Street Fighter X Tekken – Capcom fight club preview

London’s East End isn’t usually the place that you’d expect to see a great gaming event hosted in – the good looking streets and grand buildings certainly aren’t spoken of far and wide to say the least, however it goes without saying that the KO gym in Bethnal Green played host to a perfect fight club atmosphere as fans, pizza delivery boys and DJs flocked to the building for a night to remember… or not in some cases thanks in large part to the free beer on offer.

For those of us lucky enough to remember though, Capcom’s fight club let us get our hands on everything from old favourites to upcoming new titles under one roof – not to mention meeting Capcom video game producer Yoshinori Ono!

Street Fighter X Tekken (the headline title of the event) had no less than 10 machines devoted to it for the game’s UK debut appearance, and I wasted no time in choosing one and staying there for most of the night.
We were fortunate enough to be treated to the most up to date worldwide build of the game, and therefore got to see all characters currently announced, including the likes of Kuma and Hugo who had only just made their début appearances at GamesCom earlier that same week.

As a fan of both Street fighter and Tekken for many years, it amazed me how well Capcom have managed to insert Namco’s characters into their 2D world, capturing almost every animation directly from the 3D fighter in order to keep the characters true to themselves, and I found myself exclaiming loud enough to be heard over the pounding dubstep several times during the night when I recognised a combo or animation from Tekken.

When I finally got my hands on a controller though, it was a different story because the game isn’t as easy to play as it looks. Street Fighter characters of course feel pretty much as they do in Street Fighter 4, and I wasn’t the only person to fall back on my Capcom creation when the going got rough, but that’s not to say that the Tekken characters struggle in SFxT, on the contrary, they are frightening!
Mastering a character will only get you so far in Street Fighter X Tekken though, as the real depth in the game comes from mastering the use of the tag system.

The game features a tag team style gameplay, with both players picking 2 characters for their team, however unlike the recent Capcom title, Marvel vs Capcom 3, in Street Fighter X Tekken if one of your characters is knocked out, that’s it, game over, you lose. It is therefore vital to know when to switch to your partner, and how to do so. 

It’s easy to see then that success in this game comes with mastering the tag system and knowing your options in battle, whether that means performing a quick tag whilst your first character is still attacking, launching your opponent into the air and performing a tag juggle, or simply calling your partner onto the screen to attack alongside you, causing massive damage and cheers to erupt from the crowd as your opponent is mercilessly beaten by 2 people at once.

It’s not all about the tag system in SFxT, as the ultra bar also returns to shake things up a bit. Like in MvC3, the ultra bar features 3 levels – each level allowing your character to perform their ultra or an EX attack, with the complete ultra bar allowing you to perform a tag team ultra. The combos are as flashy as I had dared to hope, and the new characters have really been done justice in the Capcom world.

Despite the vast amounts of free beer and pizza consumed on the night I did manage to win a couple of fights and was left wanting more each time, but like all good things the night soon came to an end I was left with one major impression overall: Street Fighter X Tekken is awesome.

The game won’t be out until 2012, but luckily you won’t have to wait that long for another fireball throwing fix as Capcom PR Manager, Leo Tan informed me that Street Fighter x Tekken will be playable at the upcoming MCM expo in October!

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