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Street Fighter IV: Volt iOS Review

Capcom’s Street Fighter IV became an instant classic when it hit the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 just a few short years ago. Because of this success, Capcom decided to port the game onto the iOS; though the final product was not quite the best it could be. With only a handful of modes and 13 available characters, the original SFIV for iOS was a critical disappointment.

Fast forward a year and Capcom releases an updated SFIV for the iOS; one that adds a large number of characters, a fex extra modes, and the ability to have players compete online with others. This updated game, subtitled Volt brings a good amount of features that add to the Street Fighter IV experience on the iOS. But was it too little too late?

M.Bison eats a hadouken

Street Fighter IV: Volt features over 22 characters, 11 environments, all the special moves, super and ultra combos from the console games. It also features six solo-play game modes (including the Wandering Warrior mode that’s pretty much dud), Team Ranking Battles, several online versus modes, and a BlueTooth Versus mode for those who prefer to game with their friends close by.

Gameplay sticks close to the console experience with the biggest difference being the visual gamepad and a switch from six button layout to four. The four buttons are Strong Punch, Strong Kick, SP button, and the While some have said that this was a good change by Capcom, I was constantly annoyed that I couldn’t perform weak punches and kicks to begin or pad my combos. It takes out the strategy and challenge that made the console versions much deeper experiences.

That’s why you shouldn’t spam jump attacks

One of the positive (or negative if you like playing with others online) points of this simplified control scheme is that it allows players to perform super and ultra combos by simply touching the appropriate buttons on the visual pad. Given that the visual pad takes some time to get used to, these simplified buttons are a godsend for the harder difficulties.

On the many matches I’ve had online, I can honestly say that latency issues and move lag severely hampers gameplay. It’s quite frustrating when I input the button commands and see the damn move performed milliseconds late (an eternity in fast-paced fighting games). The game was very choppy and game speed depended on players’ vastly different net speeds.

Fei-Long’s flying kick makes Yun cry like a baby

TECHNICAL PRESENTATION

AUDIO – This is the area where Street Fighter IV: Volt shines. All of the game’s sound effects have been ported over to the iOS version with little to no quality loss. The fight announcer (as annoying as he can become) is here in full-force, all kiai, battle sounds, and music are recreated and sound amazing whether I was wearing headphones or using the iPod Touch’s built-in speakers. Great all around work by the SFIV:Volt sound design team on this port.

GRAPHICS – I was really torn by the game’s presentation actually. I’d have to say that it looks great and captures the look and feel of the console versions, however the 3D character models seem to have this claymation look to them that didn’t sit well with me. If you’ve watched “Robot Chicken” before and then played SFIV Volt, you’ll notice the missing and stiff animations that detract from the experience. This is just a personal preference though and the game still looks miles better than other fighting games available on the iOS.

PROS:

+ 22 Characters and A good number of game modes
+ Audio presentation is top-notch
+ Recreates the console experience well
+/-  Simplified control scheme

CONS:

– Creepy character look and animation
– Choppy online play
– Expensive ($6.99)
– Simplified control scheme
– Why couldn’t we have gotten this game the first time?

FINAL THOUGHTS

Why couldn’t we have gotten this game the first time? It seems Capcom’s penchant for double-dipping has forced players who bought the first game ($6.99) to buy the updated game ($6.99) to get the complete experience that they should have gotten the first time. Sure Volt is a fun game with lots of characters, modes, and environments but it’s brought down by a simplified control scheme that detracts from the depth and strategy needed for a complete Street Fighter experience.

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About janhutchings

Canadian Game Industry Blogger / Contributor for @Sonyrumors & @ShogunGamer / Communications and PR Professional. Voice of Canadian and Indie Gaming. http://jtmgames.com/

Posted on April 3, 2012, in Game Reviews and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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