Street Fighter II Game Boy Review
Street Fighter was, and still is a popular fighting game. Since its release, there have been countless spin offs and even more different editions of the same game. When I see a Street Fighter II game, I always think "What edition is it" instead of "Wow, Street Fighter II!". In 1995, the released a Game Boy port of the popular SNES port of the arcade classic. I like to call this Game Boy version the Street fighter II: Black and White Edition. Yes, it's Street Fighter on the go, playing Street Fighter II on the street while fighting over which edition of Street Fighter II is the best, is one of the things that doesn't happen in life today (I doubt that actually happened in the past anyway...). However, where there is Street Fighter, there is a challenger. That challenger has entered the ring and that challenger is me. I try to play every different edition of the game I can, and with every new edition of Street Fighter I play, I get a little better. Maybe when I have played every version of Street Fighter known to man, I will be at the very least a worthy foe to those who want to face me in battle. Until then, I am still a noob.
The story, as with any other Street Fighter game, is there is a Street Fighter Tournament world wide, and often the person behind it is the bad guy. In this case one M.Bison (Of course!) will be your final boss. You can play as and face nine different characters, six of which are the classic Street Fighters (and most irrationally, my two favourite: Dhalsim and E. Honda. E. Honda is a little personal to me, as he was such a defensively perfect annoyance in Super Street fighter IV, but he grew on me), the other three are bosses from the SNES version. That kinda annoys me, and this is the same as the Special Champion Edition as well. You can play as one of the bosses. In the original SNES version, you could only play as one of eight characters, and when you defeated them there were four more challengers that entered the ring, each harder than the last and were a pain to defeat. I feel being able to play as those characters takes away that level of fear that I felt when fighting these new, super hard guys. It doesn’t feel the same knowing you can play as them. I guess Special Champion Edition was ok, as that was released quite a bit after the first version of the game.
The original game had an ending that gave depth to each character, how Ryu is living and breathing a fight, and even when he is the best, he will still continue to search for the next challenge, or how Ken returns to his family. This version of the game doesn't have that. You complete the game, and it says "Congratulations!". This is really disappointing, as it just has the sense to fighting and winning. With an ending of some sorts for the character, it feels like it was more than just winning some fighting tournament, making us give a second though on why they wanted to fight in the first place. Here, it just seems like a game, and a shrug is all that is needed.
What I like about the music is that it's an 8-bit rendition of the 16-bit games music. I love it when I hear 8-bit renditions! The intro music is still as enthusiastic as ever and the character select screen is still as awesome as it was before, just half the bits to process it. I love the music on Glide's stage the best in this format. Although it is technology a copy of the originals soundtrack, I feel they did a really good job on it to still make it sound awesome. I also like the music when you pause the game. For some reason it seems to be over the top, but it's also fits perfectly with the game style.
The graphics are fairly good. They put the same level of detail in the background as they did in the original version, although the lack of animations there is a disappointment. The mug shots for all the fighters seem different from the SNES ones, and it's interesting to see them in a different light, not that their appearances affect their personalities or anything. M.Bison looks a bit like a Creeper from Minecraft, to be honest. Also, and this is a little trivial here, but their icons as you select them are mirrored from the larger icons on the left of the screen. Just seems a little odd. The animations in this game, however, and very choppy. I mean, very. Even walking left to right doesn't look like proper walking. When you attack, there are probably 2-3 frames dedicated to those animations. Ok, in the original, it was around the same for a weak punch and weak kick, but here, they execute it poorly, resulting in something that barely resembles fighting. This also effects game play. For some reason, due to the frames or something, you can effectively use an attack right after the one you used (Say you use a kick, then a punch). This changes the game play into a slightly more "button mashing" style than the original.
That being said, it's a great game to start playing Street Fighter with. You only have a punch and a kick button. No weak, medium or strong types, just a kick or a punch. This simplifies the possibilities in fights greatly, and although Street Fighter veterans won't like that, as it does take out two thirds of the strategy of the entire game, but beginners will find it great without having to worry about what type of punch to use where and when. That being said, the game is relatively easy for a Street Fighter game, but is able to leave satisfaction to the player when defeating their opponent...well for me anyway, I'm a noob. There are two main game modes. normal, where you fight opponents one by one until you finish off M.Bison, and Survival, which is the same thing as Normal, but you have no continues, better if you want a challenge. There are five modes of difficulty, ranging from 1-5, 5 being the hardest. The game's default difficulty is 2. After beating the game easily on 2 (thankfully M.Bison isn't as rock hard as he was on lvl 3 difficulty on the SNES >_<), I went onto 3. Now, you would think 3 would be a fair bit harder. It's not. It's way harder. I can't defeat my first opponent on 3. You would think it would gradually go up, not make a 130 degree turn in difficulty! I shudder to think what 5 is like...
Overall, I give this game a 7.3/10 It's not the best Street Fighter II version, but it was on the Game Boy. In fact, this game did rather well for putting up with the limitations of the Game Boy. True, it didn't offer a lot in comparison, but at least I can play Street Fighter II on the go. if you are a hardened Street Fighter player, this game isn't for you. It's like a beginners guide to what to expect from Street Fighter II. You're better off playing the SNES/Genesis game as that offers more depth and requires strategy. However, if you are a beginner like me, then play this version before you play any other. It's simpler and easier than the original, and will prepare you for the road ahead.