Friday, May 1, 2009

The Arcade Experience for 5/1/09

Today I went arcade hopping as stated on Twitter playing the newest fighting games at various SoCal arcades. First off was Super Arcade trying to shake off any rust of Tekken 6 BR and Street Fighter IV (Getting ready for Sunday's A.I. Ranbat 2.2 tournament). Then it was some Pho for lunch and then Arcade Infinity for some BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger and King of Fighters XII, both of these just came out at AI in the past week or two. But first...

I'll mention the PSN Demo for Marvel vs. Capcom 2 that came out yesterday showing off what the game looks like in widescreen. The demo features six characters which are Spider-Man, Wolverine, Iron Man, Ryu, Chun-Li, and Strider-Hiryu and its local multiplayer only with no online at all, which pissed lots of people off considering they only have one controller. Basically, its Marvel in 16:9, but there's options to play in 4:3. In addition, there are filtering options with classic, smooth, and crisp modes, but these filters pretty much look the same. Other than that, it plays like Marvel and looks like Marvel with the signature cheesy music in tow if you love blasting "I wanna take you for a ride" all day long. Unlike all the complaints that I mentioned earlier, I'm trying to use the demo as a practice mode to learn the characters more especially Iron Man since I want to learn the infinite for some odd reason. Just make sure you have someone along playing local versus with you for this demo if you want to get some mileage out of it.

Arcade Infinity's hottest new game, King of Fighters XII, is drawing some crowds because it is a SNK game and it does look that good with that HD 2D art style. Currently, it is 50 cents to play since it is a new game and as expected, the competition is already stiff. I, myself, am a newbie at this game only knowing certain characters like Andy, Iori, Joe, and Terry, but I'm willing to learn it and play it on consoles (which is out in July). I only played two or three matches at AI today and I just flat out don't know what I'm doing in terms trying to learn the new stuff KOF XII provides like parries, criticial counters, and more. Like usual SNK fighting games, it is a four button setup of light punches and kicks / strong punches and kicks while combining them allows to excute throws, evades, and the new stuff I already mentioned. It might be crazy at first playing this game because the screen seems zoomed in with characters looking a little big, but eventually you'll get used to it as you play more. I at least still know special moves by Andy, Joe, and Terry, but I know I need to do more than that to be considered decent at the game.

I had a much easier time playing BlazBlue than KOF XII since no one is really playing it at the time I was playing it and plus it is truly Guilty Gear with a new set of characters. Most of these characters seem like ripoffs of Guilty Gear characters like Ragna (my main) having somewhat a Sol Badguy vibe and Jin playing like Ky-iske. I mostly played single player as Ragna, which is 9 stages with rival battles halfway and the second to last fight. Basically, if you know Guilty Gear, you will feel right at home with BlazBlue. Personally, I'm not that good at the Guilty Gear games as I play them casually and I will feel the same way about BlazBlue in the end even though I'm still buying it on console in June 30 (50 bucks standard and 60 bucks for limited edition). Just like KOF XII, I'm willing to learn BlazBlue, but who knows if I have the time to be somewhat effective other than doing some basic stuff. My Ragna is currently a rushdown type style being aggressive towards the opponent. I'm not really worried about all the meters in the display since I don't know what's their purpose and my health meter is usually saying danger even when its high (probably because I use quick recovery too much). BlazBlue is a solid fighter by ArcSystemWorks continuing what has worked in the Guilty Gear franchise for those who appreciate that type of hardcore fighting.

The fighting game genre is still going strong for the rest of the year with the games above satisfying both the casual and hardcore audience. While games like Street Fighter IV satisfy both which is why its the early contender for fighting game of the year, BlazBlue and KOF XII do provide enough depth for the hardcore crowd and hopefully casual people can jump in to these as well than just SF4, Tekken 6 BR, and MvC2. Basically, its awesome to love fighting games again.

Before I forget...

Arcade Infinity also has some random new beat-em-up called Action Deka, which is crazy. I didn't play it myself, but from what I heard from AI regulars, the game is truly a workout with your arms. This game is basically controlled by gloves and you have to literally punch to take out the opposition. The reason this game is so random is the enemies you face which might be too offensive for some people. Here's the game in action below (I think this game costs a buck to play and 50 cents to continue):

That's it for the arcade experience for now... I'll be back at Arcade Infinity for the SF4 Ranbat 2.2 tournament on Sunday and hopefully I can do better than 1-2. The AI regulars like Kryojenix, Moval, Tatsu, and Paul (somuchdamage) were there today practicing up at casual play and usually the line to play arcade SF4 still to this day is hella long.

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