Ultra Street Fighter IV
PREVIEW: Revealed at Evolution 2013, "Ultra Street Fighter IV" is the update to SSF4: Arcade Edition (Ver. 2012). It's been 2 years since the release of SSF4: Arcade Edition, and nearly an exact 5 years since Street Fighter IV dropped in Japanese arcades. It would appear that Capcom's goal with Ultra Street Fighter IV is to lengthen the lifespan of the reigning, undisputed, most popular fighting game of this era. Considering the game's popularity and success... who can really blame them?
Ultra Street Fighter IV will feature 5 new characters. Elena, Hugo, Poison, and Rolento will make the jump from SFXT. These returning Capcom veterans won't be simple "ports" however, and will feature new animations and Ultra moves. Each of the new characters will have brand new Super & Ultra Moves which are taken from earlier games! To name a few, Rolento's Mine Sweeper & Take No Prisoners (from SFA series), Hugo's Hammer Mountain & Megaton Press (from SFIII series), Poison's Thunder Whip & Poison Kiss (from Final Fight Revenge), and finally, Elena's Spinning Beat & Healing (from SFIII series). The fifth character (currently unannounced) is a character that has never appeared in a Street Fighter game. (My personal guess is Mayor Mike Haggar. Since most of his Final Fight brethren are already in the game, it would only make sense. ...Or could it be Asura from Asura's Wrath? Nah... too easy.)
In addition to new characters, Ultra SFIV will feature 6 "new" stages... all ported from SFXT. The stages making the jump to Ultra SF4, include: Mad Gear Hideout, Jurassic Era Research Facility, Blast Furnace, Pitstop 109, Half Pipe & Cosmic Elevator. It's currently unconfirmed whether or not the SFXT stages will contain visual updates. As someone who greatly appreciates fighting games on an aesthetic level (as well as playing them), I'm certainly hoping for some updates. In fact, I think they should visually upgrade ALL stages in the game (like "Classic Capcom" always did in the SF2 era)... but considering Capcom's last few projects, I won't hold my breath.
So far, there are 2 new gameplay mechanics confirmed for Ultra SF4. First up is the "Ultra Combo Double" option (now available on the character selection screen), which allows players to fight with both of their character's Ultra moves in a match. The cost of this convenience is damage reduction when the Ultras connect (the specific amount of reduced damage is still being adjusted, and Capcom will be taking community feedback into consideration). Secondly, the new "Red Focus Attack" allows a character to absorb more than one attack by sacrificing some of their meter. The amount of meter that Red Focus Attacks will cost is still being worked out. Capcom will be holding some Ultra SF4 location tests in the near future to iron out these new systems.
Finally, every returning SF4 character will be tweaked and re-balanced. Like past versions of SF4, these changes have been based on fan feedback. Ultra Street Fighter IV will be released in "Early 2014" as a DLC add-on to SSF4: Arcade Edition for $15. By itself, the game will retail for $40 and this version will also include all previous DLC costumes for free. In addition, UDON Comics has created brand new alternate costumes for Ultra SF4. These will be released as pre-order bonuses (for the full game) and as separate DLC.
Page Updated: December 5th, 2013 Developer(s): Capcom Publisher(s): Capcom Designer(s): Yoshinori Ono (producer), Daigo Ikeno (character design) Artwork by: Daigo Ikeno Platform(s): Playstation 3, Xbox 360, PC Release Date(s): April 2014 ( Arcade)
Early June 2014 (/ PS3, 360, PC)
Characters: Ryu, Ken, Chun Li, Dhalsim, Zangief, E. Honda, Blanka, Guile, Sagat, Bison, Balrog, Vega, C. Viper, El Fuerte, Abel, Rufus, Seth, Akuma, Gouken, Cammy, Rose, Gen, Fei Long, Dan, Sakura, T. Hawk, Dee Jay, Cody, Guy, Adon, Juri, Dudley, Ibuki, Makoto, Hakan, Yun, Yang, Evil Ryu, Oni Akuma, Elena, Poison, Hugo, Rolento
Related Games: Super Street Fighter 4: Arcade Edition, Super Street Fighter 4, Super Street Fighter 4: 3D Edition, Street Fighter 4, Street Fighter X Tekken, Street Fighter Alpha 3, Street Fighter 3: 3rd Strike, Final Fight Revenge, Blazblue: ChronoPhantasma, King of Fighters XIII, Guilty Gear Xrd -SIGN-, Xuan Dou Zhi Wang, Legend of Raven, Chaos Code
Gameplay Engine Story / Theme Overall Graphics Animation Music / Sound Effects Innovation Art Direction Customization Options / Extras Intro / Presentation Replayability / Fun "Ouch" Factor Characters
First Impression: Not many fighting games have lived to see 5 years of continued updates. Considering the game's past success, it's a given that Capcom would continue to lengthen the lifespan of SF4 with yet another new installment. After all, it's still the reigning #1 tournament game, and clearly, the dedicated players still love it.
Personally, I'm hoping Capcom puts some significant effort into bringing back the "casual" SF4 player. As someone who once took SF4 semi-seriously but gradually stopped playing it, I'd like to see some fancy new bells & whistles when I come back to it in 2014. Though it'll still be a hit among hardcore players, there's no arguing SF4 is becoming an aged game. Exciting new (or updated) backgrounds, remixed BGMs, and other visual updates could reverse the trend. Don't be lazy this time Capcom.... You guys kinda have a lot to prove these days. ~TFG Webmaster