By this time, you have certainly heard about the recently unveiled fighting mash-up that is set to give Marvel Vs Capcom 3 a run for its money. I’m talking about Street Fighter X Tekken. The mix didn’t seem viable at all; if someone had told me about it before I saw the footage, I would have been convinced they were smoking something. I mean, Tekken fights take place in three dimensions while SF‘s takes place in only two. In an unprecedented union of these two genre-defining franchises, how would the gameplay go over and will these titles be released separately as two titles or should they be synthesized into one unified existence?
Well the answer came swiftly in the information that the Capcom / Namco crossover would take place over two games instead of just one. The “Street Fighter first” version will take Tekken fighters into the 2D plane and adapt them to SF‘s worlds famous combat. The “Tekken first” version will take Street Fighter characters into the 3rd dimension and adapt them to Tekken‘s juggle-happy, in-depth gameplay. These new games make up a fighting game fan’s wet dream, but they beg the question: Were two titles necessary to express this vision?
Now fans of both of these series (including myself) know all too well how different these two games are from one another. So it goes without saying that the game had to appeal to both base audiences. Anything else would alienate either the Tekken fan or the Street Fighter fan. This is not a case of games with similar mechanics being slammed together a ‘la Marvel vs Capcom. For these two crossovers fighting games from two opposite ends of the spectrum are fusing and there’s no buts about it.
Apparently Namco will be handling the “Tekken first” version and Capcom will be handling the other. This is good news for fans and bad news for consumers. In perspective, this kind of seems like milking to the tenth power. Considering that both games will likely ship at full price, fans of both series are staring down a purchase of $120. While that is just fine for the developers, gamers find it daunting enough to come up with just half of that for new games. That being said, was there no other way to make this happen?
My colleagues here at DualShockers and I spoke about the matter earlier. I found it a much wiser alternative that they simply include both play styles in one game. Even if this game charged a new premium for the staggering amount of content it would enclose, say $80, it would still be worlds more affordable than purchasing two new games at full price. I sincerely hope Capcom / Namco at least consider it because if they don’t and the only way to enjoy both playing styles is to buy both games, they can expect a backlash from devote fans of both franchises.
It kind of feels like they would prefer you bought one or the other. Maybe the two fighters were meant to compete with each other (contextually speaking). Even if I were to buy both, I would still have to switch discs to enjoy them both were they to be sold separately. I personally have between six and eight people in a game rotation at any given time in my house. Of those six, I’d say the consensus is down the middle on whether Tekken 6 or Super Street Fighter IV is the more enjoyable fighter. If they were to combine the titles, we could play SSFIV style for half and Tekken style for the other. If i’m going to buy both games anyway, I deserve the option right?
It’s still too early to tell exactly how this will go over. Perhaps either Namco or Capcom will read this and realize what a big mistake they might be making. I understand that you get what you pay for, but should I really be paying twice for something that could easily have been an extension of what I bought the first time? Another thing that will work against them is the relatively small fighting demographic. For instance, you probably don’t know half as many Tekken 6 fans as you know Modern Warfare 2 fans.
The fighting genre is still very much a niche genre because of the complexity involved in top tier play. Combining the two games-to-be would effectively combine the two audiences. Most Street Fighter fans find Tekken underwhelming and the reverse could be said of Tekken‘s fans. However, if both were accessible in one package, then perhaps even the most stubborn Street Fighter guru would dabble in the intricacies of Tekken‘s mechanics (and vice versa). What will happen remains to be seen, but I for one will have to choose between these versions if they are not combined in a more affordable, complete deal, because $120 is simply to much too spend on what is arguably one game.