There’s only one thing I love more than seeing new and interesting games being released… And that’s old games being preserved so that people who did not have access to those games can play them eventually. I am completely fine and most of the time super stoked when a new port or HD remaster gets announced because that means that not only I get to play some amazing games that I’ve loved in the past but other people who haven’t get to as well.
So that’s why I think that Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection is one of the best collections I’ve seen up till now.
The game boasts 12 games ranging from the original Street Fighter – which few even know exists I think – all the way to one of the best fighting games of all time Street Fighter Third Strike. All of these games are also arcade perfect ports so they are essentially the best ways to play them for the most part. Seeing such a large number of games also shows us how far the series has come and how many improvements it’s made.
I don’t really think I have to review each game because these games are literally older than me. Everyone has come in contact with Street Fighter in some way, shape, or form and countless people know how good these games are. I want to talk about what other things this collection adds to make the experience better.
So one of the main things I want to mention is how quick and responsive the UI is; it’s fast and responsive and the games take literally no time to load up – Another great thing is that you can quit in the middle of a game no problem by just pressing the start button. So let’s say you want to see the changes a character like Sean in the Street Fighter III series went throughout each entry in that ‘generation’ of Street Fighter – You can pause at literally any time, quit and choose another game. The game also offers save states for each game so if you want to come back to an arcade mode run at another time you can do so which is a really neat feature. When choosing a game, you get an option for more information; this is one of my favorite features as it tells you about the history of the game, what new things were added and all the secret tips and tricks like how to play Yang on Second Impact or how to play Evil Ryu in Alpha 2.
The game offers a bunch of resolutions the original being kinda small for my tastes but with some really nice borders with awesome art on the sides – What I prefer to do is to set it on wide. That way there’s nothing but the game on the screen. I thought doing so would maybe make the games look a little worse but they really didn’t change at all and ended up being way more enjoyable that way. Speaking of changing the way the games look this collection also offers two filters to put on your games. One for TV scan lines and the other for a more blurry arcade look to them. Or you can turn them off to appreciate the clear pixel art. I prefer to keep them on scan lines as it looks way nicer and lets the pixel art blend in together rather than looking a bit jagged without.
One thing that is a bit annoying is that fact that if you decide to play local or online multiplayer is that once a match it over, the UI takes over and asks for a rematch or what have you. This, unfortunately, doesn’t allow you to look at the awesome win screens from all the games. A way you can kind of get past that offline at least is that instead of choosing versus, you choose arcade and then the second player just presses the start button to join. Just like the arcades!
The game also offers online matchmaking in some of the games! You can play two versions of SFII, Alpha 3, and Third Strike online. This is a really decent roster of games but I can’t help but notice that Alpha 2 isn’t playable online, which is a shame because that game has a huge following and it would have been amazing seeing people play that online. Playing online varies though as some people have reported to have horrible stuttering and chugging while some experience minor issues. Still there needs to be a fix soon as there have been plenty of complaints already on the online. It’s certainly something that can be fixed in a patch. Speaking of patches, the day one patch added a heavily requested training mode for the four games that you can play online, which is really neat for someone who isn’t good at Street Fighter but wants to improve his Alpha 3 and Third Strike game a lot more.
Finally the game offers a museum of history, art, and music. This has got to be one of my favorite things about this collection because I am a ginormous fan of Street Fighter’s artwork, music and character designs. Seeing old design documents all the way back from the original Street Fighter is such a treat… Especially when you get to see the origins of Zubaz.
One little thing I’d like to note is that when researching this game I found that each port are the first version USA arcade versions. Now there is really no problem with that except for the fact that Super Street Fighter II Turbo’s original arcade port is notoriously difficult as the the bots read your inputs way harder than in other games… So god luck trying to beat arcade mode on that.
So overall I’d say the this collection did an amazing job at bringing arcade perfect ports to the latest console generation as well as preserving some amazing history through the design docs, art work etc. The main issue being the online is a little wonky right now can hopefully be fixed. If that happens we have a really special collection, which I’ll be playing for hours on end regardless.
I give this collection an 8/10. Now go home and be a family man!