid. Then Capcom stepped in.

The Capcoms had Youtube accounts – all of them – laden with copyright strikes. Those strikes are permanent and in cases where multiple videos were posted, each was counted as a separate infringment. According to Youtube’s 3-strikes policy, many accounts with months and months of legit videos were taken down with little chance of appeal. Then, adding insult to this grievous community blow, Capcom started requesting that arcades involved disabled use of these two characters.

You can see why they might be pissed off about this. These two characters are not really that fresh – although I maintain Oni may as well be a new character – but they do resonate with fans. When, not if, the long rumoured console DLC for SSF4: Arcade Edition comes along, two overpowered semi-bosses will be a big draw with marketing. And I’m pretty sure marketing was the department most upset.

However the fact remains that everyone knows about this. Hell, everyone knew when those achievements shots leaked out months ago and had their suspicions solidified by an official trailer a few weeks after that. Capcom’s attempts to silence the news, entitled as they are to do so, are misguided. You can’t put a lid on this now and essentially all the strong-arm tactics are doing is dirtying the brand. Capcom itself is coming off as a bit of a jerk and the reaction to these two characters hasn’t even been universally positive. They’d be better off scrapping their roadmap now and just releasing the DLC. As much as I’d like to think so, I don’t think they have anything left up their sleeve after E.Ryu and Oni. Bring on MvC3.


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