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Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix: They Call Me Hadouken..

Company: Capcom

...because I'm Down Right Fierce.

Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix (catches breath) is the long-awaited update to the classic Street Fighter II. Actually more than just a pretty facelift, this version of the game can be considered its own iteration because of numerous balance and gameplay tweaks.

In the HD Remix beta, players can choose between Ken and Ryu to duke it out through online matches. There are many modes to accommodate each type of player; Ranked Matches for the serious players that want their wins to count, Player Matches for practice sessions and experimentation where losses aren't added to the tally, and finally Tournament Play where up to eight fighters can compete in a tournament to see who the best of the bunch is.

Because of the convoluted naming conventions that Street Fighter II has gone through in the past, this version adapts well with enough new content and tweaks to not make it feel like a yearly sports title update. There are some serious additions to this version of the game. The first thing that anyone will notice when they play this game are the redrawn sprites. Both Ken and Ryu look excellent in their HD facelift and the backgrounds and effects receive the same benefit for an amazing experience.

Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix is being produced by a man that has competed in tournaments for years and has the best intentions for the franchise. The handful of changes that players will notice in the beta already prove that this might be the best 2-D Street Fighter ever. For the fighting game aficionados, all of the move sets have had their windows opened up by a few frames to make it easier to pull off some of the more complicated moves. Ryu gets a new move added to his repertoire in the form of a fake fireball. That may not seem like much to newcomers, but I can assure you that this is the only addition that Ryu needs.

Ken gets a few upgrades this time around. He can now use his spin kick in mid-air and it seems like it travels a bit farther which is excellent for cornering your opponent. Throughout the beta, I did notice that Ken's throws were a little more powerful than I remember and his Super Dragon Punch has a bug that can cause massive damage. Not that either of these throw off the balance of the game, but it doesn't take long for some players to start exploiting cheap tactics.

The beta for Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix is only a multiplayer beta, which means you need a buddy in your house or you have to play online. Finding matches does not take long and connecting is almost instant. The only caveat is that the player lobbies can get a little boring because they hold six people and most of the time, the winner stays in the match to fight the next person. You are allowed to spectate the matches which give resourceful fighters a chance to research their opponents. Once in a match, the game plays so smooth that you would swear that you were playing someone in the same room. The few hiccups in game that did happen were because someone dropped out of the lobby at the wrong time. As long as everyone stays committed to the match, the online plays as good as you could have hoped.

SSFTTHDR is just as fun as the original games and has the potential to best all of them if the online portion stays solid. If you are a fan of fighting games, then you owe it to yourself to try out the beta just so you can tide yourself over in anticipation of the full game release later this year. In the meantime, I suggest that you should save up some money to buy a nice arcade stick, because the 360 D-pad is still terrible. Stay tuned for the full review when the game releases.

-HanChi, GameVortex Communications
AKA Matt Hanchey

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