To virtual combatants everywhere, the news of another update to the successful Street Fighter 4 series was met with some varying degrees of mixed feelings. While the need for a classic Capcom throwdown is definitely hanging in the air and an addition to the Street Fighter franchise is definitely welcome, Ultra Street Fighter 4 may or may not be the breath of fresh air the franchise desperately needs.
With the addition of four previously seen characters Hugo, Poison, Rolento, Elena (in their flashy Street fighter x Tekken models) and a tightly guarded secret fifth character, Capcom promises a complete re-balancing of the current fighter’s tiers. Every character in the roster is going to see massive overhauls to combos, frame data, hit boxes, and health in this update along with six shiny new stages to smash each other in.
- Cosmic Elevator
- Pitstop 109
- Half Pipe
- Blast Furnace
- Mad Gear Hideout
- and Jurrasic Era Research Facility
You might have noticed that all of these stages were included in Street Fighter x Tekken.
A new mechanic being added to Ultra Street fighter 4 is the “Red Focus Attack.” This is similar to the standard Focus in the sense that a full charged attack will be unblockable and leave the opponent in a vunerable state, but the difference will be that with the increased cost of 2 bars of a characters Super Meter the Red Focus will allow a character to take multiple hits before breaking. Also, after a knockdown holding Heavy Punch and Medium Kick will allow a character to remain on the ground for a few seconds allowing players to get out of mix ups, cross ups, and tech trap setups. The final addition will be the addition of an “Ultra Combo Double” which will allow a player to pick both of a character’s Ultra Moves at the cost of dealing less damage, giving the player more versatility and options in a fight. With the release date scheduled for June of this year and the location tests currently running across Japan and California, it’s probably safe to say that more changes are coming soon.
As for the secret 5th character, Capcom devs have stated that “it wont be someone you’ll expect” and that it’ll be someone who has never been playable in any Street Fighter before. Your guess is as good as mine at this point, but I definitely look forward to seeing how well this update stacks up against the updates for Killer Instinct and Guilty Gear Xrd coming later this year.
I like how Capcom constantly stays up to date with Street Fighter, especially for tourny purposes, but these are things that could be handled with a patch or as DLC rather than a full-fledged re-release. I’ve honestly stopped buying Capcom fighters until a 2nd or 3rd rendition has been released for this purpose, and even waiting that long has sometimes stung a bit (Ultimate MVC3 not having the complete roster, for instance).
Still, SF will always be the most polished fighter on the market. I’d be more inclined to purchase yet another version of SF4 if it were on next-gen consoles, but I’ve already paid for SF4 twice.
Yeah I feel they should have just jumped to SF5 already instead of just milking the same game over and over but we all know Capcom better than that by now i suppose.
I do agree that they have been drawing out SF4 for quite some time, but the updates thus far have all been fairly sizable and considerably cheaper than a new release (AE was 20 bucks, I believe Ultra will be the same if purchased as an update instead of a new disc). We have to keep in mind that Capcom’s choice to release SF4 at all was quite the risk, given that the FGC circa 2009 was nowhere near what it once was, and, had they not chosen to release it, the FGC may have, by now, been all but dead.
In 2009, most people who still played fighting games were playing things like Guilty Gear, Street Fighter 3: Third Strike and Marvel vs. Capcom 2, all of which were inching toward their tenth birthdays. Capcom isn’t really a risk-taking company, as we continue to see, but they did a great thing by releasing Street Fighter 4 when they chose to and we have that release alone to thank for all current generation fighting games, as well as any fighting game releases in the foreseeable future. They revived a genre.
It’s been five years, but console gaming has hit a really difficult spot. New consoles are so new that releasing a game from a lesser-played genre might result in a major lack of sales, even if the game holds such a recognizable name. Release of the Ultra update this summer will put Capcom on track for a release of the next Street Fighter title by 2016, which would follow their current pattern of waiting two years before a new addition to the IP.
Will they wait that long? I sure hope not, but I wouldn’t be at all surprised. Until then, I’ll just red focus way too much and whine about how delayed wakeup completely changed the meta for vortex characters ;D!
Just looking at the roster and stage additions, this is the laziest update Capcom could muster for their leading fighting title. I would rather see them make an effort and add characters they haven’t already done or redone for another title. It just feels really lazy to me.
I cant really disagree with you entirely on this one. Seeing that almost everything was nearly a copy and paste from SFxT did leave me with a bad taste in my throat. But who knows with the changes to the mechanics it could feel like a completely different game. Im willing to give Capcom the benefit of the doubt here.
Bringing over so much from SFxT may also be their attempt at bringing something they were proud of creating to another crowd. I know fighting fans will play fighting games, but I’m not a Tekken fan at all and passed on SFxT completely, so a majority of those characters and stages would be new to me as an SF fan. It does seem pretty lazy though, I’ll give you that.