Street Fighter X Tekken Vita Review
Developer: Capcom / Publisher: Capcom / Platform: PlayStation Vita / Price: $39.99 / Release: October 23, 2012 / ESRB: Teen [Alcohol Reference, Crude Humor, Language, Suggestive Themes, Violence]
Street Fighter X Tekken is back again, now on the go for the PlayStation Vita. This time around Street Fighter X Tekken comes packed with several great features and bonuses so you can get the most out of your fighting game experience between the PlayStation Vita and PlayStation 3 platforms. When Street Fighter X Tekken first released earlier this year and it fell in the hands of the fighting game community, it was plagued with balance issues and unnecessary glitches. This in turn gave Street Fighter X Tekken a bad name.
But with the PlayStation Vita release and the Street Fighter X Tekken Ver. 2013 update around the corner, is it too late for this cross over fighting game? It seems Capcom will not let Street Fighter X Tekken fall by the wayside.
Street Fighter X Tekken runs great on the PlayStation Vita. Animation and textures are smooth with very little graphical difference between the console versions compared to the handheld version. One difference I have noticed was that the stages were re-worked to incorporate the twelve new characters to the game. In the Jurassic Era Research Facility you see Alex the Raptor from the Tekken series in an epic battle between two T-Rexes. At the Cosmic Elevator you see Mech-Zangief and Jack-X in the background battling for position in space. That’s the only substantive difference I’ve seen from the home console to the handheld version.
Street Fighter X Tekken is a team based two-versus-two fighter with more than enough characters to pair up with. With the additional 12 DLC characters included, this brings the character roster up to a total of 55 characters. This also includes the PlayStation exclusive characters Pac-Man, Cole (from Infamous), Megaman, and Kuro and Toro from the game Doko Demo Issyo, (a Japanese game released for the PlayStation in 1999). The 12 DLC characters consist of Alisa Bosconovitch, Bryan Fury, Christie Monteiro, Jack-X, Lars Alexanderson, and Lei Wulong to represent the Tekken side, while Blanka, Cody, Dudley, Elena, Guy, and Sakura represent the Street Fighter side.
Gameplay mechanics consist of the traditional Capcom six button setup, light, medium and hard punch and kick. And you can’t have a Capcom fighting game without some Super Meters. Your Super Meters are used to pull off EX Special moves, Cross Arts, Super Arts, Cross Assaults and other special fighting mechanics such as Quick Combos and the use of Gems. For more explanation of these mechanics please refer to our Street Fighter X Tekken Review, as I wanted to focus more on how the games plays on the Playstation Vita handheld and the features utilized with it. With that said, the core gameplay mechanics haven’t changed from the console version to the handheld version.
However, in the Vita version of Street Fighter X Tekken it seems as though they push the touch functions a little much. The touch functions seem to actually take away from an already enjoyable experience. Not only can you use the front touch panel, the back touch panel is enabled as well. With the size of the PlayStation Vita being big as it is, you will find yourself accidently performing whiffed throws and launchers when trying to get a good grip on the system. The right side of the touch screens can be used for your light and medium attacks and the back touch panel is set as your throw and launcher command. You will eventually find yourself turning these features off.
I always felt unsatisfied when it comes to touch screen commands. There’s something rewarding from pressing buttons and rolling joysticks and D-pads when executing special moves and combos. But there are features where the touch screen function actually works. Navigating through menus and utilizing it in extra modes is a great way to play with the touch features.
Street Fighter X Tekken is satisfying enough to play on the PlayStation Vita. Your hands may cramp up a little bit but it still works well. Controls are tight and performing combos and special moves to defeat your opponent isn’t too difficult to perform on the handheld’s small D-pad and buttons. But what it really comes down to are the features of the PlayStation Vita.
One of the coolest features is the Cross-Platform ability. With Cross-Platform play you will be able to fight opponents on the PlayStation 3 version of SFxT as well as the PS Vita version. This opens up the ability to play whoever, whenever on the PlayStation Network.
With the amount of extra modes and features included specifically for the PS Vita, I feel this is where the game shines. Street Fighter X Tekken not only has modes to utilize its touch capabilities but also its network and microphone features. The Online Mode comes packaged with several modes to choose from. You have the choice to play online in Ad Hoc (System to System). Online mode features Ranked match, Endless Battle, and Scramble Battle.
One thing about the PlayStation Vita is that the online play actually works. The netcode is pretty solid while playing online, with only minor slow down happening before the match begins and after the final hit. Searching for an opponent can take a while to connect though. I was waiting at least 3 minutes before I was able to connect in a ranked match but the connection during the match was good.The matchmaking needs to be improved in ranked matches, however. I found myself playing against players with over 2,500 battle points to my 0 battle points, which was a little unfair, though it was cool that I was playing against players on the PlayStation 3 console (this was indicated by a small PlayStation controller icon next to the opponent’s name, or a PS Vita icon for Vita players).
Like I mentioned, online mode comes with Endless Battle and Scramble Mode. Endless Battle allows you to make or join a lobby and the winner stays on while the loser is replaced by a waiting player. Scramble Battle is an all-out battle with all four players fighting all at once. Another cool feature is the ability to enable or disable the built-in microphone for online chat.
Replay Channel also makes its way to the PlayStation Vita. In Replay Channel mode you can view and save the latest online matches from across the world. You can search by top ranked players, the last 50 matches you’ve played online, or even by a specific character. And this isn’t just replays from the PS Vita, but also replays from the PS3. New in Arcade mode you have the Burst Kumite mode where you fight endless matches against the CPU. This mode also includes opponents’ AI that you have fought online, similar to Tekken’s Ghost data. So if I play a friend online, his gameplay style, or ghost, will get uploaded to the Burst Kumite mode. I feel this is a perfect mode for the handheld device.
Whenever you get tired of playing, just press the home button. This pauses your game in real time and you can pick the game back up later wherever you left off. You don’t have to worry about starting over after you complete the Arcade mode. It’s the perfect meaning of “pick up and go,” and getting just enough enjoyment for moments at a time.
You can also customize the look of your characters in Customization mode, and can even customize your character quickly using the touch screen. You can use the pinch function to resize your character, and you can also scroll through the many colors with a flick of your finger. This is also utilized in other ways, such as customizing your character’s gems.
Street Fighter X Tekken has tons of extra modes to play with. One of my favorites is the sound section in the Gallery mode. You get all the sound effects from the game as well as every voice from every character in the game in English and Japanese. Each character has over 300 sounds alone! I know it’s just sound effects and voices, but using the touch screen to play them make for some crazy remixes you can create.
Another mode that utilizes the PlayStation Vita is AR mode (Augmented Reality). Honestly it’s a cool feature… but it rarely works. You can take photos of your favorite Street Fighter or Tekken character in real life photos. After trying an hour to get the feature to work, most of my pictures had the character upside down. On top of that, the camera for the PS Vita is not the best. Pictures turned out fuzzy and blurry all the time. This feature would have possibly worked better if you were able to take your photos and use them as background images for stages.
Now what is the reason to own Street Fighter X Tekken for PlayStation Vita if you already own it for the home consoles? This version is packed full of extras geared towards owners of the PlayStation 3 version of the game. With this you receive the extra 12 DLC characters and 38 alternate costumes for the core characters of the game. You are also able to play across both platforms, the PS Vita and PS3. On top of that you are also able to share your data and DLC that you have already purchased for the PlayStation 3 and use it for the PS Vita version.
With all of this, it’s not a complete waste of cash if you are a Street Fighter X Tekken fan and want to play it on the go. If you were patient enough to wait for the 12 DLC characters that retail at around $20 bucks, for just an extra $20 bucks you can have the full game for PS Vita.
I still feel Street Fighter X Tekken is a great fighting game packed with good content and a vast character roster. With the Burst Kumite mode it’s satisfying to get a quick game or two on the go. The online capabilities work very well and you are able to play opponents on both PS Vita and PlayStation 3 platforms. If you own a PlayStation Vita I recommend picking this version up, it’s definitely worth it. Hopefully with Version 2013 of Street Fighter X Tekken they can re-balance the game so a great idea to cross these two successful fighting game franchises won’t go to waste.
+ Awesome DLC package
+ Online mode works well
+ Cross-Platform play works great
9.5 / 10