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Super Street Fighter IV Review

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Still classy after all these years

★★★★

OK, so we know 2009’s Street Fighter IV is still the best fighting game around. But what makes this one so, well... Super? Not a lot, sadly.

For Capcom fanboys the most seductive addition in SFIV is 10 new fighters, bolstering the already-generous roster to a bewildering 35, all of which are selectable from the get-go. Of this 10, eight bruised and battered faces – including Adon, Dudley and Ibuki – will be familiar to the long-serving SF hardcore, each blessed with unique fighting styles that bring extra variety to the familiar SFIV experience and give aficionados a new arena to test their favourite fighter’s skills.

By contrast, SFIV’s other two recruits, Juri and Hakan, are completely new to the series and offer wildly different styles; while Juri is quick, nimble and has a sneaky fireball up her sleeve that can unleashed at unexpected moments, Turkish wrestler Hakan is a grappler by nature, with slower moves that inflict more damage, and whose habit of spilling crude oil allows him to use devastating slide attacks.

Fresh fighters aside, SFIV refines the online portion of the original game by awarding Player Points that are based on your number of wins or losses, and Battle Points that are intrinsically linked to the fighters you use, encouraging players to step out of their comfort zone and try new characters without running the risk of losing their position in the game’s online leaderboards.

Aside from these tweaks, however, its business as usual for SFIV, the stunning fighter offering brutal combat, a striking art style and the most imaginative line-up in beat ’em up history – and if you don’t already have SFIV, this is essential. But if it’s innovation or a fresh experience you’re looking for, this isn’t the new SF you were hoping for.

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