Switch to: Deutsch
The Playstation Vita is home to many great fighting games like BlazBlue: Continuum Shift Extend and Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3, with Dead or Alive 5 Plus on the way. With this said, Street Fighter x Tekken is a decent addition to the Vita’s library, but is unable to reach the greatness of other fighters on the system.
For those that haven’t experienced the console versions, Street Fighter x Tekken is a 2-on-2 fighting game bringing together 2 of Capcom and Namco’s biggest franchises. The roster is large and fairly varied, with some other characters like Mega Man and Cole McGrath (Infamous) being thrown in for good measure. Thankfully the Vita version also includes all of the characters that were introduced as DLC for the console version, as well as a decent selection of costumes, with a total of 54 fighters being available.
Street Fighter x Tekken uses Street Fighter IV’s button layout, with weak, medium and strong versions of punches and kicks. Specials are pulled of using directional inputs in combination with attack buttons. Like Street Fighter IV, you can also power up special moves by pressing two attack buttons of the same type. Since this is a team based fighter, you can switch between fighters, even when attacking to extend combos. Basic tag combos are relatively easy to pull off, so newcomers should be able to pull off longer combos with less fuss.
While the Vita version’s controls are acceptable, it’s not perfect. With strong attacks mapped to the L and R buttons, your hands start to cramp after a while. With access to other control methods like fight sticks, this can be annoying during long sessions of play, but you get used to it eventually.
The Vita version of Street Fighter x Tekken looks amazing. Characters and stages are as close to the console versions as possible, with the difference being barely noticeable on the Vita’s smaller screen. The only part that could use some work is the special effects, with hit animation looking a little pixelated. Still, it’s only a slight problem, and it doesn’t detract much from the game’s stunning visuals.
As for different modes, Street Fighter x Tekken includes many of the genre staples, including a basic arcade mode and training modes. Also included is a Burst Kumite mode, where you fight against an infinite number of opponents with Ai that is based on people you have fought online. This is a nice twist to the infinite modes that are usually included in fighting games.
One feature excusive to the Vita is touch integration. While this works fine for navigating menus and the like, its implementation into actual fights is less than perfect. Touching different part of the screen allows you to pull off ready-made combos easily. This takes out a lot of the challenge of finding combos for yourself. While this feature can be avoided, it can be annoying to go up against someone who spams them.
Included in the Vita version is a range of extra features unavailable in the console versions. There’s a gallery where you can view character models and mess around with sound effects. The game also makes use of the Vita’s camera for an Augmented Reality mode. This allows you to bring characters into the real world where you can take photos of them. While these are cool little extras, they don’t really add much to the game, and you’ll most likely forget about them after a short while.
There are also a few other unique systems in Street Fighter x Tekken. Cross assault allows you to bring both of your fighters onto the stage at the same time. This gives you the opportunity to unleash some interesting combos. Players also have access to Pandora mode. When your current fighter has less than a quarter health you are able to access this mode, which significantly powers up your reserve character. After a short amount of time in this powered up state your fighter is instantly KO’d, which means that this option is only viable if your opponent is low on health too. While this mode used to be far too short to be of any use, the recent patch released fixes this (more on that later).
Something Street Fighter x Tekken introduces that we’re not fond of is the gem system. Characters can have different gems set to them which activate after certain conditions are met. Gems can give players certain bonuses, like attack and defence. While this would be ok if you had access to every gem easily, this is not the case here. Some gems are locked off as paid content, which can cause imbalances during online multiplayer.
Capcom recently released a 2013 patch for Street Fighter x Tekken, which fixes some of the problems that we originally had when we started playing. Characters have received numerous tweaks and, among other things, a significant damage boost. You see, before the patch it was quite common to have matches ending at a timeout, with attacks not doing enough damage. The damage boost helps to make fights feel faster paced, with timeouts being extremely rare. Overall, the patch really helps to improve the game, and hopefully it brings people back to it who may have stopped playing.
This leads us on to one major problem Street Fighter x Tekken on the Vita has; The lack of players online. Even after the patch, it can take a long time to find opponents to fight against. Even when you do find someone, they end up being a far higher rank than you. At least it’s possible to connect to PS3 users, but even then it still takes a while to find matches. When you’re in games, the netcode is fairly smooth. There are some sound issues that are caused by the way the online code works, but for the most part it’s acceptable.
Verdict: A fun yet flawed Fighter
Overall, Street Fighter x Tekken on the Vita is a great port of a decent fighting game. While not perfect, it has enough to keep you occupied for a while, as long as you’re not too bothered about playing online.
We created all screenshots with the Vita version.
Street Fighter x Tekken
System: Xbox 360, PS3, PSVita
Version tested: PSVita
Price: 30 GBP /36 US-Dollar / 42 Euro (Retail: UK/US/DE – similar price on PSN)