Features// Xmas 2012 - The Video Games Easy Buyers Guide

Posted 20 Dec 2012 17:39 by
This is a shame really because it?s a bit of a gem. The gameplay is very similar to the brilliant Street Fighter IV but with a faster pace thanks to its tag team mechanics and with a host of Tekken characters thrown in against the Street Fighter stalwarts. Like most of Capcom?s fighting games however, this might not be the best choice for casual fans.

Unless you?re ready to put the time and effort into learning the game and mastering combos and techniques before taking your skills online to compete against other players, there?s not much meat here for a solo player. But if you were a big fan of Street Fighter IV and put a lot of time into it then this pseudo-sequel might be right up your alley.

Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition (360, PS3, PC)
Speaking of Street Fighter IV, this is the most complete iteration of the game there is. While the Arcade Edition wasn't as big a step up from Super Street Fighter IV as that edition was from the original release of the game, it still adds a few new characters and features that die-hard Street Fighter fans will look into. And if you didn't pick up the Super edition then the Arcade Edition includes all of that content as well, almost doubling the size of the character roster and adding new stages and a host of online features.

If you never even picked up the original release of Street Fighter IV, then you either really don't care for fighting games or you're doing it all wrong. A brilliant, bold art style with precise, well-balanced gameplay and an incredibly diverse range of fighting styles made Street Fighter IV the game that revitalised the fighting genre. Even though it's getting on a bit now, there's still a thriving competitive online community behind it, which is great as the game is admittedly lacking in single-player content.

Mortal Kombat (360, PS3, PC)
While the Mortal Kombat series had fallen into disrepute following a decade of decidedly mediocre efforts culminating in the spectacularly underwhelming Mortal Kombat: Armageddon, this reboot did much to help the series regain its kredibility.

Admittedly Mortal Kombat's gameplay and balance have never been as tight as its rivals, but by returning to the series' 2D roots and introducing a tag-team system this game takes things up a notch. Also there's loads of gore. The bloody and ridiculously over the top fatalities have always been a hallmark of the series and Mortal Kombat fans who love the red stuff won't be disappointed here.

Even if it does struggle to hold up next to Street Fighter and the like as far as pure gameplay goes, Mortal Kombat's real advantage over its rivals is the far greater amount of single player kontent it has on offer. With a lengthy character-driven story mode that retells the events of the original trilogy and a Challenge Tower that presents the player with hundreds of unique scenarios to complete, Mortal Kombat is almost unique in giving the player plenty to do before heading online to test their skills against their fellow man.

If you don't approve of Capcom's extensive DLC and updated release practices, Mortal Kombat doesn't dabble too much in that sort of thing. There are some extra characters, including a surprise crossover appearance by horror icon Freddy Kreguer, available, but they're easily ignored unless you're a big Nightmare on Elm Street fan.

This one's unique but a great choice for anyone looking for either a slightly different fighting game or a really different RPG. With gameplay more reminiscent of Kingdom Hearts than anything else that springs to mind, this gibberishly-named crossover gathers together a selection of heroes and villains from throughout the entire Final Fantasy series to take part in amazing gravity-defying duels.
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