Capcom is no stranger to making crossover games, so when they announced Street Fighter X Tekken it seemed like a natural fit. Capcom has developed numerous crossover games from Capcom to SNK to the lesser known Tatsunoku. The first question you may ask about Street Fighter X Tekken is what the fight system is like? Read more to find out!
Honestly, it does not play like the typical crossover fighter. Yes, it is still very fast and learning to switch characters along with juggle combos are a must, but this game plays like Street Fighter 4 more than anything else. The new mechanics to the fighting system are pretty cool with the new switch attack where you hit an enemy and switch characters knocking your opponent into the air so you can start to juggle them along with the super moves and attacks where both you and your partner go at it. Last is Pandora where when you are losing badly, you can use Pandora providing a massive boost to all stats and the super gauges will be filled. The negative tradeoff is not only do you lose your partner if you do not win before the Pandora timer runs out, you are defeated. So Pandora can completely turn a fight around or ensure a loss.
Another new mechanic that adds a nice touch, though I feel could break the balance of the game, are gems. Gems add more stats to different characters or do special effects when activated. So my main character, Zangief, already has a ton of health so I should not worry about health gems with him and probably worry about another stat. Some gems can only be activated in battle, for instance you hit harder when your health drops below a certain percentage.
As far as controls go, it is super easy to input combos even with a controller, but most hardcore players or people who want to get deep into the game and truly improve are going to want to buy or build a tournament style fight stick.
When it comes to modes, Street Fighter X Tekken is pretty basic. You have the standard arcade mode where you go through a pretty nonsensical story. Then there is online where you can do 1 vs. 1 or 2 vs. 2. The online is great, though right now there is a sound bug which makes it so sounds happen before or after they actually happen regardless if the game is lagging or not. Challenge mode is also an interesting mode of online where there is a tutorial and a set of challenges to help you improve at the game which new players are going to want to play a lot of because the learning curve is super steep. I fancy myself to be pretty solid at this type of game, but even I was having trouble learning some of the deeper mechanics of the game at first, especially when trying to use them online where I got beat like a rug during spring cleaning. After hours of practice, I finally got the hang of it and was hanging in there with some pretty good players. Also, I feel learning on a fight stick for those willing to invest would be best.
The graphics engine behind Street Fighter X Tekken is similar to that of Street Fighter 4. Everything looks super cartoony and has a hand-drawn effect to it. The game looks great, the backgrounds are very active and colorful, and the character’s facial expressions during close-up and super combos look spectacular. Just like Street Fighter 4, this game pulls off that cartoony style very well.
The sound in the game, other than the bug mentioned earlier, is great. It takes tracks mainly from older Street Fighter games along with some new tunes and put them together with great effects to make a very solid audio experience. Honestly, I love the sound effects in this game because they all scream old school arcade fighting.
As a whole, Street Fighter X Tekken is a very good, well balanced fighting game with some minor issues. Casual fans might be thrown off by the steep learning curve, but fans of fighting games or those willing to learn will find something to love about Street Fighter X Tekken.
Final Score: 8.5/10