Of course we can’t have a Cap-Vember without talking about the Street Fighter series and with Street Fighter V coming in 2016 I guess I can talk about it and why don’t we start from the very first one. Street Fighter (ストリートファイターSutorīto Faitā), developed and published by Capcom and was released in 1987. There were home ports and the most well-known one was on the PC Engine/TurboGrafx CD but the title was changed to Fighting Street, I don’t know why since it’s an official port but it was the 80’s, who knows.
The game was produced and directed by Takashi Nishiyama and planned by Hiroshi Matsumoto, both previously worked on Avengers (No, not the Marvel comic book series). And right after producing the game, they left Capcom to go to SNK and produce rip-offs of Street Fighter II, those being Fatal Fury and Art of Fighting, games released after Street Fighter II. So the guys who created the illustrious series ended up making copy cats of the game they made. Think about that for a minute. But they did comeback and work on Street Fighter IV, and before they did anything they probably were forced to write a 500 page apology to Capcom for their treasonry. Keiji Inafune, best known for Mega Man, worked on the game as a character portrait illustrator for the game and this was the first thing he did when he started working for Capcom.
You either play as Player 1 Ryu or Player 2 Ken (and those are the only characters you can play as) as you go around the world and battling different opponents…and that’s about it, you can punch, kick and use command based special techniques and that’s about it too. There are many characters to defeat including Retsu, a Shorinji Kempo instructor and Ninja Geki, both represent Japan. In ‘murica we have, Joe, a karate champion and Mike, former heavyweight boxer with a sofa nose and racially insensitive lips.
In China we have Lee, an expert in Chinese boxing and Gen, an elderly professional killer. And then from Ye ol’ England, Birdie, a bouncer and Eagle, a well-dressed bodyguard. The final stages are at Thailand where you battle Adon, and his mentor Sagat, way before M. Bison became the main villain. Keep in mind that only four of these characters make a comeback in future games in the series. The graphics are very detailed to an extent, though it’s not aged too well and the music is forgettable. The gameplay….SUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCKS, I mean maybe for the time it was decent, but this is horrible, it’s clunky, stiff and just not fun to play, and that’s about it.
Overall, this is a basic but terrible fighting game, but I will say that it’s a shame that people who love the Street Fighter series or most gamers at all don’t know anything about the first game since many people know about Street Fighter II, in fact that game is more of the first game in the series than the first game in the series. But I recommend playing it for the true history of Street Fighter.
You can get it for the Arcade, Amiga, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, DOS, PC Engine/TurboGrafx CD, Wii Virtual Console, Xbox, PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable (the latter three as part of Capcom Classics Collection) and the ZX Spectrum.
Next Year: A Street Fighter II Retrospective, because it’s better than making separate game reviews for it.