Street Fighter II Turbo Revival
was one of the first games I ever loved in an arcade. Not because of
the graphics or the gameplay...there were a lot of games out there
with that. What made Street Fighter a piece of history for me was
that I spent three or four Friday nights shortly after the release
of Street Fighter 2 Turbo at a Putt-Putt that a friend happened to
be the night manager of. While he and a few others would run to the
NEO GEO and N.A.R.C. machines after they had locked up, I was
allowed the singular pleasure of opening the front panel to SFIIT
and playing for free until dawn. After two nights of this, my Ryu
and Fei-Long were unstoppable.
Laugh all you
Now I hold in my
hands a rather faithful re-creation of this gaming bliss, in the
form of Street Fighter II: Turbo Revival.
Iím not going
to lie to you. The missing two buttons are a handicap that is hard
to ignore, but only for the Street Fighter(SF) extremists. I can
live with the limitations, though I find it a little more difficult
to play both Fei-Long and Sagat. Personal preferences.
Once you get
used to that though, thereís only one thing to be said: Sweet Lord
In A Candy-Coated Shell. I still cannot believe Iím holding
this game in my hand. Pretty much all of the tricks and timing you
remember are present in this little piece of silicon joy, with the
added pleasure of extra modes and variable speeds.
Iím not going
to go into detail about all the various abilities and specials the
characters are capable of. To be honest, after all this time and all
the various iterations, I have a hard time telling some of them
apart. I can say that most of the basic moves and the special meter
seem to be culled directly from Super Street Fighter 2: Turbo with
very few differences.
This is almost
exactly the arcade version. Yes, there are some changes, like
slightly altered stages for a few characters and some missing frames
of animation. But these in no way affect the gameplay. For the most
part, this looks identical to the arcade version.
mince words here; this game was never an aural pleasure. The only
thing even remotely enjoyable about the sound was the strange
bubble-wrap sound of landing a big hit. The voices were atrocious,
and quickly became annoying. The best part about having this on the
Gameboy Advance is the easily accessible volume control. Take that
sucker through the floor.
There are a few
extra modes, like survival and Time attack, but the biggest feature
of any Street Fighter game is the ability to beat the hell out of a
friend. You can do this with Turbo Revival as well, you just need
another cartridge and another Gameboy Advance. But once you have
that, this is probably the best excuse for looking like a complete
loser on the train with a cable between you and a buddy that I can
think of. Anything less could never justify the humiliation.
There are plenty
of hours of gameplay in this little beast, even if youíre all by
yourself. Lots of features, hidden characters and a faithful
translation all add up to one heck of a good time. However, if you
want your D-pad to survive, you may want to think about the Ďmotor
skills challengedí control scheme that simplifies most of the
special moves into one or two-button combinations. No, itís not
Ďold-schoolí, but you did pay for your little piece of plastic
gaming joy, and it doesnít have a controller you can replace.
- You almost
canít believe youíre playing this on a portable.
- Lots of
- Still just
potentially destroy your D-pad attempting one too many Dragon
Punches or Tiger Knees.
undeniably cool you look tethered to another Gameboy-toting
freak through some high-tech umbilical cord delivering Ďanimated
violenceí rather than nutritional sustenance.
- Did I mention
itís still just Street Fighter? If my repetition of this fact
annoys you, you should probably own this game.
This is an
amazing handheld fighter. I would love to give it the honor of being
ĎThe Bestí, but for all itís graphical splendor, it still canít
oust the reigning champ; SNK vs. Capcom: Match of the Millennium for
the Neo Geo Pocket. And I stand by that statement with resolve and a
large rabid animal.