Definitions

Street Fighter II (pinball)

Street Fighter II

is a 1991 competitive fighting game by Capcom. It is widely credited with launching the fighting game genre into the mainstream and extending the life of the worldwide arcade scene for several years with its unique six button "combo" controls and revolutionary "loser pays" competitive gameplay. Its popularity far eclipsed that of its comparatively obscure predecessor, thanks in part to its inclusion of eight selectable characters (a number which would increase in subsequent updates) with their unique playing style and refinement of the unique play controls featured in the first game, setting the template for future fighting games. Its success also led to the production of several updates of the game (including home versions), as well as merchandising and cross-media adaptations (including two separately produced theatrical films).

Gameplay

Street Fighter II follows several of the conventions and rules already established by its original 1987 predecessor. The player engages opponents in one-on-one close quarter combat in a series of best-two-out-of-three matches. The objective of each round is to deplete the opponent's vitality before the timer runs out. If both opponents knock each other out at the same time or the timer runs out with both fighters having an equal amount of vitality left, then a "double KO" or "draw game" is declared and additional rounds will be played until sudden death. In the first Street Fighter II, a match could last up to ten rounds if there was no clear winner; this was reduced to four rounds in Champion Edition and onward. If there is no clear winner by the end of the final round, then either the computer-controlled opponent will win by default in a single-player match or both fighters will lose in a 2-player match.

After every third match in the single player mode, the player will participate in a "bonus game" for additional points. The bonus games includes (in order) a car-breaking event similar to another bonus round featured in Final Fight; a barrel breaking bonus game where the barrels are dropped off from a conveyor belt above the player; and a drum-breaking bonus game where drums are flammable and piled over each other. The bonus games were removed from the arcade version of Super Street Fighter II Turbo (although they're featured in the Dreamcast and Game Boy Advance versions).

Like in the original, the game's controls uses a configuration of an eight-directional joystick and six attack buttons. The player uses the joystick to jump, crouch and move the character towards or away from the opponent, as well as to guard the character from an opponent's attacks. There are three punch buttons and three kick buttons of differing strength and speed (Light, Medium and Heavy). The player can perform a variety of basic moves in any position, including grabbing/throwing attacks, which were not featured in the original Street Fighter. Like in the original, the player can perform special moves by inputting a combination of directional and button-based commands.

Street Fighter II differs from the original due to the selection of multiple playable characters, each with their distinct fighting styles and special moves. Additionally, the player can also "cancel" during animation by performing another move, allowing for a combination of several basic and special moves. Both of these features would be expanded upon in subsequent installments.

Characters

The original version of Street Fighter II featured a roster of eight playable characters that could be selected by the player. Ryu and Ken, the main characters from the original Street Fighter returned along with six new characters from different nationalities: E. Honda, a sumo wrestler from Japan; Blanka, a beast-like man from Brazil; Guile, a military operative from the United States of America; Chun-Li, a female martial artist from China; Zangief, a pro wrestler from USSR; and Dhalsim, a Yogi from India.

The single player tournament mode also features four CPU-controlled opponents whom the player faces after defeating the other main characters. The bosses in the game: Balrog (M.Bison in the Japanese version), an American boxer; Vega (Balrog in Japan), a Spanish claw-welding matador; Sagat, the former champion from the original Street Fighter; and M. Bison (Vega in Japan), a mysterious crime lord. The African-American boxer was named M. Bison in Japan (with the "M" being an initial for "Mike"), since he was designed as a pastiche of real-life boxer Mike Tyson. When Street Fighter II was released overseas, the names of the bosses were rotated, fearing that the character of “M. Bison” resembled Mike Tyson to the point of likeness infringement, but also because Capcom USA's marketing team believed that "Vega" was a "weak-sounding name" for the games final opponent.

From Champion Edition and onward, the boss characters became playable, expanding the selectable roster to twelve and the player could now face against an opponent who used the same character. This meant that the player faced all twelve characters, including a clone of their own, during the single-player tournament.

Super Street Fighter II introduced four new characters from previously unrepresented nationalities to the pre-existing roster: Fei Long, a martial artist from Hong Kong; Cammy, an amnesiac secret agent from England; T. Hawk, a Native American refugee in Mexico; and Dee Jay, a fighting musician from Jamaica. The new characters were designed by Capcom's internal artists in Japan except for Dee Jay, whose original design was contributed to the game by American designer James Goddard. The character roster was now increased to sixteen, although the player still faced only twelve opponents (including the original four bosses) in the single-player tournament.

Super Street Fighter II Turbo featured another new character whom the player faced (upon meeting the required conditions) in the game's final match instead of M. Bison. This character, who was unnamed within the actual game, was officially referred as Gouki in Japan and as Akuma in the English version and the different names were stuck in those territories. Akuma becomes selectable only by entering a special cheat code in the character selection screen.

Arcade release history

The World Warrior

Street Fighter II: The World Warrior is the first iteration of the Street Fighter II series, released on March . The game featured all the basic features that would be carried over to subsequent Street Fighter II editions. The original game featured eight selectable characters, with Ryu and Ken being the only characters with identical moves. In the single-player tournament, the player faces against the other seven main characters, before proceeding to the final four opponents, which were non-selectable boss characters. In World Warrior, matches could go up to ten rounds if there were no clear winner before making the player lose by default (in Champion Edition and onward, this was reduced to four rounds). This version featured several glitches, such as Guile's infamous "Handcuffs.

Champion Edition

Street Fighter II': Champion Edition, known in Japan as , was released on April as the first update of Street Fighter II. The four boss characters from the first edition became selectable character and a feature was added that allowed two players to select the same character, with one character being distinguished from the other with an alternate color scheme. Characters using their alternate color scheme have their names printed in blue below their lifebar. The number of opponents in the single-player mode increased to twelve due to the addition of clone matches. Some of the artwork were redrawn as well and the stages' backgrounds were recolored. Much of the gameplay was revised to balance the characters out.

Hyper Fighting

Street Fighter II': Hyper Fighting, or in Japan, was a minor update released in response to the proliferation of modified bootlegs of Champion Edition. Released on December 1992 (eight months after Champion Edition), Hyper Fighting increased the game speed and added new special techniques for some of the characters such as Dhalsim's Yoga Teleport and Chun-Li's Kikoken. All of the characters received a third color scheme, which served as the default color scheme for all characters (with the original color scheme as the alternate) except for M. Bison (Vega in Japan), who still used the original color scheme as his default. Bison used his new color scheme for this version as his alternate.

Super Street Fighter II

, released on October , was one of the earliest game produced for the CPS II hardware. All of the graphics and sound were remade and a new opening intro was featured. The returning twelve characters were further balanced out and four new characters were added (Fei Long, T. Hawk, Cammy, and Dee Jay). A new scoring system is introduced that keeps track of combos, first attacks, reversals and other specific actions made by the player. However, the speed of the game was reduced back to Champion Edition-level.

A variant of the game was produced titled Super Street Fighter II: Tournament Battle. This version featured four arcade cabinets connected together for simultaneous tournament play, which uses the double-elimination format.

Super Street Fighter II Turbo

Super Street Fighter II Turbo, or in Japan, was released on April . Super Turbo introduced "Super Combos" for each character, which are special moves (usually a more powerful version of a regular special move) that can only be performed after filling up a power gauge at the bottom of the screen. Super Turbo also introduced other features, including adjustable game speed, allowing player to choose from four settings (from regular to above Hyper Fighting-level); the ability to "Juggle" or perform combos in mid-air; and the ability to "tech" or reduce damage from throwing techniques. A new character named Akuma known as Gouki in Japan, was introduced as a secret final boss as well as a selectable character via a code.

This was the last Street Fighter II game released in the arcades during the '90s. Capcom later released an arcade version of Hyper Street Fighter II in Japan and Asia in , a version of Super Turbo which allows players to select between character variants from all five Street Fighter II games. The game was originally released for the PlayStation 2.

Ports

Consoles

  • The very first home version produced by Capcom was the SNES version of Street Fighter II: The World Warrior, released on June 10, in Japan and on July in North America. This version introduced the 2-Player Versus Mode that allowed players to adjust their handicap and features a cheat code (Down, R, Up, L, Y, B at the "Capcom" screen) that allows two players to select the same character like in Champion Edition. The sprites, backgrounds and animation count introduced in the inagural SNES port of SFII would serve as the basis for several subsequent SFII ports on home consoles, PC and portables.
  • In , a PC-Engine version of Street Fighter II Dash was produced by NEC Avenue and released in Japan on June 12. A six-button controller was released specifically for the game.
  • A second SNES version by Capcom simply titled Street Fighter II Turbo (no prime symbol) was released shortly afterwards on July 10 in Japan and on August in North America. The game defaults to Turbo mode and is a port of Hyper Fighting. The SNES version allowed players to adjust the game's speed, with secret additional speed settings available via a cheat code. A second mode called Normal is available and is a port of the previous Champion Edition.
  • A Genesis/Mega Drive port was produced titled Street Fighter II ': Special Champion Edition (Street Fighter II Dash Plus: Champion Edition in Japan), released in Japan on September 28 and during the same month in North America. Special Champion Edition features much of the same content as Turbo for the SNES, except the default game mode is Champion and is a port of Champion Edition. The second mode available is Hyper and is a port of Hyper Fighting. This port contains an exclusive five-on-five "Group Battle" mode and the ability to disable any of the characters' special moves in Versus Mode. A six-button controller was also made for this version of the game.
  • In , Capcom produced ports of Super Street Fighter II for the SNES and Genesis/Mega Drive were released on June 25 in North America and Japan.
  • A version of Super Street Fighter II Turbo for the 3DO was on November . This port features an arranged version of the original CPS II soundtrack.
  • In , Capcom released a compilation for the PlayStation and Sega Saturn titled Street Fighter Collection, a two-disc set which features Super Street Fighter II and Super Turbo on one disc and Street Fighter Alpha 2 Gold (a minor upgrade of the original Street Fighter Alpha 2) on the other.
  • A Master System port of Street Fighter II was also released in 1997 for the Brazilian market, published by Tec Toy. This version, based on Champion Edition (hence the prime symbol), features only eight characters: Dhalsim, Honda, Zangief and Vega are not in this version.
  • In , a second compilation titled Street Fighter Collection 2 was released for the PlayStation, which featured the original Street Fighter II, Champion Edition and Hyper Fighting, as well as a new "Super Vs. Mode" that allows player to select between character variants from all three games. This compilation was also released for the Saturn in Japan as Vol. 5 of the Capcom Generation compilation series.
  • In , Capcom released Super Street Fighter II X for Matching Service for the Dreamcast in Japan as a mail-order title via Dreamcast Direct. This version which features an online-compatible Vs. Mode and restores the bonus rounds from previous Street Fighter II games which were removed from the arcade version of Super Turbo.
  • In , Capcom released Hyper Street Fighter II for the PlayStation 2 in Japan and Europe. Similar to the "Super Vs. Mode" in Street Fighter Collection 2, this version of the game allows players to select from different versions of the selectable from the five arcade games. Hyper includes an option for CPS, CPS II and Arranged soundtrack, as well as an edited cut of the Street Fighter II animated movie. The PS2 version of Hyper was released in North America as part of bundle titled Street Fighter Anniversary Collection, which also includes a PS2 port of Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike. The Anniversary Collection was later released for the Xbox in all three territories.
  • In , Capcom released Capcom Classics Collection Vol. 1 for the PS2 and Xbox, which features all 16 games from the Capcom Generation compilations for the PlayStation, including the three Street Fighter II games. A second compilation, Capcom Classics Collection Vol. 2, released in for the PS2 and Xbox, contains the original Street Fighter and a port of Super Street Fighter II Turbo.
  • An online-enable version of Street Fighter II : Hyper Fighting was released for the Xbox 360 in as a downloadable game available for the Xbox Live Arcade service. A high definition remake titled Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix is currently being developed for the Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Store download services. HD Remix will feature new sprites and backgrounds rendered with high-resolution artwork drawn by UDON Comics, among other changes.
  • All three Street Fighter II games released for the SNES, as well as Special Champion Edition for the Genesis, have also been released for the Wii through the Virtual Console service.

Portables

  • A Game Boy version of Street Fighter II was released in . This version is based on Super Street Fighter II, but features only nine characters, namely Ken,Ryu, M.Bison,Balrog,Chun-Li,Sagat,Blanka,Guile and Zangeif . Dhalsim, E. Honda and Vega, as well as the "New Challengers" were left out in this version due to technical limitations. The controls and some of the moves were modified due to the two-button configuration of the Game Boy console.
  • Super Street Fighter II Turbo: Revival was later released for the Game Boy Advance in , which featured several superficial changes such as new backgrounds taken from the Street Fighter Alpha and Street Fighter III games, and a revised localization.
  • The compilation Capcom Classics Collection: Reloaded for the PlayStation Portable, contains the three Street Fighter II games from Street Fighter Collection 2.
  • Mobile phone versions of the original Street Fighter II and Champion Edition have also been released.

Computers

A PC-DOS port of Street Fighter II was published and developed by US Gold in 1992. It only had two attack buttons: one for punching and one for kicking. In this port, special moves were more difficult to perform and the keyboard controls were often unresponsive. Ports for Amiga, Commodore 64, Atari ST and ZX Spectrum were also released by U.S. Gold. Capcom later released a PC port of Super Street Fighter II in based on the SNES version. During the same year, GameTek released a CD-ROM-based port of Super Street Fighter II Turbo.

In 2003 Capcom Arcade Hits Volume 1 was released for Windows PC, featuring emulated arcade versions of the original Street Fighter and Street Fighter II ': Champion Edition.

Legacy

Sequels

The Street Fighter II games were followed by several sub-series of Street Fighter games and spinoffs which includes Street Fighter Alpha, Street Fighter EX, Street Fighter III, Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo and Capcoms Vs. series (which combined Capcoms characters with properties from other companies such as Marvel, SNK and Tatsunoko). Capcom released Street Fighter IV for the arcades in .

Related media

Street Fighter II was adapted into two different film adaptations in 1994, Street Fighter II: The Animated Movie (a Japanese anime released in the U.S. courtesy of Sony Music Entertainment) and an American produced live-action film, simply titled Street Fighter. Starring Jean Claude Van Damme as Guile, Kylie Minogue as Cammy and Raúl Juliá as M. Bison, the live-action film effectively incorporated the main cast of the video game and wrapped them into an action adventure very reminiscent of the classic adventure films of yore. Director Steven E. de Souza's take on the premise: "I especially loved films like The Longest Day, The Great Escape and The Guns of Navarone. What made those films great wasn't the random violence. It was the clear-cut struggle between forces of good and evil, leading to an ultimate showdown."

There was also a US Street Fighter cartoon, which followed a combined Van Damme movie and game series plot, and an unrelated anime titled Street Fighter II V.

Reception

Guinness World Records awarded Street Fighter II three world records in the Guinness World Records: Gamer's Edition 2008. These records are "First Fighting Game to Use Combos", "Most Cloned Fighting Game", and "Biggest-Selling Coin-Operated Fighting Game." The numerous home versions of the Street Fighter II are listed among Capcoms Platinum-class titles (games which have sold more than 1 million units worldwide). As of June 30, , the SNES version of the original Street Fighter II is still the companys best-selling game, having sold more than 6.3 million units, followed by the SNES versions of Street Fighter II Turbo (4.1 million) and Super Street Fighter II (2 million), and the Genesis version of Street Fighter II': Special Champion Edition (1.65 million).

References

  • Studio Bent Stuff (2000). All About Capcom Head-to-Head Fighting Games. Dempa Publications, Inc..

External links

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