Publisher

Tim Lindquist
Editor in Chief
Greg Off
greg@hardcoregamer.com
Editorial Director
Steve Hannley
Editors
Steve Hannley Danny Cowan
Thomas Wilde David Brothers
Geson Hatchett Iaian Ross
Jason Venter James Cunningham
Jeremy Peeples Karin Renoux
Steven Kent Thomas Shin
Jeb Haught
Spooktartler
Julie Miyamoto
Artists
Terry Wolfinger
Amadeo Garcia III
Production Director
Brady Hartel
Production Artists
John McKechnie David Silviera
Casey Yates Julie Miyamoto
Translator
Elizabeth Ellis
Asset Manager
Adam Beck
Ad sales
Burr Hilsabeck
415-412-5685
burr@hardcoregamer.com
Games Daishi
Martin Gilbert
Customer Service
425-868-2216
V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
Hardcore Gamer® Magazi ne i s publ i shed quart erl y by Doubl eJump®
Publ i shi ng, Inc. at 21407 NE Uni on Hi l l Rd, Redmond, WA 98053.
Per i odi cal s post age pai d at Redmond WA and at addi t i onal mai l i ng of fices.
USPS NO. 024063. ISSN 19362110 POSTMASTER: send addr ess changes t o
Har dcor e Gamer Magazi ne, PO Box 146, Redmond, WA 98073. “ Har dcor e
Gamer ” and “ Doubl eJump” ar e t r ademar ks or r egi st er ed t r ademar ks of
Doubl eJump Publ i shi ng Incor por at ed. Al l r i ght s r eser ved. No par t of t hi s
magazi ne may be r epr oduced or t r ansmi t t ed i n any f or m or by any means,
el ect r oni c or mechani cal , i ncl udi ng phot ocopyi ng, r ecor di ng, or by any
i nf or mat i on st or age or r et r i eval syst em wi t hout wr i t t en per mi ssi on f r om
Doubl eJump Publ i shi ng. Doubl eJump Books i s a di vi si on of Doubl eJump
Publ i shi ng, Inc.
Doubl eJump Publ i shi ng and t he aut hor s have made ever y ef f or t t o ensur e
t hat t he i nf or mat i on cont ai ned i n t hi s magazi ne i s accur at e. However, t he
publ i sher makes no war r ant y, ei t her expr essed or i mpl i ed, as t o t he accur acy,
ef f ect i veness, or compl et eness of t he mat er i al i n t hi s magazi ne; nor does t he
publ i sher assume l i abi l i t y f or damages, ei t her i nci dent al or consequent i al ,
t hat may r esul t f r om usi ng t he i nf or mat i on i n t hi s magazi ne. Quest i ons
r egar di ng oper at i on of t he game sof t war e and har dwar e shoul d be di r ect ed
t o t he suppor t number s pr ovi ded by t he game and devi ce manuf act ur er s i n
t hei r document at i on.
Pr i nt ed i n t he Uni t ed St at es of Amer i ca
DJPubba_Tim Lindquist
I was r ecent l y checki ng out eBay r ecent l y f or r et r o
gami ng goodi es and came acr oss a sel l er i n t he UK sel l i ng
hi s SG- 1000 ( Japanese Mast er Syst em) col l ect i on. The
games had t he best names evar . Check i t out : Dr agon
Wang. Guzzl er. Gi r l s’ Gar den. Hust l e Chumy. Al so St ar
Jacker. Yes, St ar. . . Jacker. . . . Her e I t hought Hol e Land,
Hot Dog St or m, Van Van Car and Oh My God! wer e t he
best game names I’ d hear d.
Now Pl ayi ng: Cast l evani a ( DS, X68000, ar cade) , Di sgaea 3
Roger Danish_Greg Off
Wolfie_Terry Wolfinger
Wanderer_Thomas Wilde Lynxara_Alicia Ashby
Arlieth_Thomas Shin
James_James Cunningham
Racewing_Geson Hatchett Ashura_Brady Hartel
A
Ja
Wat chi ng t he Max Payne movi e r emi nded me t hat I’ ve
been meani ng t o r epl ay t he Max Payne games. They’ ve
aged r emar kabl y wel l , but t he most ast oundi ng t hi ng i s
how somebody managed t o wal k away f r om t hese and
make a sl ow, bor i ng, t al ky nap i nducer of a movi e. What
t he hel l .
Now Pl ayi ng: Cast l evani a: Or der of Eccl esi a, Max Payne,
Mega Man 9, Wor l d of War cr af t
Thi s i s get t i ng r i di cul ous. I get t o pl ay maybe one RPG a
year, i f I’ m l ucky. Once you get out of col l ege and i nt o
t he wor k f or ce, t hat ’ s r eal l y al l you can do. I’ ve had
Per sona 3 si t t i ng her e f or t wo year s now! I move we make
RPG st or i es mor e conci se, and t he games t hemsel ves l ess
gr i nd- t ast i c. Who’ s wi t h me —hey, what ’ s wi t h t hose
pi t chf or ks?
Now Pl ayi ng: Sai nt s Row 2, Soni c Unl eashed, Mor t al
Kombat II
Thi s mont h Gr eg wr ot e 45 of fici al st r at egy gui des, 19
i nst r uct i on manual s, l ocal i zed f our games and pl eased one
sexy l ady, al l whi l e wor ki ng f r om a hot el i n Japan on hi s
l apt op and i Phone.
Now Pl ayi ng: Phone t ag
What possesses publ i sher s t o r el ease a year ’ s wor t h of
games i n a si ngl e mont h?
Now Pl ayi ng: Per sona 4, Tal es of Symphoni a: Dawn of
t he New Wor l d
Hal l oween i s gone and Thanksgi vi ng i s seguei ng r i ght i nt o
Chr i st mas. What t he &%*@happened t o 2008? Ser i ousl y,
i t onl y j ust st ar t ed l ast week. If I’ m one of t he most
i mpat i ent peopl e on t he pl anet i t ’ s onl y because someone
sl ammed down t he accel er at or on t he r ocket - bi ke of t i me
and t hey j ust won’ t l et up.
Now pl ayi ng: Mot her 3, Li t t l e Bi g Pl anet , Si l ent Hi l l
Homecomi ng, and much, much mor e.
So about t wo mont hs back I was f or t unat e enough t o
par t i ci pat e i n Sebast i an Kr uger ’ s 4t h annual wor kshop hel
i n Bar si nghausen, Ger many. It was mysel f al ong wi t h 20
ot her ar t i st s sel ect ed wor l dwi de f or a week of pai nt i ng
( and some dr i nki ng) wi t h t he mast er, hi msel f ! If you don’ t
know who t hi s guy i s, googl e hi m- he’ s amazi ng! Cur r ent l y
r ecover i ng f r om a t equi l a- soaked Hal l oween! “ For t he
Hor de! ”
Cur r ent l y Pl ayi ng: Sai nt ’ s Row 2
I don’ t know why, but f or some r eason I’ ve st uck wi t h
per haps t he wor st char act er i n al l of St r eet Fi ght er IV. . .
Vega ( Cl aw) . Maybe I l i ke t aki ng mor e damage t han Akuma
when my mask fli es of f . Maybe I l i ke bei ng t r apped i n a
cor ner wi t h no r ever sal s. Maybe Zangi ef j ust want s t o be
my f r i end, but t hat usual l y i nvol ves havi ng my skul l cr ushed
bet ween hi s t hi ghs. Maybe my cl aw keeps f al l i ng of f because
my gi r l f r i end j ust put t hem i n t he di shwasher agai n.
Now Pl ayi ng: St r eet Fi ght er IV ( Ar cade) , Cont act ( DS) ,
Li t t l e Bi g Pl anet ( PS3)
Fun Fact : Di scar ded pi zza boxes ar e an i nval uabl e sour ce
of cheese.
Now you know, and knowi ng i s hal f t he bat t l e.
Now Pl ayi ng: Li t t l e Bi g Pl anet , Cast l evani a: Or der of
Eccl esi a, and Per sona 4
HonestGamer_JasonVenter
Jeremy_Jeremy Peeples Je
I’ ve not i ced t hat whi l e on t he one hand I’ m const ant l y
l ooki ng f or t hose f ew games t hat pr esent me wi t h
somet hi ng new I haven’ t encount er ed dur i ng my year s of
gami ng, t he ot her hand i s busy pl ayi ng t he heck out of
ever yt hi ng f ami l i ar t hat I can find. Me? Confli ct ed?
Now Pl ayi ng: Dokapon Ki ngdom ( Wi i ) , Tal es of Vesper i a,
St ar Ocean: Fi r st Depar t ur e, Mega Man 9 ( Xbox Li ve)
It t ook t wo year s, but I was final l y abl e t o find ( and buy) a
Wi i and af t er scour i ng t he shel ves f or st uf f , I’ m baf fled by
t he sheer quant i t y of shovel war e f or i t . Thank goodness f or
A- l i st hol i day r el eases.
Now Pl ayi ng : Mot her 3, Super Mar i o RPG, Mega Man Zer o
4, Mi dni ght Cl ub: LA, For za Mot or spor t 2, GRID
Hitoshura_Iaian Ross
Kitty_Karin Renoux
Why i s i t t hat whenever I ment i on “ f og” wi t h r egar ds
t o Per sona 4, a f og bank r ol l s i n wher e I l i ve f or an hour
and t hen di sappear s?
Now Pl ayi ng: Per sona 4
The i ndust r y i s a cr uel , cr uel pl ace. Ther e’ s a weal t h of
t i t l es I need t o pl ay, but I have no t i me f or t hem.
Now pl ayi ng: Not hi ng. Not hi ng at al l .
Dack_Steve Hannley
You’ r e goi ng t o want t o eat cat f ood, huf f a l i t t l e
gl ue and dr i nk some beer. Ther e’ s some sor t of wei r d
r eact i on when t hat happens. It makes you f eel si ck and
want t o f al l asl eep, because t her e’ s goi ng t o be about
50 cat s howl i ng out si de your wi ndow and you have no
i dea how l oud 50 cat s ar e.
Now Pl ayi ng: Fal l out 3, Yel l ow’ s “ Oh Yeah” , TV On t he
Radi o’ s “ Dear Sci ence”
As
Fun
of c
Now
Now
H
W
t
a
W
Wa
be
ag
ho
m
t h
Kitty
The i
t i t l es
Big Wyrm_Jeb Haught
Wel l , I di dn’ t t hi nk i t was possi bl e, but somet hi ng
has t empor ar i l y r epl aced my addi ct i on t o WAR, and
i t s name i s Fal l out 3. I’ m defini t el y not done wi t h
WAR, but I’ m f or ced t o t ake a shor t hi at us. Funny
how Fal l out 3 cost s t he same as ot her games who’ s
devel oper s di dn’ t even put f or t h 1/ 10 t he ef f or t .
That ’ s r i ght , I’ m t al ki ng t o you Gol den Axe: Beast
Ri der !
Cur r ent l y Pl ayi ng: Fal l out 3, Dead Space,
Resi st ance 2
Tr y Net flix f ree f or t wo weeks.
* St reaming inst ant l y f rom Net flix requires Xbox LIVE Gol d membership and a Net flix unl imit ed subscript ion
pl an. Hard drive is recommended f or Xbox LIVE, and is required f or some f eat ures. See www.xbox.com/ l ive.
See t he New Xbox Experience at xbox.com/ nxe.
Get inst ant st reaming* and wat ch DVD rent al s on your Xbox 360
®
.
Connect wit h f riends as you share games, phot os, and more.
Enjoy t he best in ent er t ainment right in your l iving room.
The Ul t imat e in Social Ent ert ainment .
The New Xbox Experience
V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
We’ve got t w o huge, in-dep t h look s at W ii Mus ic <
and Sonic Unleas hed t his mont h. Go bey ond t he
s c ore, and c hec k out our int erv iew c overage w it h
Nint endo’s Shigeru Miy amot o and Sega’s Pat ric k
Riley . It s tart s on p age 4 2 .
St reet Fight er IV is in arc ades t hroughout J ap an and t he Wes t Coas t , and t hat means it ’s t ime t o break t he
game op en and s ee how it t ic k s . Chec k out our in-dep t h ex aminat ions of SFIV ’s s y s t em mec hanic s , c harac t er
s t rat egies , and an ex c lus ive int erv iew w it h Yos hinori Ono! It all begins on p age 8 .
Is t here a game t uc k ed aw ay in y our c los et , forgot t en,
t hat c ould be w ort h big buc k s ? Well, p robably not . St ill,
if y ou w ant an educ at ion on w hat t he mos t c ollec t ible,
rare, and valuable games of all t ime are, c has e t he
c huc k w agon t o p age 3 4 .
8 . on the cover
street fighter iv
the rundown the run Ê
Ç
means it ’s t ime t o break t he
s s y s t em mec hanic s , c harac t er
ss
8 on the cover
street fighter iv street fighter iv
8 . on the cover on the cove
ÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇÇ
pg.8 : cover
street fighter iv
pg.3 4: feature
let’s retrogame holiday !
pg.42 : review
wii music
pg.45 : review
sonic unleashed
pg.48 : online gamer
resistance 2
pg.49 : imports
ikuze! gen-san
pg.5 0 : imports
pc engine best collection
pg.5 2 : imports
trouble witches
pg.6 0 : gravey ard
uncharted waters
pg.6 4 games america forgot
mother 3
pg.6 6 arcade
rambo
Ç
3 4 feature
let’s retrogame holiday ! Ê
3 4 feature
let’s retrogame holiday ! Ê
42 reviews
sonic unleashed, wii music É
42 reviews
sonic unleashed, wii music É
8 . on the cover
street fighter iv
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 8_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
More than you ever wanted to know
ABOUT HOW TO PLAY STREET FIGHTER IV
Introduction
In 1999, when Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike hit arcades
across the world, no one knew when players would
master it, least of all the game’s Sound Management
Director, Yoshinori Ono. For years, players strove to
exhaust every technique, gimmick, combo, glitch and
strategy from its nineteen-character roster, with only
four of them (Ryu, Ken, Chun-Li and Akuma) from the
original Street Fighter II series. Later, the game would
achieve some devoted success with the hardcore
crowd, while alienating many others who were unable
to survive its terrifying learning curve. It was clear that
the Street Fighter franchise was a mere shadow of its
former glory. But Street Fighter was as much a part of
Capcom’s identity as Castlevania is to Konami. And
even as Capcom Coin-Op USA closed its doors in
2004, fans never gave up hope.
Almost a decade later, Street Fighter ¿nally makes
its comeback. In an effort to return the series to its
former glory, Yoshinori Ono, now Lead Producer
for the series, has taken a step back... literally, as
Street Fighter IV takes place before the events of the
controversial (and almost impossible to master) Street
Fighter III trilogy. The gameplay is reminiscent of the
old-school era of Super Turbo. The original World
Warriors, along with the Four Bosses of Shadaloo,
have returned. Most importantly, it no longer requires
a Master’s Degree (har har) to survive a match for
thirty seconds. It’s kinder. Gentler. n00b-friendly, even.
But it doesn’t make it any less hardcore. Quite the
opposite, in fact. Often touted as a “hardcore game”,
Street Fighter II: 3rd Strike’s technical requirements
gave players the Àexibility to rely more upon skill than
a carefully planned strategy. This was evident from
the amount of damage possible in a single combo,
because characters such as Yun, Urien and Makoto
could win with a single opening. With insta-kill setups
and the all-out offense possible with the Parry system,
it wasn’t as important to play carefully and strategically
when a single guess could lead you to victory.
Street Fighter IV is a total break from that
philosophy. It is a game of position, angles and
the crafting of traps. The reduced mobility, the
slower pace and the Ultra System each contribute
to a game engine that encourages careful play.
At the highest levels of play, the game is about
strategically reducing your opponent’s options over
time so that they are caught in an inescapable
situation. Some would call this “cheap”.
The cold truth about Street Fighter II is that
most fans of the series never reached that
level of skill. Many were held back by
an invisible code of honor that limited
their potential, with rules like “no
throwing” and “no chip-kills”. As
a result, gamers who haven’t
touched a Street Fighter title in
years will have a lot of catching
up to do.
If you’ve never played a ¿ghting game
before, be warned: Most other types of
games (e.g.: RPGs, adventure) have a
learning curve that spans a few hours. They
are intended to be played for a couple weeks, at
best. A ¿ghting game is designed to be played for
years, and its learning curve reÀects that. If you have
friends that play Super Smash Bros. Brawl (arguably
the most popular ¿ghting game on
the planet), you’re probably going
to end up being just like them.
Street Fighter IV is a hardcore
game with a hardcore learning
curve. Fortunately, we wrote a
hardcore guide to help you along.
Return
of the
NEW
CHALLENGERS
É
>
>
>
by arlieth
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV _COV ER_9
>Position
Being trapped in a corner at close range is a very
dangerous situation.
Position and
Movement
Street Fighter IV places particular importance on
position and movement. You can walk, crouch, jump
and dash, and each of these will immediately change
your available moves and your position in relation
to two things: Your opponent, and the corners of the
stage. Knowing your options in the myriad combinations
of positions is crucial- some characters ¿ght better
at close range, others ¿ght better in the air, and it is
almost universally bad news to have your back to the
wall. New to this game is the ability to back-dash with a
brief invulnerability period. This is crucial for close and
medium-range ¿ghts where you’re on the defensive
and need some breathing room. However, if you’re
stuck in the corner, your back-dash won’t do you much
good. There is one other position: Àat on your back. If
you’re knocked down, you can usually Quick-Recover
by tapping Down or pressing two buttons.
Note: This guide uses abbreviations: Directions are
denoted by (u)p, (d)own, (b)ack and (f)orward, while
positions are denoted by (c.)rouching or (j.)umping. Far
and Close positions are relative to your opponent and
will be mentioned as well, but not abbreviated.
Blocking
Before you press a single button, learn to block. You’ll
need to know when to block, how to block (high or low?)
and when you can’t block. For starters, all jumping
attacks (except for dive-kicks) must be blocked high,
and all crouching kicks must be blocked low. Most other
attacks canbeblockedeither standingor crouching, with
the exception of “Overheads” which must be blocked
high and usually have a short delay before striking.
When blocking an attack, you’ll be in a state called
“block-stun”, where you are unable to attack, move
or jump. Some blocked attacks allow you to retaliate
before your opponent recovers. The only attacks you
cannot block are Throws, Command Throws (Grabs)
and Level 3 Focus Attacks. Finally, immediately after
blocking an attack, you cannot be thrown for a brief
period of time (until your block-stun wears off).
Normal Attacks
These are the bread-and-butter of every Street
Fighter match. Like chess pawns, they may not seem
impressive, but they make up for it in sheer numbers.
All characters have Close Standing, Far Standing,
Crouching, Vertical Jumping and Diagonal Jumping
versions of their normal attacks, each with different
properties. You should pay extra attention to your
character’s c.HK range, since it’s knockdown makes it
the most tactically powerful of your normal attacks.
LP: Light Punch. Extremely quick but short-ranged and
weak, these often chain together with Light Kicks to
form the basis of close-quarters combat.
MP: Medium Punch. Average speed, strength and
range, but often allows you to link or cancel into many
Special Attacks or other normal attacks.
HP: Hard Punch. Slowest speed, with high power and
priority. Can often be canceled into Special Attacks at
close range. Slow recovery if missed.
LK: Light Kick. Very quick, but weak. Usually reaches
farther than Light Punch. Crouching LKs are necessary
for ¿nding holes in your opponent’s defense.
MK: Medium Kick. Very good speed and range, and
usually allows you to cancel into Special Attacks from
farther distances. Important for ‘footsies’.
HK: Hard Kick. Slowest kick, but the most versatile at
long distance. Crouching HKs (c.HK) will knock down,
and j.HKs almost always set up for combos.
Command Normals
These are normal attacks that usually require you to
hold a direction on the controller. For example, Guile’s
Chopping Straight is notated as “f+MP”. Hold Forward
and press MP to execute it. Many command normals
have special properties (the Chopping Straight is an
Overhead attack, for example), and some can even be
done in the air, like Rufus’s Falcon Kick (df+j.MK).
Throws
Throws are performed with LP+LK at close range.
They’re unblockable, but can be defended against if
the opponent presses LP+LK at the same time. Throws
cannot be Quick-Recovered from, and some characters
can perform throws in the air as well (Guile, Chun-Li
and Vega). You can ‘tick’ into a throw by forcing your
opponent to block with a quick attack like c.LK, then
throwing them almost immediately afterwards. (If you
throw too soon, they’ll still be in block-stun and you’ll
miss.) You can perform different throws by moving the
controller back, forward or leaving it in neutral right
before you throw.
Special Attacks
These are your fancy chess pieces, your bishops,
knights and rooks. Almost all of these have special
properties (projectile, invincibility frames, juggle, etc.)
and look really fancy, but usually have severe recovery
if blocked. They can also be performed by ‘canceling’ a
normal attack to a special attack. However, they require
fancy motions like QCF (Quarter Circle Forward), HCB
(Half Circle Back), Charge (hold a direction for one
second) and DP (Shorthand for “Dragon Punch”, or Ryu
and Ken’s Shoryuken). This is performed by pressing
F,D,DF (think of a “Z” motion) on your controller. Some
Special Attacks are really Throws (a.k.a. “Command
Grabs”) with enhanced range and damage. Finally,
Special Attacks performed by mashing punches or
kicks like Chun-Li’s Hyakuretsu Kyaku (“Press K x5”)
work as if you had to “charge” the Special Attack with
kicks. You can press any kick to count as a “charge”,
and the kick you press for the ¿fth “charge” determines
the version (LK,MK, HK).
Charge Attacks
Charge attacks often make it dif¿cult to maneuver.
However, you can dash forward and still maintain your
charge. It takes a while to learn, but you can also use
this technique while using a Focus Attack.

button mashing 101
SYSTEM MECHANICS
É
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 10_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
Focus Attacks
The new tactical tool in SFIV is the Focus Attack (aka
“Saving Attack” in Japan), performed by pressing (or
holding) MP+MK while standing. It has three strength
levels, depending on how long you hold it. At Level 1,
it will execute a blockable attack for minor damage and
hitstun, unless it’s a counter-hit. If that happens, they
enter “crumple-stun” where they’re open for a combo for
a brief moment. At Level 2, crumple-stun is guaranteed,
but the hit is still blockable. At Level 3, which usually
takes a full second of charging, the attack becomes
unblockable, executes automatically, breaks through
Super Armor, and results in crumple-stun.
The property shared by all Focus Attacks is that during
charging, you have one point of Super Armor, and can
cancel the charging animation or a connected hit with
a forward dash or back dash at any time (Focus Attack
Dash Cancel, or FADC for short). You can thus feint
and bait wakeup attacks, or make them block a Level 1
Focus Attack, cancel into a dash, and throw them.
There are other, more advanced techniques with the
Focus Attack that will be covered below, especially
with FADC.
Super Armor
This is a new mechanic for the Street Fighter canon
series, but familiar to Versus players. Focus Attacks
(and some EX Special Attacks) have one point of
Super Armor, meaning that they will “soak” one hit
and continue to execute their move. El Fuerte’s EX
Habanero Dashes are even better, with two points
of Super Armor. While you still suffer damage from a
soaked attack (your health bar turns grey), the damage
is gradually healed over time.
However, if the player is hit by any attack or throw
before that damage is fully recovered, any unrecovered
health is lost permanently. Blocked ‘chip-damage’ from
Special Attacks will not forfeit your recovery. Successive
armor-soaked hits stack cumulatively, so absorbing four
Hadoukens in a row would put a huge amount of your
health at risk and would take a lengthy period of time to
recover. Most important of all, if you have no health left,
soaking an attack with Super Armor will knock you out!
Be careful about using Focus Attacks in this situation.
Armor Break
Almost every character in the game has a Special
Attack with the Armor Break property, denoted as
“Break” in the character movelists. This will completely
nullify Super Armor and displays a “shattering” effect
when this occurs. Zangief is the only character in the
game without one. Also, Special Attacks executed as
Reversals (performed immediately out of “block-stun”)
will automatically gain Armor Break.
Super Gauge
This four-bar gauge determines whether or not you’ll
be able to perform enhanced versions of moves (EX
Special Attacks), EX Focus Attacks or a Super Combo.
It increases whenever you hit an opponent, execute a
special attack (except for projectiles), have an attack
blocked, or get hit. Like Super Street Fighter II Turbo,
you cannot build Super Gauge by whif¿ng normal
attacks. However, it does carry over between rounds.
Revenge Gauge
The Revenge Gauge increases whenever you suffer
damage, even if it’s temporary damage from Super
Armor. When this gauge hits 50%, you can execute an
Ultra Combo, but you’ll do even more damage when
it hits 100%. This gauge does not carry over between
rounds. Advanced players often use Focus Attacks
to ‘soak’ hits and build their Revenge Gauge without
taking permanent damage early in a match.
EX Special Attacks
These enhanced versions of Special Attacks cost
one EX bar from your Super Gauge and often have
invincibility, enhanced speed and extra damage. Some

intermediate syst em mechanics
WHAT’S NEW IN SFIV?
É
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 12_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
even have juggle properties which allow for extended
combos, like Ryu’s EX Tatsumaki. You can perform
these by pressing two Punch (“PP”) or two Kick (“KK”)
buttons when executing a Special Attack.
EX Focus Attacks
This technique is activated by interrupting most
normal attacks and some Special Attacks (Marked as
“Cancel” in the movelist) with a Focus Attack (MP+MK).
This costs two EX bars, but allows unique combo
opportunities, especially if the EX Focus Attack is dash-
canceled. You can also use it for defensive purposes
(i.e.: stopping a Special Attack from continuing and
leaving you vulnerable).
Focus Attack Dash
Cancel (FADC)
All Focus Attacks can be interrupted or canceled with
a dash command, but “FADC” is used to denote an EX
Focus Attack that is canceled with a dash. In combos,
an FADC often allows you to continue a combo for even
more hits than is normally possible. For example, Ryu
can perform a c.MK -> HP Shoryuken, and this would
normally end the combo.
However, he can extend the combo by performing
c.MK -> HP Shoryuken, interrupt the HP Shoryuken’s
animation with an EX Focus Attack, cancel the Focus
Attack with a forward dash (FADC), and perform
another HPShoryuken or an Ultra Combo for additional
damage. Some characters use this technique
exclusively to create guaranteed opportunities to
connect an Ultra Combo.
Super Combos
Often extremely quick with high priority, these can be
performed when the Super Gauge is ¿lled to 100%(four
EX bars). Most normal attacks, and Special Attacks
marked “Cancel” can interrupt the animation of a
connected attack into a Super Combo for a guaranteed
hit. For example, Ken can perform a close MP -> HP,
canceled into an HP Hadouken, then super-canceled
into his Shoryu Reppa. Some characters bene¿t greatly
fromthis option, but others are better served by using the
Super Gauge on EX Special Attacks instead. It depends
entirely on your playing style.
Ultra Combos
When the Revenge Gauge reaches 50% or more,
your Ultra Combo becomes available. These tend to
be slightly slower to activate than a Super Combo,
and cannot be canceled into from a normal or Special
Attack. However, they can often be performed after
an FADC or as a juggle. An Ultra Combo is usually
invincible on startup and gives you an opportunity
to make a comeback against your opponent. If the
Revenge Gauge is fully charged at 100%, your Ultra
Combo will inÀict 150% of its normal damage. What
often determines a character’s ability to make a
comeback is whether or not their Ultra Combo can
be easily comboed into (Ryu, Rufus and Sagat for
example). Some characters are simply unable to, and
can only combo from a crumple-stun state like Zangief
and Vega. The character stats appendix later in this
guide lists these for your convenience.
>FADC
M.Bison uses an FADC to safely interrupt a blocked
Double Knee Press into a blocked Focus Attack.
>Focus Attack
Chun uses the Focus Attack’s Super Armor to counter
Vega’s Flying Barcelona Attack.
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV _COV ER_13
Frames of Animation
Fighting games typically operate at 60 frames per
second (fps). It’s important to know how frames work
because you’ll be able to create new combos and
retaliate against blocked attacks that appear ‘safe’.
The three most important frame numbers for an attack
are: Startup (how long it takes to come out), Frame
Advantage if Blocked (helps with baiting and punishing
attacks) and Frame Advantage on Hit (helps with
combos). Frame advantage is an important concept to
learn: the more frames of advantage that you have, the
sooner you’ll recover before your opponent. If frames
are denoted in negative numbers (-2, -5), it means
they’ll recover before you do! If an attack has 7 frames
of block-stun, 10 frames of hit-stun and 12 frames of
recovery, that means your opponent recovers in 7
frames if blocked, in 10 frames if hit, and you recover in
12 frames no matter what. If you subtract the recovery
fromthe block or hit frames, you have the ¿nal numbers:
-5 frames on block (7-12), and -2 frames on hit (10-12).
For example, Chun-Li’s HK Hazanshu has 26 frames
of startup, -1 frame on block, and +4 frames on hit
(+4 frame advantage). Coincidentally, her c.HK has 4
frames of startup, is -5 frames on block, and knocks
down on hit. You can make a HK Hazanshu (+4f hit) to
c.HK (4f startup) combo, but you have zero room for
error. If you perform the c.HK late, it’ll be blocked and
you’ll be vulnerable for 5 frames. Do your homework
and study your frames!
Combos
There are four methods of connecting multiple attacks
into a continuous combo: Chaining, Linking, Canceling
and Juggling. Chaining exclusively involves LP and LK,
and can chain into each other (c.LK -> c.LP, or c.LP x3)
freely. Then there’s Linking, in which the animation of
one attack must completely ¿nish (including recovery)
until the next attack is executed. For this to work, the
¿rst attack must have frame advantage. As mentioned
earlier, Chun-Li’s HK Hazanshu (+4 on hit) can link
into her c.HK (4f startup). The ¿nal type is Canceling,
which completely interrupts one attack to start another.
Ryu’s c.MK is normally -2 frames on hit. However, you
can interrupt his recovery frames of animation into
the Hadouken (13f startup), which would normally be
impossible to link together.
The distinction between Chaining and Linking is
important. In Street Fighter IV, if an attack chains into
another attack, that second attack cannot cancel! For
Zangief to combo c.LP -> c.LP -> EX Banishing Flat,
the two c.LP attacks must be linked, not chained.
Therefore, if c.LP -> c.LP is a chain, one more c.LP
must be linked into for an EX Banishing Flat to be
canceled into. It would look like c.LP (chain) c.LP (link)
c.LP (cancel) EX Banishing Flat.
For Cancels, the hierarchy is a one-way street, and goes
Normal -> Special -> EX Focus Attack or Super Combo.
Normals can cancel into any of the other options, but a
Special can only cancel into an EXFocusAttack or Super
Combo, not another Normal. The only time a Normal can
cancel into another Normal is with a character’s “Target
Combo”, such as Ken’s close MP->HP.
If your opponent blocks the ¿rst hit of your combo, you
can still continue to attack, but you should avoid ending
it with a move that leaves you vulnerable on block (e.g.:
Shoryuken). A string of attacks that links together and
locks your opponent in block-stun is extremely handy to
prepare your next attack. These are known as “block-
strings” and can be just as effective as an actual combo.
Characters with attacks that move forward, are safe on
block, and end with them in a favorable position can do
especially well with this; M.Bison’s Double Knee Press
is perhaps the best example.
Float/Juggle
Typically, when you’re hit in mid-air, your character will
backÀip and land on their feet. But some moves will
cause you to fall strangely (marked “Float”). If you’re
hit by a “Float” attack in mid-air, such as M.Bison’s
Hell Attack (j.MP+MP), you’ll be vulnerable to being hit
with certain attacks afterwards. Some characters have
ground attacks that launch you into a Floating state, like
Abel’s c.HP. Being in a “Float” state is bad.

hardcore players only
ADVANCED MECHANICS
É
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 14 _COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
Attacks that can hit you during a “Float” state are
marked as “Juggle”, such as M.Bison’s EX Psycho
Crusher or Abel’s Muga (his Ultra). A simple combo to
do is M.Bison’s Hell Attack against an airborne opponent
(which puts them in “Float”), then juggle them with the
EX Psycho Crusher. Float and Juggle properties tend
to be involved in the game’s most advanced combos.
Reversals
After blocking an attack, if you perform a special
attack immediately after emerging from block-stun,
your attack will show up as a Reversal. In this game,
Reversal attacks gain the Armor Break property. That
means moves like Ryu’s Shoryuken can Armor Break
out of a sticky situation, even though his Shoryuken
normally can’t Armor Break! Keep this in mind when
using Focus Attacks. Keep this mind if you’re trying
to perform a Focus Attack trap, such as Akuma’s air
¿reball with a Focus Attack followed immediately after.
If E.Honda was the one being trapped, his reversal
EX Hyakkan Otoshi (which doesn’t have Armor Break)
would actually Armor Break you on the way up!
Counter-Hit
In most instances, if an attack interrupts another attack
during its startup or active attack frames (but not during
recovery), it causes a Counter-Hit state. Counter-Hits
inÀict 25% extra damage and 1-3 additional frames
of hitstun, allowing for combos not normally possible.
The sole exception is a Level 1 Focus Attack, which
causes crumple-stun if it connects as a Counter-Hit.
Sometimes, opposing attacks with trade hits with each
other, and both be considered counter-hits.
Stun
There is an invisible gauge that measures how much
‘Stun’ damage you’ve taken. It heals over time, but if you
take too much Stun damage too quickly, your character
will fall down dizzy and will be completely defenseless.
Most characters have about 1000 Stun points. Light
attacks usually inÀict 50 points, Medium attacks about
100 points, and Hard attacks and Specials about 200
points of Stun. Supers and Ultras never inÀict Stun.
Note: If you inÀict Stun in the middle of a combo, your
combo ends immediately. All subsequent attacks
will miss (even if they’re airborne, e.g.: If Vega’s EX
Barcelona Attack stuns Chun-Li, then the follow-up
Izuna Drop will whiff), so stop what you’re doing and
charge a Level 3 Focus Attack!
Crumple
“Crumple-stun” is a sort of ‘mini-stun’ that occurs only
after Focus Attacks (Counter-Hit Level 1, or a cleanly
hit Level 2 or Level 3). During this state, your opponent
will slowly crumple to the ground and is temporarily
open to an attack (throws and command grabs work
too). However, if you take too long, your opponent will
only be open for one hit of your attack, making it dif¿cult
to combo! In order to make the best use of it, you’ll have
to cancel your Focus Attack with a dash immediately
after it hits. Also, some characters (Zangief, Vega) can
only combo their Ultra with a crumple-stun opportunity
(see the chart later in this guide).
Cross-Ups
Jumpingattackscanbestrange- if their hitboxissuf¿ciently
wide enough, they can hit from behind. This is the idea
behind a cross-up: to jump just past your opponent with
an attack that can hit behind you (or under you) that
can only be blocked in the opposite direction. Zangief’s
j.d+HP, Ryu and Ken’s j.MK, C.Viper’s Flame Kick, and
many other attacks can be used in this manner. These are
easy to perform after a throw, since your opponent can’t
quick-recover fromthem.
Kara-Canceling
As mentioned in our interview with Yoshinori Ono, there
is a high-level technique in Street Fighter IV (included
by design) known as Kara-Canceling. Originally a glitch
in Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike, this technique enhances
the range of an attack or throw by “empty” canceling
an attack into another before it fully extends. Throws
have a three-frame input “forgiveness” window in which
to press LP+LK simultaneously. If this window didn’t
exist, it would require pressing LP+LK at the exact
same time. Many attacks cause a character to quickly
move forward within the ¿rst three frames of startup,
like Ken’s f+MK. Because all normal attacks in Street
Fighter IV have a minimum of three frames of startup,
you are allowed to cancel the ¿rst three frames of any
normal attack into a throw! To execute this with Ken,
you would press f+MK, then within 3 frames, press
LP+LK simultaneously. This is very fast- three frames is
only 3/60ths of a second! If done correctly, Ken’s throw
will reach much farther than normal. It is possible to
kara-cancel into Special Attacks as well.
Special-Only Kara-Cancels are done in a different
manner. This type of kara-cancel can only cancel into a
Special Attack, but can be done much slower. E.Honda
can begin his Shikofumi (df+HK) stomp, and before the
stomp comes out, press HCB+P to kara-cancel into
his Oicho Throw. In this instance, it’s more like a feint
than a range-increasing technique. (This is identical to
Makoto’s LK kara-cancel in SF3:3rd Strike.)
There are also Special Attacks being kara-canceled
into their EX versions because of this same 3-frame
window being applied to PP and KK button inputs. Ken
can extend the range of his EX Tatsumaki in the air by
kara-canceling fromthe HK Tatsumaki. The input would
look like this: jump, qcb+HK (then quickly) MK. What
results is an EX Tatsumaki with the trajectory of a HK
Tatsumaki. There is rumor that the same technique can
be applied to Ultras because of their triple button (PPP
and KKK) inputs, but their potential is unknown.
>Combos
You can take advantage of Float and Juggle
properties by interrupting your moves with an FADC
for greater Àexibility.
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV _COV ER_15
IF YOU CAN DREAM IT, OU CAN DREAM IT,,,
YOU CAN BUILD IT.
I f it f l ies, f l oat s, or dr ives, you can buil d
it - and use it t o expl or e six f ant ast ic wor l ds.
Over 100 unique par t s and bl uepr int s give you
t he power t o cr eat e an unl imit ed ar r ay
of ingenious new vehicl es t o t ackl e
over 150 dif f er ent chal l enges.

using your t ools
CHARACTER MECHANICS
É
CommandNormals Properties Command
Sakotsu Wari (Overhead) f+MP
Mizo'ochi Kudaki (Cancel) (Float) f+HP
Special Attacks Properties Command
Hadouken (Cancel) QCF+P
Shoryuken (Cancel) (Float) DP+P
Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku (Break) QCB+K (Ground or Air)
EX Hadouken (Juggle) (Cancel) (Float) QCF+PP
EX Shoryuken (Cancel) (Float) DP+PP
EX Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku (Juggle) (Break) (Float) QCB+KK (Ground or Air)
Super Properties Command
Shinkuu Hadouken (Juggle) QCFx2+P
Ultra Properties Command
Metsu Hadouken (Juggle) QCFx2+PPP
r
y
u
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
The Eternal Wanderer
If you truly wish to learn the new SFIV system, Ryu epitomizes it: He cannot be played to
his fullest potential without learning the EX Focus Attack/Dash Cancel technique. He has
great pressuring ability and can capitalize for heavy damage in any opening. However, his
Ultra is only useful in combos (not as a reversal), and he has one of the slowest-recovering
c.HK sweeps in the game. Be careful not to use it in close range. While he doesn’t have the
ground-pressure tools and footsies that Ken has, he still has his j.MK crossup (which works
particularly well in the corner) and can bait throw attempts with EX Tatsumaki (it hovers in
place and vacuums in the opponent), which is relatively safe if blocked.
Ryu has the powerful ability to link after his f+MP overhead. If you see it connect on your
opponent, follow it up with a c.LP combo, or instead link a HP Shoryuken, FADC and juggle
with your Ultra (this is the basic method of using Ryu’s Ultra). He is also able to combo his
c.LK-c.LP-c.MK into an EX Hadouken and juggle with an EX Tatsumaki, followed by an Ultra
in the corner, or hit you out of the air with his 2-hit j.MP and juggle you with an Ultra, or...
you get the point. You can also cancel f+HP into a special attack, or link into a c.LP to start
a combo. Combined with his EX Hadouken’s distance-control and the Tatsumaki to dodge
¿reballs, he’ll always remain a threat when played carefully and consistently.
Japan
RYU
>
Style: Ansatsuken(Modi¿ed)
Health: 100%
Stun: 100%
Overhead: f+MP
Air Throw: No
Kara-Cancel: far HK
Properties Introduction
Each character has a dizzying arsenal of moves and techniques which formthe
foundation of their playing style. However, it is up to you, the player, to utilize
themto their fullest potential. The following information on each Street Fighter
will utilize concepts and terms fromthe Mechanics section of this article, so it is
recommended that you familiarize yourself with that ¿rst before continuing on.
Property Explanation
Low Low attack. Must be blocked crouching.
Overhead High attack. Must be blocked standing.
Grab Close-ranged grab, and cannot be blocked at all.
Cancel Can be interrupted with an EX Focus Attack or a Super Combo.
Armor Has Super Armor, which can absorb attacks and continue to execute.
Break Penetrates an attack with Super Armor and stops it immediately.
Float Causes your opponent to be in "Float" state until they fall to the ground.
Juggle Allows the attack to hit an opponent who is in "Float" state.
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 16_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
CommandNormals Properties Command
Kouhou Kaiten Kyaku df+LK
Kaku Kyaku Raku (Overhead) df+HK
Kakusen Shuu f+MK
Kinteki Shuu b+MK
Kenku Kyaku After Kinteki Shuu, MK
Tensho Kyaku (Float) After Kenku Kyaku, d,u+MK
Head Stomp (Juggle) (Float) In Air, d+MK (x3)
Wall Jump Jump near a wall, Up-Forward
Target Combo (Float) j.HP-HP
Special Attacks Properties Command
Kikouken (Cancel) (Float) Charge b,f+P
Hazanshu (Cancel) (Overhead) HCB+K
Spinning Bird Kick (Break) Charge d,u+K
Hyakuretsu Kyaku (Cancel) (Float) Press Kick x5
EX Kikouken (Cancel) (Float) Charge b,f+PP
EX Hazanshu (Cancel) (Overhead) HCB+KK
EX Spinning Bird Kick (Juggle) (Break) (Float) Charge d,u+KK
EX Hyakuretsu Kyaku (Juggle) (Cancel) (Float) Press Kick x4, then KK
Super Properties Command
Senretsu Kyaku Charge b,f,b,f+K
Ultra Properties Command
Housenka (Juggle) (Break) Charge b,f,b,f+KKK
c
h
u
n
-
l
i
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
The Legs of Legend
Chun-Li is one of the most technical characters in the game. She has the fastest dash and
FADC, allowing her to capitalize well on Focus attacks. However, her opportunities require
massive EX meter-burning, such as comboing c.LK-c.LK-EX Hyakuretsu to juggle with her
Ultra in the corner. Outside of juggle combos, her Ultra is fairly quick and can punish ¿reballs
and many blocked sweeps. Expert players should learn howto Charge-Partition her dash into
the Ultra. And like 3rd Strike Chun, you can use EX Spinning Bird Kick as your “Get the hell
off me” button. In a zoning situation, her Kikouken projectile works well with her MK and HK
as anti-air measures, and the Hazanshu is a good attack for leaping over ¿reballs, but it can’t
Armor Break so savvy players can Focus through it to punish you.
Be warned: “Technical” is also euphemismfor “hard work” (some prefer “high-maintenance”).
The majority of damage will be dealt from carefully chosen normal attacks, not specials.
Her Kaku Kyaku Raku (df+HK) cross-up kick works very well against cornered opponents
(especially after throws), and jump-back HK works as an instant overhead for that last bit
of damage to KO your opponent. She also gains a new chain combo with the Kinteki Shuu
(b+MK), and the ¿nal hit (Tenshou Kyaku) launches for a juggle opportunity. One of her best
mix-ups by far is her j.HP-HPchain, where you can skip the second HPand instead land with
a c.LK combo, or throw. If your opponent activates a Focus Attack, her j.HP+HP will blow
through the armor before the Focus can hit you. On characters that don’t have an invincible
wake-up option, this trap is almost impossible to escape from. If you hit someone in mid-air
with j.HP->HP, you can juggle with EX Spinning Bird Kick or jump again and use your Head
Stomp to build meter.
The Crimson King of Brawling
For players still uncomfortable with the new mechanics, Ken ¿ts like a comfortable, padded
glove, allowing you to punch brick walls without hurting yourself. Ken is easier to learn for
beginners, but while his techniques and tactics are simple to learn, he has fewer opportunities
for high-damage combos. For anti-air, Ken’s MP Shoryuken has better invincibility frames than
the HP version, making it better to use against jump-ins. If you’re in a pickle, Ken’s Ultra is
geared to re-capture momentum with brute-force invincibility. However, it combos poorly, so
Ken’s biggest potential for damage is to cancel into his Super instead. Because Super gauge
takes so long to build, it is even more important for Ken to use his superior ‘footsie’ techniques
to dominate the ground. Fortunately, his f+MK kick allows him to get in close without losing
frame advantage.
When Ken manages to close distance, his mix-up game becomes extremely powerful. After
linking c.LK/LP x3, Ken can choose to either combo into the HP Shoryuken (it has huge
horizontal reach), or (if it was blocked) follow with a kara-throw (f+MK), which has just as much
range and allows Ken to set up a new pressure situation. Ken can also choose to jump over his
opponent and land a solid cross-up j.MK to continue the pressure. It may not be Àashy, but the
damage (and meter) adds up quickly.
k
e
n
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
United States of America
KEN MASTERS
>
UUnited States of A
KKEN MASTE
CommandNormals Properties Command
Inazuma Kakato Wari (Overhead) b+MK
Fumikomi Maegeri f+MK
Shiden Kakato Otoshi (Overhead) f+HK, Hold K to fake
Target Combo (Cancel) close MP-HP
Special Attacks Properties Command
Hadouken (Cancel) QCF+P
Shoryuken (Cancel) (Float) DP+P
Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku (Break) QCB+K (Ground or Air)
EX Hadouken (Cancel) QCF+PP
EX Shoryuken (Juggle) (Cancel) (Float) DP+PP
EX Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku (Break) QCB+KK (Ground or Air)
Super Properties Command
Shoryu Reppa (Juggle) QCFx2+P
Ultra: Properties Command
Shinryuken (Juggle) QCFx2+PPP
Style: Ansatsuken(Modi¿ed)
Health: 100%
Stun: 100%
Overhead: b+MK, f+HK
Air Throw: No
Kara-Cancel: f+MK
Normals Properties Command
akato Wari (Overhead) ( ) b+MK
Maegeri f+MK
People’s Republic of China
CHUN -LI
>
Style: Wu-Shu
Health: 90%
Stun: 105%
Overhead: Hazanshu, j.HK(Jumpaway)
Air Throw: Yes
Kara-Cancel: f+MK
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 18_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
The Hot-Blooded Wrestler
E.Honda has often been an underrated character. Like Chun-Li, he requires an expert player to
fully utilize his potential. His Zutsuki (headbutt) serves as a solid anti-air measure and breaks
through armor, and many characters have dif¿culty punishing it on block, including Ryu and
Sagat. His Ultra might not have the best priority, but if it trades, Honda can immediately charge
for a Level 3 Focus Attack that’s almost impossible to escape from. He also has exceptional
range with his j.HK and mix-up opportunities with his Hyakkan Otoshi, which has invincibility
frames on the way up (EX is fully invincible as it rises), and is safe on block! However, it cannot
Armor Break, so don’t go crazy with it.
Where Honda is surprisingly good at is his wake-up game. His LP Oicho Throw can be ticked
after several crouching light attacks, after HP Hand Slaps, and even kara-canceled from his
Shikofumi (df+HK) overhead! Since the Oicho cannot be quick-recovered from, this gives him
ample opportunity to set up a cross-up, a Focus Attack or Hand Slaps. Hand Slaps are great
to use against someone getting up or after a Saving Attack. If you connect, you’ll recover in
time to set up a mix-up or the following combo: c.LK -> c.LP -> EX Hand Slaps -> c.LP -> EX
Hyakkan Otoshi. Also, if you connect an HP Hand Slap, you can link a far HK afterwards for
free damage.
CommandNormals Properties Command
Surprise Forward b+KKK
Surprise Back f+KKK
Rock Crush b+MPor f+MP(HoldMPfor Overhead)
Fear Down d+PPP
Amazon River Run (Low) df+HP
Special Attacks Properties Command
Rolling Attack (Cancel) (Break) Charge b,f+P
Backstep Rolling (Overhead) Charge b,f+K
Vertical Rolling Charge d,u+K
Electric Thunder (Cancel) (Float) Press Punch x5
EX Rolling Attack (Cancel) (Break) Charge b,f+PP
EX Backstep Rolling (Overhead) Charge b,f+KK(Hold b or f to move)
EX Vertical Rolling Charge d,u+KK
EX Electric Thunder (Cancel) (Float) Press Punch x4, then PP
Super Combo Properties Command
Ground Shave Rolling (Juggle) Charge b,f,b,f+P
UltraCombo Properties Command
Lightning Cannonball (Juggle) (Low) (Overhead) Charge b,f,b,f+PPP
b
l
a
n
k
a
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
CommandNormals Properties Command
Shikofumi (Overhead) df+HK
Target Combo close MP(1st hit)-df+HK
Special Attacks: Properties Command
Hyakuretsu Harite (Cancel) Press Punch x5
Super Zutsuki (Cancel) (Break) (Float) Charge b,f+P
Super Hyakkan Otoshi (Float) Charge d,u+K
Oicho Throw (Grab) HCB+P
EX Hyakuretsu Harite (Cancel) Press Punch x4, then PP
EX Super Zutsuki (Cancel) (Break) Charge b,f+PP
EX Super Hyakkan Otoshi (Float) Charge d,u+KK
EX Oicho Throw (Grab) HCB+PP
Super Properties Command
Oni Musou (Juggle) Charge b,f,b,f+P
Ultra: Properties Command
Super Oni Musou (Juggle) (Break) Charge b,f,b,f+PPP
CommandNormals Properties Command
e
.
h
o
n
d
a
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
Warrior of the Jungle
Blanka has some stupidly good tricks going for him. He has great range and speed on his
normal attacks, a great cross-up j.MK, and can link attacks together to combo into a Rolling
Attack, like j.HK -> MP -> c.MK -> LP -> HP Rolling Attack as a bread-and-butter combo. He
still has his Surprise dashes which can cross-over opponents (f+KKK or b+KKK), and now
has a new command crouch, the Fear Down (d+PPP) which dodges ¿reballs, many attacks,
and can be canceled directly into a special attack. Another move to abuse is his Amazon River
Run (df+HP) slide, which knocks down and goes under every ¿reball in the game, including
Sagat’s low Tiger Shot! His standing HP and neutral j.HP also work as extremely effective
anti-air measures.
His special attacks are even better. The RollingAttack is extremely dif¿cult to punish, especially
for Zangief! (see the chart later in this guide). The EX version even goes through ¿reballs and
comes out instantly. Blanka’s EX Backstep Rolling is now controllable in mid-air, allowing for
precision cross-up attacks. EX Vertical Rolling has ¿ve frames of full-body invincibility, useful for
anti-air but may not be as good for ground-based reversals. His Electric Thunder is immune to
high attacks, and the EX version envelops his entire body in electricity. Either of these versions
can punish holes inside an attacker’s blockstring. His Super can adjust distance with the button
used, and can juggle after an Electric Thunder in the corner. His Ultra is ridiculous: It starts as a
low attack, turns into an overhead, and then goes mid. It also has massive invincibility on start-
up, and is so fast that it can link after c.MK!
CommandNormals Properties Command
Japan
E . HONDA
>
Style: SumoWrestling
Health: 110%
Stun: 110%
Overhead: df+HK
Air Throw: No
Kara-Cancel: df+HK(Special Only)
Federative Republic of Brazil
BLANKA
>
Style: ElectricShock&WildFighting
Health: 105%
Stun: 95%
Overhead: b+MPor f+MP(HoldMP)
Air Throw: No
Kara-Cancel: None
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV _COV ER_19
IheWing
IM
WirelessConlrollerisalolalluawesomewaulobrealhenewlile
inloWii
IM
VirlualConsole
IM
games.Enjouuplolenleelolwirelesslreedom
~nocordconneclionlolheWiiPemole
IM
required.Space-agelechnologu
deliversuplo30hoursolplaulimeonlwoAAAballeries~orplauinlolhe
lulureusingaUSBcableandanuslandardrechargeableballeries*.ll'slhe
ullimaleconlrollorlhenexlgeneralionolgamers.
*USBCableandPechargeableballeriesnolincluded.
©
¯´´´ '+'' /'' '''- '·-··C /'' 'C·'- C ·-'··C 'C·'- · ''· .C.·' C' ''· ·-.·'· 'C'C·-
Ava||ab|e a| gcur |avcr||e re|a||er. ür |urn cn gcur µerscna| ccmµu|er and
gc |c |he Wcr|d W|de Web: www.ngkc.ccm. Ask gcur µaren|s |cr he|µI
CommandNormals Properties Command
Chopping Straight (Overhead) f+MP
Spinning Back Knuckle f+HP
Knee Bazooka b+LK or f+LK
Rolling Sobat b+MK or f+MK
Reverse Spin Kick Close b+HK or f+HK
Guile High Kick (Float) df+HK
Target Combo c.MK-f+MP
Special Attacks Properties Command
Sonic Boom (Cancel) Charge b,f+P
Somersault Kick (Cancel) (Break) (Float) Charge d,u+K
EX Sonic Boom (Juggle) (Cancel) Charge b,f+PP
EX Somersault Kick (Juggle) (Cancel) (Break) (Float) Charge d,u+KK
Super Combo Properties Command
Double Somersault (Float) Charge db,df,db,uf+K
UltraCombo Properties Command
Somersault Explosion (Juggle) Charge db,df,db,uf+KKK
g
u
i
l
e
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
The Secret Blade
For some reason, Guile’s only had two special attacks in his entire Street Fighting career.
That’s okay, because that’s all he really needed. The Sonic Boomisn’t just a projectile. Think
of it instead as a power-up to all of his normal attacks. Guile recovers almost instantly after
throwing one, and the LP version travels so slowly that Guile can attack before it reaches his
opponent. The EX version is the opposite, Àying across the screen like a bullet and hitting
twice (but it does not knock down). It can also juggle if you hit an opponent with a traded
Somersault Kick, or off of Guile’s High Kick (df+HK).
The Somersault Kick serves as a decent wake-up attack, moreso because of its Armor
Break properties. Unfortunately, it’s a little more vulnerable than in previous games. Many
jumping characters can stuff Guile in mid-air if the Somersault isn’t executed early enough.
(The EX Somersault Kick has enough invincibility frames to cover him, though.) If this is the
case, you can use c.HP as an alternate anti-air to cover the zones where the Somersault is
weakest. You can still combo into it, as long as you don’t chain into the attack you’re trying
to cancel (this is the number one reason for failure). In a combo like c.LK -> c.LK -> c.LP ->
HK Somersault Kick, you must correctly time the link between c.LK -> c.LP. Guile still has
his cross-up j.LK and his excellent arsenal of normal attacks (try out his b+MK and f+MK
Sobat kicks for footsies), and should almost always be on the offensive with a Sonic Boom
plowing the way ahead of him. Almost, because there are some attacks that punish Sonic
Booms reliably (see later in this guide). Finally, if you connect Guile’s Super, you can follow
up with his Ultra!
The Red Cyclone
Out of the box, Zangief is one of the most dominating characters in the game: He has the
highest stamina (120%), the hardest-stunning attack (neutral j. u+HP, his headbutt), amazing
air-to-ground attacks like his cross-up body splash (j. d+HP) and his new air stomp (j. MK)
which has huge downward range (helpful against Guile’s Flash Kick), and a far-reaching sweep
(df+HK). He also has a running grab with Armor, the EX Flying Powerbomb. His Lariats also
retain their initial priority as anti-air reversal attacks (as well as dodging ALL ¿reballs, including
Ryu’s Ultra), and are confusing as hell to counter (see the guide later in this article). Furthermore,
both Lariats can be ‘steered’ with the controller (hold back or forward), and the PPP Lariat is
temporarily invulnerable to high attacks, while the KKK Lariat will dodge low attacks. About
the only thing he’s missing is an Armor-breaking attack, but you can use EX Banishing Flat’s
multiple hits to do the job.
The Banishing Flat deserves deeper examination. All versions nullify projectiles and cover
distance faster than dashes (use after an SPD), but leave Zangief slightly vulnerable to attack,
even if it hits. The EX version doesn’t have this problem, it knocks down. It also has invincibility
frames, and can be blind-con¿rmed from long distance with standing and crouching jabs
(perform LP -> EX Banishing Flat from long distance- if the LP misses, the EX Banishing Flat
won’t come out). However, if blocked, Zangief will still be vulnerable to combos(9 frames of
recovery). As for his EX Screw Piledriver, it has invincibility frames, but takes slightly longer to
activate than the LP Screw Piledriver. You can also use his far HK to advance closer into grab
range, especially since it will miss crouching characters. Finally, his Ultra grabs instantly- if
your opponent is still on the ground during the startup animation, they’re dead meat. His main
weaknesses are that he’s a large target (not too much of a handicap), and that he has no full-
screen distance options against characters like Blanka and Akuma.
z
a
n
g
i
e
f
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
CommandNormals Properties Command
Flying Body Attack Diagonal Jump, d+HP
Double Knee Drop Diagonal Jump, d+LK
Headbutt Vertical Jump, d+MP or d+HP
Long Kick (Low) df+HK
Special Attacks Properties Command
Screw Piledriver (Grab) 360+P
Banishing Flat (Cancel) DP+P
Double Lariat (Float) PPP (Hold b or f to move)
Turbo Lariat (Float) KKK (Hold b or f to move)
Flying Power Bomb (Grab) 360+K (Far)
Atomic Suplex (Grab) 360+K (Close)
EX Screw Piledriver (Grab) 360+PP
EX Banishing Flat (Juggle) (Cancel) DP+PP
EX Flying Power Bomb (Armor) (Grab) 360+KK (Far)
EX Atomic Suplex (Grab) 360+KK (Close)
Super Combo Properties Command
Final Atomic Buster (Grab) 720+P
UltraCombo Properties Command
Ultimate Atomic Buster (Grab) 720+PPP
xxx
CommandN
Flying Body y g y
Double Knee p g p,
Normals Properties p Command
y Attack y Diagonal Jump, d+HP g p
ee Drop Diagonal Jump, d+LK
xxxxxxxxxx xx xx xxx xxx xx xxx xxxxxxxxx xx xxx xxxx xxx xxxxxx xxxxx xx xxx xxxxxxx xxxxxx xxxxxx xxx xxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxxxxx xxxxxx
Russian Federation
ZANGIEF
>
ZANGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGIIIIEF
United States of America
GUILE
>
Style: Martial Arts/Pro-WrestlingHybrid
Health: 100%
Stun: 90%
Overhead: f+MP
Air Throw: Yes
Kara-Cancel: MP
Style: Russian/AmericanPro-Wrestling
Health: 120%
Stun: 120%
Overhead: None
Air Throw: No
Kara-Cancel: None
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 20_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
Special Attacks Properties Command
Dash Straight (Cancel) (Float) Charge b,f+P
Dash Upper (Cancel) (Float) Charge b,f+K
Dash Ground Straight (Cancel) (Low) (Float) Charge b,df+P
Dash Ground Smash (Break) (Cancel) (Float) Charge b,df+K
Dash Swing Blow
(Break) (Cancel)
(Overhead) (Float)
Charge b,df+P (Hold)
Buffalo Headbutt (Float) Charge d,u+P
EX Dash Straight (Cancel) (Armor) (Float) Charge b,f+PP
EX Dash Upper (Cancel) (Armor) (Float) Charge b,f+KK
EX Dash Ground Straight
(Cancel) (Armor) (Low)
(Float)
Charge b,df+PP
EX Dash Ground Smash
(Break) (Cancel) (Armor)
(Float)
Charge b,df+KK
EX Dash Swing Blow
(Break) (Cancel) (Armor)
(Overhead) (Float)
Charge b,df+PP (Hold PP)
EX Buffalo Headbutt (Float) Charge d,u+PP
Turn Punch (Break) (Cancel) Hold PPP or KKK, Release
Super Combo Properties Command
Crazy Buffalo (Juggle) (Break) Charge b,f,b,f+P or K
UltraCombo Properties Command
Violence Buffalo (Juggle) (Break) Charge b,f,b,f+PPP or KKK
b
a
l
r
o
g
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
The Lion’s Roar
Balrogis solid. Whilehehas noCommandNormal attacks, his mid-rangeoptions areterrifying.
If you have an Ultra charged, you can punish ¿reballs and some openings, but where it really
shines is if you popped them up with his Buffalo Headbutt, because the Ultra will juggle (use
KKK for better vertical range). The Buffalo Headbutt can also go under ¿reballs and can be
comboed from linked c.LP attacks. The Dash Swing Blow, while being an Overhead, also
allows Balrog to follow up with a c.LK -> Dash Straight -> Super, and the EX Dash Upper
can be followed up with c.LP -> c.LP -> Buffalo Headbutt, which sets up for an Ultra. If you’re
in a pinch, the EX Buffalo Headbutt has 15 frames of invincibility, more than enough for any
situation, and his EXDash punches all haveArmor. Also, Balrog’s Super and Ultra will change
to uppercuts (for anti-air and juggles) if you use Kicks instead of Punches to execute it.
Learning how to use the Turn Punch can be tricky, as you’ll have to deal with losing all of
your kicks or punches, playing ¿nger Twister(tm) to access your remaining buttons, and then
not losing the charge accidentally. It’s rare for a Turn Punch to hit Final status (it requires 56
seconds of charging!), but will destroy 50%of your opponent’s life, if not blow their head off.
Even if you never charge it for that long, the Turn Punch will give you a ready retaliation option
for Focus Attacks due to its Armor-break property. It can also dodge attacks and projectiles
during the back-turn (18 frames), which lets you counter moves likeAbel’s Wheel Kick, Vega’s
Barcelona Attack, and even El Fuerte’s shenanigans (though you can still be grabbed). If you
happen to have a Super charged up, you can cancel into that, too!
The Spiritual Seeker
Dhalsim, like Chun-Li, plays in a completely different fashion than from before. While he’s still
stretchy (with limbs and slides going under projectiles), his drills can’t be used as offensively,
and his teleports give him some crazy mix-up options from full-screen, especially when used
with his Ultra (Yoga Catastrophe is the new Aegis ReÀector). You can also “Tiger-Knee” the
teleport (Finish the motion with up-forward before pressing PPP or KKK) so that it activates
right off the ground. When you re-appear, you now have an instant aerial attack and will land
immediately to continue your combo. Unfortunately, the Yoga Teleport makes for a poor escape
move when you’re cornered. There is NOoption to teleport to the other side of the screen, only
right behind your opponent. Keep in mind that while his limbs do stretch, you can shorten all of
his crouching, standing and jumping attacks by holding back on the controller.
The Yoga Tower is an evasive move. It dodges many attacks and even command throws (like
Zangief’s Screw Piledriver), and you can cancel out of it with a special or normal attack. As for
Anti-air options, his short-range normals like db+LP and b+HK have surprisingly good priority,
and can often be canceled into a HP Yoga Flame (which gives frame advantage on block). He
also has the longest-reaching Focus Attack, but where Dhalsim falls short is with FADC. Along
with Zangief, he has the slowest Dash Cancel in the game, and the slowest forward dash in the
game... so after a Focus Attack, you’ll often have to backdash instead.
d
h
a
l
s
i
m
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
CommandNormals Properties Command
Yoga Shock (Overhead) b+LP
Drill Kick In Air, d+K
Drill Headbutt (Float) In Air, d+HP
Yoga Tower (Cancel) d+PPP
Special Attacks Properties Command
Yoga Fire (Cancel) QCF+P
Yoga Flame (Cancel) (Break) HCF+P
Yoga Blast (Cancel) HCB+K
EX Yoga Fire (Cancel) QCF+PP
EX Yoga Flame (Cancel) (Break) HCF+PP
EX Yoga Blast (Cancel) HCB+KK
Yoga Teleport: Behind (Close) DP+PPP (Ground or Air)
Yoga Teleport: Front (Close) DP+KKK (Ground or Air)
Yoga Teleport: Front (Mid) RDP+PPP (Ground or Air)
Yoga Teleport: Front (Far) RDP+KKK (Ground or Air)
Super Combo Properties Command
Yoga Inferno (Juggle) QCFx2+P
UltraCombo Properties Command
Yoga Catastrophe (Float) QCFx2+PPP
xxx
CommandN
Yoga Shock g
Drill Kick In Air, d K
Normals Properties Command
k (Overhead) ( ) b+LP
In Air, d+K
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
xxx xxx xxxxxxxxx xxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Republic of India
DHALSIM
>
United States of America
BALROG
>
Style: Boxing
Health: 110%
Stun: 100%
Overhead: DashSwingBlow
Air Throw: No
Kara-Cancel: None
Style: Yoga
Health: 90%
Stun: 90%
Overhead: b+LP, j.HP(Jumpaway)
Air Throw: No
Kara-Cancel: None
22_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
The Blood-Stained Claw
Of the Four Kings of Shadaloo, Vega drew the short straw. His d+HK slide is slower than
molasses and is easily punished, he lacks solid anti-air options, and he loses his gear faster
than a Chippendale stripper. This is bad, because if his mask falls off, he suffers a 25%defense
penalty. If you lose his claw, your punches lack range and damage. Vega dominates on the
ground, however. His MK has insane range and speed, and will force many players to jump out
of frustration. Because Vega lacks anti-air options, keep your distance and be ready to slash
them out of the air with j.MP, an air-throw, or an anti-air Focus Attack. His modi¿ed Cosmic
Smart (df+HK) nowlaunches opponents and is safe on block. And on wake-up, you can use his
BackÀips (PPP or KKK, varying length) for full invincibility. Unfortunately, his Scarlet Terror has
poor ground length and is easily countered. It serves as anti-air only fromlong distances.
The EX BarcelonaAttack’s initial leap is an attack! You’ll need to aimit at the opponent (Charge
d, uf+KK). It lacks priority, but has speed and full-screen range. It can combo after a Cosmic
Smart and sets up for an Izuna Drop, and also combos fromc.LK, c.LP or c.MP. To go through
¿reballs, the EX Rolling Crystal Flash works best. Vega also has one of the farthest Focus
Attacks in the game, and can combo his Ultra off of crumple-stun if charge-partitioned. Outside
of this, his Ultra is only useful for full-screen punishes. On the other hand, his Super Combo,
the Barcelona Special, sets up like the normal Barcelona Attack. If you grab your opponent, it
becomes the Rolling Izuna Drop and is surprisingly effective.
CommandNormals Properties Command
Piece of Mercury df+MK
Cosmic Smart (Float) df+HK
Backslash PPP
Short Backslash KKK
Special Attacks: Properties Command
Rolling Crystal Flash (Cancel) Charge b,f+P
Scarlet Terror (Break) Charge db,f+K
Sky High Claw Charge d,u+P
Flying Barcelona Attack Charge d,u+K (Hold b or f to move)
EX Rolling Crystal Flash (Cancel) Charge b,f+PP
EX Scarlet Terror (Break) Charge db,f+KK
EX Sky High Claw (Break) Charge d,u+P
EX Flying Barcelona Attack (Juggle) (Float) Charge d,u+KK (Hold b or f to move)
Izuna Drop (Juggle) (Grab)
During Barcelona, f+HP or b+HP near
opponent
Remove Claw DP+P
EX Remove Mask DP+PPP
Super Combo Properties Command
Flying Barcelona Special Charge db,df,db,uf+P
Rolling Izuna Drop (Grab) During FBS, f+Por b+Pnear opponent
UltraCombo Properties Command
Bloody High Claw (Break) Charge db,df,db,uf+PPP
The Honorable Emperor
The King of Muay Thai is so powerful in this game that he can completely shut out any
opponent’s game plan. His Tiger Knee Crush hits twice, breaks armor, and if spaced correctly,
has no recovery penalty and can cross-up his opponent after the second hit! You can lock an
opponent down with a c.LK -> c.MK -> LK Tiger Knee Crush blockstring which leaves few
openings for your opponent to escape. Furthermore, his Step LowKick is safe if blocked, allows
him to cancel into a special attack on hit, and can also kara-cancel into a special attack, which
can give his HK Tiger Knee Crush full-screen range! His Tiger Shots also recover quickly, and
his Tiger Uppercut still hits like a ton of bricks. His air options aren’t lacking either: j.LK is an
effective cross-up, and his j.MP is an effective jump-in, as well as having the ability to juggle!
To make things worse, his Ultra is easier to combo into than Ryu’s! It will connect after a deep
j.HK on counter-hit, or a FADC’ed Tiger Uppercut. It also connects off of his Step High Kick
(f+HK), which has odd juggle properties (much like Ryu’s j.MP). An FADC or traded Tiger
Uppercut can be followed up with a Step High Kick, then ¿nished with his Ultra. Basically,
whenever Sagat has an Ultra charged, jumping in on himamounts to suicide. His one weakness
is his sheer height. Characters like Vega and Chun-Li gain a slight advantage against him
because of this. Both characters can hit him crouching with a jump-back overhead attack, and
certain combos become easier to perform because of his height (including Vega’s EX Flying
Barcelona Attack).
CommandNormals Properties Command
Fake Kick Press HKx2 quickly
Step Low Kick (Low) f+LK
Step High Kick (Juggle) (Float) f+HK
Heavy Tiger Elbow (Overhead) f+HP
Special Attacks Properties Command
Tiger Shot (Cancel) QCF+P
Ground Tiger Shot (Cancel) QCF+K
Tiger Uppercut (Cancel) (Float) DP+P
Tiger Knee Crush (Cancel) (Break) (Float) DP+K
EX Tiger Shot (Cancel) (Float) QCF+PP
EX Ground Tiger Shot (Cancel) (Float) QCF+KK
EX Tiger Uppercut (Cancel) (Float) DP+PP
EX Tiger Knee Crush (Cancel) (Break) (Float) DP+KK
Super Combo Properties Command
Tiger Genocide (Juggle) QCFx2+K
UltraCombo Properties Command
Tiger Destruction (Juggle) QCFx2+KKK
s
a
g
a
t
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
v
e
g
a
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
Piece of Mercury df+MK
CommandNormals Properties Command
Piece of Mercury df+MK
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
Kingdom of Spain
VEGA
>
Style: SpanishAssassinationArts
Health: 100%(75%without Mask)
Stun: 90%
Overhead: j.HP(Jumpaway)
Air Throw: Yes
Kara-Cancel: HK
VEGA
Kingdom of Thailand
SAGAT
>
Style: Muay Thai
Health: 110%
Stun: 110%
Overhead: f+HP
Air Throw: No
Kara-Cancel: f+LK(Specials Only)
STREET FIGHTER IV _COV ER_23
www.uat.edu > 877.UAT.GEEK
877.828.4335
Geeks transform into Alpha-Geeks by becoming fluent in:
LEARN: Digital Animation, Digital Art and Design, Digital Video, Game Design, Artificial Life Programming, Computer Forensics
Game Programming, Network Engineering, Network Security, Software Engineering, Web Architecture, Robotics and Embedded Systems
CommandNormals Properties Command
High Jump d,u
Viper Elbow (Overhead) f+MP
Double Kick f+MK
Special Attacks Properties Command
Thunder Knuckle
(Juggle) (Cancel) (Break)
(Float)
QCF+P
Burning Kick (Float) QCB+K (Ground or Air)
Seismo Hammer (Cancel) DP+P
EX Thunder Knuckle (Cancel) (Break) (Float) QCF+PP
EX Burning Kick (Float) QCB+KK (Ground or Air)
EX Seismo Hammer (Cancel) (Float) DP+PP
Feint After Seismo or Thunder, PP
Super Combo Properties Command
Emergency Combination (Juggle) QCFx2+P
UltraCombo Properties Command
Burst Time (Juggle) QCFx2+PPP
c
.
v
i
p
e
r
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
Miss Perfect
Of the four newcomers, Crimson Viper is the Àashiest... and the most complex. She is the
only character in the game that has a High Jump (Tap down, then any upward direction), and
inherits the ability to jump-cancel certain attacks for additional combos, even into her Ultra.
She can also cancel her Thunder Knuckle and Seismo Hammer to recover faster with a
feint (press PP immediately after the startup animation), which can actually be used to make
combos. She pays a price for this versatility: She has 10%less health and deals about 20%
less damage than average. Her Focus Attack is also rather slow. In order to keep up, she’ll
need to constantly be on the offensive and combo, combo, combo.
Viper’s normal attacks are decent. Her HK and Double Kick (f+HK) both dodge low attacks
on startup, and her j.HK works as a crossup, especially useful after her back throw. Her Viper
Elbow (f+MP) is both an Overhead and an advancing short-jump attack. Her special attacks
take some time to explain. The Thunder Knuckle is really three specials in one: LPgoes under
¿reballs, MPis faster, and HPhas brief invincibility and can juggle an opponent twice if the ¿rst
HPThunder Knuckle was an early anti-air. EX version will get you out of the corner and knock
the opponent down. Viper can also punish ¿reballs with a high-jump Burning Kick, and the
move can also cross-up opponents after a jump-kick (you can combo into it in the air), giving
way to a mix-up mind game. The Burning Kick also combos into Ultra in the corner. In a pinch,
EX Burning Kick acts as a decent wake-up and gets opponents off of you in a hurry. Her EX
Seismo Hammer has massive invincibility frames, can launch, and can be jump-canceled into
her HP Thunder Knuckle, Burning Kick, or an Ultra. Because of its versatility, it’ll probably be
your biggest meter drain, but if it gives you the opportunity to combo into your Ultra, go for it!
The Demon From Hell
M.Bison, aka “Dictator” can lock-down an opponent with his Double Knee Press, and his
standing kicks have great reach and priority. His air options are just as strong: he can capitalize
off of mid-air Hell Attacks (j.MP-MP) with followup juggles, and he has a j.MKcross-up. His Devil
Reverse looks identical to a jump on ascent, and can fake you out! That’s not all, though. His
EX Psycho Crusher absorbs 1-hit ¿reballs (like Zangief’s Banishing Flat) and has a huge hitbox,
making it good for anti-air escapes, and his EX Devil Reverse is an invincible escape as it goes
up. The EX Head Press has invincible start-up (great as anti-air), does a TON of damage (as
much as some combos), and can even defeat Zangief’s Double Lariat. EX Double Knee Press
goes full-screen through ¿reballs, making it an invaluable tool against Guile’s Sonic Booms.
Best of all, his Ultra is invincible on start-up, and can juggle after a Hell Attack for full damage,
as it will ‘grab’ airborne characters.
Unfortunately, Dictator lacks an overhead or kara-throw for ground mixups. Much of his game
will be spent teasing out openings with his Devil Reverse and well-placed Double Knee Presses
for minimal recovery. Also, the Skull Diver and Devil Reverse falls are both vulnerable to being
Focus countered. When hitting people out of the air with his Hell Attack, keep in mind that you
can follow up with any attack on the ground if you only press MP once. If you hit it twice (j.MP-
MP chain), you will only be able to juggle with techniques speci¿cally with the Juggle property,
such as the EX Psycho Crusher or Ultra.
m
.
b
i
s
o
n
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
CommandNormals Properties Command
Hell Attack (Float) j.MP->MP during Diag. Jump
Special Attacks Properties Command
Psycho Crusher (Cancel) (Break) Charge b,f+P
Double Knee Press (Cancel 1st) Charge b,f+K
Head Press (Overhead) Charge d,u+K
Somersault Skull Diver (Overhead)
After Head Press, P (Hold b
or f to move)
Devil Reverse (Overhead)
Charge d,u+P (Hold b or f
to move)
EX Psycho Crusher (Juggle) (Cancel) (Break) Charge b,f+P
EX Double Knee Press (Juggle) (Cancel 1st) Charge b,f+KK
EX Head Press (Float) (Overhead) Charge d,u+KK
EX Somersault Skull Diver (Juggle) (Overhead)
After EX Head Press, P
(Hold b or f to move)
EX Devil Reverse (Juggle) (Overhead) Charge d,u+PP
Teleport: Behind (Close) DP+PPP
Teleport: Front (Close) DP+KKK
Teleport: Front (Mid) RDP+PPP
Teleport: Front (Far) RDP+KKK
Super Combo Properties Command
Knee Press Nightmare (Juggle) Charge b,f,b,f+K
UltraCombo Properties Command
Nightmare Booster (Juggle) Charge b,f,b,f+KKK
xxx
CommandN
Hell Attack
Special Attacks Properties Command
Normals Properties Command
(Float) ( ) j.MP->MP during Diag. Jump j g g p
acks Properties Command
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
Shadaloo Crime Syndicate
M.BISON
>
Shhadaloo Crime Syndicate
MM.BISON
United States of America
C.VIPER
>
Style: Way of the Secret Spy
Health: 90%
Stun: 95%
Overhead: f+MP
Air Throw: None
Kara-Cancel: None
Style: PsychoPower
Health: 100%
Stun: 95%
Overhead: None
Air Throw: No
Kara-Cancel: None
24 _COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
CommandNormals Properties Command
Triangle Jump Jump near a wall, Up-Forward
Drop Kick (Overhead) f+MK
Target Combo Far MK-MK
Special Attacks Properties Command
Habanero Dash QCF+P
Habanero Back Dash QCB+P
Stop During HD/HBD: LP
Tostada Press (Overhead) During HD/HBD/Triangle Jump: MP
Fajita Buster (Grab) During HD/Triangle Jump: HP
Propeller Tortilla (Grab) During HBD, HP
Back Step During HD, LK
Gordita Sobat (Float) (Cancel) During HD, MK
Caramale Sliding (Low) During HD, HK
Picadillo Jump During HBD, K
Quesadilla Bomb (Break) (Cancel) (Float) Hold K, Release
Guacamole Leg Throw (Juggle) DP+K
EX Habanero Dash (Armor) QCF+PP
EX Habanero Back Dash (Armor) QCB+PP
EX Quesadilla Bomb (Break) (Cancel) (Float) Hold KK for 8 seconds, Release
EX Guacamole Leg Throw (Juggle) DP+KK
Super Combo Properties Command
El Fuerte Dynamite (Juggle) QCFx2+K
UltraCombo Properties Command
El Fuerte Flying Giga Buster (Grab) QCFx2+KKK (Hold b or f to move)
e
l

f
u
e
r
t
e
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
The Courageous Hurricane
True to Lucha Libre form, El Fuerte throws his entire body at you to attack, and he’s fast.
His Habanero Dash is dif¿cult to track, and during it, he gains a low sliding attack (Caramale
Sliding), an overhead/anti-air cross-up body-slam with invincible start-up (Tostada Press),
a command throw that only ‘hits’ standing enemies (Fajita Buster), a safe attack with frame
advantage on hit (Gordita Sobat), a back dash (Back Step) and cancel (Stop) option. The
Habanero Back Dash is slightly different, in that the Fajita Buster gets changed into the
Propeller Tortilla (which is unblockable), and all Kicks lead to the Picadillo Jump, which sets
himup for a Triangle Jump into his wall-options: either the Tostada Press or the Fajita Buster.
The Tostada Press is a huge part of El Fuerte’s pressure game. It has invincibility frames
(allowing it to pass through ¿reballs), attack frames in the air, ability to cross-up, knockdown
on hit, and relatively safe recovery distance (he’s punishable, but not for long), forcing
opponents to adapt to it.
Creative use of the Habanero Dash allows you to control the entire stage; the EX version
even has two points of Super Armor!). It is also possible to gain frame advantage with the
Habanero Dash -> Stop combination after a close HP, which can be performed repeatedly. El
Fuerte also has his close HK, which launches and sets up for his Guacamole Leg Throw, and
his Quesadilla Bomb, which can Armor Break. The EX Guacamole Leg Throw has massive
invincibility, and its angle gets himaway fromcross-up attempts. Finally, his Super is easy to
link into after his Drop Kick (LPversion has 3f startup), and his Ultra is an invincible Àying grab
that can be steered in mid-Àight to catch grounded opponents.
The Man Without A Past
Abel is a deceptively effective character. His mix-up series is the Change of Direction (QCF+P),
and gives you options for low and overhead attacks. The “Mids” always come faster than the
“Lows” and are guaranteed to combo if the initial Change of Direction hit, but the “Lows” do
more damage. His Tornado Throw is a little slow, but is invincible to throws (the EX version is
invulnerable to attacks) and allows himto dominate in close situations such as a blocked Focus
Attack dash-canceled into a throw. His Marseille Rolling makes himtemporarily invulnerable to
attack, but is vulnerable to throws. The Sky Fall will grab opponents out of the air, and works
well after his c.HP. His Wheel Kick is great for punishing ¿reballs, but the initial startup can
be Focus countered. As for normal attacks, you’ll mainly be comboing c.MP into Change of
Direction. His j.MK is also a decent cross-up and works after a Tornado Throw or Ultra. The
real killer in his toolbox is his humble Front Kick (f+MK), which cancels into a dash with time
to spare. If it counter-hits, you’re looking at a free combo. Finally, he has an Ulltra that rushes
across half the screen like a homicidal madman, goes through ¿reballs, catches opponents out
of the air, juggles after a c.HP, and punishes just about everything. Beware though, if his c.HPis
blocked, it leaves himas vulnerable as a blocked Ken sweep (-6 frames), and many characters
can quickly punish himfor it.
a
b
e
l
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
CommandNormals Properties Command
Front Kick f+MK
Special Attacks Properties Command
Change of Direction (Float) QCF+P
Second Middle (Overhead) After Change, F+P
Second Low (Low) After Change, F+K
Finish Middle (Overhead) After Second, F+P
Finish Low (Low) After Second, F+K
Wheel Kick (Break) (Float) (Overhead) QCB+K
Marseille Rolling QCF+K
Sky Fall (Float) DP+P
Tornado Throw HCB+P
EX Change of Direction (Float) QCF+PP
EX Wheel Kick (Break) (Float) (Overhead) QCB+KK
EX Marseille Rolling QCF+KK
EX Sky Fall (Juggle) (Float) DP+PP
EX Tornado Throw (Grab) HCB+PP
Super Combo Properties Command
Mushin (Juggle) (Break) QCFx2+P
UltraCombo Properties Command
Muga (Juggle) (Break) QCFx2+PPP
xxx
CommandN
Front Kick
Special Attacks Properties Command
Normals Properties Command
f+MK
acks Properties Command
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
French Republic
ABEL
>
ABEL
United Mexican States
EL FUERTE
>
Style: Lucha Libre
Health: 90%
Stun: 100%
Overhead: Tostada Press, f+MK, far HK
Air Throw: Yes
Kara-Cancel: None
Style: JudoVariant
Health: 110%
Stun: 105%
Overhead: SecondMiddle, FinishMiddle
Air Throw: None
Kara Cancel: None
26_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
The Dancing Giant
The only thing more ridiculous than Rufus’s appearance is howgood he is: He has a controllable
dive-kick (df+j.MK, Hold b or f to move) that can be performed immediately off of the ground,
a spin-kick (Messiah Kick) that can EX as an invincible wake-up and has combo (LK), low
(MK) and overhead (HK) options, a hopping Àurry of attacks (Snake Strike) that, if EX’ed, has
invincibility and does more damage than Sagat’s EX Tiger Uppercut, and a spin-attack (Galaxy
Tornado) that can nullify ¿reballs, launch, and can vacuum opponents with the EX version. To
top it off, he has the second-highest health in the game! His normal attacks are just as crazy.
His far HK launches for an EX Snake Strike or his Ultra, and can also chain from his close LK,
which is extremely fast (4 frames). Therefore, with a quick LK-HK chain, you could con¿rm a
launch before ¿nishing with the Ultra! For distance, he has a c.HP that reaches halfway across
the screen, but recovers slowly. To get in closer, he has a rolling low-kick (d+MK) that’s safe on
block. In the air, his j.HK has the same property as M.Bison’s Hell Attack (juggle state), allowing
you to juggle with his Ultra or EX Snake Strike. He’s so beginner-friendly that it almost seems
unfair, but veteran players familiar with dive-kick strategy can shut his Falcon Kick game down
if they’re careful.
The Ultimate Fist
Akuma has low health but high offense; the proverbial glass cannon. He can win any ¿reball
¿ght with his Shakunetsu Gou Hadouken (3 hits for HP version), juggle after LK Tatsumaki, and
uppercut newcomers. He has also has the Hyakki Shuu (“Demon Flip”) that leaps into the air
and follows with a dive kick, armor break/overhead, throw or low attack, and that dive kick hits
like a Mack Truck. Akuma can throw air ¿reballs at varying angles (determined by button; EX
version ¿res two), and his air ¿reballs travel so slowly that land behind it to maintain his offense.
Because of these options, Akuma can approach with impunity. His bread-and-butter is dive kick
or air ¿reball, close HP -> LK Tatsumaki -> HP Gou Shoryuken. But if his opponent trapped
behind the air ¿reball, Akuma can also decide to charge a Focus Attack. After a blocked Focus
Attack, most players tend to dash in and throw. Akuma has a more devilish option; he can dash
in and activate his Shun Goku Satsu (Super or Ultra version), which is now even easier to
execute (it’s now three motions instead of ¿ve: LP, LP, f+LK+HP).
His far HK is a double-kick that advances him similarly to Ken’s, forces his opponent to stand
on hit, and gives him frame advantage (just enough to sneak another attack in). He also has a
small kara-cancel with HP, though it isn’t nearly as good as Ken’s. His Ultra (Shin Shun Goku
Satsu) however, does not have many frames of invincibility (the Super version is much better
for this), but inÀicts terrifying damage. Mastering it as an anti-air measure will completely change
the nature of late-game strategy against you.
CommandNormals Properties Command
Zugai Hasatsu (Overhead) d+MP
Tenma Kujin Kyaku (Overhead) At peak of jump, d+MK
Special Attacks Properties Command
Gou Hadouken (Cancel) QCF+P
Shakunetsu Hadouken (Cancel) HCB+P
Zankuu Hadouken In Air, QCF+P
Gou Shoryuken (Juggle) (Float) (Cancel) DP+P
Tatsumaki Zankuukyaku (Float) (Cancel 1st, MK,HK) QCB+K (Ground or Air)
Hyakki Shuu DP+K
Hyakki Gouzan (Low) After Hyakki Shuu, nothing
Hyakki Goushou (Break) (Overhead) After Hyakki Shuu, P
Hyakki Goujin After Hyakki Shuu, K
Hyakki Gousai (Grab) After Hyakki Shuu, LP+LK (close)
Ashura Senkuu (Far) DP or RDP + PPP
Ashura Senkuu (Short) DP or RDP + KKK
EX Gou Hadouken (Float) (Cancel) QCF+PP
EX Shakunetsu Hadouken (Cancel) HCB+PP
EX Zankuu Hadouken In Air, QCF+PP
EX Gou Shoryuken (Juggle) (Float) (Cancel) DP+PP
EX Tatsumaki Zankuukyaku (Juggle) (Float) QCB+KK
EX Hyakki Shuu DP+KK
Super Combo Properties Command
Shun Goku Satsu (Grab) LP,LP,f+LK+HP
UltraCombo Properties Command
Shin Shun Goku Satsu (Grab) LP,LP,b+LK+HP
a
k
u
m
a
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
CommandNormals Properties Command
Falcon Kick (Juggle) (Float)
In Air, df+MK (Hold f or b
to move)
Virtua Kick (Overhead) f+MK
Glory Kick (Low) df+MK
Fragrance Palm f+HP
Target Combo (Float) Close LK-HK
Special Attacks Properties Command
Messiah Kick (Float) QCF+K
Messiah Finish (LK) (Cancel) (Float) After Messiah Kick, LK
Messiah Finish (MK) (Low) After Messiah Kick, MK
Messiah Finish (HK) (Overhead) After Messiah Kick, HK
Galaxy Tornado
(Juggle) (Break) (Float)
(Cancel 1st)
QCF+P
Snake Strike (Juggle) DP+P
EX Messiah Kick (Float) QCF+KK
EX Galaxy Tornado (Break) QCF+PP
EX Snake Strike (Juggle) DP+PP
Super Combo Properties Command
Spectacle Romance (Juggle) (Break) QCFx2+P
UltraCombo Properties Command
Space Opera Symphony (Juggle) (Break) QCF+PP
r
u
f
u
s
’s

m
o
v
e
l
i
s
t
Falcon Kick (Juggle) (Float)
In Air, df MK (Hold f or b
CommandNormals Properties Command
Falcon Kick (Juggle) (Float)
In Air, df+MK (Hold f or b
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
United States of America
RUFUS
>
Style: MisunderstoodKarate
Health: 115%
Stun: 95%
Overhead: f+MK
Air Throw: None
Kara-Cancel: None
Japan
AKUMA
>
Style: Ansatsuken(Unsealed)?
Health: 85%
Stun: 85%
Overhead: f+MP
Air Throw: None
Kara-Cancel: HP, f+MP(Special Only)
STREET FIGHTER IV _COV ER_27
>Key:
(F) = Far
(C) = Close
(S) = Must Block Standing
(H) = Works Even If Hit
Counter-Attack
Options
Can’t ¿gure out how to defeat a certain
move? These are our recommended
attacks to retaliate or counter troublesome
special attacks, especially if they seem
safe on block. These attacks include:
Zangief’s Double Lariat, E.Honda’s Zutsuki
(Headbutt), Blanka’s Rolling Attack, and
Guile’s Sonic Boom.

everything else
THE APPENDIX DATA
É
>Counter
Attack
Examples
Here’s what to look for
when doing the above
moves. Take a look!
Character Zangief DoubleLariat (PPP) E.Honda'sHeadbutt (Chargeb, f+P)
Ryu: HK (F), HP (F), c.HK (C) HP Super
Ken: EX Shoryuken (F), LK (F), c.MK (C) f+MK
Chun Li: HP (F), HK (F), c.MP (C), Ultra (F or C) Step then c.HK, Step then MP (S), Super, Ultra
Blanka: df+HP (Beats Lariat startup at max distance) df+HP, EX Rolling Attack
Zangief: HK (F), LP (F), Double Lariat (C) EX Banishing Flat
Honda: HP (F), Headbutt (late)(F/C), Ultra (C) HP Super (S), Ultra (S)
Guile: HP (F), c.HK (C), HK Somersault Kick (F/C), EX Sonic Boom (during Lariat recovery), Ultra (C) --
Dhalsim: c.HP (F), HP (F), c.HK (C) LK, HP
Balrog: LP (F), c.HP (F), EX Buffalo Headbutt (F/C), EX Dash Upper (F) LP Dash Straight, HP Super, Ultra
Vega: HK (F), c.HK (C), EX Barcelona Attack (C), Ultra (F) HK, EX Barcelona Attack
Sagat: HK (F), HK Tiger Knee (F), HP Tiger Uppercut (C), Ultra (F/C) HK Super (S)
M.Bison: HP (F), c.MK (C), HK Double Knee Press (C), Ultra (C) Step then MK, HK Double Knee Press, HK Super
C.Viper: Seismo Hammer (F/C), HK (F), c.HK (C) LP Super
Abel: HP (F), c.HK (C), EX Wheel Kick (F), EX Change of Direction (F) MP Change of Direction, Ultra
El Fuerte: Tostada Press, Propeller Tortilla (F), c.HK (C), Ultra (F/C) Ultra
Rufus: Far HP (F), EX Messiah Kick (C), LP Snake Strike (C), Ultra (C) c.HP, EX Galaxy Tornado
Akuma: Tenma Kujin Kyaku (F), Hyakku Goujin (F) c.MK (C) --
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 28_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV STREET FIGHTER IV TTT FF FF VVV SSSST SST ST ST STTTTT SST ST SST SSSST SSSS RE RE RE RE RE R EET ET ET EET T F FFFFFF FFFFFIG G IG GGG IG IG GGGGHT HT HT HT HT HHT TT HT HT T HT HT TT HT T H ER ER ER ER ER ER ER ER R ER ER ER ER R EEER RRRRRRRRRRR EE IIIVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVV
Miscellaneous Character Data
This information will be useful to help gauge your character against your
opponent’s. Knowing if your Ultra can be comboed into is especially important- if
you know how your opponent uses their Ultra, you may be able to bait them into
wasting it. At high levels of play, it is rare to see an Ultra used outside of a combo
because of the severe penalties involved in missing. If your opponent’s Ultra
misses and has more than -30 frames of recovery (disadvantage), you can set up
a combo starting with a Level 2 Focus Attack.
For clari¿cation, the Jump frames are listed as Startup+Air-Time. Notice that
Zangief has the highest jump startup. This is because he needs extra time on the
ground to execute a 360 or 720 degree motion (e.g.: Screw Piledriver) without
accidentally jumping. Dhalsim’s jump startup, on the other hand, is faster because
of the necessity of performing an aerial Yoga Teleport immediately off of the
ground. In effect, this actually gives him a ~30 frame jump.
Chara Health Stun DashSpeed BackdashSpeed JumpSpeed UltraStartup UltraRecovery CombointoUltra
Ryu 1000 1000 18 27 4+36 10 -25 Yes
Ken 1000 1000 18 27 4+36 9 -50 Yes
Chun-Li 900 1050 15 22 4+41 6 -47 Yes
E.Honda 1100 1100 19 27 4+37 10 -15 Stun Only
Blanka 1050 950 21 26 4+34 3 -41 Yes
Zangief 1200 1200 26 26 6+37 0 n/a Stun Only
Guile 1000 900 19 26 4+36 6 -77 Yes
Dhalsim 900 900 32 29 3+56 11 +44 Yes
Balrog 1100 1000 18 24 4+36 10 -25 Yes
Vega 1000 900 20 22 4+35 Varies -30 Stun Only
Sagat 1100 1100 18 29 4+36 9 -48 Yes
M.Bison 1000 950 17 25 4+40 11 -35 Yes
C.Viper 900 950 19 27 4+36 6 -201 Yes
Abel 1100 1050 16 25 4+36 13 -30 Yes
El Fuerte 900 1000 16 19 4+39 4 n/a Stun Only
Rufus 1150 950 20 27 4+39 8 -13 Yes
Akuma 850 850 18 25 4+36 4 n/a Stun Only
Blanka'sRollingAttack(Chargeb, f+P) Guile'sSonicBoom(Chargeb,f+P)
HP Super (H) Tatsumaki, EX Hadouken
Near corner, Step then f+MK EX Hadouken, EX Tatsumaki
Dash then HK Super, Ultra (H) Hazanshu, Ultra
Step then df+HP (H) df+HP, EX Rolling Attack
Near corner, EX Banishing Flat EX Banishing Flat
HP Headbutt, HP Super, Ultra Super, Ultra
EX Sonic Boom EX Sonic Boom
HP (H), c.HK (S) df+HP
LP Dash Straight, LP Super (H), Ultra (H) EX Dash Straight, Super, Ultra
Dash then c.MP, EX Barcelona Attack, Ultra Ultra
Near corner, EX Ground Tiger Shot EX Tiger Shot, Ultra
c.HK, HK Double Knee Press, HK Super EX Double Knee Press
HP Seismo Hammer Viper Elbow, EX Seismo Hammer, LP Thunder Knuckle, Burning Kick
Ultra (H) EX Change of Direction, EX Wheel Kick, Ultra
Habanero Dash -> Caramale Sliding, Step then Ultra (S) EX Habanero Dash -> Caramale Sliding, Ultra
Step then c.HP (S) HP Galaxy Tornado, EX Messiah Kick
Super, Ultra Tatsumaki, EX Shakunetsu Hadouken, EX Gou Hadouken
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV _COV ER_29

looking ahead
INTO THE HOME FUTURE
É
Console Talk
New playable characters for the console version will include Sakura, Gouken, Dan, Fei Long, Gen and Rose.
New characters may end up shipping in the game itself, or as downloadable content, but as of press time,
we don’t know for certain. Also, it is a given that console players will have access to online play, and the
game’s architecture was developed from the beginning to be optimized for this purpose. Early test reports look
favorable in Japanese networks, but Japan is about the size of California, and seeing how well that netcode
holds under cross-country conditions is a different beast altogether.
For dedicated players, there’s also a deeply-involved Training mode that teaches you basic and advanced
combos with each character. Those of you who remember Street Fighter EX + Alpha and its top-notch “Expert
Mode” missions will be pleasantly surprised with the tools available to learn the game’s mechanics.
For console versions, we highly recommend that you purchase an arcade-quality joystick to play Street
Fighter IV. One of the best sticks on the market is the Hori Real Arcade Pro 3 (HRAP3) for the
Playstation 3 (also PC compatible via USB), though there are reports that Mad Catz will also be
creating an of¿cial joystick. Since most arcades and tournaments now use the Japanese style
of joysticks (the gumball kind, not the bat-sticks), practicing on a Japanese-style joystick
will allow you to instantly translate your console skills over to the arcade. The advantage of
having an arcade-quality stick like the HRAP series is that broken parts can be replaced
with new arcade hardware that you can purchase through various vendors online. While
you can expect to pay over $100 USD for hardware, it is a very sound investment.
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 30_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
>Special Thanks
This guide would not have been possible without
extensive help from key staff, the ¿ghting game
community and my friends: Shoryuken.com, Capcom,
Yoshinori Ono, Andrew Alfonso, Ed Ma, Kentaro
Inoue, Ultradavid, Bebop, Dzuy Vuong, Scott Tsai,
MarkMan, Family Fun Arcade, Denjin Arcade, Arcade
In¿nity, and Joanna Micco.
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV _COV ER_31
HGM: The ¿rst thing that caught my attention with SFIV
development was that it was developed with Dimps, who
developed The Rumble Fish. What kind of relationship
does Capcom and Dimps have and how did Dimps
contribute to SFIV’s development?
Ono: Dimps is co-developing the game with Capcom. It
is well known that Dimps employs a substantial amount of
old-school ¿ghter-era staff members that have worked on
many revolutionary ¿ghting games, including the original
Street Fighter that started the series. We basically created
a big team composed of both Capcom and Dimps staff
and developed the game hand in hand.
The concept of this game, of course, is to bring an SFII-era
¿ghting tool into the 21st century. This is why a teamwith so
much experience in the ¿ghting games of that time period
is so well-suited to this particular project, and this is why we
are engaged in a co-development scheme with Dimps.
HGM: The price tag for a set of SFIV cabinets seems to
have shocked players. Is the market in Japan for arcade
machines able to support that kind of pricing?
Ono: Well, we are using a brand new arcade board (Taito
X-2), a brand new cabinet, it’s equipped with ID card
readers, and the machines can be networked in clusters.
Since all of these features are sold as a full set, it is indeed
a pricey proposition, but arcade owners here [in Japan]
probably viewed it as the standard deluxe or premium
machine price.
HGM: As of this interview, there have been no
announcements to bring SFIV arcade cabinets to the
United States. Has Capcom decided ¿nally whether
or not to release the arcade version in the American
arcade market?
Ono: Well, the unfortunate reality is that the arcade
market in the States isn’t exactly healthy. Add to that
the fact that Capcom USA doesn’t have access to the
sales network it once did on the arcade front [Capcom
Coin-Op USA closed in 2004], and you can see that
things are quite dif¿cult. That said, we have no intention
of simply giving up and negotiations with possible
distribution partners are ongoing.
HGM: I’ve heard from many SFIII:3s players that don’t
want to stop playing SFIII to play SFIVbecause of the time
invested into learning the Parrying system. They would
love to jump onto SFIVif there was a mode that eliminated
Ultras and Focus attacks but brought back Parrying. Was
this idea ever brought up during development?
Ono: Well, it is important to remember that we are treating
SFIII and SFIV as very different beasts. Each game plays
by its own rulebook. As you say, the techniques people
spent time honing in III will not work in IV. Capcom’s
attitude about III is that the complex gameplay system
in that game is the main reason that it is still so widely
enjoyed to this day.
That is why it’s always good to hear from fans who love
III. Capcomis very happy to hear that SFIII has a place in
the hearts of so many hardcore fans.That said, IV is much
closer to II in regards to rules and gameplay. Which is not
to say that these two games are identical. We worked with
the rulebook of II as the base and built on top of it, adding
new layers and tweaking things here and there.
This is the concept on which we based all of development
for IV, and I think we’ve come up with something unique
as a result. When you actually sit down to play the game,
I think you l realize that it has a feel that is different from
previous iterations.
HGM: Players have already begun utilizing SFIII’s kara-
cancel glitch (to extend range on throws and attacks) in
SFIV. Was kara-canceling deliberately left in SFIV to add
to the game’s depth, or was it an honest oversight? And if
it was unintentional, will it be left alone, or will it be patched
later on?
Ono: Kara-canceling is no bug and it was no oversight.
It was, as you insinuate above, included deliberately. We
knew that problems would pop up here and there as a
result of this decision, but we feel that the depth it adds
to the gameplay was a big enough merit to justify its
inclusion. Both the dev team and our quality assurance
teamcame to this conclusion. We were careful to build the
game around this feature to minimize negative effects and
ensure that the general rulebook for IV was suited to it.
HGM: I’ve noticed that in SFIV, you cannot quick-recover
when being thrown.
I have the feeling that this change, although minor, was
a very deliberate decision. I‘ve also noticed invincibility
frames on back- dashes. What was the rationale behind
these changes, and what other minor tweaks were
discussed with gameplay?
Ono: First, let me address the quick-recover issue
you bring up. In order to prevent a series of sure-thing
counterattacks, we decided to make certain moves
resistant to recovery.
We’ve broken this system down into three basic
components or options that a player has and they are
crouching sweep kick, throw, and special move throw.
As for back dashing, let me start by saying that IV’s basic
gameplay system is based upon Super Street Fighter II
Turbo, the last of the SFII series. The way attacks can
be layered and the fact that throws are generally very
powerful in this system made it necessary to allow for
a brief period of invincibility in the back dash maneuver.
This opens up many more strategic options in both the
offensive and defensive realms. Furthermore, if you back
dash your way out of a Focus Attack, you can deepen
your offense and defense options even further.
I can tell you quite a bit about some of the minor tweaks
we implemented. We’ve tried to tune the game so that
the cancel system has some depth and isn’t just a two
dimensional process. The timing is such that you can
pull it off almost as soon as the thought hits your brain,
allowing for some harrowing matches.
Furthermore, we put a lot of energy into avoiding turning
the game into a combo-fest. Instead, we steered the
gameplay to focus more on distancing yourself from your
opponent or closing that gap when necessary, harkening
back to SFII gameplay. The big challenge was in deciding
where to draw the line. We decided to spice things up by
tuning the cancels to suit a feint-heavy gameplay style
as well as the traditional cancel uses. Fine-tuning the
balance when it comes to these cancels was a challenge,
but we think we’ve come up with a really strategic ¿ghting
tool that will show its depth as time goes on.
HGM: It’s fun to be playing updated versions of the original
twelve Street Fighters, and for the most part, the core
of their gameplay hasn’t changed much. There is one
exception, however: Chun-Li. I really like her newchanges
built upon her SFIII:3s foundation, but she appears to be
a character with a very high learning curve again, like in
Super Street Fighter II Turbo. Why does Chun-Li keep
changing so much fromgame to game?
Ono: Chun-Li is the eternal Capcom heroine, no matter
the series or title we speak of, and she will continue to
ful¿ll that role in the future. Basically, we want her to stand
out as our heroine, so a lot of effort is put into tuning
her and establishing a solid and unique feel for each
title in which she appears. As for me, I want gamers to
appreciate her strength as well as her beauty, so we have
tuned the game to this end.
HGM: How big of a factor was the Focus Attack system
when designing the new characters and adapting
classic ones?
Ono: Well, the Focus Attack system serves many
purposes. Obviously, it’s there to add a layer of strategy,
but it serves another very important role as well in that
it gives us an opportunity to show off the characters
personalities. The type of move they perform and the
way they pull it off, their reaction to their own move, it all
serves to give us a glimpse at the kind of characters these
¿ghters are. This is especially useful when dealing with
the new characters as they haven’t yet had time to enter
the consciousness of the average gamer.
HGM: What kind of challenges did you have when
designing the game for a 16:9 screen ratio? It seems
creator int erview
DIRECTOR YOSHINORI ONO
É
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 32_COV ER_STREET FIGHTER IV
that some characters that make use of wall- jumps, like
Chun-Li and Vega, might have a problem reaching the
wall at times.
Ono: As you can imagine, the move to 16:9 indeed
brought several challenges to the table. Firstly, the fact
that the main gameplay surrounds the idea of managing
the distance between yourself and your opponent means
that we had to carefully use the space given when it comes
to jump arcs and the like. On top of that, ¿reballs and other
projectiles needed special attention since they have high
priority and can be thrown fromall the way across the wide
screen. That’s where we started with our tuning, actually.
By knocking out the above two issues at a relatively
early stage, we were able to handle wall jumps without
any major issues, since the basics were already in place
for the transition to the new aspect ratio. I want to assure
players that the feel of the game is not thrown off due to the
16:9 display. Wall jumps and other maneuvers should feel
pretty much exactly like they always have.
HGM: One addition to SFIV that shocked me was the
new Super Armor system. It’s perfect. It makes perfect
sense to include it for EX attacks, especially when a 7-foot
tall Russian bear-wrestler is about to crush you, and it
wouldn’t make sense to stop him with a simple jab. Was
this feature ever discussed for previous Street Fighter
games (excluding Vs. titles)?
Ono: An argument could be made that the parry systemin
SFIII: 3rd Strike took on a similar role to the Super Armor.
At least that’s the way I look at it. If parrying has any
negatives, it would have to be that really mastering it —
knowing how to activate it, how to use it effectively, when
to unleash it and when to hold back these aspects —was
extremely dif¿cult and narrowed our audience for III. As for
the Super Armor in IV, it is really the result of wanting to add
a gameplay element that would be available to anyone,
that would suit the images of the characters themselves,
and that would inherit the type of gameplay that parrying
brought to III, albeit with a different feel.
HGM: I felt that with SFIII, it was easy to be lazy with
strategy and matchups because of the tactical superiority
of the Parrying system. You didn’t have to learn what
moves could beat another character’s moves because
you could just Block it and retaliate with a super. It was
the great equalizer. But with SFIV, even though it is easier
to introduce to people, it actually has deeper strategy
because of the importance of learning character-speci¿c
matchups. Is there any basis to this?
Ono: This is probably the result of steering the general
gameplay as much as possible to encourage “yomi”, or
the reading and predicting of an opponent’s moves. Even
if you know your opponent’s character inside and out, it
really comes down to how they use them. This is why it’s
so important to try to look for patterns and make educated
guesses about howyour opponent will move. It’s really the
only way to win. It’s a bit like chess in that way. You can
fake your opponent out by feinting or making them think
you’ll do something speci¿c, then change it up on them
and whip out something entirely different. In IV, it’s almost
like you win by getting a checkmate rather than a knockout.
We’ve tried to do everything possible to extend the life of
the game and allow for deeper and deeper strategies to
develop throughout its lifetime.
HGM: In general, do you advocate players to stick with
one character, or to learn multiple characters?
Ono: No matter the era, no matter the game, I think the
most important thing is to know your opponent. That’s
the quickest way to mastering any game in the genre.
That said, actually getting your hands dirty with a variety
of characters will help you to understand what they’re
capable of and what their strengths or weaknesses may
be. You can then exploit this knowledge when on the other
side of the ring. In that sense, I highly recommend that
players experiment with as many characters as they can
to deepen their knowledge of the game.
HGM: For SFIV tournaments, do you prefer them to be
run with a ‘locked’ character selection, or the freedom to
change characters?
Ono: I really prefer the locked style of tournament play.
We’ve already run a few tournaments in Japan and we’ve
found that limiting the character selection is more fun for
the audience as it brings about some match-ups that would
seem, at ¿rst glance, to be rather unbalanced. But that’s
when the pros kick it into overdrive and let us see what
they’re really made of. I’ve seen some amazing matches
at these tournaments.
HGM: 14. Rumor has it that the legendary Umehara
Daigo is well on his way to racking up 10,000 wins with
his Ryu (if he hasn’t exceeded that already). What kinds of
contributions have top-tier players like Daigo, Ohnuki, and
others, made to the SFIV development process?
Ono: Well, I can’t make any claims as to whether this
is actually the real Umehara, but it so happens that the
holder of the number 1 rank on the Grandmaster chart in
IVis a player who goes by the name UMEHARA. You can
draw your own conclusion.
Like I’ve said before, the concept behind IV is chess. And
by that, I mean that it’s a tool accessible to a variety of
users, each playing at their own skill level. With chess, we
have matches that run the gamut fromtelevised and hyped
showdowns between Russia andAmerica, all the way down
to a grandfather and his grandson playing on a folding table
in the backyard on a relaxing Sunday evening.
Our goal was to lower the barrier of entry into this game
to the point that even those who don’t traditionally play
¿ghting games won’t feel daunted by it and can jump right
in. From what I’ve heard from fans at various events and
arcades, we have achieved this goal. That does leave us
with a little less focus on the hardcore, but the problem is
that if we had spent too much time and energy skewing
the game in favor of the pros, we could risk blowing our
goal of bringing back lapsed SFII players. You can see our
dilemma. In the end, we decided to cast the net as wide as
possible and open the game up to more people. The pros
have also jumped on board, showing us that our target
market is indeed vast and giving us con¿dence that we
have not left anyone behind.
HGM: SFIV has returned to a more ‘simpli¿ed’ system.
Howcomplete do you feel SFIV’s core mechanics are? Do
you plan on experimenting with new game-play features
and game engine tweaking in future installments (making
it more complex), or will you focus more on character
balance and development (making it deeper)?
Ono: Well, for now, I’d really like to spend some more
time with this rulebook and continue observing the way
people play. Here in Japan, arcade players are only now
beginning to dig deeply into the game. Once the PS3 and
Xbox 360 versions are released, we will have that many
more players out there giving feedback and allowing us
to research their reactions. Only after we know how our
audience feels will we embark on any major adjustments.
That said I wouldn’t put my money on changes so
sweeping as to completely rewrite the rulebook. Should
I get a chance to make an updated version, the ¿rst thing
I would do is lean on the information we’ve gathered from
players and make sure that our adjustments are in line
with what people want. At any rate, I think we’ve looking at
minor tweaks to the original rulebook and not a reinvention
of the wheel.
HGM: Finally, after what date do you anticipate we could
get access to the console versions?
Ono: I’m focusing all my energy on getting the game
out sometime this winter season. Players in Japan and
elsewhere in Asia have access to the arcade game, but
fans in North America and Europe aren’t so lucky. There
are a few machines Àoating around, and some fans have
been cool enough to seek us out at various events to get
a chance to play, but the majority of potential players are
eagerly awaiting a proper home port. That doesn’t seem
fair to me, so I want to do what I can to get the game in
those players’ hands as soon as humanly possible. Instead
of focusing on unnecessary additions, our primary goal is
to get the game out there so that people can begin delving
into this ¿ghting tool. That’s what the team is focused on
right now.
that some characters that make use of wall jumps like really comees down to how they use them This iss why it’s Our goal was to lower the barrier of entry into this game that some characters that make use of wall jumps like really comes es d
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV _COV ER_33
HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4 _ISSUE 3_TOM. BAKER. SCARF.
HOLIDAY
HOLIDAY
LET’ S RETROGA ME
LET’ S RETROGA ME
The holiday season is a wonderful time of year, when
all good little hardcore gamers give and receive the
games they
,
ve been drooling over all year.
At least, that’s how we think it should work. So,
in order to help turn that fantastical dream into
reality, we’ve put together this handy retro wish
list to show our loved ones — who may need
a guide to what we’d love — what we want for
Christmas!
According to Christian mythology, the Holy Grail
is the chalice used by Jesus during the Last
Supper and is said to possess miraculous powers.
While video games are not often characterized
as being miraculous, certain video game titles
have been actively sought after by collectors in a
manner as rigorous as the quest for the Holy Grail
by King Arthur’s knights, the Knights Templar and
even Indiana Jones.
The games featured in this article are those that
demand or have demanded an amazing amount
of cold hard cash to acquire. This compilation
completely disregards game quality and only
deals with rarity... which usually translates to a
hefty monetary value.
In most cases the popular games are also the best
ones to play. The end result is that bad games
ultimately have a lower manufacturing count
and poorer distribution. Therefore many games
mentioned in this article play horrendously, and
while you may wish to own them, you may never
want to actually play them. What a crazy world we
live in, and what a crazy hobby that entertains us!
While this is a listing of valuable games, it is also
a historical article. So, while selecting the games
to be featured, it was important to offer juicy
tidbits as to why each game listed was. These
anecdotes may give clues as to why these games
have become so valuable.
* Editor’s note: The prices you see in the following article
are rough estimate averages based on what is the likely price
in the current market. These prices do not take into account
passing Àuctuations caused by industry events, or the way
price will vary according to condition of the game. A pristine,
sealed copy of a title is going to sell for more than an unsealed
or damaged copy. Consider these prices a “baseline”, what you
could expect to pay in a theoretically “average” sale. Obviously,
few individual sales are really average!
U n r e l e a s e d P r o t o t y p e s ( A N Y )
Priceless
There are many games that
were completely developed,
but never published (and
so, never mass-produced).
These are known as
prototypes, and are obviously
very rare. Most were meant
to remain “in-house” or be
destroyed, but time proves
that sometimes they survive.
There is nothing more appealing to a collector than
to own something that was never meant to be in
one’s hands. Because prototypes are often one-of-
a-kind objects, their actual value is extremely hard to
determine due to a limited transaction history.
Besides, while many games featured in this article
may be dif¿cult to obtain for one’s personal collection
due to a lack of income, they are still available from
time to time for a price. Any prototypes appearing here
would only tease an interested individual, no matter
how much disposable income he may have to indulge
in the hobby!
A i r Ca r s ( 1 9 9 5 )
Atari Jaguar
$100
The only of three
announced titles for the
Atari Jaguar by Midnight
Entertainment Group to be
released, this title barely
made it out the door. Released without a box, it came
coupled with only a manual in a cardboard insert;
even the controller overlay was omitted. However the
back page of the instruction manual had the layout
if you wanted to attempt making your own in Arts n’
Crafts class. The game supports eight-player network
game play, if you can manage to ¿nd seven more
copies of this rare game, a rare CatBox and some
poor saps willing to play this horrendous action
battle game.
A i r R a i d ( 1 9 8 2 )
Atari VCS, a.k.a. Atari 2600
$3500
The sole release by the oddly-
named company MenAvision,
Air Raid was encased in a solid
blue plastic casing and featured a
distinctive “T-shaped” handlebar
grip. The label artwork featured
an illustration of alien saucers aggressively
battling helicopters and jets over a city full
of high-rise buildings. Interestingly, the
label did not even feature the game title or
manufacturer. As a side note, be sure not to
pay over three grand for Air Raiders, a very
common title published by M Network and
worth about four bucks!
A f eat ur e by Mi cha el Thoma s s on of Good Dea l Ga mes
TTTTTThhhhhheeeeee hhhhhhooooolllllllliiiiiiidddddddaaaaaayyyyyy sssssseeeeeeaaaaaasssssooooooooonnnnnn iiiiisssss aaaaaaa wwwwwwooooonnnnnndddddddeeeeeerrrrrffffffuuuuulllllll ttttttiiiiiimmmmmmmmmmmeeeeee oooooffffff yyyyyyyeeeeeeaaaaaarrrrrr,,, wwwwwwhhhhhhheeeeeennnnn
aaaaaaalllllllllllllll gggggggooooooooooodddddd llllllliiiiiiitttttttttttttllllleeeeee hhhhhhaaaaaarrrrrrddddddddddddccccccooooorrrrrreeeeee gggggggaaaaaammmmmmeeeeeerrrrrssssss gggggggiiiiiiivvvvvveeeeee aaaaaaannnnnndddddd rrrrrreeeeeeccccceeeeeeiiiiiiivvvvvveeeeee tttttthhhhhheeeeee
gggggggaaaaaaammmmmmeeeeeessssss tttttthhhhhheeeeeeyyyyyy
,,,,
vvvvveeeeee bbbbbbeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeennnnn dddddddrrrrrrroooooooooolllllllliiiiiiinnnnnnnggggg oooooovvvvvveeeeeerrrrr aaaaaaallllllllllllllllllllll yyyyyyyeeeeeeaaaaaaarrrrrrr...
The holiday season is a wonderful time of year, when
all good little hardcore gamers give and receive the
games they
,
ve been drooling over all year.
34 _FEATURE_LET’ S RETROGAME HOLIDAY HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 3_TOM. BA KER. SCA RF.
A t l a n t i s I I ( 1 9 8 2 )
Atari VCS a.k.a. Atari 2600
$1000
The “Defend Atlantis” contest
required players to mail in a
photograph of their high score
in Atlantis, after which the top
four players would compete in
a special tournament to be held in Bermuda for a
chance to win $10,000. What publisher Imagic did not
anticipate is that more than four players would max
out Atlantis’s the score counter.
To narrow down the numerous “¿nalists,” ten (and
only ten) new cartridges titled Atlantis II were custom
programmed for the competition and sent to those
players who previously submitted “perfect” scores.
This new version awarded points more sparingly and
played at a much faster speed… and required that
results be submitted within a two-day period!
In November of 2006, one copy of Atlantis II was
listed for auction on E-Bay for a cool $1,750,000. The
game, however, went unsold at that “bargain” price. If
you own a copy of Atlantis, you might want to pop it
into you Atari VCS immediately. While Atlantis II was
packaged in a box with a substandard “Atlantis II”
sticker on the box, the cartridge label itself remained
the same. The actual game play is the only way to
determine which version is which. So, your ordinary
copy of Atlantis might just turn out to be the
crown jewel!
B a n g a i - O: P r i z e E d i t i o n ( 2 0 0 0 )
Sega Dreamcast
$600-$1300
While the regular release of Bangai-O is hard to ¿nd,
this version is next to impossible. In January of 2000,
a Japanese gaming contest awarded ¿ve copies to
the ¿ve highest scoring contestants. This special
version included an autographed themed phone card
and poster. The game itself is identical to the standard
release, but the jewel case packaging included a
sticker identifying the game as the “winner’s trophy.”
Try your best on your regular version to match the
winner’s score of 60,199,689, and see if you could
have been awarded such a prize.
B l u e T h u n d e r ( 1 9 8 7 )
Action Max
$100
World of Wonder decided to
enter the videogame business
in 1987, but their unique VHS
console played more like their
Teddy Ruxpin than a videogame.
While the game played in a
miserable manner similar to the
other light gun games on the
Action Max, the game itself had
a high video production value
and included footage from the
popular 1983
Blue Thunder
movie
featuring the high-tech helicopter
of the same name. While the other
games for the Action Max system
are easy to ¿nd, this was the
only non-launch title to make it to
market, and had minimal distribution
since the unit failed on arrival.
B o u n t y B o b S t r i k e s B a c k ! ( 1 9 8 4 )
Atari 5200
$250 - $500
In the early 80’s, Bounty
Bob’s predecessor Miner
2049er, was available
for most platforms and
computer systems of the
time. The original sequel to
Miner 2049er was Scraper
Caper, but the game was
scrapped and never made
it to store shelves. Bounty
Bob Strikes Back was the of¿cial sequel, but it was
so late to arrive that most of the game’s following had
forgotten about poor Bob. It did ¿nally get released,
but for only a few systems. Perhaps one of the best
playing games of the era, Bounty Bob Strikes Back
was a sequel that actually
bested the original. Who knew
that mining could be so much
fun? It should also be mentioned
that the software box and full
color poster that were packaged
with the game are even more
valuable than the
game itself!
LET’ S RETROGA ME HOLIDAY_FEATURE_35
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 3_TOM. BA KER. SCA RF.
B u b b l e B a t h B a b e s ( 1 9 9 1 )
Nintendo Entertainment System
$500 to $750
A Taiwanese company by the name of Panesian
released, ahem, a “handful” of adult titles for
the original Nintendo Entertainment System.
Accompanied by Hot Slots and Peek-A-Boo Poker,
the rarest of the three, Bubble Bath Babes, made its
way ONLY to certain seedy video rental stores. The
title was not sold in traditional retail establishments as
Nintendo certainly did NOT give the green light to a
nude bathing woman surrounded by bubbles, despite
its game play similarity to Nintendo’s own Tetris. Since
it was direct-to-video in distribution, Bubble Bath
Babes was packaged in a VHS-style case, and not
the usual NES cardboard box. Less than a grand are
believed to be in circulation among those not
too ashamed to admit having paid cold hard cash
for them.
Ch a s e t h e Ch u c k W a g o n ( 1 9 8 3 )
Atari VCS, a.k.a. Atari 2600
$50 to $500
Looping almost continuously
on the only three television
networks in the early ‘80s
were commercials for Purina’s
Chuck Wagon dog food. Each
spot would involve a miniature
covered wagon that would
emerge from an open bag of their branded dog food
and race through the kitchen, narrowly escaping a
malnourished dog in hot pursuit! When Purina hired
game developer Spectravision to program an Atari
VCS game around the famous commercials, a new
technique involving cross marketing evolved and the
industry was forever changed for the worse!
While the game is scarce, it is not as rare as many
other Atari titles. Over the years it has gained a false
reputation of being dif¿cult to locate. This illusion of
rarity evolved from the game’s original distribution
method. Chase the Chuck Wagon was only available
via mail order, and to obtain a copy a customer had
to mail in several proofs of purchase from the bags
of dog food and then wait eight to twelve weeks for
delivery via snail mail.
In the game, the player controls a canine that has to
navigate a maze to reach the trademark chuck wagon.
The gameplay is simplistic and theme would bore
even young children. The fact that one would have
to own a dog that consumed a great deal of Chuck
Wagon brand dog food and have a parent willing
to take the time to collect, mail and add additional
payment to cover postage, ensured this game was
delivered to
few households
at the time.
The remaining
undelivered
inventory was
later destroyed.
The title itself
has become
a synonym for
rare video game
hunting, and
recently a new online game auction site with the same
name, ChasetheChuckwagon.com, has emerged to
play off the mystique surrounding the history of the
game and the hunt for rare titles.
Ch u c k N o r r i s S u p e r k i c k s /
A r t i l l e r y Du a l ( 1 9 8 3 )
Colecovision
$100
A company named XONOX released several
combination titles that featured two games on one
cartridge. While most were released in PAL format
in Europe, some NTSC versions were released in
Canada and found their way across the border onto
US soil. Other XONOX dual cartridges combined the
games Tomarc the Barbarian, Motocross Racer, Robin
Hood and Sir Lancelot, and sometimes those do fetch
a bit more. But, come ‘on: how cool is Chuck Norris!
He can slam a revolving door! If you do not collect his
game he’ll introduce you to the only two hands that
can beat a royal Àush…Chuck Norris’s right hand and
Chuck Norris’s left hand!
Co n g o B o n g o ( 1 9 8 4 )
Intellivision
$300
This game, based on the
1983 Sega coin-op, was
the only of three planned
Sega Intellivision titles to
reach the market. This
title may be the only game
ever to be released that
features a gorilla that sets
Àame to protagonist’s
heinie. Completist collectors
can stop hunting after
acquiring the game, box and
manual, because while most Intellivision games were
packaged with controller overlays, Congo Bongo did
not include a set.
D a r x i d e ( 1 9 9 6 )
Sega 32X
$400
Originally set to be released as Dark Side,
before copyright restrictions led to the
clever name change, Darxide was the ¿nal
international release for the Sega 32X. It was
released only in Europe and compatible only
with European hardware on a European PAL
36_FEATURE_LET’ S RETROGA ME HOLIDAY
s
e
game and the hunt for rare titles.
Colecovision
$100
Ch u c k N o r r i s S u p e r k i c k s /
A r t i l l e r y Du a l ( 1 9 8 3 )
Colecovision
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 3_TOM. BA KER. SCA RF.
television. Even if you ¿nd a copy, ¿nding a way to
actually play the game can prove to be quite elusive!
D o n k e y K o n g Co u n t r y
Co m p e t i t i o n Ca r t r i d g e ( 1 9 9 5 )
Super Nintendo
$200 to $500
The popular rental
chain Blockbuster
Video hosted
the Blockbuster
World Videogame
Championship II in
1995, during which
Donkey Kong Country tournaments were held in
many of their stores. Following the tournament, some
of the specially-made competition cartridges were
given away to contest ¿nalists, and in some locations
were even sold as used games in Blockbuster
discount bins following the event. They were also
brieÀy made available to Nintendo Power subscribers.
Since only two and half thousand copies were
manufactured, the irony is not lost that this game was
developed by the company…Rare!
I r o n S o l d i e r 3 ( 2 0 0 0 )
Nuon
$100 - $200
Originally revealed as VM Labs’s
gaming platform “Project X”,
the NUON eventually became a
graphics processor that added
additional functionality to several
branded DVD players that included
the technology. Only eight games were released for
the platform, with Iron Soldier 3 being recalled due
to incompatibility with certain Nuon-enabled players
shortly after release. Note that this game was the
sequel to the ¿rst two installments of Iron Soldier on
the Atari Jaguar. While not rare in the least,
Iron Soldier 3 was also later released on the
PlayStation platform.
M r . B o s t o n Cl e a n S w e e p ( 1 9 8 2 )
Vectrex
$1,000 - $2,500
Purina wasn’t the only
company who thought
having a video game
about their product
would make for great
marketing. Mr. Boston
was a liquor company.
Mr. Boston Clean Sweep
was regular Vectrex
Clean Sweep with Mr.
Boston plastered on.
Never heard of Mr.
Boston? Yeah, the
marketing didn’t work so great… kids don’t drink rum,
remember guys? But, dang it, what a lovely collectible
we now have to dream of ¿nding in a Boston
thrift store some day (they were actually based in
Kentucky, go ¿gure)!
M a g i c a l Ch a s e ( 1 9 9 3 )
TurboGrafx 16
$250
For a rare title, the game name itself could not have
been more prophetic. If you want a copy of this hard
to ¿nd game, you will need to embark on a ‘magical
chase’ just to get your sweaty hands on a copy!
Even more ironic is the fact that the developer’s name
is Quest.
Magical Chase is a TurboGrafx-16 title that was
heavily inÀuenced by the popular Cotton series,
complete with a witch who Àies the unfriendly skies
on a broomstick. The gameplay is very similar to
Gradius, and just as dif¿cult. Despite the candy-
coated paint job given to try and make this release
a kid’s title at the time, no paint job can hide the fact
that this is a real SCHMUP!
Technologically, Magical Chase soars above other
TurboGrafx-16 titles due to its extensive use of
multi-plane scrolling. The TG-16 hardware is only
capable of rendering a single background layer, so
creating parallax scrolling via multiple layered sprite
graphics accomplished “the impossible” and made
Magical Chase a real stand-out title for the time on
the system!
M e t a l S l u g ( 1 9 9 6 )
Neo-Geo AES
$1000
While the arcade MVS
version is common and
sells for around ¿fty
bucks, the AES home
version is worth well over
twenty times that amount.
LET’ S RETROGA ME HOLIDAY_FEATURE_37
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 3_TOM. BA KER. SCA RF.
This low quantity, high quality 2D production slipped
out quietly when 3D gaming was becoming all the
rage in the industry. This game is readily available
and budget priced on numerous platforms such as the
Nintendo Wii, Playstation 2, Game Boy Advance and
Sony PSP, but collectors want the “real deal” and it
will cost them!
M u s i c M a c h i n e ( 1 9 8 3 )
Atari VCS a.k.a. Atari 2600
$200 to $300
The Christian faith group Sparrow created The
Music Machine as a companion to its record
albums. In the game, innocent children Stevie
and Nancy carry a basket and gather angels,
hearts, mustard seeds, harps and other symbols
of virtue. Since The Music Machine was only
sold in Christian bookstores and created to
enhance moral values in players, one could argue
that it is much more “holy” than the other holy
grails listed in this article.
N i n t e n d o W o r l d Ch a m p i o n s h i p
Ca r t r i d g e s ( 1 9 9 0 )
Nintendo Entertainment System
$3,000 to $10,000
Similar to the adventures of Fred Savage in the
Nintendo promotional movie, The Wizard, there
actually were famous gaming tournaments. Nintendo
staged a thirty city Powerfest Tour in the U.S. and
Canada, allowing Nintendo fans to prove themselves
against a six minute timed blend of several popular
Nintendo titles of the time. In order for competitors to
qualify for the tournament, each entrant must have
collected ¿fty coins in the ¿rst level of Super Mario
Bros., complete a lap in Rad Racer and then score as
many points as possible in a game of Tetris with any
time remaining using a specially designed cartridge.
The Rad Racer score would be multiplied by 10, the
Tetris score would be multiplied by 25, and then all
three scores were combined into a ¿nal total. The
top ninety ¿nalists were awarded a gray edition of
the cartridge.
Nintendo Power also awarded an additional twenty-six
World Championship cartridges in a contest. These
cartridges are gold in color, similar to the Zelda
cartridges common in circulation. Only a dozen of
the twenty-six gold carts have surfaced since 1990.
While most of the gold carts have sold for around six
grand, the most recent sold to a New York collector for
$15,000. Do you have one of the remaining fourteen
copies in your collection?
P a n z e r Dr a g o o n S a g a ( 1 9 9 8 )
Saturn
$200 to $300
This critically-acclaimed role-playing game is highly
sought after and demands a high asking price more
for its gameplay and popularity than actual rarity.
Originally only six thousand copies were produced,
but later two additional shipments of 12,000 each
were made to try and meet demand. Since it is so
adored, those who have the game are hard pressed to
part with their copy, and as a result, Panzer Dragoon
Saga is worthy to be considered a rare ¿nd.
Most believe Saga to be the third game
in the series, behind the original Panzer
Dragoon and Panzer Dragoon Zwei. It is
actually the fourth, as Panzer Dragoon Mini
was released for the Sega Game Gear.
38_FEATURE_LET’ S RETROGA ME HOLIDAY
pp
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 3_TOM. BA KER. SCA RF.
P e p s i I n v a d e r s ( 1 9 8 3 )
Atari VCS a.k.a. Atari 2600
$500 to $2000
The Coca-Cola company
commissioned Atari to
modify their popular
Space Invaders game
to be distributed at their
1983 sales convention
in Atlanta. Each row of six Space Invader aliens were
replaced with the letter characters P E P S and I.
Other changes in gameplay included unlimited lives
and the inclusion of a three-minute time limit. Sales
executives that attended the meeting were give one
of the 125 copies created, along with an Atari VCS
console. De¿nitely a quirky release, and since those
awarded were not avid game players, who knows
how these have circulated over the years or even how
many are known to be left in existence.
The game was packaged as a solid black cartridge in
a Àimsy Styrofoam shell, and as a result, the gaming
community incorrectly referred to this game as the
game’s victory message that Àashed on the screen.
This “Coke Wins” title was used until designer Omarzu
revealed the proper name (Pepsi Invaders) years
later. Collectors beware, as numerous counterfeit
versions of Pepsi Invaders are in circulation.
P o w e r L o r d s ( 1 9 8 3 )
Odyssey2
$150
When the Odyssey2 was conceding defeat to
competitors Atari, Coleco and Mattel, it had one late
release, Power Lords! Don’t think that the exclamation
point makes it a great game, because every
Odyssey2 game published ended with that same
interjection! Anyway, Power Lords was based on a
failed action ¿gure line of the same name created by
Revell. The game was only of¿cially released for the
Odyssey, although a prototype version exists for the
Colecovision, which is also quite valuable.
Qu a d r u n ( 1 9 8 3 )
Atari VCS a.k.a. Atari 2600
$300 to $850
Atari had a fan club in the early eighties that included
a subscription to Atari Age Magazine. On four
separate occasions, the club released exclusive titles
via mail order only to club members. Quadrun was
one such title, and warranted the limited release after
a test group consisting of mostly young girls stuck
their noses up at the rather unusual play mechanics
of the game. Approximately ten thousand Quadrun
copies were released. Quadrun is recognized for
being the ¿rst of two VCS titles to feature voice
synthesis and to do so without any additional
hardware. A fantastic game that is worthy of its
hefty price!
S D Gu n d a m Di m e n s i o n W a r
( 1 9 9 5 )
Nintendo Virtual Boy
$1000
Forget about how hard it is to ¿nd Jack Bros. for the
Virtual Boy, as there are bigger ¿sh to catch in the
small Virtual Boy pond. While many import Japanese
Virtual Boy games made it stateside when the system
went belly up prematurely, there were two titles that
rarely reached these shores: Virtual Bowling and SD
Gundam Dimension War. While Virtual Bowling nets
half a grand, the real score
is the SD Gundam anime
turn-based strategy game
Dimension War.
LET’ S RETROGA ME HOLIDAY_FEATURE_39
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 3_TOM. BA KER. SCA RF.
S o n i c t h e H e d g e h o g ( 1 9 8 7 )
Sega Master System
$200
The original Sonic the
Hedgehog was released for
the Sega Genesis while the
Sega Master System was
on life support in the United
States. However, the SMS
was much more popular in
Europe, so Sega released
a “dumbed-down” version
for the older and inferior
Master System. It shared
the same plot as its Genesis older brother, but offered
some new stages, zones and boss battles. This was
eventually used as a pack-in title and is extremely
common, mostly worthless, and not really collectable.
However, the game was also released in small
quantities as an of¿cial late release title in America.
While the game plays the same, the only cosmetic
difference is a UPC sticker slapped on the packaging.
So, if you simply want to play the game, grab yourself
an inexpensive region-free European version. If you’re
a collector, get ready to pay many golden rings for
essentially the same item!
S p i d e r - M a n : W e b o f F i r e ( 1 9 9 5 )
Sega 32X
$100 to $150
The ¿nal domestic release
for the “doomed from the
start” Sega 32X is also the
rarest on the Sega Genesis
expansion platform. Sega,
seeing the writing on the
wall, only created 1,500
copies of this title featuring
Marvel Comics friendly
neighborhood Spider-Man.
S t a d i u m E v e n t s ( 1 9 8 7 )
Nintendo Entertainment System
$300 to $1000
Stadium Events
was recalled for
being so good!
Really! But of
course there
is more to the
story... Bandai
of¿cially released
the game in 1987
with Nintendo’s
permission, only
to have the game
recalled after its
initial shipping.
Approximately 2000 copies were distributed only to
test market in Woolworth Department stores, but it is
suspected that only about a ¿fth of those made it into
customers hands before the Big “N” ordered them
back in order to bring the product under Nintendo’s
own wing and release it as World Class Track Meet.
This recall makes Stadium Events the rarest of the
800+ NES titles.
The game used an accessory called the Family Fun
Fitness Mat. This input device allowed the player to
play the game with his feet by stepping on designated
postions on the pad itself. This controller was later
replaced by Nintendo’s own “Power Pad.” Note that
the Power Pad and World Class Track Meet cartridges
were packed in with many NES consoles as a Power
Set Bundle and are very common.
S t a r F o x S u p e r W e e k e n d Of f i c i a l
Co m p e t i t i o n Ca r t r i d g e ( 1 9 9 3 )
Super Nintendo
$200
Between April 30th and May 2nd 1993, several
retailers hosted tournaments to promote the new
Super Nintendo title, StarFox. Many cross-promotional
StarFox-themed prizes were awarded such as pins,
apparel including t-shirts and jackets, and even
vacation packages. Well, the vacation packages were
to exotic locales across
the globe, not to actual
StarFox destinations in
the Lylat system. These
tournaments were held
in the United States and
the United Kingdom and
used special competition
cartridges that played
differently than the
regular version of
StarFox. Approximately
4 0_FEATURE_LET’ S RETROGA ME HOLIDAY HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 3_TOM. BA KER. SCA RF. _V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 3_ A RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 3_ BA KER TOM. BA KER. SCA R RFF.
2,000 copies of the competition cartridge were
manufactured. Nintendo Power also offered a few
remaining cartridges in their catalog for a limited time.
S w o r d q u e s t : W a t e r w o r l d ( 1 9 8 3 )
Atari VCS a.k.a. Atari 2600
$75 - $350
What began as Adventure II
quickly evolved into its own
large-scale intellectual property.
One game became four and
the Swordquest series was
born. Following Earthworld and
Fireworld, which were released
via regular retail channels,
Waterworld was released only
to Atari Club members. The
fourth and ¿nal game, Airworld,
was cancelled when Warner
Communications bought and took
control of Atari.
Each of the Swordquest titles was packaged with a
DC comic book that explained the plot and included
clues to help direct the player not only to the solution
of the individual game but also a part of a large scale
contest. Prizes, valued at $150,000, consisted of
the Waterworld Crown, the Earthworld Talisman, the
Fireworld Chalice, the Airworld Philosopher’s Stone,
and ¿nally the grand prize, The Sword of Ultimate
Sorcery. The last three prizes were never awarded
and would certainly be considered real world holy
grails unto themselves.
So now you know all about the legendary titles
we all dreaming of owning some day. Other
collectors know very well of their existence and
their demand is unmatched. Will you ever see
one? Uncertain. Will you ever possess one? Very
unlikely. Will you stumble across even one of
them in the wild? Doubtful. Even so, is your wallet
up to the challenge? Certainly! Obtaining a single
game on this list will award you the best holiday
gift ever along with bragging rights among your
peers and be the centerpiece of your collection!
Fan boys, dreamers and collectors, we wish you
only the best of good fortune in your endeavors!
Ot h e r S t o c k i n g S t u f f e r s W e R a n Ou t o f S p a c e f o r
Akumaj o Dr acul a X: The Rondo of Bl ood ( Konami , PC Engi ne) - $100 - $120
Akumaj o Dr acul a ( Konami , X68000) - $200 - $250
Bat t l espher e ( 4Pl ay/ Scat oLOGIC, Jaguar ) - $400 - $600
Bi r t hday Mani a ( Per sonal , At ar i 2600) - $2, 000 - $2, 500
Bl ockbust er Wor l d Vi deo Game Champi onshi p II ( Sega Genesi s) - $1, 500 - $2, 000
Cr azy Cl i mber ( At ar i 2600) $70 - $120
Condor At t ack ( Ul t r avi si on, At ar i 2600) - $150 - $200
Dayt ona USA: CCE Net l i nk Edi t i on ( Sega, Sat ur n) - $150 - $250
Dr agon For ce ( Wor ki ng Desi gns, Sat ur n) - $80 - $120
Ear t hbound ( Ni nt endo, SNES) - $50 - $75
El i ’ s Ladder ( Si mage, At ar i 2600) - $1, 000
Gaunt l et ( Answer, At ar i 2600) - $80 - $120
Guar di an Her oes ( Sega, Sat ur n) - $90 - $120
Hal l oween ( Wi zar d Vi deo, At ar i 2600) - $150 - $200
Jack Br os. ( At l us, Vi r t ual Boy) - $100 - $200
Ki zuna Encount er ( PAL) ( SNK, Neo- Geo) - $9, 000 - $12, 000
Lochj aw ( Apol l o, At ar i 2600) - $250
Mal agai ( Answer, At ar i 2600) - $180 - $250
Mega Man X3 ( Capcom, SNES) - $80 - $150
Mi ne St or m/ Mi ne St or m II ( GCE, Vect r ex) - $400 - $550
Myr i ad 6 i n 1 ( Myr i ad, NES) - $200 - $300
Ni nj a Gai den Tr i l ogy ( Tecmo, SNES) - $150 - $300
Psychi c Ki l l er Tar omar u ( Ti me War ner, Sat ur n) - $150 - $250
Radi ant Si l ver gun (Japan) ( Tr easur e, Sat ur n) - $200 - $300
Soni c Advent ur e Li mi t ed Edi t i on ( Sega, Dr eamcast ) - $50 - $75
Spi ker Super Pr o Vol l eybal l ( Int el l i vi si on) - $800 - $1, 500
Tact i cs Ogr e ( At l us, Pl ayst at i on) - $80 - $120
Tet r i s ( Sega, Genesi s) - $5, 000 - $15, 000
Texas Chai nsaw Massacr e ( Wi zar d Vi deo, At ar i 2600) - $100 - $150
Vi deo Li f e ( CommaVi d, At ar i 2600) - $1, 800 - $2, 500
Vi r t ual Bowl i ng ( Japan) ( Vi r t ual Boy) - $600 - $800
Thanks t o At ar i Age. com f or per mi ssi on t o use some of t hei r i mages.
LET’ S RETROGA ME HOLIDAY_FEATURE_4 1
est of good fortune in your r en
There is a certain type of gamer that Wii Music is not for. To them- people who play
music games alone with plastic instrument replicas, who try to play for absolute
tonal and rhythmic perfection, who live for increasing multipliers and high scores,
and who believe that games absolutely must rank their players based on some sort of
performance criteria - Wii Music will be frustrating and boring. While there is a certain
validity to the frustration of these gamers, I can tell you now that their voices will be
drowned out by the sound of ringing cash registers, and the laughter of other delighted
people.
What Nintendo has accomplished with Wii Music is a widening of the potential
audience for music games that goes beyond the mainstreampopularity the genre
currently enjoys. Wii Music does for music what Wii Sports did for popular sporting events. Nintendo
has stripped the concept of the “music game” down to its bare essentials, then stripped away even more of the traditional “game” aspect, in a way
that may seemspiteful to a hardcore traditionalist. In place of all of the flash, frills, colored note tabs, and licensed master recordings we’ve gotten
used to, Nintendo has added a connection that’s hard to explain.
It’s a connection between user and medium, the likes of which few developers are capable of creating. You wave the Wii Remote and Nunchuk in
certain ways, you press their buttons, and bam, music happens, and it sounds good. Who knows how it’s happening (well, okay, Nintendo says
there’s chord theory in the code), but there it is. Just as the game says, now anyone can make music.
Publisher: Nint endo · Developer: Nint endo · Rat ing: Everyone
Genre: Music · Cat egory: Possibly Psychic · Release Dat e: 10/ 20/ 08
The meat of the title, Jammode, flies in the face of convention. Wii Music’s tracklist is a far cry fromall of the rock fantasy
games out there today. Say goodbye to Metallica and Iron Maiden; replacing themare public domain tunes such as “Yankee
Doodle,” campy ‘80s hits such as Wham’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go,” classical music, and well-known tracks from
Nintendo’s own back catalog of games.
Most games only allow you to play their songs one way. It’s always their notes, their rhythm, their beats, underlying your
controller inputs every single time. Wii Music, however, lets you play with the songs, much like clay. In Jammode, you
pick fromabout five dozen instruments to fill the six parts of a group. This means that at the outset, you have the ability to
create customremixes of tunes you’ve known all your life. Want a Latin-jazz “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star?” How about
dogs and cats singing Earth, Wind & Fire? Perhaps you might feel like creating the most epic Legend of Zelda theme
ever? With Wii Music, you can, and are encouraged to. Afterwards, you can save it in a music video format and trade
it around online.
Reviewed by Racewing
There is a certain type of gamer that Wii Music is c not for. To them- people who rr
music games alone with plastic instrument replicas, who try to play for absolut
tonal and rhythmic perfection, who live for increasing multipliers and high scor
and who believe that games absolutely must rank their players based on some t
performance criteria - Wii Music will be frustrating and boring. While there is a c
validity to the frustration of these gamers, I can tell you now that their voices w
drowned out by the sound of ringing cash registers, and the laughter of other d t
people.
What Nintendo has accomplished with Wii Music is a widening of the potential c
audience for music games that goes beyond the mainstreampopularity the genre
currently enjoys. Wii Music does for music what c Wii Sports did for popular sporting events. Nintendo s
has stripped the concept of the “music game” down to its bare essentials, then stripped away even more of the traditional “game” aspect, in a way e
that may seemspiteful to a hardcore traditionalist. In place of all of the flash, frills, colored note tabs, and licensed master recordings we’ve gotten
used to, Nintendo has added a connection that’s hard to explain.
It’s a connection between user and medium, the likes of which few developers are capable of creating. You wave the Wii Remote and Nunchuk in
cer cer certai tai tain w n w n ways ays ays yy , you ou ou pre pre press ss ss the the their ir ir but but button ton tonsss, and and and bam bam bam mm , musi usi usic h c h c happ app appens ens ens aa , and nd nd it it it sou sou sounds nds nds go go good od od. Wh Wh Who k o k o know now nowsss how how how it it it’sss hap hap happen pen pening ing ing (w (w (well ell ell oo , okay kay kay NN , Nint int intend end endo s o s o says ays ays www
there’s chord theory in the code), but there it is. Just as the game says, now anyone can make music. e
Publisher: Nint endo · Developer: Nint endo · Rat ing: Everyone
Genre: Music · Cat egory: Possibly Psychic · Release Dat e: 10/ 20/ 08
he meat of the title, Jammode, flies in the face of convention. Wii Music’s tracklist is a far cry fromall of the rock fantasy cc
ames out there today. Say goodbye to Metallica and Iron Maiden; replacing themare public domain tunes such as “Yankee
oodle,” campy ‘80s hits such as Wham’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go,” classical music, and well-known tracks from
Nintendo’s own back catalog of games.
Most games only allow you to play their songs one way. It’s always their notes, their rhythm, their beats, underlying your yy
controller inputs every single time. Wii Music, however, lets you c play with the songs, much like clay. In Jammode, you
pic pick f k from romab about out fifive ve doz dozen en ins instru trumen ments ts to to fil fill t l the he six six pa parts rts of of aa gro group. up. Th This is mea means ns tha that a t at t t the he out outset set, y , you ou hav have t e the he abi abilit lity t y too
create customremixes of tunes you’ve known all your life. Want a Latin-jazz “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star?” How about
ddog dogs a s a d nd nd t cat cats s s siing ingiing ing EEa Ea h rth rth WW , Wi d ind ind &&& Fi Fir Fir ? e? e? PPer Perhhap haps y s you ou i mig mighht ht ffee feel l l l l lik ike ike cr cr t eat eatiing ing h th the m e m t ost ost ep epiic ic Legend of Zelda h th theme eme a
ever? With Wii Music, you can, and are encouraged to. Afterwards, you can save it in a music video format and trade c
it it aro d und onli line.
Reviewed by Racewing
Th
ga
Do
N
4 2_REV IEW_WII MUSIC HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
play
e
res,
sort of
certain
will be
delighted
nre
Once you pick your instruments, it’s time to start playing. As long as you follow the overall beat of the song you choose, you can
performit however you wish. You can freestyle with it, you can add notes, subtract notes, bend and twist notes, or cooperate
with friends to make a song’s melody, harmony or rhythmelements more or less significant. In other words, you can make
any given song more awesome than it used to be, or make it totally crazy. Whatever happens, in the end, it becomes your
own. It deftly sidesteps the “Hey, Don’t I Already Have an iPod?” syndrome that haunts many licensed music games.
During your improvisation, the game automatically figures out how to make your added ingredients sound their best. It’s
hardly infallible, but it works far more often than it doesn’t. You won’t be able to recompose pieces note by specific note,
but as long as you have one iota of musical inclination in your body, you and the game will still come out with something that
sounds really good. If you’re old enough to remember a little PSX gemby the name of UmJammer Lammy, be happy. Apparently
Nintendo did, too.
All of this is wrapped up in a package no different fromWii Sports or Wii Fit in terms of aesthetics. Large fonts, soothing pictures
and happy Miis once again permeate the proceedings. Aside fromthe main Jammode, you’ve got Pitch Perfect, a mode that
helps to teach music recognition to those who may need it, set up in the formof a quiz show. There’s Handbell Harmony, which
lets you and up to three friends play through certain songs entirely with handbells in a setup reminiscent of Guitar Hero. There’s
also Mii Maestro, which you may remember fromMiyamoto’s conduction of a virtual orchestra to the Zelda theme at E3 2006.
If you’ve got a Wii Balance Board, there’s a Virtual DrumSet waiting for your use, albeit with somewhat confusing button controls as opposed to true
spatial recogniton. Finally, there’s Instrument Improv, where you just pick an instrument, and give it all you’ve got. Even without specific note control,
it’s a blast, and will put a smile on your face. Probably the only truly bewildering downside is the lack of song variety in any of these side modes. You
can Jamto any song, but only Maestro or Handbell to five or six. Say what? More Nintendo game music would also have been nice. Here’s hoping for
DLC.
Music games, thus far, don’t come any more novel than this. There is no easier way to make music and play recognizable songs than by playing Wii
Music. It’s great to mess around with any time you feel like having some crazy pointless fun, but has the potential to get deep when you least expect it.
Best of all, it doesn’t require any budget-destroying fake plastic instruments. Families are going to go absolutely nuts over this.
Me, though? I’mwaiting eagerly for all the drunken Wii MusicYouTube videos. You know they’re coming.
I had a ton of fun playing this. I love being the oompa-loompa tuba-d00d or the cowbell-banger.
Give me more licensed tunes and I’ll add more points.
Second Opinion by DJPubba Score : 4 of 5
Final Score: 4 of 5
Once you pick your instruments, it’s time to start playing. As long as you follow the overall beat of the song you choose, you can
performit however you wish. You can freestyle with it, you can add notes, subtract notes, bend and twist notes, or cooperate
with friends to make a song’s melody, harmony or rhythmelements more or less significant. In other words, you can make
any given song more awesome than it used to be, or make it totally crazy. Whatever happens, in the end, it becomes your
own. It deftly sidesteps the “Hey, Don’t I Already Have an iPod?” syndrome that haunts many licensed music games. e
During your improvisation, the game automatically figures out how to make your added ingredients sound their best. It’s
hardly infallible, but it works far more often than it doesn’t. You won’t be able to recompose pieces note by specific note,
but as long as you have one iota of musical inclination in your body, you and the game will still come out with something that a
sounds really good. If you’re old enough to remember a little PSX gemby the name of UmJammer Lammy, be happy. Apparent yy
Nintendo did, too.
All of this is wrapped up in a package no different fromWii Sports or s Wii Fit in terms of aesthetics. Large fonts, soothing picture t
and happy Miis once again permeate the proceedings. Aside fromthe main Jammode, you’ve got Pitch Perfect, a mode that
helps p to teach music recogn g ition to those who may n y eed it, s , et up p in the formof a qquiz show. There’s Handbell Harmony, y, which
lets you and up to three friends play through certain songs entirely with handbells in a setup reminiscent of Guitar Hero. There’s
also Mii Maestro, which you may remember fromMiyamoto’s conduction of a virtual orchestra to the Zelda theme at E3 2006. a
If you’ve got a Wii Balance Board, there’s a Virtual DrumSet waiting for your use, albeit with somewhat confusing button controls as opposed to true
spatial recogniton. Finally, there’s Instrument Improv, where you just pick an instrument, and give it all you’ve got. Even without specific note control,
it’s a blast, and will put a smile on your face. Probably the only truly bewildering downside is the lack of song variety in any of these side modes. You l
can Jamto any song, but only Maestro or Handbell to five or six. Say what? More Nintendo game music would also have been nice. Here’s hoping for
DLC.
Music games, thus far, don’t come any more novel than this. There is no easier way to make music and play recognizable songs than by playing Wii
Music. It’s great to mess around with any time you feel like having some crazy pointless fun, but has the potential to get deep when you least expect it.
Best of all, it doesn’t require any budget-destroying fake plastic instruments. Families are going to go absolutely nuts over this.
Me, though? I’mwaiting eagerly for all the drunken Wii Music YouTube videos. You c know they’re comingg. w
I had a ton of fun playing this. I love being the oompa-loompa tuba-d00d or the cowbell-banger.
Give me more licensed tunes and I’ll add more points.
SecondO i ionbyDJPubba Sco e 4of5 Second Opinion by DJPubba Score : 4 of 5 SecondOpinionbyDJPubba Score: 4of5 Second Opinion by DJPubba Score : 4 of 5
f5 f5 f5 4 of Score: 4of 4 re: rr Sco SS nnn FFF eee SSSccc 555 aaa ooo oooooo ooofff 444 rrr lll aaa nnnnnn iii FFF a oo oo cc Final re: f5 Final Score: 4 of 5
n
tly
es

WII MUSIC_REV IEW_4 3 HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
Shortly before launch day, we were given the opportunity to meet with Shigeru
Miyamoto, the man behind many of Nintendo’s most popular game franchises
including Wii Music. We were among several different magazines and web
sites who were invited. What follows are what we felt were some of the more
interesting questions, answers and thoughts which Mr. Miyamoto shared with us.
Shigeru Miyamoto: Because we knew [this is] such a new and different kind of
game, our feeling all along has been that it will be one of those long sellers that
doesn’t race right out of the gate. But [what] we are finding is that people who’ve
played the game and spent a good deal of time with it are reacting very positively
to it and writing some very long things about it.
Now, for me personally, my thoughts and [feelings] about this game are really [a]
little bit different froma lot of the other games that I’ve made. I’ve been making
games for thirty years, and that whole time I’ve been a musician and a big fan
of music. Over all those years, I personally thought that creating a game out of
music was something that was very difficult to do.
So, unlike a product like WiiFit where… you know, with WiiFit, I had started a diet
that had me weighing myself every day, and I found something interesting in that
experience and found a way to take that experience and translate it in the formof
a video game. Really, with Music, what I experienced was that I had this passion
for creating video games for thirty years and this passion for creating music for
thirty years, but I was never really able to find a way for the two of those to come
together.
Having that long experience of not really being able to find a way to turn music
into a video game product… seeing the end-result that we’ve achieved with Wii
Music has left me very happy.
Of course, over the last ten-plus years we’ve seen what people now call “music
games” start to emerge and take form— games like Beatmania and, more
recently, games like Guitar Hero. When I looked at those as a game designer
—you know, I called those “music games” myself — and I looked at those and
thought, “You know, they’re very well made and they’re very fun.”
But what I really experienced with those was that, while the gameplay itself is
very fun, I often found that, in playing those games, the enjoyment that I got out
of themwas very different fromthe kind of enjoyment that I get out of playing
music.
So, while, as a game designer, when I looked at games like Beatmania and Guitar
Hero and [saw] the fun of those games as games, when I looked at themfrom
my perspective of being a musician…. To me what those games reflected was
—games that were trying to allow people to be the very best cover band that
they could be. And my feeling was that if, as a musician, I were to create a music
game, my goal wouldn’t be to try to allow people to join the best cover band
that they could join, but rather to let themmove beyond that rather basic level of
music training of trying to replicate existing music, and, instead, give themthe
creative freedomto try to bring their own personal creativity and their own flair
to music creation.
I feel that with Wii Music we’ve managed to achieve that, and my hope is that
we’ll have as many people as possible who’ll be able to play Wii Music and
experience what it’s like to have that creative freedomin creating music.
I mentioned to you that I’ve been playing music for thirty years, in fact in my
college days. But that doesn’t mean that I ama good musician. I’mnot very good
at playing instruments, and I’mnot very good at performing publicly, and, in fact,
I’mrather embarrassed about playing in front of other people. But, on October
2nd at Yoyogi in Tokyo, we held our media event, and I was able to get on-stage
in front of a very large audience and performa song together with the director
of this game in front of a thousand people or more. It was a very liberating
experience to feel like… here was this instrument that finally I can play and know
that I’mgoing to play it well and be able to let out my musical creativity in front
of a large audience.
I hope you’ll take that all into account and look at Wii Music fromthat perspective
when you’re playing the game and then talking about it to people.
Question: What kind of demographic did you have in mind when creating the
game? Did you expect this to appeal to the “core gamer?”
SM: When I create a game — not just Wii Music but any game — I don’t really
focus on a particular audience or particular age range. I feel that the games that
I’mmaking are based on a more universal, inherently human sense of fun that I
think doesn’t really change, regardless of your age.
In creating a game like a Super Mario Bros. sequel or a Zelda sequel, we do
create those games [while] trying to take into account the experience and
knowledge that players of those franchises have had in the past games.
Simultaneously, we feel it is very important that we always look at how people
who have never played a Super Mario Bros. game or a Zelda game are going to
interact with this title. How are they going to experience it?
With regard to Wii Music there were two things that we looked at in creating it.
One, of course, was that I think the game’s fun. Regarding the second…. There’s
a director that some of you may be familiar with who works with me. He was
a director with me for the last twenty-plus years, and he’s a producer now. He
knows absolutely nothing about music and cannot play music whatsoever.
Throughout the development of Wii Music, I was keenly watching how he
responded to Wii Music and whether or not he, as someone who’s not musically
inclined, would think it was fun.
I think that people have probably heard me say that I think this title is very well
suited to an elementary musical education for children — a very good first step to
really introduce children to the key theories of music. That’s an opinion that I have
formed after seeing the final product, and it wasn’t something that I strove to try
to create fromthe outset.
So when I say that I think that Wii Music is very good for elementary education
or first-step music education for children, the reason I think that actually stems
back to my experience in elementary and middle school with studies in history
and geography. Those were two subjects that I had absolutely no interest in
whatsoever as a child and hated. But as an adult now, I’ve developed quite a
deep interest in those. I think that’s because I have the perspective that allows
me to understand what kind of role history and geography can play in the world.
In the case of music, I think that, if we’re able to introduce children to the joy of
musical creativity fromthe outset, then they’re going to be more interested in the
principle of music theory. And that’s why I’ve been suggesting that perhaps Wii
Music is a better way to start music education than starting with basic tools.
As for the question of whether or not it would appeal to core gamers…. We
didn’t really look at it in terms of how it would appeal to so-called “core gamers”
versus so-called “casual gamers.” The appeal of this game is based upon people’s
own personal interest in music. Obviously, among people who are casual gamers
there are people who have very intense interest in music creation, and I think that
Wii Music is the kind of game that is able to take a person’s interest in music —
whether it’s deep or just a budding interest — and grab a hold of people. I think
that with Wii Music, particularly when it comes to the ability to relayer parts and
rearrange songs, you’re going to find that people who have that core musical
interest are going to become obsessed with the process of rearranging their
songs — to the point that among the Wii Music audience you will find people
who are as “core” of a gamer at Wii Music as you would in any other franchise
or genre.
Maybe it’s a question of the degree of interest in music that might result in some
people’s confusion as to the audience for Wii Music. If you’re the type of person
who starts tapping your hands or humming when you listen to music on a CD,
then I think you’ll find this game interesting.
Question: Forgive me if I’mwrong, but it seems like the track list is the same
across all territories. I’mwondering if there was any thought of localizing it for
different territories. And on that note, why were there so few classic Nintendo
tracks? I think I’ve counted only three 8- and 16-bit songs.
SM: This time around we wanted to have one song list worldwide. Using the Wii
Music system, I think it would be interesting to go forward with localized song
lists for different markets. With regard to the NES songs — I would assume that
everyone here is familiar with the very large number of songs fromthe NES
and Super NES era. We wanted the music in the game to appeal to a very broad
audience, and probably not many people in the mass market would be as familiar
with those songs. So, in the song selection this time around, we wanted to focus
on songs that people will know by ear for the most part, because that will make it
easier for themto play the song and improvise the song.
Question: You’re prohibited fromever talking about your hobbies but then you
accidentally revealed that you have a deep interest in history. Is Wii History next?
SM: I think that one thing that Wii Music helped to reinforce for me was that
there really is a wide selection of topics of interest that span all ages. Obviously,
there’s a lot of different genres of games, there are a lot of different skill levels
of gamers, but, again, I really just focus on those innate human experiences and
that type of entertainment is something that spans generations.
Question: I know it’s a very broad range of instruments and there were some
weird ones — we saw the cat in a dog suit and the karate
practicing guy — and I’mwondering if there’s anything
weirder than those that didn’t make the final cut.
SM: I don’t think there were any other instruments that
were weirder than what we have in there. There were
many other varieties of guitar, but, when we decided
to cut down the instruments to sixty, we ended up
removing some of those. The one thing that I think I
regret most about Wii Music, and I think it’s a mistake on
my part, was that we didn’t include a mandolin.
Interview with Shigeru Miyamoto
Shortly before launch day, we were given the opportunity to meet with Shigeru
Miyamoto, the man behind many of Nintendo’s most popular game franchises
including Wii Music. We were among several different magazines and web
sites who were invited. What follows are what we felt were some of the more
interesting questions, answers and thoughts which Mr. Miyamoto shared with us.
Shigeru Miyamoto: Because we knew [this is] such a new and different kind of
game, our feeling all along has been that it will be one of those long sellers that
doesn’t race right out of the gate. But [what] we are finding is that people who’ve
played the game and spent a good deal of time with it are reacting very positively
to it and writing some very long things about it.
Now, for me personally, my thoughts and [feelings] about this game are really [a]
little bit different froma lot of the other games that I’ve made. I’ve been making
games for thirty years, and that whole time I’ve been a musician and a big fan
of music. Over all those years, I personally thought that creating a game out of
music was something that was very difficult to do.
So, unlike a product like WiiFit where… you know, with t WiiFit, I had started a diet tt
that had me weighing myself every day, and I found something interesting in that
experience and found a way to take that experience and translate it in the formof
a video game. Really, with Music, what I experienced was that I had this passion c
for creating video games for thirty years and this passion for creating music for
thirty years, but I was never really able to find a way for the two of those to come
together.
Having that long experience of not really being able to find a way to turn music
into a video game product… seeing the end-result that we’ve achieved with Wii
Music has left me very happy. c
Of course, over the last ten-plus years we’ve seen what people now call “music
games” start to emerge and take form— games like Beatmania and, more a
recently, games like Guitar Hero. When I looked at those as a game designer
— you know, I called those “music games” myself — and I looked at those and
thought, “You know, they’re very well made and they’re very fun.”
But what I really experienced with those was that, while the gameplay itself is
very fun, I often found that, in playing those games, the enjoyment that I got out
of themwas very different fromthe kind of enjoyment that I get out of playing
music.
So, while, as a game designer, when I looked at games like Beatmania and Guitar
Hero and [saw] the fun of those games as games, when I looked at themfrom o
my perspective of being a musician…. To me what those games reflected was
— games that were trying to allow people to be the very best cover band that
they could be. And my feeling was that if, as a musician, I were to create a music
game, my goal wouldn’t be to try to allow people to join the best cover band
that they could join, but rather to let themmove beyond that rather basic level of
music training of trying to replicate existing music, and, instead, give themthe
creative freedomto try to bring their own personal creativity and their own flair
to music creation.
I feel that with Wii Music we’ve managed to achieve that, and my hope is that c
we’ll have as many people as possible who’ll be able to play Wii Music and c
experience what it’s like to have that creative freedomin creating music.
I mentioned to you that I’ve been playing music for thirty years, in fact in my
college days. But that doesn’t mean that I ama good musician. I’mnot very good
at playing instruments, and I’mnot very good at performing publicly, and, in fact,
I’m I mra rathe ther e r emba mbarra rrasse ssed a d abou bout p t play laying ing in in fr front ont of of ot other her pe peopl oplee. But But o , on O n Octo ctober ber
2nd 2nd at atYo Yoyog yogi i i inT nToky okyoo, we we hel held o d our ur med media ia eve event nt, an and I d I wa was a s able ble to to ge get o t on s n-stag tagee
in front of a very large audience and performa song together with the director
of this game in front of a thousand people or more. It was a very liberating
experience to feel like…here was this instrument that finally I can play and know
that I’mgoing to play it well and be able to let out my musical creativity in front
of a large audience.
I hope you’ll take that all into account and look at Wii Music fromthat perspective c
when you’re playing the game and then talking about it to people.
Question: What kind of demographic did you have in mind when creating the
game? Did you expect this to appeal to the “core gamer?”
SM: When I create a game — not just Wii Music but any game — I don’t really c
focus on a particular audience or particular age range. I feel that the games that
I’mmaking are based on a more universal, inherently human sense of fun that I
think doesn’t really change, regardless of your age.
In creating a game like a Super Mario Bros. sequel or a Zelda sequel, we do a
create those games [while] trying to take into account the experience and
knowledge g that pla p yer y s of those franchises have had in the ppast ga g mes.
Simultaneously, we feel it is very important that we always look at how people
who have never played a Super Mario Bros. game or a Zelda game are going to a
int intera eract ct wit with t h this his ti title tle. H . How ow are are th they ey goi going ng to to exp experi erienc ence i e it? t?
With regard to Wii Music there were two things that we looked at in creating it. c
One, of course, was that I think the game’s fun. Regarding the second…. There’s
a director that some of you may be familiar with who works with me. He was
a director with me for the last twenty-plus years, and he’s a producer now. He
knows absolutely nothing about music and cannot play music whatsoever.
Throughout the development of Wii Music, I was keenly watching how he c
responded to Wii Music and whether or not he, as someone who’s not musically c
inclined, would think it was fun.
I think that people have probably heard me say that I think this title is very well
suited to an elementary musical education for children — a very good first step to
really introduce children to the key theories of music. That’s an opinion that I have
formed after seeing the final product, and it wasn’t something that I strove to try
to create fromthe outset.
So when I say that I think that Wii Music is very good for elementary education c
or first-step music education for children, the reason I think that actually stems
back to my experience in elementary and middle school with studies in history
and geography. Those were two subjects that I had absolutely no interest in
whatsoever as a child and hated. But as an adult now, I’ve developed quite a
deep interest in those. I think that’s because I have the perspective that allows
me to understand what kind of role history and geography can play in the world.
In the case of music, I think that, if we’re able to introduce children to the joy of
musical creativity fromthe outset, then they’re going to be more interested in the
principle of music theory. And that’s why I’ve been suggesting that perhaps Wii
Music is a better way to start music education than starting with basic tools. c
As for the question of whether or not it would appeal to core gamers…. We
didn’t really look at it in terms of how it would appeal to so-called “core gamers”
versus so-called “casual gamers.” The appeal of this game is based upon people’s
own personal interest in music. Obviously, among people who are casual gamers
there are people who have very intense interest in music creation, and I think that
Wii Music is the kind of game that is able to take a person’s interest in music — c
whether it’s deep or just a budding interest — and grab a hold of people. I think
that with Wii Music, particularly when it comes to the ability to relayer parts and c
rearrange songs, you’re going to find that people who have that core musical
interest are going to become obsessed with the process of rearranging their
songs — to the point that among the Wii Music audience you will find people c
who are as “core” of a gamer at Wii Music as you would in any other franchise c
or genre.
Maybe it’s a question of the degree of interest in music that might result in some
people’s confusion as to the audience for Wii Music. If you’re the type of person
who starts tapping your hands or humming when you listen to music on a CD,
then I think you’ll find this game interesting.
Question: Forgive me if I’mwrong, but it seems like the track list is the same
across all territories. I’mwondering if there was any thought of localizing it for
different territories. And on that note, why were there so few classic Nintendo
tracks? I think I’ve counted only three 8- and 16-bit songs.
SM SM T : Thi his ti time aro d und we wa t nted t d t h o have one song li li t st world ldwid ide U . U i sin t g thhe Wii
Music system, I think it would be interesting to go forward with localized song c
lists for different markets. With regard to the NES songs — I would assume that
everyone here is familiar with the very large number of songs fromthe NES
and Super NES era. We wanted the music in the game to appeal to a very broad
audience, and probably not many people in the mass market would be as familiar
with those songs. So, in the song selection this time around, we wanted to focus
on songs that people will know by ear for the most part, because that will make it
eas easier ier fo for t r them hemto to pl play ay the the so song ng and and im impro provis vise t e the he son songg.
Question: You’re prohibited fromever talking about your hobbies but then you
accidentally revealed that you have a deep interest in history. Is Wii History next? y
SM: I think that one thing that Wii Music helped to reinforce for me was that c
there really is a wide selection of topics of interest that span all ages. Obviously,
there’s a lot of different genres of games, there are a lot of different skill levels
of gamers, but, again, I really just focus on those innate human experiences and
that type of entertainment is something that spans generations.
Question: I know it’s a very broad range of instruments and there were some
weird ones — we saw the cat in a dog suit and the karate
practicing guy — and I’mwondering if there’s anything
weirder than those that didn’t make the final cut.
SM: I don’t think there were any other instruments that
were weirder than what we have in there. There were
many other varieties of guitar, but, when we decided
to cut down the instruments to sixty, we ended up
removing some of those. The one thing that I think I
reggret most about Wii Music, and I think it’s a mistake on c
my part, was that we didn’t include a mandolin.
InterviewwithShigeruMiyamoto Interview with Shigeru Miyamoto InterviewwithShigeruMiyamoto Interview with Shigeru Miyamoto
4 4 _REV IEW_WII MUSIC HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
reviewed by racewing
Publisher: Sega • Developer: Sonic Team/ Dimps • Genre: Act ion • Cat egory: Supersonic • Release Dat e: 11/ 18/ 2008 • # Players: 1 • ESRB: E10+
For fans of Sonic the Hedgehog, as well as
Sega, there’s a lot riding on Sonic Unleashed.
After the negative overall reception given to SONIC the Hedgehog (2006), the famous
character’s stock was put in serious jeopardy, until Sonic and the Secret Rings and Sonic
Rush Adventure came to his rescue. Sonic Unleashed is the game that Sega’s now
touting as the real return to console formfor their company mascot.
In a bold yet cautious approach, Sonic Team’s built two distinct versions from the ground
up for two separate sets of platforms. Furthermore, for the Wii and PS2 versions of this
game, Sega wisely tapped Dimps (the minds behind the Sonic Advance and Sonic Rush
games) as designers of the daytime versions of stages. With all this planning, has Sega
gotten things right? Having played from start to credits, and then further still, I can easily
say that at least for one platform, it’s mission accomplished.
The daytime stages, where you control the cool blue hedgehog we all know and love,
are fabulous. The game often sports Secret Rings’s behind-the-back perspective, which
allows you to control Sonic like a superfast race car (with a sweet Outrun 2-style drift
to boot). Sonic Rivals’s 2.5D perspective kicks in for about half of each stage, complete
with dynamic camera angles that show off Sonic’s best and speediest moments in style.
Finally, hailing from Sonic Rush Adventure is Dimps’s great stage design, complete with
multiple paths and junctions through courses, assuring that every one of these stages has
rewarding, long-termreplay value.
In addition, Sonic’s got some new moves. The Quick Step allows for fast horizontal
movement without any break in the action, eliminating many analog-stick mishaps that
plagued Sonic last generation. The Sonic Boost allows for a burst of speed on the ground
but also in the air, making it great for avoiding bottomless pit-deaths. The only bad part
about all this is that there appears to be no multiplayer whatsoever. So unlike Sonic Rush
Adventure, you can’t have limitless fun zooming around these great levels with a friend or
online opponent. It’s a shame, because these well-done stages cry out for the treatment.
During nighttime, the Werehog’s quick scampering movements, double-jumps
and stretchy arms allow him to shimmy along poles, across narrow walls and past
precarious platforms, as well as ef¿ciently take out multiple baddies at once with a
respectable and responsive combo system.
SONIC UNLEA SHED_REV iEW_4 5
SONI C
UNLEASHED UNLEASHED
SONI C
reviewed by racewing reviewed by racewing
The ¿ghting and platforming are still fairly speedy,
feel surprisingly rewarding, and are actually, dare
I say, a good way to relax after all that pent-up
adrenaline’s been coursing through your systems
from the daytime missions. While, as an older
fan, I can’t bring myself to embrace the Werehog
decision, I can’t really fault it either, because what’s
here de¿nitely works.
Rounding everything out is a completely optional
hub world with special bonus rooms, containing
extra lives and secret missions waiting beyond
some novel puzzles which involve switching back
and forth between Sonic’s two forms. Also making
a return appearance are the much-maligned “town”
stages from SONIC, only this time, they’re little
more than graphic menus and text boxes, keeping
the pace of the game fast.
The best part of this game is that it’s actually well-
designed at its core, and clearly playtested. Usually
invisible walls in games are a sign of trouble, but
here their presence often saves the player from
headaches and unfair deaths off of stage sides.
Even during the Werehog’s sections where they’re
largely absent, I counted all of ¿ve situations (out of
a couple hundred) where I actually felt frustrated.
The Werehog can be somewhat slippery, like Sonic
was last generation (oddly enough, the Hedgehog
nowstops on a dime). Still, on the whole, things are
very manageable and control well. Motion controls
are also present. In the daytime Sonic controls a lot
like he did in Secret Rings, and at night you use the
manipulate the Werehog’s arm actions yourself.
While the setup’s all right, after a while I simply
stuck with the Gamecube controller.
Even given the blistering speeds Sonic moves at
here, odds are you’ll slow down to check out the
scenery. Unleashed for the Wii boasts huge worlds,
bustingwithlight, color, expansivebackgroundsand
terrain effects. Whether it’s looking at a beautiful
forest waterfall while playing as the Werehog, or
spinning through dizzying loop-de-loops as Sonic
with your point-of-view going from the bottom up,
the framerate never, ever dips.
Dressing all these wonderful visuals is a feast for
the ears. The background music eschews the hard
rock of most currernt-era Sonic games and instead
is a fusion of jazz and old-school game tunes.
Much of it calls forth memories of Sonic Rush
Adventure—which it should, since the composer
for that game also worked on this. The voice acting
is as cheesy as it’s ever been, but hats go off to
the actual sound direction in this title. As Sonic
runs through stages, he gives off whoops and
hollers that show he’s having fun being the Fastest
Thing Alive. As the Werehog, he’s snarling and
aggressive, and even howls.
In the end, the whole of Sonic Unleashed is slightly
greater than the sum of its parts. Sonic fans who
own the current crop of Nintendo systems can once
again hold their heads up high. The Wii rendition
of Sonic Unleashed is the best console Sonic
game since probably the Dreamcast days. Even
if the absolute worst happens, and the next-gen
versions somehowend up completely dropping the
ball, there’s one system where things are as they
should be.
Score: 4 of 5
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 4 6_REV IEW_SONIC UNLEA SHED
2ND OPI NI ON 2ND OPI NI ON
...man, we had to wait 8 years and suffer a human/hedgehog romance just to get this. Fortunately,
this almost makes up for it.
Second opinion by Zippy • Score: 4 of 5
FI NAL SCORE:4of 5 FI NAL SCORE:4of 5
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
This time, however, we went to themto ¿nd out just where they were planning to go with
all of this, as well as with Sonic’s future. Fortunately, Patrick Riley (Producer at Sega of
America) was kind enough to answer our questions.
HGM: In a nutshell, what do you hope to accomplish in terms of the Sonic character and
his franchise with Sonic Unleashed?
Riley: The goal is to re-launch the franchise with a high-quality, immensely
enjoyable game.
HGM: Just what happened to the SONIC the Hedgehog (2006) team? Is anyone from
it still involved in this project?
Riley: Some of the Sonic Unleashed team members were on SONIC the Hedgehog
(2006), but many of themwere not. Many are younger, energetic and passionate team
members working on their ¿rst game, and many of themworked on major titles for other
companies and this is their ¿rst game for SEGA.
However the leaders of the [Sonic Unleashed] development teamwere not on SONIC
the Hedgehog (2006), namely Hashimoto-san, who is the game design lead/director/
technical lead and Kawamura-san who is the art director. Interestingly enough,
Hashimoto-san and Kawamura-san’s last big console Sonic project was Sonic
Adventure 2, in which they were two of the creators of the original Chao. Kawamura-
san did the art design, and Hashimoto-san did the programming and design. So you
can see that there is a rich history of true Sonic experience behind this game.
HGM: What, exactly, are the speci¿cs, features and bene¿ts of the Hedgehog Engine?
How does it help in making Sonic Unleashed a more fun game?
Riley: TheHedgehogEngine, whichwascreatedbysomeof theteammembersmaking
the game, uses a technique known as “Global Illumination” in which the reÀections of
colored light around a scene is calculated and baked into a pre-rendered lighting pass.
This makes for vibrant and detailed scenes that feel like high-end computer animation.
Also, since Sonic runs so fast, the need for an engine to be able to streamtextures and
geometry is extremely important. So the engine was also built from the ground up to
allow for this. Finally, the Hedgehog Engine is an investment in future SEGA games.
Sonic Unleashed is just the ¿rst game, but it’s a base fromwhich we can develop future
Sonic titles and titles of other genres without having to start from zero on the engine
and toolset.
HGM: Why the Werehog, exactly? We’ve heard the of¿cial reason, to add “gameplay
variety”, but we’ve heard that to justify several past Sonic games that have come
under ¿re (at least by critics) for this
very reason. Is there a reason Sega
and Sonic Team stick to their guns in
this regard? (Are all the characters
and differing gameplay concepts that
popular with the younger audience, for
example?)
Riley: We de¿nitely wanted to try
something a little different with Sonic
and appeal to both Sonic fans and
people outside of the normal target
audience. There were skeptics
internally here at SEGAas well, but as
the gameplay matured everyone came
to see the promise in the Werehog
element as it grew and matured. One
side effect that I enjoy is that it’s always
dif¿cult to encourage exploration in
the game while simultaneously asking
players to run 300 miles per hour to
get a top rating. The Werehog gave
us a chance to include that element of
exploration.
HGM: Given the above, do Sega and
Sonic Team consider its classic form of high-speed platforming gameplay to still be
viable in today’s industry, outside of the handheld market?
Riley: Absolutely. With the power behind all the new plaforms we can continue to take
that kind of gaming to new levels and make it that much more intense and make sure
gamers continue to feel the speed they look for in a Sonic game. Once people get this
game in their hands, they will see that the team has proven that it is possible to keep
adapting Sonic to the modern era and there is still roomfor him. The development team
has really nailed the combination of 3D with 2.5D, and have designed levels that stand
up to a lot of replay. Some of the levels such as Apotos were in near ¿nal formmonths
ago and I’ve been enjoying playing themon a regular basis since then.
HGM: Any chance of a 2D console Sonic revival, a la Capcom’s recent efforts (Bionic
Commando Rearmed, Mega Man 9)?
Riley: I agree with the fans that it would be great so stay tuned and see what comes
down the pipe. In the meantime, I’m sure you will all enjoy Sonic Unleashed and its
2D/3D gameplay elements.
Sonic Unleashed is a fairly Big
Thing(tm) for Sega, and they’ve been
making quite a bit of noise to make
sure the gaming press knows it...
I NTERVI EW:
PATRI CK RI LEY PATRI CK RI LEY
I NTERVI EW:
“[The] Hedgehog Engine is an investment in
future SEGA games. “
SONIC UNLEA SHED_REV iEW_4 7
With Resistance 2, the player limit has been
raised to a whopping 60, which is simply
unheard of on consoles. But despite having
so many players, the game is still overÀowing
with useful additions and features that truly
enhance game play.
When my session began, I was thrust into
a large urban map called Construction that
had several pathways snaking throughout
the buildings and debris. This particular battle
takes place at night, which helps to enhance
the laser ¿re and explosions (of which there
were plenty). My ‘tour guide’ was Insomniac
community director James Stevenson,
who explained to me that every player is
automatically placed on a team when they
enter the fray, and that team is randomly
pittedagainst anenemy teamfor theduration
of the match. These rival teams will be
directed by screen prompts to ful¿ll different
objectives, but they will always ¿ght over the
same territory. On top of that, players earn
extra points for killing rival squad members,
giving themmore incentive to focus their ¿re.
Sounds cool to me.
Continuing on my session, I was prompted
to meet up with fellow squad members at a
rendezvous point and then press on to the
main objective. This simple yet effective
idea ensures that teams will always attack
their objectives in a group (if they can follow
orders). Despite not knowing each other,
my squad met up at the indicated point and
we all attacked our objectives like a well-
oiled machine. “Wow,” I thought, “this kind
of cooperation never happens in PUGs.” I
guess we just needed some direction.
Apparently, the enemy wasn’t too thrilled
with losing their real estate because a furious
battle erupted all around me. Grenade and
rocket explosions sent bodies Àying
whilegun¿re
ripped through friends and foes alike. After
killing several enemies without dying,
I was able to activate a personal shield that
protected my front and was large enough
to also protect one or two comrades. We
charged forwards and tore through a group
of Locust only to be dropped by some well-
placed grenades at our feet.
On my way back to the battle, I was cut
down by sniper ¿re fromabove before I even
arrived. Timetoseekrevenge! Jamestoldme
that there were several areas to gain access
to the rooftops, so I ignored the ¿re¿ght and
stalked my killer. I took cover on a rooftop,
placed the reticule of my sniper riÀe over his
head, and BAM!! But rather than rejoin the
battle, I just waited for him to come up and
seek revenge on me. Hopefully he noticed
that it was the same player that just killed him
twice in a row, mwhahaha.
Even after playing Resistance 2 multiplayer
for several hours, I still wanted to go back
for more. I originally thought that having so
many players interacting at the same time
would be confusing and produce intense
lag, but neither happened. This is due to the
innovative squad rivalry systemthat focuses
battles in different areas of the map instead
of letting front lines formon their own. Add a
frantically fun eight-player class-based co-op
mode to the mix and this may just become
my new multiplayer game of choice.
by BigWyrm
Resist ance 2
When Insomniac int roduced t he gaming
world t o Resist ance: Fall of Man, fans were
surprised at how well t he PS3 could handle
such int ense 32-player ßreßght s.
Resist ance 2
4 8_ONLINE_RESISTA NCE 2
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
Speak softly and carry a big hammer. That’s the motto of Gen-san, the hero of the
latest installment in Irem’s venerable Daiku no Gen-San platformer series, Ikuze!
Gen-San: Yuuyake Daiku Monogatari. Ikuze! Gen-San features the adventures of
an honorable carpenter who battles the minions of a greedy construction company.
The Daiku no Gen-San series cut its teeth in the side scrolling beat ‘em up
platforming heyday of the early 90’s arcade and home console scene. Future
iterations of the series appeared on various 8 and 16-bit systems throughout the
decade. Gen-san even made an English language appearance on the NES in an
obscure title called Hammerin’ Harry (complete with goofy early 90’s box art).
Review by: E. Goban
Publisher: Irem
Developer: Irem
Release Date: 6/30/08
Genre: Platformer
Category: Beat ‘em up
# of Players: 1
Rating: 3.5 of 5
Ikuze! Gen-San: Yuuyake Daiku Monogatari is a solid, if unspectacular,
platformer. English-only gamers shouldn’t have much trouble navigating
the menus, although the storyline will remain a mystery. Old school gaming
enthusiasts will appreciate Gen-san’s quirkiness and ought to give it a try.
Worth Importing?
Every Daiku no Gen-San game follows the same basic platformer formula of jump, dodge,
smash and repeat liberally until the world is fully cleansed of evil. Irem doesn’t try to reinvent
the game play wheel, focusing instead on quirky character and level design.
Ikuze! Gen-San: Yuuyake Daiku Monogatari follows faithfully in the footsteps of its
predecessors. The hero, Gen-san, armed with his trusty oversized hammer, takes to the
streets to ¿ght off waves of construction company minions. Our hero’s nemesis is an evil
construction company, lead by the diabolical President Hyousuke. Hyosuke’s men are
overdeveloping the city, disrupting its peaceful small town tranquility and causing its citizens
grief. Gen-san decides to right this wrong by assaulting the company in a whirlwind of blue
collar violence not seen since the happy-go-lucky union-busting days of the 1920’s.
At its heart, is the same side scrolling beat em’ up that you’ve been playing since the days
of River City Ransom and Double Dragon. Platform veterans will ¿nd themselves right at
home jumping over obstacles and smashing Gen-san’s many foes. What makes the game
unique is the wide assortment of bizarre opponents and situations that you encounter. One
minute, you’ll be happily riding a merry-go-round and a ferris wheel before facing down a
mad scientist’s weather machine, and the next minute you’ll ¿nd yourself dashing through a
restaurant, dodging cooks while helping a waitress and chef ¿nd love. This variety of fun and
interesting venues will help take the edge off of the naturally repetitive side scroller formula.
The game’s main innovation comes from a costume change system that allows Gen-san to
assume the role and skills of a variety of different professions. Each unlockable costume
changes Gen-san’s attributes, making him faster, more powerful, or altering his attacks. The
sushi master costume turns our hero into a short order cook who can wallop enemies with a
gigantic ¿sh. The baseball costume will channel his inner Ichiro, allowing him to knock bad
guys out of the park. Other personas include a beat boxin’ DJ, a deep sea diver, and many
more. As an added bonus, you can even play the part of hack psychologist. Gen-san can
smash away NPC’s troubles by using his hammer on big frowny faces that are supposed
to represent their emotional trauma. The newly giddy citizens then aid him in his quest by
engaging in acts of civil disobedience against their former oppressors.
As far as pure gameplay is concerned, Ikuze! Gen-San won’t knock your socks off. The game
plays a little too slowly and leisurely compared to its more famous platforming cousins. While
vibrant backgrounds and large character sprites make the game aesthetically appealing, this
causes framerate problems, slowing the game down at very inopportune times. The game’s
preponderance of one hit kills will also make for many frustrating moments.
Speak softly and carry a big hamm
latest installment in Irem’s venerable Daiku no Gen-San platformer series, Ikuze!
Gen-San: Yuuyake Daiku Monogatari. Ikuze! Gen-San features the adventures of
an honorable carpenter who battles the minions of a greedy construction company.
The Daiku no Gen-San series cut its teeth in the side scrolling beat ‘em up
platforming heyday of the early 90’s arcade and home console scene. Future
iterations of the series appeared on various 8 and 16-bit systems throughout the
decade. Gen-san even made an English language appearance on the NES in an
obscure title called Hammerin’ Harry (complete with goofy early 90’s box art). y
Review by: Review by: EE. GGobannn
Publisher Publisher: Irrem
Developer: Developer: Irem
Release Date: Release Date: 6/ 6 30/0088888
Genre: Genre: Plat atform r er
Category: Category: Be Beat ‘‘em u upppp
# of Players: # of Players: 1
Rating: Rating: 3. 3 5 of o 5
Ikuze! Gen-San: Yuuyake Daiku Monogatari is a solid, if unspectacular, i
platformer. English-only gamers shouldn’t have much trouble navigating
the menus, although the storyline will remain a mystery. Old school gaming
enthusiasts will appreciate Gen-san’s quirkiness and ought to give it a try.
g???? porting n Worth Im WorthIm h WW gggg pppp ting ttt tttt oo mpo t o pppp Woo Wo t o nnnnnnnn iiii rrrr mmmmmmmmmmmm IIII hhhhhhhh rrrr WWWWWW gggg pp tt tt gg???? rr rr ng WWWW i ? Worth Importing?
Every Daiku no Gen-San game follows the same basic platformer formula of jump, dodge,
smash and repeat liberally until the world is fully cleansed of evil. Irem doesn’t try to reinvent
the game play wheel, focusing instead on quirky character and level design.
Ikuze! Gen-San: Yuuyake Daiku Monogatari follows faithfully in the footsteps of its i
predecessors. The hero, Gen-san, armed with his trusty oversized hammer, takes to the
streets to ¿ght off waves of construction company minions. Our hero’s nemesis is an evil
construction company, lead by the diabolical President Hyousuke. Hyosuke’s men are
overdeveloping the city, disrupting its peaceful small town tranquility and causing its citizens
grief. Gen-san decides to right this wrong by assaulting the company in a whirlwind of blue
collar violence not seen since the happy-go-lucky union-busting days of the 1920’s.
At its heart, is the same side scrolling beat em’ up that you’ve been playing since the days
of River City Ransom and Double Dragon. Platform veterans will ¿nd themselves right at
home jumping over obstacles and smashing Gen-san’s many foes. What makes the game
unique is the wide assortment of bizarre opponents and situations that you encounter. One
minute, you’ll be happily riding a merry-go-round and a ferris wheel before facing down a
mad scientist’s weather machine, and the next minute you’ll ¿nd yourself dashing through a
restaurant, dodging cooks while helping a waitress and chef ¿nd love. This variety of fun and
interesting venues will help take the edge off of the naturally repetitive side scroller formula.
The game’s main innovation comes from a costume change system that allows Gen-san to
assume the role and skills of a variety of different professions. Each unlockable costume
changes Gen-san’s attributes, making him faster, more powerful, or altering his attacks. The
sushi master costume turns our hero into a short order cook who can wallop enemies with a
gigantic ¿sh. The baseball costume will channel his inner Ichiro, allowing him to knock bad
guys out of the park. Other personas include a beat boxin’ DJ, a deep sea diver, and many
more. As an added bonus, you can even play the part of hack psychologist. Gen-san can
smash away NPC’s troubles by using his hammer on big frowny faces that are supposed
to represent their emotional trauma. The newly giddy citizens then aid him in his quest by
engaging in acts of civil disobedience against their former oppressors.
As far as pure gameplay is concerned, Ikuze! Gen-San won’t knock your socks off. The game
plays a little too slowly and leisurely compared to its more famous platforming cousins. While
vibrant backgrounds and large character sprites make the game aesthetically appealing, this
causes framerate problems, slowing the game down at very inopportune times. The game’s
preponderance of one hit kills will also make for many frustrating moments.
IKUZE! GEN-SA N: YUUYA KE DA IKU MONOGATA RI_IMPORTS_4 9 HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _.BLEEN
mer. That’s the motto of Gen-san, the hero of the
Publ i sher : Hudson Sof t
Devel oper : Hudson Sof t
Genr e: Dat i ng/ Combat Si m/ Shoot er
Cat egor y: Gi r l s i n Space!
Back i n t he ear l y ‘ 90s, whi l e Ni nt endo was domi nat i ng t he
US vi deogame mar ket wi t h t he NES, t he PC Engi ne was gi vi ng
Ni nt endo’ s Fami com a r un f or i t s money. Two popul ar genr es on t he
PC Engi ne, whi ch r eal l y showcased t he consol e’ s super i or 1-megabi t
CD t echnol ogy, i ncl uded 2D shoot er s and gr aphi cal advent ur es. The
Gi nga Oj ousama Denset su Col l ect i on f or PSP pr esent s t oday’ s
gamer s wi t h qual i t y por t s of t hr ee such cl assi cs.
Gi nga Oj ousama i s a game f r anchi se t hat spawned t he devel opment
of a popul ar ser i es of ani me al so known as Gal axy Fr aul ei n Yuna.
Famous f or hi s wor k i n t he Gundam ser i es and hi s Mobi l e Sui t Gi r l s
char act er desi gns, Aki t aka Mi ka cr eat ed t he concept f or Gi nga
Oj ousama af t er bei ng appr oached by Hudson. Or i gi nal l y i nt endi ng
t o cr eat e a shoot er f eat ur i ng hi s t r ademar k mecha gi r l s, t he Ànal
pr oduct coul d be descr i bed as t he opposi t e of an awe-i nspi r i ng
shoot er. Inst ead of f r enet i c, edge-of -your -seat hi gh oct ane
shmupness, f ans of Aki t aka Mi ka wer e t r eat ed t o an act i onl ess
gr aphi c novel advent ur e i n Gi nga Oj ousama Denset su Yuna. The
sequel , Gi nga Oj ousama Denset su Yuna 2, was essent i al l y mor e of
t he same, wi t h a f ew new addi t i ons, but st i l l not much act i on. It
was not unt i l t he t hi r d game i n t he ser i es, Gi nga Fukei Denset su:
Sapphi r e, t hat Aki t aka Mi ka’ s or i gi nal concept was used t o cr eat e
one of t he PC Engi ne’ s gr eat est gems.
If you have i nt er medi at e Japanese ski l l s, Yuna and Yuna 2, st ar r i ng a f ut ur i st i c beaut y-
queen, pr esent ent er t ai ni ng st or yl i nes t hat f ans of t he ani me wi l l deÀni t el y want t o
check out . For t hose who do not under st and Japanese, nei t her Yuna nor Yuna 2 have
much t o of f er, f or t he act i on i s scant whi l e t he save poi nt s ar e f ew and f ar bet ween.
Yuna al l ows t he pl ayer t o i nt er act wi t h t he st or y by i nput t i ng commands such as
“ l ook, ” “ t al k” and “ move. ” Yuna 2 ups t he ant e wi t h some basi c dungeon cr awl i ng
aspect s as wel l as t ur n-based car d bat t l es ver sus r i val char act er s. The l anguage bar r i er,
however, i s j ust t oo gr eat f or casual i mpor t f ans t o endur e 30 mi nut es of st or y f or t he
f ew mi nut es of act i on Yuna and Yuna 2 pr esent .
That sai d, t he Gi nga Oj ousama Denset su Col l ect i on i s a must own f or any gamer.
Per i od. Why? Because i t packs one of t he r ar est and gr eat est shoot er s ever r el eased
on t he PC Engi ne - Gi nga Fukei Denset su: Sapphi r e. Unt i l now, gamer s want i ng
t o exper i ence t hi s gol den ol di e needed t o make an i nvest ment t hat makes t he PS3
suddenl y seem cheap by compar i son. At $300 f or a used copy of t he or i gi nal r el ease,
not t o ment i on hundr eds of dol l ar s wor t h of 20-year -ol d har dwar e f r om Japan, f ew
gamer s have ever exper i enced t hi s f r enet i c shmup. Thi r t een year s af t er i t s debut ,
Sapphi r e hol ds i t s own as one of t he best shoot er s ever made and t he PSP por t does
not di sappoi nt .
Sapphi r e can be descr i bed as a hybr i d of t wo cl assi cs - Rai den and Radi ant Si l ver gun.
The weapon syst em seems l i ke i t was yanked st r ai ght out of Rai den f eat ur i ng a pr i mar y
cannon t hat can be l evel ed-up by col l ect i ng r ed, gr een, or bl ue power ups and bombs
t hat can cl ear t he scr een i n an i nst ant . Ther e i s a t hi r d at t ack t hat can be di schar ged
usi ng t he Sel ect but t on, but t he but t on conÀgur at i on i s so awkwar d t hat unl eashi ng
t hi s at t ack i s a r eci pe f or i nst ant deat h. Whi l e t he f our avai l abl e spacecr af t each
have a uni que weapons set , t he di f f er ences ar en’ t so gr eat as t o be a consi der at i on
i n sel ect i ng your shi p. Inst ead, you’ l l most l i kel y onl y pl ay wi t h Char at t e’ s shi p, t he
f ast est i n t he Áeet .
Rel ease Dat e: 7/ 30/ 08
# of Pl ayer s: 1
Rat i ng: 4 of 5
Revi ew by: E. Kozo
Publ i sher : Hu HHu Hu Huds ds ds dssss dssson on on ooooon SSof of of f ttttttttt
Devel oper : HHu Hu Hu HHu HHHu H ds dssssss dd on on on on on ooon oo SSof oof ooo ttt
Genr e: Da Da D t i t i ng ng/ C / C / Com om om mba ba bba ba ba bbbatt t SSi Si ii SSSSSS m/ m/ m/ mmmmmmm SSSSh Sh Sh Sh Sh SSh hhoooo oo ooo oo oott e t e t e ttt e t r
Cat egor y: Gi GGi Gi Gi r l l rr l ssssss ii n ii n SSSSSpa pa pa pa pa pace ce ce ce ce!!!!!!!
Back i n t he ear l y ‘ 90s, whi l e Ni nt endo was domi nat i ng t he
US vi deogame mar ket wi t h t he NES, t he PC Engi ne was gi vi ng
Ni nt endo’ s Fami com a r un f or i t s money. Two popul ar genr es on t he
PC Engi ne, whi ch r eal l y showcased t he consol e’ s super i or 1-megabi t
CD t echnol ogy, i ncl uded 2D shoot er s and gr aphi cal advent ur es. The
Gi nga Oj ousama Denset su Col l ect i on f or PSP pr esent s t oday’ s
gamer s wi t h qual i t y por t s of t hr ee such cl assi cs.
Gi nga Oj ousama i s a game f r anchi se t hat spawned t he devel opment
of a popul ar ser i es of ani me al so known as Gal axy Fr aul ei n Yuna.
Famous f or hi s wor k i n t he Gundam ser i es and hi s Mobi l e Sui t Gi r l s
char act er desi gns, Aki t aka Mi ka cr eat ed t he concept f or Gi nga
Oj ousama af t er bei ng appr oached by Hudson. Or i gi nal l y i nt endi ng
t o cr eat e a shoot er f eat ur i ng hi s t r ademar k mecha gi r l s, t he Ànal
pr oduct coul d be descr i bed as t he opposi t e of an awe-i nspi r i ng
shoot er. Inst ead of f r enet i c, edge-of -your -seat hi gh oct ane
shmupness, f ans of Aki t aka Mi ka wer e t r eat ed t o an act i onl ess
gr aphi c novel advent ur e i n Gi nga Oj ousama Denset su Yuna. The
sequel , Gi nga Oj ousama Denset su Yuna 2, was essent i al l y mor e of
t he same, wi t h a f ew new addi t i ons, but st i l l not much act i on. It
was not unt i l t he t hi r d game i n t he ser i es, Gi nga Fukei Denset su:
Sapphi r e, t hat Aki t aka Mi ka’ s or i gi nal concept was used t o cr eat e
one of t he PC Engi ne’ s gr eat est gems.
If you have i nt er medi at e Japanese ski l l s, Yuna and Yuna 2, st ar r i ng a f ut ur i st i c beaut y-
queen, pr esent ent er t ai ni ng st or yl i nes t hat f ans of t he ani me wi l l deÀni t el y want t o
check out . For t hose who do not under st and Japanese, nei t her Yuna nor Yuna 2 have
much t o of f er, f or t he act i on i s scant whi l e t he save poi nt s ar e f ew and f ar bet ween.
Yuna al l ows t he pl ayer t o i nt er act wi t h t he st or y by i nput t i ng commands such as
“ l ook, ” “ t al k” and “ move. ” Yuna 2 ups t he ant e wi t h some basi c dungeon cr awl i ng
aspect s as wel l as t ur n-based car d bat t l es ver sus r i val char act er s. The l anguage bar r i er,
however, i s j ust t oo gr eat f or casual i mpor t f ans t o endur e 30 mi nut es of st or y f or t he
f ew mi nut es of act i on Yuna and Yuna 2 pr esent .
That sai d, t he Gi nga Oj ousama Denset su Col l ect i on i s a must own f or any gamer.
Per i od. Why? Because i t packs one of t he r ar est and gr eat est shoot er s ever r el eased
on t he PC Engi ne - Gi nga Fukei Denset su: Sapphi r e. Unt i l now, gamer s want i ng
t o exper i ence t hi s gol den ol di e needed t o make an i nvest ment t hat makes t he PS3
suddenl y seem cheap by compar i son. At $300 f or a used copy of t he or i gi nal r el ease,
not t o ment i on hundr eds of dol l ar s wor t h of 20- year -ol d har dwar e f r om Japan, f ew
gamer s have ever exper i enced t hi s f r enet i c shmup. Thi r t een year s af t er i t s debut ,
Sapphi r e hol ds i t s own as one of t he best shoot er s ever made and t he PSP por t does
not di sappoi nt .
Sapphi r e can be descr i bed as a hybr i d of t wo cl assi cs - Rai den and Radi ant Si l ver gun.
The weapon syst em seems l i ke i t was yanked st r ai ght out of Rai den f eat ur i ng a pr i mar y
cannon t hat can be l evel ed-up by col l ect i ng r ed, gr een, or bl ue power ups and bombs
t hat can cl ear t he scr een i n an i nst ant . Ther e i s a t hi r d at t ack t hat can be di schar ged
usi ng t he Sel ect but t on, but t he but t on conÀgur at i on i s so awkwar d t hat unl eashi ng
t hi s at t ack i s a r eci pe f or i nst ant deat h. Whi l e t he f our avai l abl e spacecr af t each
have a uni que weapons set , t he di f f er ences ar en’ t so gr eat as t o be a consi der at i on
i n sel ect i ng your shi p. Inst ead, you’ l l most l i kel y onl y pl ay wi t h Char at t e’ s shi p, t he
f ast est i n t he Áeet .
Rel ease Dat e: 77/ 7// 30 30 300/ 0 // 88
# of Pl ayer s: 1111111
Rat i ng: 4 4 4 444 f of f of of 555555555
Revi ew by: EE. E. E. EEE. E. E KKK KKoz oz oz z ozooooooooooo
Publ i sher : Hu HHu Huuds ds dddddson on o SSof of f ttt Rel ease Dat e: 7// 77 30 30 30// 088
50_IMPORTS_GINGA OJ OUSA MA DENSETSU COLLECTION HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
The l evel desi gn may wel l have ser ved as Tr easur e’ s i nspi r at i on f or Radi ant Si l ver gun: shor t l evel s
wi t h l egendar y boss bat t l es. Don’ t mi st ake t he f act t hat t he l evel s ar e shor t t o mean t hi s game i s
easy, f or i t ’ s anyt hi ng but . Unf or t unat el y, much of t he game’ s di f Àcul t y seems t o be bor n f r om your
shi p’ s compar at i ve l ack of speed coupl ed wi t h a l ar ge hi t box. When t he scr een Àl l s wi t h bul l et s and
enemi es, success of t en depends mor e on f ami l i ar i t y wi t h t he l evel t han qui ck r eÁexes. Pl ayi ng wi t h
Char at t e’ s shi p hel ps a bi t . Never t hel ess, t he exper i ence i s aki n t o navi gat i ng t he Ti t ani c t hr ough
ar t i c wat er s. You’ r e okay as l ong as you know exact l y wher e t he i ceber gs ar e, but . . . t hankf ul l y,
Sapphi r e has cont i nues, and many of t hem.
Si mi l ar t o Radi ant Si l ver gun, t he shor t bur st s of mani c act i on cl i max at t he end of each l evel wi t h
boss bat t l es t hat ar e not hi ng shor t of spect acul ar. The devel oper s cer t ai nl y squeezed ever y ounce
of gr aphi cal hor sepower f r om t he PC Engi ne when t hey cr eat ed Sapphi r e. Wi t h l i ght i ng ef f ect s,
par al l ax scr ol l i ng, spi nni ng pol ygons, and t ons of gr at ui t ous eye-candy, t her e i s har dy a pr et t i er
16-bi t shoot er. Sapphi r e’ s ar t di r ect i on cer t ai nl y compensat es f or any shor t comi ngs i n i t s mechani cs,
and at about one-t ent h of t he cost of t he PC Engi ne ver si on, t hi s i s a must own t i t l e f or any shmup
aÀci onado.
The PSP por t gi ves t he pl ayer t he opt i on t o change t he vi ewi ng mode f or al l t hr ee games, but whi l e
t hi s i s a ni ce f eat ur e i n concept , i t does not wor k wel l i n pr act i ce. The or i gi nal aspect r at i o r equi r es
t he game t o be pl ayed i n a t i ny vi ewi ng scr een t hat i s onl y uses about hal f of t he PSP’ s wi de scr een.
The ver t i cal l y st r et ched ver si on Àl l s a l i t t l e mor e of t he scr een wi t hout much not i ceabl e di st or t i on,
and t he f ul l scr een mode i s ugl y and vi r t ual l y unpl ayabl e. If onl y t he devel oper s had i mpl ement ed a
ver t i cal di spl ay opt i on, aki n t o what Tr easur e di d wi t h t he GameCube por t of Ikar uga, t o opt i mi ze
t he PSP’ s beaut i f ul wi descr een di spl ay. If onl y. . . .
For f ans of Aki t aka Mi ka, or f or anyone who l i kes bust y ani me gi r l s i n mecha sui t s, Gi nga Oj ousama
Denset su Col l ect i on of f er s excel l ent bonus cont ent . Accessi bl e f r om t he mai n menu i s an ar t gal l er y
f eat ur i ng many Aki t aka Mi ka or i gi nal s as wel l as what appear s t o be concept ar t f or t he t hr ee games.
The gal l er y i t sel f i s al most wor t h t he pr i ce of admi ssi on.
Yes! For shooter fans looking to play Sapphi r e at about one-
tenth the price of the PC Engine version, Gi nga Oj ousama
Denset su Col l ect i on is a great value and a must import.
Although Yuna and Yuna 2 are unplayable without intermediate
Japanese language skills, these should be considered icing on a
delicious shmup cake. Sapphi r e’s style and action make up for
any of its shortcomings and this PSP port is a top notch example
of a quality game withstanding the test of time.
Worth Importing?
The l evel desi gn may wel l have ser ved as Tr easur e’ s i nspi r at i on f or Radi ant Si l ver gun: shor t l evel s
wi t h l egendar y boss bat t l es. Don’ t mi st ake t he f act t hat t he l evel s ar e shor t t o mean t hi s game i s
easy, f or i t ’ s anyt hi ng but . Unf or t unat el y, much of t he game’ s di f Àcul t y seems t o be bor n f r om your
shi p’ s compar at i ve l ack of speed coupl ed wi t h a l ar ge hi t box. When t he scr een Àl l s wi t h bul l et s and
enemi es, success of t en depends mor e on f ami l i ar i t y wi t h t he l evel t han qui ck r eÁexes. Pl ayi ng wi t h
Char at t e’ s shi p hel ps a bi t . Never t hel ess, t he exper i ence i s aki n t o navi gat i ng t he Ti t ani c t hr ough
ar t i c wat er s. You’ r e okay as l ong as you know exact l y wher e t he i ceber gs ar e, but . . . t hankf ul l y,
Sapphi r e has cont i nues, and many of t hem.
Si mi l ar t o Radi ant Si l ver gun, t he shor t bur st s of mani c act i on cl i max at t he end of each l evel wi t h
boss bat t l es t hat ar e not hi ng shor t of spect acul ar. The devel oper s cer t ai nl y squeezed ever y ounce
of gr aphi cal hor sepower f r om t he PC Engi ne when t hey cr eat ed Sapphi r e. Wi t h l i ght i ng ef f ect s,
par al l ax scr ol l i ng, spi nni ng pol ygons, and t ons of gr at ui t ous eye-candy, t her e i s har dy a pr et t i er
16- bi t shoot er. Sapphi r e’ s ar t di r ect i on cer t ai nl y compensat es f or any shor t comi ngs i n i t s mechani cs,
and at about one-t ent h of t he cost of t he PC Engi ne ver si on, t hi s i s a must own t i t l e f or any shmup
aÀci onado.
The PSP por t gi ves t he pl ayer t he opt i on t o change t he vi ewi ng mode f or al l t hr ee games, but whi l e
t hi s i s a ni ce f eat ur e i n concept , i t does not wor k wel l i n pr act i ce. The or i gi nal aspect r at i o r equi r es
t he game t o be pl ayed i n a t i ny vi ewi ng scr een t hat i s onl y uses about hal f of t he PSP’ s wi de scr een.
The ver t i cal l y st r et ched ver si on Àl l s a l i t t l e mor e of t he scr een wi t hout much not i ceabl e di st or t i on,
and t he f ul l scr een mode i s ugl y and vi r t ual l y unpl ayabl e. If onl y t he devel oper s had i mpl ement ed a
ver t i cal di spl ay opt i on, aki n t o what Tr easur e di d wi t h t he GameCube por t of Ikar uga, t o opt i mi ze
t he PSP’ s beaut i f ul wi descr een di spl ay. If onl y. . . .
For f ans of Aki t aka Mi ka, or f or anyone who l i kes bust y ani me gi r l s i n mecha sui t s, Gi nga Oj ousama
Denset su Col l ect i on of f er s excel l ent bonus cont ent . Accessi bl e f r om t he mai n menu i s an ar t gal l er y
f eat ur i ng many Aki t aka Mi ka or i gi nal s as wel l as what appear s t o be concept ar t f or t he t hr ee games.
The gal l er y i t sel f i s al most wor t h t he pr i ce of admi ssi on.
Yes! For shooter fans looking to play Sapphi r e at about one-
tenth the price of the PC Engine version, Gi nga Oj ousama
Denset su Col l ect i on is a great value and a must import.
Although Yuna and Yuna 2 are unplayable without intermediate
Japanese language skills, these should be considered icing on a
delicious shmup cake. Sapphi r e’s style and action make up for
any of its shortcomings and this PSP port is a top notch example
of a quality game withstanding the test of time
thImporting? thImporting? Wort t Worth Importing? WorthImporting? Worth Importing?
of a quality game withstanding the test of time.
GINGA OJ OUSA MA DENSETSU COLLECTION_IMPORTS_51 HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _.BLEEN
The Good Kind
of Troubl e?
From Doujinsoft to Arcade Game,
we take a look at what kind of
wacky hijinx Bouken’s upcoming
horizontal shooter gets into.
An import feature
by Pink Godzil l a’s E.
Goban, with interview
by E. Taragan
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 52_IMPORTS_TROUBLE WITCHES
Are you a good witch or a bad witch?
Are you a good witch or a bad witch? Not since the days of The Wizard of Oz has there been such exciting
witch on witch action as seen in Bouken’s upcoming arcade shoot ‘em up, Trouble Witches.
In Trouble Witches, you’ll take control of a team of wanna-be Glindas as they take on the Daughters of
Amalgram, a gang of troublemaking evil witches. However, rather than dropping houses on their foes, the good
guys (or girls, in this case) instead take to the skies on their magic brooms for a good old fashioned magical
shoot fest.
More akin to the Twinkle Star
Sprites and Keio Flying Squadrons
of the shmup universe, Trouble
Witches is a stylistic deviation from
the average fare. Departing fromthe
gritty, futuristic space motifs of R-Type
and Ikaruga, Trouble Witches features
a cheery, colorful, and downright cute
atmosphere. Don’t let the pretty scenery
fool you though. These unfriendly skies
are ¿lled with the same endless waves of
merciless enemies, gigantic bosses and
unnecessarily high concentrations of weapons
¿re that are found in your modern shooters.
While Trouble Witches exquisitely executes
the standard shoot and dodge shmup formula,
it features a unique innovation that skews
the equation. While in play, your character is
accompanied by a companion pet that follows her
wherever she goes. With the push of a button, that
pet creates a temporary spherical barrier that causes
all enemy projectiles to slow to a crawl. If the enemy
ship is then destroyed, then all of its bullets in the
barrier turn to gold. That money can then be spent on
power ups at the Àoating shops that appear mid-stage.
As you can imagine, this magic barrier system
fundamentally alters the game play. Rather than relying on rote memorization of enemy patterns, the magic barrier gives players a
different strategy for survival. A variable meteor shower of bullets? No problem. With the magic barrier system, you’re evading
bullets like Neo in the Matrix. Keep your barrier up for too long, however, and you risk creating a massive wall of angry projectiles
with no escape.
Despite the game’s disarming cuteness and your handy magic barrier ability, don’t expect Trouble Witches to be a walk in the
park. Enemies are just as plentiful and dangerous as in any other frantic shooter. You can also expect more than a few visits
to the infamous purgatory of bullet hell. However, with a steady hand and some deft maneuvering, you will also ¿nd yourself
frequently escaping certain death in one of those impossibly daring last second dodges that are the hallmark of a great shoot
‘em up experience. Trouble Witches will be coming soon to an Akihabara arcade near you! If for some reason you don’t live
in Japan, you can download the demo at the game’s of¿cial website. With any luck, gamers on this side of the Paci¿c will
soon see this title magically appear on their favorite home console’s download service.
Publ isher: Bouken • Devel oper: Bouken • Genre: Shmup • Category: Witches! • Pl ayers: #1-2 • Rel ease Date: Winter 2008
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN TROUBLE WITCHES_IMPORTS_53
Whil e Bouken is a key cog in the
Japanese game devel opment industry,
both digital and analog, very few American gamers have probably
ever heard of the company. Founded in 1987, the company was
instrumental in popularizing tabletop RPGs in Japan. Today,
Bouken is trying their hand at a new type of game, the side-
scrolling shooter. Hardcore Gamer Magazine recently sat down
with Kondou Koushi, president of Bouken, to discuss his company’s
hottest new release, Trouble Witches.
Hardcore Gamer Magazine: Tell us a little about Trouble Witches.
Kondou Koushi: Since the days of Sailor Moon, manga and anime
involving cute girls battling the forces of evil have been extremely
popular in Japan. Developing this concept, Trouble Witches is a
side scrolling shooter featuring cute witches who must restore peace
to the strange world that they have created by battling bosses who
also just happen to be cute witches.
HGM: Besides featuring witches on brooms instead of your
stereotypical spacecraft, how does Trouble Witches differ from your
typical shooter?
KK: What sets Trouble Witches apart from the pack is its magic barrier
system. The witches can cast spells to create a magic force ¿ eld.
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN 54 _IMPORTS_TROUBLE WITCHES
When enemy ¿ re enters the force ¿ eld, the bullet
speed slows considerable making it much easier for
the player to evade enemy attacks. When the player
defeats the enemy that ¿ red those shots, however,
the projectiles turn into coins. The key to a high
score, of course, is mastery of this barrier system.
HGM: What are the coins for? Points?
KK: Mid-stage, your witch will encounter Magic
Shops. These coins are useful for purchasing magic
cards, which power up your witch with stronger
attacks and unique weaponry.
HGM: So Trouble Witches has some light RPG
elements, then. Although it seems like a strange
combination, it’s hardly surprising given Bouken’s
strong roots in RPGs. So how is it that a company
famous for making RPGs ends up making a
shooter?
KK: Bouken does a lot of graphic design,
programming and game development for the large
publishers in Japan. In creating Trouble Witches,
we wanted to make a game that was completely
different from the genres of games we typically work
on. To be honest, since Bouken was founded, we
wanted to make a shooter. Twenty years later the
opportunity ¿ nally presented itself.
HGM: So how big is the Trouble Witches
development team?
KK: The core team consists of just ¿ ve members.
HGM: Just ¿ ve?!?! How long has Trouble Witches
been in development?
KK: About one year. We probably could have
¿ nished much quicker, but everyone on the team
is a gamer at heart. So whenever there was some
aspect of the game that we didn’t like or that we
thought we could improve upon, we would take the
extra time to get it right.
HGM: How is the development coming along?
KK: The PC version of the game saw a limited
release in Akihabara, becoming an instant hit. The
arcade version of the game is still in development,
though. It was originally set for release this past
summer, but for various reasons the launch date has
been pushed back to this winter. We’re currently
using the extra time to make the game even better.
HGM: Sounds like you’ll have a hit on your hands, though,
when Trouble Witches hits the arcades this winter.
KK: Although we’re con¿ dent it will do well in
Akihabara, until recently, we were a little uncertain as
to how well the game would be received elsewhere.
But we received a boost of con¿ dence at this year’s
Tokyo Game Show when the public voted Trouble
Witches into the top ten best in show.
HGM: Congratulations! So does that mean we’ll be
seeing a stateside release of Trouble Witches in the
near future? On Xbox Live Arcade, maybe?
KK: Well, we demonstrated Trouble Witches at PAX
08, and the game seemed to be received quite well
by that hardcore gamer demographic. Xbox Live
Arcade is probably the ideal platform for an American
release of Trouble Witches. The only question is
whether there are enough gamers in America who
would like to play a shooter starring cute witches to
justify a US release.
HGM: You might be surprised.
KK: I certainly think so.
HGM: With the arcade version of Trouble Witches
wrapping up soon, are there any plans for a sequel
on the horizon?
KK: There are. The concept involves witches in
sailor out¿ ts battling their rivals, the cheongsam
witches. Don’t ask.
HGM: Don’t worry. You had me at “witches in
sailor out¿ ts.”
HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN TROUBLE WITCHES_IMPORTS_55
Everyone should have played Portal by
now, but if you’ve been denied it due to a
lesser-powered PC and a bizarre aversion
to all that extra Orange Box content then
it’s time to rejoice. Portal is ¿nally available
by itself, complete with a collection of new
bonus levels ranging from simple to pure
evil. The central game is still as excellent
as ever. Chell runs through GlaDOS’s
challenges in exactly the same way that
gained Portal more awards and fan-love
in its four hour completion time than any
ten ¿fty-hour epics. It’s the promise of
new content that makes this version so
appealing, however, and Portal: Still Alive
delivers a good number of levels to beat
your poor, abused skull against. The maps
introduce some new gameplay elements,
such as the deadly red surfaces that
allow cubes and portal gun shots to pass
through, and the dif¿culty level ramps up
quick. The only downside is that GlaDOS
has no new speaking parts, making the
challenge levels feel lifeless. On the plus
side it’s new levels for one of 2007’s best
surprises, and that’s more than enough to
justify playing Portal one more time.
By : J ames • Score: 4 .5 of 5
Now this is how you evolve a series that’s
not only appeared on just about anything
that’s capable of running a game but has
been cloned endlessly to boot! Bejeweled
Twist takes the classic gem-matching
formula and gives it a few tweaks,
resulting in a game that not only feels both
fresh and familiar but is also far better than
its predecessors.
The most obvious change is how the gems
move. A mouse-click causes a wheel
to spin one quarter rotation clockwise,
taking the four gems inside with it. It’s no
longer necessary to match three in a row
to make a move, but taking a turn without
clearing any gems has a nasty effect on the
multiplier. Each move ¿lls in a pip on the
multiplier bar, and when the bar is full the
multiplier increases. The ¿rst wrong move
clears all the pips and the second one
knocks 1x off the multiplier. There’s always
at least one move available on the board
somewhere, but there’s strategy in knowing
when to take a hit to either set up a giant
combo or arrange to clear a bomb.
With a move always available, Game Over
is now reliant on the bomb gems. Bombs
are standard gems with a counter on them,
and each move decreases it by one. The
counter can be generous to start with but
it only gets crueler as the levels go by, and
bad things happen when it hits zero.
What these changes accomplish is to throw
the board wide open. Although combos are
still arrived at by luck more than design,
there’s much more strategy available in
move selection than ever before. This
makes Bejeweled Twist easily the best in
the series, and brain-consumingly addictive
to boot.
B y : J ames • Sc o re: 4 .5 o f 5
D eveloper: PopCap Games • Genre: Puzzle
Release D ate: 10 / 2 8 / 0 8 • # Play ers: 1
Portal: Still A live
XBOX Live A rcade • 12 0 0 points ($15 .0 0 )
D eveloper: Valve • Genre: First-person puzzler
Release D ate: 10 / 2 3 / 0 8 • # Play ers: 1
Bejeweled Tw ist
http:/ / w w w .popcap.com • $2 0 .0 0
C’mon baby , do the...
56_DOWNLOA DS HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
BBB jjj lll dddd TTT iii tttt
C’mon baby do the
Rakugaki Showtime is just plain awesome.
How could a game where you play as little
scribble people that throw tons of crap at
each other and cause massive property
damage not be, though? There’s not much
more to this game than that: you pick up
stuff and throw it at the other people until
they die. You’re given a lot of choices in
weaponry, too: Black Holes, Grenades,
Homing Missiles, Rocks, ICBMs, and of
course the most deadly of all, smiley faces.
Once you hit enough stuff with the smiley
faces, an angelical chorus indicates that
the next time you pick up said ball you’ll
activate a Super for mass damage. Wham,
bam, thank ya’ ma’am. Quick to pick up, the
reason it’s fun to play is because it’s easy to
play. Cool characters and the ability to play
with up to 4 friends at once are just a bonus.
In tangible form, this Japanese-only PS1
game costs upwards of $200 to buy, and at
about $6 on the Japanese PSN it’s a steal.
If you’ve ever wanted to own a legit copy of
the game, this is the easiest way.
Check out http://ashura.hardcoregamer.com
for some help picking up this game from
America, some menu translations (very little
Japanese knowledge required!), and more!
By : A shura • Score: 5 of 5
D eveloper: Treasure • Genre: A ction
Release D ate: 6 / 2 4 / 2 0 0 8 • # Play ers: 1-4
Rakugaki Show time
J apanese PSN (PS3 / PSP) • 6 0 0 y en (~$6 )
The goo balls of World of Goo have a
problem, but thankfully they’re completely
oblivious to being processed by a mega-
corporation into all manner of beauty and
food products. What they really want isn’t
clear, but they seemhappy enough to
link together to somehow reach the exit
pipe, which draws in all the unused goo
balls to be whisked away to their eventual
fate. As the levels go by new species of
goo are revealed, each one adding a new
wrinkle to construction. The normal black
balls shoot out support tendrils to all other
balls in range and, once joined, can’t be
disconnected. The green balls, on the other
hand, can be reused as many times as
needed, while the clear drool balls can only
attach at one point to forma goo-rope.
On most levels, each unused ball is
one point at level’s end. Each ball used,
however, adds to your building’s structural
integrity, and it’s very easy to see the lack
of a strut cause a wobbly tower to collapse
on itself or sway just a bit too close to a
destructive spinning gear. Each level either
adds a new gameplay element or re¿nes
an old one in a new way, and the free-form
style of building structures gives each level
plenty of replay. World of Goo is simply
fantastic, with an excellent soundtrack and
a storytelling style all its own, and passing
it over will lead to a sad and empty life of
regret. Play it, and be happy.
By : J ames • Score: 5 of 5
D eveloper: 2 D Boy • Genre: Puzzle
Release D ate: 10 / 13 / 0 8 • # Play ers: 1
Some puzzle games work better than others, and Cubello looks
at them with envy in its heart. A 3D structure of cubes of various
colors rotates in the center of the screen, with the Remote
controlling a cursor that highlights a cube’s edge. Tapping the A
or B button lands a colored cube on the cursor, and also causes
the entire structure to rotate in a new direction depending on
the angle of the shot. Connect four cubes of the same color and
they fall off, with an extra three shots added to the magazine to a
maximum of ten. Run out of shots and the game’s over, or clear
off the center cube to complete the level. It’s pretty simple and has
the seeds of addiction, but the random nature of the colors added
to the magazine leaves you screwed too often. The controls are
smooth and accurate and there are a good number of levels, but
the overly-careful strategies needed make it more work than play.
By : J ames • Score: 2 .5 of 5
Cubello
W iiWare • 6 0 0 points ($6 .0 0 )
D eveloper: Skip • Genre: Puzzle
Release D ate: 10 / 13 / 0 8 • # Play ers: 1
DOWNLOA DS_57 HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
World of Goo
PC: http:/ / w w w .2 dboy .com, W iiWare • $19 .9 5
RRR kkk ki kkk SSSShhh ttttiii bbb ll ll CCC
to pay for provisions to
make the journey. Another
complication is that you
can’t rely on the same
transaction to hold equal
value if you repeat it too
often; as you merrily supply a region such as Bordeaux with all of the sweet goodness
it can handle, the merchant there will start to pay less for the merchandise (and
your connection in Lisbon will charge more on his end). This mechanic forces you to
explore other options if you want to remain pro¿table, which in turn encourages actual
exploration as you seek out the best trade routes.
At ¿rst, that exploration seems rough, perhaps even broken. You don’t simply press
and hold the button that matches the direction you want your ship to Àoat. Instead,
you set the compass bearing and then take a hands-off approach until it’s time to
tweak your course yet
again. The process is
slightly passive and that’s
punctuated by the fact
that your vessel Àashes
from one map tile to the
next rather than passing
Àuidly along its course.
This design choice
seems odd at ¿rst, but
it adds some depth that
otherwise couldn’t have
existed on the hardware.
Koei was able to add
important elements such
as wind resistance and
ocean currents, and to
make their impact obvious. Time passes and supplies dwindle no matter what you’re
doing, so it’s important to plan your routes carefully.
If that’s not enough to excite you, there also are plenty of opportunities to battle the
enemies of Portugal for a bit of variety and treasure. Confrontations begin when one
ship is adjacent to another on the map and one of the captains chooses to attack.
You’re then given control of your Àeet as the ships maneuver about the limited space
to set up cannon volleys. Combat at close range is also possible. Positioning yourself
next to your chosen rival allows you to unleash your swarthy crew, whereupon
numbers and stats affect the outcome. If you’ve built up a virtual army, that approach
can work well, but early in the game you’ll probably value each and every member of
your force and will prefer to attack froma distance instead. Either way, the battle ends
when the enemy Àagship is defeated (you can loot it and perhaps even add it to your
Àeet) or when your own Àagship suffers a similar fate (game over for you!).
Another intriguing component of the game
is empire building. Historically, nations
¿nanced pirates to build their wealth
and hold within the world. You can
play a role in those proceedings
here by investing money
into neutral ports. No
one particularly cares
whether you got
that by selling
stolen jewels or by
legitimately distributing
grain fromMajorca. As an added
bonus, spreading your money around key stops on
favorite routes allows you to haggle with marketplaces, or
to build better vessels at shipyards. Other nations may try
to invest too, so building up a slew of Portuguese ports
can become a nice little side challenge.If the combat, trade
routes, investment and exploration wear thin, Uncharted
Waters offers diversionary poker and blackjack games at most
ports. Here you can turn a few hundred gold into a few thousand.
The gambling mini-game is especially fun because your success or failure has a
tangible impact on your in-game assets (something that even full-Àedged gambling
video games don’t generally offer). Holding a full house or a Àush and Àeecing your
cheerful opponents of their wealth can mean a lot when it ¿nances that next journey
to Bordeaux or an upgrade for your ship.
Aside from the dated production values and some occasional quirks in the interface,
Uncharted Waters could almost have been released this year. It’s easy to lose
many enjoyable hours to its complexities without even realizing it, even now with
all of the competition the title faces. Unfortunately, aside from a single sequel, Koei
seems to be content to let subsequent installments remain only in Japan. For all of
its strengths, the string of historical brawlers we’ve instead received makes a poor
substitute for the likes of Uncharted Waters. Try it soon and see for yourself...
UNCHARTED WATERS_GRAVEYARD_61 HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
If t hat ’ s t r ue, t hen w hy t he heck ar e you her e?
Damn, t he St ar Tr ek symbol is af t er us!
At least it ’ s not “ ke ke ke!”
The scale seems a lit t le askew her e...
Fleet and seek was nev er as popular as hide and seek.
Before Koei became known for annually releasing two or three
variations of the same historical brawler, the niche publisher with an
eye on human history produced some fantastic games that made
warlords and revolutions exciting and relevant in the 20th century.
Efforts such as the early Romance of the Three Kingdoms and
Nobunaga’s Ambition titles were the company’s bread and butter
in much the way that the Dynasty Warriors and Samurai Warriors
franchises are today, and allowed for development of some thrilling
side projects. Uncharted Waters is an excellent case in point.
Released on a handful of platforms but perhaps most commonly
accessible on the Super Nintendo, the unconventional RPG tells the
story of a young merchant who is an outcast for reasons of ancestry.
His grandfather, a wealthy and valued member of society, went on
an exploratory ocean expedition and never returned. Since then, the
once-noble family name has enjoyed none of its former glory. As the
game begins on the brink of the 16th century, you are that young
merchant. Your plan is to follow your dreams by continuing the
family tradition of turning to the seas... where in all likelihood
you will die of starvation, too much watery brine or a
cutlass slash to the gullet.
The adventure begins humbly, in the Portuguese
port of Lisbon. You have only a handful of gold
and a loyal sailor for company. Your job is to
build the former into a mountain of wealth
that will ¿ nance your own journeys across
the pirate-infested seas (while making
sure that your loyal companion is joined
by a selection of suitable shipmates).
Success will restore glory to your
family name as you attract the attention of rival sailors, barmaids and
even the princess herself. You’ll face the jealous warships of Spain
and Turkey, the greed of scurvy sea dogs and the most brutal winds
and ocean swells that Mother Nature can throw your way. All of the
ingredients necessary for a good time are on hand, but what really
makes Uncharted Waters stand out from the crowd is the way that it
places control of your virtual destiny so squarely within your hands.
Much of that freedom is due to the lack of any set narration. Aside
from the opening prologue and the conclusion, there’s no real plot.
Your fate is left to the
winds and any key
characters could act
out their limited roles
in any number of ways
or even escape your
notice entirely. There’s
the king, of course,
who will sometimes
give you imperial tasks
that you can complete
for prestige and a new
title, and there’s a
princess who mostly
just sits around looking
pretty. Everything
else comes down to
gossip you pick up at
the local tavern or the
interactions you have with pirates, merchants and soldiers. That’s
all left up to you, ensuring that Uncharted Waters is in some ways
a purer RPG than many in the genre before and since (with nary a
slobbering monster in sight!).
The lack of narrative focus allows you to focus on actual adventure.
Unless you’re particularly aggressive, much of the game will be
spent focusing on commerce. For example, you might start with a
sugar purchase at Lisbon at the price of 22 gold per sack, then travel
north to Bordeaux and sell it for twice that. That’s not quite enough
to double your investment, though,
because you also have
60_GRAVEYARD_UNCHARTED WATERS HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
onc onc onc once-n e-nobl ob oble f e f e faam a y
gam ga game b b e egi egins ns ns n ooon the the he b brrink ink nkk of oof th th thee 1 e 16th 6th ce ce
ou ou ou ouu ou d r dd r ddrea rea rea r ms s by by by bbby by byy y byyy y con o con con con co con co co con co co cc nn ontin tinn tin tin tttinn tinn in i uuin uin uin uin uin uin uin uin uin in uing t g t g t g t gg tt g tttt gg the he hhe he he hhe he he hh
lih lih lihh ih lihhhhoo oood ood ood oo ooddd oodd
who who who who who w wi wi wi wi wi
giv giv giv giv giv giv giv gi e y ee y e y e y e y y e yoooo
tha tha tha tha tha tha hat y t y t y t y t y t y t oooo
for for for for fo f pr ppp p e
tit tit tit tit titt tt le, le, le, le, leee le a a a
pri pri pri p nc nc
jus jus jusst s t s t s t s
pre pre pre re reett ttt
els els lssee
gos gos os os
th the h
int i te
all ll
a aa
sl sl
TT
UUU
ue uu t tttt
e a e a e aa e a e aaaaa e nd nd ndd nd ndd d nd n the the the the the hee co co co co concl ncl ncl nc nc usi si si i us on, on, on, on, n on, n th th th th th tth th ere ere ere ere er e
s sss
ee
w w w
yy
ing ing ing
ooooo
Your bald head? Oh, you said f or, not at .
Get t hat anchor !
Exhumedbyhonestgamer
By r eidyoung
Mot her 3 (Eart hbound 2) Mot her 3 (Eart hbound 2)
by reid young by reid young
Publisher: Nint endo • Developer: HAL Laborat ory • Genre: RPG • Cat egory: Modern Bizarro • # Players: 1• Rat ing: C
E
R
O
A
Forget Japan, t his is European and fan-t ranslat ed
gaming. The English st uff you’ve never heard about .
The Games America Forgot .
Forget Japan, t his is European and fan-t ranslat ed
gaming. The English st uff you’ve never heard about .
The Games America Forgot .
Everyone approaches Mr. Crab for his wisdom. It get s a bit annoying somet imes, but he feels it ’s wort h it .
I would never have guessed. No, not his cohort s!
64 _GA MES A MERICA FORGOT_MOTHER 3 HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
MOTHER3 is a GameboyAdvance game done in the style
of its SNES predecessor, Earthbound, which itself was an
NES throwback. “Retro” doesn’t begin to cover it, but when
an RPG is as cute, sad, fun, charming, and touching as
MOTHER 3 it doesn’t really matter. What’s important is
that this a good gaming.
MOTHER 3 follows the story of a family living in a peaceful
village that’s in for a rude awakening. As the story switches
from the viewpoint of one character to another during the
opening chapters, their world goes through drastic changes
as the Pigmask army invades. In true RPGfashion it takes a
while for the Pigmask’s schemes to be unveiled, but there’s
no shortage of dungeons and combat to keep things going
while the plot comes to a boil.
Battle is fairly basic, but in a simple rather than simplistic
fashion. At the start of each round of combat you choose
the commands for each playable character in the party, and
the order of the actions is determined mostly by the speed
statistic. Each character has a set of unique abilities, some
determined by Psychic Points (PP) and others being tool or
skill based. Astandard attack is usually the most effective,
especially when using the music beat system. It’s possible
to land multiple hits in a single attack by pressing the A
button in time with the monster’s musical theme, although
¿guring out the beat takes a good ear and steady rhythm.
The combat is fast-paced and rarely dull, but what makes
the MOTHER series such a standout is its story.
For example, the main character Lucas (who English
gamers will recognize from Smash Bros Brawl) befriends
a mystical being who claims to be ageless and genderless,
but who dresses and talks like a 45-year-old drag queen.
When she (he?) is suddenly confronted with her own
impending death, she quietly accepts her fate and offers
Lucas an encouraging speech. She is then abruptly carried
away by the wind like a piece of paper.
This wonderfully bizarre caliber of writing is a rule with
few exceptions. The glassy-eyed NPC, a staple of literally
every RPG in existence, is nowhere to be found, with
most characters having distinct names, personalities, and
sprites. Some of them even have their own background
stories that you’ll never discover if you don’t take time to
explore the game. MOTHER 3’s “Fan Translation” team
stumbled across dozens of such secrets during the two
years they spent hacking the game. For example, there’s a
newspaper sitting in a junk-¿lled, dilapidated house which
many players understandably neglect to read. In spite
of its insigni¿cance, though, the newspaper’s headline
changes after every small event in the game.
MOTHER 3 is ¿lled with little touches like this that bring its
world to life. The excellent story, likable characters, zippy
combat, and vibrant world combine in a perfect example of
RPG goodness. A Nintendo translation would have been
nice but the patch is ¿nally available, so now there’s no
reason to miss what should have been a true classic entry
in the GBA’s library.
There comes a point where you’ve got
t o st op wondering if a game is ret ro
and just kick back and enjoy it .
Tomb Raider: Underworld © Eidos Interactive Limited 2008. Developed by Crystal Dynamics Inc. Co-published by Eidos, Inc. and Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, a division of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Inc. Tomb Raider, Tomb Raider: Underworld, Crystal Dynamics, the
Crystal Dynamics logo, Eidos, and the Eidos logo are trademarks of Eidos Interactive Limited. All rights reserved. "PlayStation", "PLAYSTATION" and "PS" Family logo are registered trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. Microsoft, Windows, the Windows Vista Start button,
Xbox, Xbox 360, Xbox LIVE, and the Xbox logos are trademarks of the Microsoft group of companies, and 'Games for Windows' and the Windows Vista Start button logo are used under license from Microsoft. Wii and Nintendo DS are trademarks of Nintendo. ©2006 Nintendo. The rating
icon is a registered trademark of the Entertainment Software Association.
WBIE LOGO, WB SHIELD: ™ & © Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
(s08)
"...pushes adventure gameplay – not just
graphics - to new levels."
– PlayStation® The Official Magazine
66_A RCA DE_RA MBO HA RDCORE GA MER MA GA ZINE_V OLUME 4 _ISSUE 4 _BLEEN
The 80s was the time of the ‘beefcake macho soldier’
movie genre that was defined by movies featuring people
like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Chuck Norrisand of course,
Sylvester Stallone in Rambo.
While the 80s are long gone the Rambo legacy continues to chug along today, ¿rst with
a movie released earlier this year and now with the release of a new arcade light-gun
title by Sega, also called Rambo. And as you would expect, Rambo features all of the
carnage and rage that you could want.
To tie everything together, Sega’s Rambo uses actual movie clips from the series at
certain parts in gameplay as it documents Rambo’s one man war and the dif¿culty in
dealing with the pain that he suffered through war and its aftermath. The game starts
with First Blood and ends with Rambo 3, which is strange considering that the newest
¿lm came out well in advance of the release of this game. There are two versions of
the game, where gameplay feels slightly different due to differences in the guns. The
26” LCD version uses the same guns found on House of the Dead 4 and the 62” DLP
version uses the same guns found on Ghost Squad. The deluxe version ¿ts better into
the Rambo mold because of this, as the guns are larger and ‘manlier’ than the standard
version, and also include force feedback.
While the object of the game is nothing new: shoot them before they shoot you, and
doing so rewards the player for both accuracy and timing. When enemies appear on
the screen, a timer will also appear near their heads to show you when they are taking
aim. You need to take themdown quickly to avoid taking damage. On some occasions
you even get to use the infamous crossbow with the explosive-tip arrows, but using
it requires pinpoint accuracy and timing as you only get one shot to get it right when
a small red targeting diamond appears on the screen. This targeting systems also
shows up for a few non-crossbow situations, such as when when Rambo wrestles
with another soldier.
One other game feature is the ‘Rage Gauge’. As you shoot down enemies the gauge
¿lls, and when full you hit a button on the gun to activate your Rage. Rambo belts out
his war cry, and you become temporarily invincible and armed with ini¿nte ammo. This
plays straight into the Rambo ‘god mode’ cliché and it’s so much fun that you might
accidentally yell out the war cry yourself.
The graphics are decent for the game, as they are powered by Sega’s PC-based
Lindbergh hardware, but it doesn’t live up to the already three-year-old House of the
Dead 4 that runs on the same hardware. The sound and gameplay make up for it
though as it’s a real blast to play when the volume is turned up. This game is already
starting to trickle into arcades in the US and Europe, so keep an eye out for it or ask
your local operator to pick it up if they don’t have it.
By Adam Pratt of ArcadeH eroes.com
Score: 4.5 of 5
ff
Publisher : Sega • Developer : Sega
Genre : Light-gun • Gategory: Kill ‘em all!
# Players: 1-2 • Release Date: 10/2008
Publisher : Sega • Developer : Sega
Genre : Light-gun • Gategory: Kill ‘em all!
# Players: 1-2 • Release Date: 10/2008
STANDING UP FOR YOURSELF IS STRONG.
STANDING UP FOR THOSE AROUND YOU
IS ARMY STRONG.
There’s strong. And then there’s Army Strong. The strength
that comes from not just changing your life but changing the lives of others.
Find out more at goarmy.com.
©200 ©200 ©200 ©200 ©20 ©200 ©200 ©200 00 ©200 ©200 20 2000 0 ©200 0 ©20 ©200 ©200 ©200 ©200 ©200 0 ©20 2 0 ©20 ©20 ©20 ©200 ©200 ©20 ©200 © 0 7. P 7. P 7. P 7. P 7. PP 7. P 7. P 7. P 7. P 7. P 7. PP 7. P 7 P 7. P 7. P 7 P 7. 777777 aid aid aid aid aid aid id id aid aid aid aid aaid id aid aid d id d id id i aid aid d for for for for for for for for for for for for for ffo for foor ffo ff r by t bby bbby by by t by t by t by t by tt by ttt bb t yy he U he U he U he U he he U he U he U ee UUUU he e he U he U hhe UUnite it nite nite ite ite i nite nite nite nite itt ite nite itt d St d St d St d St d St d St d St d S dddd St d St S at at at t at at t at at aat at aaa AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAll r ll r ll r ll r ll r ll r ll r ll r ll r ll r l r lll r ll r ll llll ll llll ll ll r l r l rrr l r l ight ight ight ight igh ight ight ight gh ht h hht ht ht t i ht gh ght ghh h gh s re s re s re s re s re s re s r s re s re rre s re s re s re re e r s re s re eeserv serv serv serv serv serv erv serv serv serv serv serv serv serv ser serv serv vv serv serv serv s v e ser s ed ed. ed. dd ed. ed. ed. ed. ed. d. d ed. ed. ed. ed. d. d. ed ed. d ed dd. ed ed. ddd es tes tes es tes tes s Arm Arm Arm Ar Arm AArm Ar Ar Arm Arm AAAAr Ar y. y. y. yy. yyyy
Staff Sergeant Jeremy Mutart
DOES BEING IN THE ZONE
MAKE YOU AN ATHLETE?
The incredible multi-threaded Intel® Core™2 Extreme quad-core processor.
A NEW KIND OF GEAR FOR A NEW KIND OF ATHLETE. INTEL.COM/GO/GAMING
©2008, Intel Corporation. All rights reserved. Intel, Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U.S. and other countries.

Publisher Tim Lindquist Editor in Chief Greg Off

DJPubba_Tim Lindquist
I was recently checking out eBay recently for retro gaming goodies and came across a seller in the UK selling his SG-1000 (Japanese Master System) collection. The games had the best names evar. Check it out: Dragon Wang. Guzzler. Girls’ Garden. Hustle Chumy. Also Star Jacker. Yes, Star... Jacker.... Here I thought Hole Land, Hot Dog Storm, Van Van Car and Oh My God! were the best game names I’d heard. Now Playing: Castlevania (DS, X68000, arcade), Disgaea 3

Roger Danish_Greg Off
This month Greg wrote 45 official strategy guides, 19 instruction manuals, localized four games and pleased one sexy lady, all while working from a hotel in Japan on his laptop and iPhone.

Wolfie_T erry Wolfinger
So about two months back I was fortunate enough to participate in Sebastian Kruger’s 4th annual workshop hel in Barsinghausen, Germany. It was myself along with 20 other artists selected worldwide for a week of painting (and some drinking) with the master, himself! If you don’t know who this guy is, google him- he’s amazing! Currently recovering from a tequila-soaked Halloween! “For the Horde!” Currently Playing: Saint’s Row 2

greg@hardcoregamer.com

Editorial Director Steve Hannley Editors Steve Hannley Danny Cowan Thomas Wilde David Brothers Geson Hatchett Iaian Ross Jason Venter James Cunningham Jeremy Peeples Karin Renoux Steven Kent Thomas Shin Jeb Haught Spooktartler Julie Miyamoto Artists Terry Wolfinger Amadeo Garcia III Production Director Brady Hartel Production Artists John McKechnie David Silviera Casey Yates Julie Miyamoto Translator Elizabeth Ellis Asset Manager Adam Beck Ad sales Burr Hilsabeck 415-412-5685
burr@hardcoregamer.com

Now Playing: Phone tag

W Wanderer_Thomas Wilde
Wa Watching the Max Payne movie reminded me that I’ve be been meaning to replay the Max Payne games. They’ve aged remarkably well, but the most astounding thing is ag ho how somebody managed to walk away from these and m make a slow, boring, talky nap inducer of a movie. What th the hell.

Ja James_James Cunningham
Halloween is gone and Thanksgiving is segueing right into Christmas. What the &%*@ happened to 2008? Seriously, it only just started last week. If I’m one of the most impatient people on the planet it’s only because someone slammed down the accelerator on the rocket-bike of time and they just won’t let up.

Lynxara_Alicia Ashby
What possesses publishers to release a year’s worth of games in a single month?

Now Playing: Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia, Max Payne, Mega Man 9, World of Warcraft

Now playing: Mother 3, Little Big Planet, Silent Hill Homecoming, and much, much more.

Now Playing: Persona 4, Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World

Racewing_Geson Hatchett
This is getting ridiculous. I get to play maybe one RPG a year, if I’m lucky. Once you get out of college and into the work force, that’s really all you can do. I’ve had Persona 3 sitting here for two years now! I move we make RPG stories more concise, and the games themselves less grind-tastic. Who’s with me — hey, what’s with those pitchforks? Now Playing: Saints Row 2, Sonic Unleashed, Mortal Kombat II

HonestGamer_Jason Venter
I’ve noticed that while on the one hand I’m constantly looking for those few games that present me with something new I haven’t encountered during my years of gaming, the other hand is busy playing the heck out of everything familiar that I can find. Me? Conflicted?

As Ashura_Brady Hartel
Fun Fact: Discarded pizza boxes are an invaluable source of c cheese. Now you know, and knowing is half the battle.

Now Playing: Dokapon Kingdom (Wii), Tales of Vesperia, Star Ocean: First Departure, Mega Man 9 (Xbox Live)

Now Playing: Little Big Planet, Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia, and Persona 4

Games Daishi Martin Gilbert Customer Service 425-868-2216

H Hitoshura_Iaian Ross
W Why is it that whenever I mention “fog” with regards t to Persona 4, a fog bank rolls in where I live for an hour a and then disappears?

Dack_Steve Hannley
You’re going to want to eat cat food, huff a little glue and drink some beer. There’s some sort of weird reaction when that happens. It makes you feel sick and want to fall asleep, because there’s going to be about 50 cats howling outside your window and you have no idea how loud 50 cats are.

Je Jeremy_Jeremy Peeples
It took two years, but I was finally able to find (and buy) a Wii and after scouring the shelves for stuff, I’m baffled by the sheer quantity of shovelware for it. Thank goodness for A-list holiday releases.

Hardcore Gamer® Magazine is published quarterly by DoubleJump® Publishing, Inc. at 21407 NE Union Hill Rd, Redmond, WA 98053. Periodicals postage paid at Redmond WA and at additional mailing offices. USPS NO. 024063. ISSN 19362110 POSTMASTER: send address changes to Hardcore Gamer Magazine, PO Box 146, Redmond, WA 98073. “Hardcore Gamer” and “DoubleJump” are trademarks or registered trademarks of DoubleJump Publishing Incorporated. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage or retrieval system without written permission from DoubleJump Publishing. DoubleJump Books is a division of DoubleJump Publishing, Inc. DoubleJump Publishing and the authors have made every effort to ensure that the information contained in this magazine is accurate. However, the publisher makes no warranty, either expressed or implied, as to the accuracy, effectiveness, or completeness of the material in this magazine; nor does the publisher assume liability for damages, either incidental or consequential, that may result from using the information in this magazine. Questions regarding operation of the game software and hardware should be directed to the support numbers provided by the game and device manufacturers in their documentation. Printed in the United States of America

Now Playing: Persona 4

Now Playing: Fallout 3, Yellow’s “Oh Yeah”, TV On the Radio’s “Dear Science”

Now Playing : Mother 3, Super Mario RPG, Mega Man Zero 4, Midnight Club: LA, Forza Motorsport 2, GRID

A Arlieth_Thomas Shin
I don’t know why, but for some reason I’ve stuck with perhaps the worst character in all of Street Fighter IV... Vega (Claw). Maybe I like taking more damage than Akuma when my mask flies off. Maybe I like being trapped in a corner with no reversals. Maybe Zangief just wants to be my friend, but that usually involves having my skull crushed between his thighs. Maybe my claw keeps falling off because my girlfriend just put them in the dishwasher again. Now Playing: Street Fighter IV (Arcade), Contact (DS), Little Big Planet (PS3)

Kitty Kitty_Karin Renoux
The industry is a cruel, cruel place. There’s a wealth of i titles I need to play, but I have no time for them.

Big Wyrm_Jeb Haught Wyrm_Jeb
Well, I didn’t think it was possible, but something has temporarily replaced my addiction to WAR, and its name is Fallout 3. I’m definitely not done with WAR, but I’m forced to take a short hiatus. Funny how Fallout 3 costs the same as other games who’s developers didn’t even put forth 1/10 the effort. That’s right, I’m talking to you Golden Axe: Beast Rider! Currently Playing: Fallout 3, Dead Space, Resistance 2

Now playing: Nothing. Nothing at all.

VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN 4_BLEEN

photos. Enjoy the best in entertainment right in your living room. Still. and that means it’s time to break the s game open and see how it ticks. 42 reviews 42 Riley. the run rundown street fighter iv let’s retrogame holiday! wii music pg.Try Netflix free for two weeks. and an exclusive interview with Yoshinori Ono! It all begins on page 8.45: review pg. chase the chuck wagon to page 34. The New Xbox Experience Get instant streaming* and watch DVD rentals on your Xbox 360®. and is required for some features.34: feature pg.xbox.64 games america forgot pg. that could be worth big bucks? Well. probably not. sonic unleashed. Connect with friends as you share games. in-depth looks at Wii Music< and Sonic Unleashed this month. 8. See www. It starts on page 42. .com/live. wii music We’ve got two huge. 34 feature 34 See the New Xbox Experience at xbox.8: cover The Ultimate in Social Entertainment. and valuable games of all time are. cove let’s retrogame holiday! Is there a game tucked away in your closet. and check out our interview coverage with Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto and Sega’s Patrick VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN *Streaming instantly from Netflix requires Xbox LIVE Gold membership and a Netflix unlimited subscription plan. and more.60: graveyard pg.com/nxe. forgotten. on the cover 8 8. Go beyond the score. if you want an education on what the most collectible.52: imports pg.66 arcade street fighter iv s Street Fighter IV is in arcades throughout Japan and the West Coast.50: imports pg.48: online gamer resistance 2 ikuze! gen-san pc engine best collection pg. rare. Hard drive is recommended for Xbox LIVE. Check out our in-depth examinations of SFIV’s system mechanics. character strategies.49: imports trouble witches uncharted waters mother 3 rambo pg. sonic unleashed pg.42: review pg.

Yoshinori Ono.. This was evident from the amount of damage possible in a single combo.: RPGs. even.. Urien and Makoto could win with a single opening. With insta-kill setups and the all-out offense possible with the Parry system. the slower pace and the Ultra System each contribute to a game engine that encourages careful play. Often touted as a “hardcore game”. the game would achieve some devoted success with the hardcore crowd. with rules like “no throwing” and “no chip-kills”. be warned: Most other types of games (e. angles and the crafting of traps. when Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike hit arcades across the world. along with the Four Bosses of Shadaloo. Many were held back by an invisible code of honor that limited their potential. For years. But Street Fighter was as much a part of Capcom’s identity as Castlevania is to Konami. Yoshinori Ono. glitch and strategy from its nineteen-character roster. now Lead Producer for the series.g. It’s kinder. least of all the game’s Sound Management Director. n00b-friendly. and its learning curve re ects that. literally. while alienating many others who were unable to survive its terrifying learning curve. gimmick. players strove to exhaust every technique. Street Fighter nally makes its comeback. as Street Fighter IV takes place before the events of the controversial (and almost impossible to master) Street Fighter III trilogy. Quite the opposite. it no longer requires a Master’s Degree (har har) to survive a match for thirty seconds. Street Fighter IV is a total break from that philosophy. have returned. If you have friends that play Super Smash Bros. the most popular ghting game on the planet). in fact. The reduced mobility. at best. And even as Capcom Coin-Op USA closed its doors in 2004. > Morethanyoueverwantedtoknow ABOUTHOWTOPLA STREETFIGHTERIV Y If you’ve never played a ghting game before. because characters such as Yun. fans never gave up hope. As a result. Street Fighter II: 3rd Strike’s technical requirements gave players the exibility to rely more upon skill than 8_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV_COVER_9 IV_COVER_9 . Some would call this “cheap”. you’re probably going to end up being just like them.Return of the NEW CHALLENGERS byarlieth Introduction In 1999. no one knew when players would master it. the game is about strategically reducing your opponent’s options over time so that they are caught in an inescapable situation. we wrote a hardcore guide to help you along. it wasn’t as important to play carefully and strategically when a single guess could lead you to victory. adventure) have a learning curve that spans a few hours. Almost a decade later. The gameplay is reminiscent of the old-school era of Super Turbo. with only four of them (Ryu. Street Fighter IV is a hardcore game with a hardcore learning curve. has taken a step back. Chun-Li and Akuma) from the original Street Fighter II series. Later. It was clear that the Street Fighter franchise was a mere shadow of its former glory. A ghting game is designed to be played for years. Ken. combo. The original World a carefully planned strategy. In an effort to return the series to its former glory. But it doesn’t make it any less hardcore. It is a game of position. Gentler. At the highest levels of play. Brawl (arguably > > Warriors. They are intended to be played for a couple weeks. Most importantly. The cold truth about Street Fighter II is that most fans of the series never reached that level of skill. Fortunately. gamers who haven’t touched a Street Fighter title in years will have a lot of catching up to do.

However. Throws cannot be Quick-Recovered from. since it’s knockdown makes it the most tactically powerful of your normal attacks. you’ll be in a state called “block-stun”.) You can perform different throws by moving the controller back. Crouching. When blocking an attack. but can be defended against if the opponent presses LP+LK at the same time. LK: Light Kick. your back-dash won’t do you much good. or Ryu and Ken’s Shoryuken). how to block (high or low?) and when you can’t block. Average speed. New to this game is the ability to back-dash with a SYSTEM MECHANICS need to know when to block. Crouching LKs are necessary for nding holes in your opponent’s defense. Throws Throws are performed with LP+LK at close range. but you can also use this technique while using a Focus Attack. NormalAttacks These are the bread-and-butter of every Street Fighter match. Very quick.button mashing 101 Positionand Movement Street Fighter IV places particular importance on position and movement. then throwing them almost immediately afterwards. but they make up for it in sheer numbers. Can often be canceled into Special Attacks at close range.HKs almost always set up for combos. HP: Hard Punch. each with different properties. MP: Medium Punch.some characters ght better at close range.MK. all jumping attacks (except for dive-kicks) must be blocked high. However. (b)ack and (f)orward. Slowest kick.MK). However. “Command Grabs”) with enhanced range and damage. You can ‘tick’ into a throw by forcing your opponent to block with a quick attack like c. and usually allows you to cancel into Special Attacks from farther distances. (If you throw too soon. If you’re knocked down. Guile’s Chopping Straight is notated as “f+MP”. Hold Forward 10_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN . It takes a while to learn. Finally. Crouching HKs (c.HK) will knock down. but the most versatile at long distance. Almost all of these have special properties (projectile. Important for ‘footsies’. but usually have severe recovery if blocked. For example. and the corners of the stage. invincibility frames. You’ll CommandNormals These are normal attacks that usually require you to hold a direction on the controller. Extremely quick but short-ranged and weak. They can also be performed by ‘canceling’ a normal attack to a special attack. and some can even be done in the air. with the exception of “Overheads” which must be blocked high and usually have a short delay before striking. these often chain together with Light Kicks to form the basis of close-quarters combat. for example). Charge (hold a direction for one second) and DP (Shorthand for “Dragon Punch”. Like chess pawns. but weak.D. Blocking Before you press a single button. Slowest speed. Most other attacks can be blocked either standing or crouching.k. like Rufus’s Falcon Kick (df+j. they require fancy motions like QCF (Quarter Circle Forward). others ght better in the air. SpecialAttacks These are your fancy chess pieces. with high power and priority.a. HK). strength and range. Knowing your options in the myriad combinations of positions is crucial. For starters. Usually reaches farther than Light Punch. All characters have Close Standing. learn to block. >Position Being trapped in a corner at close range is a very dangerous situation. juggle. and it is almost universally bad news to have your back to the wall. Many command normals have special properties (the Chopping Straight is an Overhead attack. you can usually Quick-Recover by tapping Down or pressing two buttons. you cannot be thrown for a brief period of time (until your block-stun wears off). while positions are denoted by (c. Far and Close positions are relative to your opponent and will be mentioned as well.LK. LP: Light Punch. (d)own. you can dash forward and still maintain your charge. knights and rooks. where you are unable to attack.DF (think of a “Z” motion) on your controller. move or jump. Command Throws (Grabs) and Level 3 Focus Attacks. This is performed by pressing F. Some Special Attacks are really Throws (a.)umping. but not abbreviated. they may not seem impressive. jump and dash. brief invulnerability period. You can press any kick to count as a “charge”.HK range. your bishops. Vertical Jumping and Diagonal Jumping versions of their normal attacks. MK: Medium Kick. if you’re stuck in the corner. ChargeAttacks Charge attacks often make it dif cult to maneuver. You should pay extra attention to your character’s c. and j. and press MP to execute it. and the kick you press for the fth “charge” determines the version (LK. immediately after blocking an attack. and all crouching kicks must be blocked low. There is one other position: at on your back. and some characters can perform throws in the air as well (Guile. they’ll still be in block-stun and you’ll miss. You can walk. HK: Hard Kick. crouch. and each of these will immediately change your available moves and your position in relation to two things: Your opponent. Very good speed and range. HCB (Half Circle Back).)rouching or (j. Finally.) and look really fancy. etc. Far Standing. forward or leaving it in neutral right before you throw. Slow recovery if missed. Note: This guide uses abbreviations: Directions are denoted by (u)p. Some blocked attacks allow you to retaliate before your opponent recovers. This is crucial for close and medium-range ghts where you’re on the defensive and need some breathing room. Chun-Li and Vega). The only attacks you cannot block are Throws. Special Attacks performed by mashing punches or kicks like Chun-Li’s Hyakuretsu Kyaku (“Press K x5”) work as if you had to “charge” the Special Attack with kicks. They’re unblockable. but often allows you to link or cancel into many Special Attacks or other normal attacks.

: stopping a Special Attack from continuing and leaving you vulnerable). However. performed by pressing (or holding) MP+MK while standing. Ken can perform a close MP -> HP. your Ultra Combo will in ict 150% of its normal damage. Zangief is the only character in the game without one. any unrecovered health is lost permanently. When this gauge hits 50%. more advanced techniques with the Focus Attack that will be covered below. you can execute an Ultra Combo. he can extend the combo by performing c. if the player is hit by any attack or throw before that damage is fully recovered. or FADC for short). these can be performed when the Super Gauge is lled to 100% (four EX bars). have an attack blocked. and can only combo from a crumple-stun state like Zangief and Vega. Like Super Street Fighter II Turbo. This gauge does not carry over between rounds. and perform another HP Shoryuken or an Ultra Combo for additional damage. then super-canceled into his Shoryu Reppa. crumple-stun is guaranteed. However. but you’ll do even more damage when it hits 100%. These tend to be slightly slower to activate than a Super Combo. It depends entirely on your playing style. cancel the Focus Attack with a forward dash (FADC). This will completely nullify Super Armor and displays a “shattering” effect when this occurs. interrupt the HP Shoryuken’s animation with an EX Focus Attack. If the Revenge Gauge is fully charged at 100%. WHA NEW IN SFIV? T’S RevengeGauge The Revenge Gauge increases whenever you suffer damage. SuperGauge This four-bar gauge determines whether or not you’ll be able to perform enhanced versions of moves (EX Special Attacks). Also. There are other. Focus Attacks (and some EX Special Attacks) have one point of Super Armor. While you still suffer damage from a soaked attack (your health bar turns grey). Special Attacks executed as Reversals (performed immediately out of “block-stun”) will automatically gain Armor Break. your Ultra Combo becomes available. EXFocusAttacks intermediate system mechanics FocusAttacks The new tactical tool in SFIV is the Focus Attack (aka “Saving Attack” in Japan). but familiar to Versus players. What often determines a character’s ability to make a comeback is whether or not their Ultra Combo can be easily comboed into (Ryu. >FocusAttack Chun uses the Focus Attack’s Super Armor to counter Vega’s Flying Barcelona Attack. executes automatically. Most important of all. breaks through Super Armor. Focus Attack Dash Cancel(F ADC) All Focus Attacks can be interrupted or canceled with a dash command. even if it’s temporary damage from Super Armor. At Level 2.MK -> HP Shoryuken. Advanced players often use Focus Attacks to ‘soak’ hits and build their Revenge Gauge without taking permanent damage early in a match. However. or make them block a Level 1 Focus Attack. or get hit. it does carry over between rounds. Most normal attacks. UltraCombos When the Revenge Gauge reaches 50% or more. SuperCombos Often extremely quick with high priority. If that happens. like Ryu’s EX Tatsumaki. soaking an attack with Super Armor will knock you out! Be careful about using Focus Attacks in this situation. canceled into an HP Hadouken. You can also use it for defensive purposes (i. Rufus and Sagat for example). It increases whenever you hit an opponent.MK -> HP Shoryuken. unless it’s a counter-hit. you have one point of Super Armor. the damage is gradually healed over time. with two points of Super Armor. which usually takes a full second of charging. execute a special attack (except for projectiles). depending on how long you hold it. and throw them. Blocked ‘chip-damage’ from Special Attacks will not forfeit your recovery. EXSpecialAttacks These enhanced versions of Special Attacks cost one EX bar from your Super Gauge and often have invincibility. Some characters bene t greatly from this option. Some characters use this technique exclusively to create guaranteed opportunities to connect an Ultra Combo. At Level 1. However. especially if the EX Focus Attack is dashcanceled. You can perform these by pressing two Punch (“PP”) or two Kick (“KK”) buttons when executing a Special Attack. This technique is activated by interrupting most normal attacks and some Special Attacks (Marked as “Cancel” in the movelist) with a Focus Attack (MP+MK). In combos. if you have no health left. especially with FADC. An Ultra Combo is usually invincible on startup and gives you an opportunity to make a comeback against your opponent. and results in crumple-stun. This costs two EX bars.even have juggle properties which allow for extended combos. >F ADC M. so absorbing four Hadoukens in a row would put a huge amount of your health at risk and would take a lengthy period of time to recover. It has three strength levels. and can cancel the charging animation or a connected hit with a forward dash or back dash at any time (Focus Attack Dash Cancel. but “FADC” is used to denote an EX Focus Attack that is canceled with a dash. ArmorBreak Almost every character in the game has a Special Attack with the Armor Break property. and this would normally end the combo. you cannot build Super Gauge by whif ng normal attacks. For example. You can thus feint and bait wakeup attacks.e. Successive armor-soaked hits stack cumulatively. but others are better served by using the Super Gauge on EX Special Attacks instead.Bison uses an FADC to safely interrupt a blocked Double Knee Press into a blocked Focus Attack. cancel into a dash. and cannot be canceled into from a normal or Special Attack. “Break” in the character movelists. meaning that they will “soak” one hit and continue to execute their move. Ryu can perform a c. The property shared by all Focus Attacks is that during charging. Some SuperArmor This is a new mechanic for the Street Fighter canon series. it will execute a blockable attack for minor damage and hitstun. The character stats appendix later in this guide lists these for your convenience. they enter “crumple-stun” where they’re open for a combo for a brief moment. At Level 3. they can often be performed after an FADC or as a juggle. denoted as 12_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV_COVER_13 IV_COVER_13 . an FADC often allows you to continue a combo for even more hits than is normally possible. the attack becomes unblockable. but allows unique combo opportunities. EX Focus Attacks or a Super Combo. For example. El Fuerte’s EX Habanero Dashes are even better. but the hit is still blockable. Some characters are simply unable to. and Special Attacks marked “Cancel” can interrupt the animation of a connected attack into a Super Combo for a guaranteed hit. enhanced speed and extra damage.

the hierarchy is a one-way street. allowing for combos not normally possible. you can interrupt his recovery frames of animation into the Hadouken (13f startup). opposing attacks with trade hits with each other.Bison’s Hell Attack (j.LP (cancel) EX Banishing Flat. Chaining exclusively involves LP and LK. A simple combo to do is M.LP -> c. Cross-Ups Jumping attacks can be strange. The input would look like this: jump. but you should avoid ending it with a move that leaves you vulnerable on block (e. or c. and knocks down on hit. Special-Only Kara-Cancels are done in a different manner.LP (chain) c. For example. when you’re hit in mid-air. But some moves will cause you to fall strangely (marked “Float”). you have the nal numbers: -5 frames on block (7-12). not chained. her c. the sooner you’ll recover before your opponent. If this window didn’t exist. Some characters have ground attacks that launch you into a Floating state. This is the idea behind a cross-up: to jump just past your opponent with an attack that can hit behind you (or under you) that can only be blocked in the opposite direction.LK -> c. you’ll have to cancel your Focus Attack with a dash immediately after it hits. Vega) can only combo their Ultra with a crumple-stun opportunity (see the chart later in this guide). that means your opponent recovers in 7 ADV ANCED MECHANICS frames if blocked. that second attack cannot cancel! For Zangief to combo c. There is rumor that the same technique can be applied to Ultras because of their triple button (PPP and KKK) inputs. Crumple “Crumple-stun” is a sort of ‘mini-stun’ that occurs only after Focus Attacks (Counter-Hit Level 1. they can hit from behind.HK (4f startup) combo.g.MP+MP).LP. like Ken’s f+MK. but their potential is unknown. E.Honda can begin his Shikofumi (df+HK) stomp. You can make a HK Hazanshu (+4f hit) to c. press LP+LK simultaneously. Counter-Hits in ict 25% extra damage and 1-3 additional frames of hitstun. Linking. The three most important frame numbers for an attack are: Startup (how long it takes to come out). These are known as “blockstrings” and can be just as effective as an actual combo. his reversal EX Hyakkan Otoshi (which doesn’t have Armor Break) would actually Armor Break you on the way up! take too much Stun damage too quickly. This is very fast. your character will fall down dizzy and will be completely defenseless. such as M. If E. in which the animation of one attack must completely nish (including recovery) until the next attack is executed. are safe on block. Counter-Hit In most instances. which would normally be impossible to link together. Normals can cancel into any of the other options. the rst attack must have frame advantage.LP is a chain. your opponent will only be open for one hit of your attack. During this state. such as Akuma’s air reball with a Focus Attack followed immediately after. Frame Advantage if Blocked (helps with baiting and punishing attacks) and Frame Advantage on Hit (helps with combos). and you recover in 12 frames no matter what. such as M. (This is identical to Makoto’s LK kara-cancel in SF3:3rd Strike. your combo ends immediately. and can chain into each other (c. Frame advantage is an important concept to learn: the more frames of advantage that you have. it’ll be blocked and you’ll be vulnerable for 5 frames. which causes crumple-stun if it connects as a Counter-Hit. For this to work. so stop what you’re doing and charge a Level 3 Focus Attack! Kara-Canceling As mentioned in our interview with Yoshinori Ono.d+HP.HK (4f startup). Sometimes.MK is normally -2 frames on hit. it means they’ll recover before you do! If an attack has 7 frames of block-stun. If you perform the c. What results is an EX Tatsumaki with the trajectory of a HK Tatsumaki.LP x3) freely. >Combos You can take advantage of Float and Juggle properties by interrupting your moves with an FADC for greater exibility. Combos There are four methods of connecting multiple attacks Attacks that can hit you during a “Float” state are marked as “Juggle”. but can be done much slower. making it dif cult to combo! In order to make the best use of it. Supers and Ultras never in ict Stun. Do your homework and study your frames! into a continuous combo: Chaining. you are allowed to cancel the rst three frames of any normal attack into a throw! To execute this with Ken.LP (link) c. if you take too long. The sole exception is a Level 1 Focus Attack. qcb+HK (then quickly) MK. Chun-Li’s HK Hazanshu (+4 on hit) can link into her c. Characters with attacks that move forward. you can still continue to attack. Ken can extend the range of his EX Tatsumaki in the air by kara-canceling from the HK Tatsumaki. This type of kara-cancel can only cancel into a Special Attack. However. If you’re hit by a “Float” attack in mid-air. then within 3 frames. Being in a “Float” state is bad. your attack will show up as a Reversal. These are easy to perform after a throw.HK has 4 frames of startup. Then there’s Linking. and many other attacks can be used in this manner. If frames are denoted in negative numbers (-2.HK late. even though his Shoryuken normally can’t Armor Break! Keep this in mind when using Focus Attacks. if an attack interrupts another attack during its startup or active attack frames (but not during recovery).if their hitbox is suf ciently wide enough. Stun There is an invisible gauge that measures how much ‘Stun’ damage you’ve taken. like Abel’s c.Bison’s Double Knee Press is perhaps the best example.Bison’s EX Psycho Crusher or Abel’s Muga (his Ultra). your opponent will slowly crumple to the ground and is temporarily open to an attack (throws and command grabs work too). or a cleanly hit Level 2 or Level 3). if you perform a special attack immediately after emerging from block-stun. not another Normal. but a Special can only cancel into an EX Focus Attack or Super Combo. it causes a Counter-Hit state. and end with them in a favorable position can do especially well with this. Throws have a three-frame input “forgiveness” window in which to press LP+LK simultaneously. e. The only time a Normal can cancel into another Normal is with a character’s “Target Combo”. but you have zero room for error. and both be considered counter-hits. It heals over time. Most characters have about 1000 Stun points. such as Ken’s close MP->HP. you’ll be vulnerable to being hit with certain attacks afterwards.hardcore players only Framesof Animation Fighting games typically operate at 60 frames per second (fps). if an attack chains into another attack. it’s more like a feint than a range-increasing technique.Bison’s Hell Attack against an airborne opponent (which puts them in “Float”). Reversal attacks gain the Armor Break property. then juggle them with the EX Psycho Crusher. and Hard attacks and Specials about 200 points of Stun. As mentioned earlier. Therefore.LP attacks must be linked. Many attacks cause a character to quickly move forward within the rst three frames of startup. Light attacks usually in ict 50 points. Ryu and Ken’s j. A string of attacks that links together and locks your opponent in block-stun is extremely handy to prepare your next attack. It is possible to kara-cancel into Special Attacks as well. Also. some characters (Zangief. which completely interrupts one attack to start another. Canceling and Juggling. -1 frame on block.Viper’s Flame Kick. 10 frames of hit-stun and 12 frames of recovery. It’s important to know how frames work because you’ll be able to create new combos and retaliate against blocked attacks that appear ‘safe’.) There are also Special Attacks being kara-canceled into their EX versions because of this same 3-frame window being applied to PP and KK button inputs. there is a high-level technique in Street Fighter IV (included by design) known as Kara-Canceling. you would press f+MK. However. Note: If you in ict Stun in the middle of a combo. Zangief’s j. -5). Originally a glitch in Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike.three frames is only 3/60ths of a second! If done correctly. Coincidentally.LP -> EX Banishing Flat. Float and Juggle properties tend to be involved in the game’s most advanced combos. All subsequent attacks will miss (even if they’re airborne. press HCB+P to kara-cancel into his Oicho Throw. your character will back ip and land on their feet. Reversals After blocking an attack. and -2 frames on hit (10-12).LP -> c. In Street Fighter IV. but if you HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN 14_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV_COVER_15 IV_COVER_15 . Float/Juggle Typically. The distinction between Chaining and Linking is important.HP. It would look like c. since your opponent can’t quick-recover from them. the two c. this technique enhances the range of an attack or throw by “empty” canceling an attack into another before it fully extends. one more c.LP must be linked into for an EX Banishing Flat to be canceled into. and goes Normal -> Special -> EX Focus Attack or Super Combo.g. Ryu’s c. In this game.Honda was the one being trapped. and +4 frames on hit (+4 frame advantage). C. Medium attacks about 100 points. in 10 frames if hit.: If Vega’s EX Barcelona Attack stuns Chun-Li. That means moves like Ryu’s Shoryuken can Armor Break out of a sticky situation. Because all normal attacks in Street Fighter IV have a minimum of three frames of startup. Chun-Li’s HK Hazanshu has 26 frames of startup.MK. it would require pressing LP+LK at the exact same time. In this instance. Ken’s throw will reach much farther than normal. is -5 frames on block. If you subtract the recovery from the block or hit frames.: Shoryuken). and before the stomp comes out. then the follow-up Izuna Drop will whiff). Keep this mind if you’re trying to perform a Focus Attack trap. If your opponent blocks the rst hit of your combo. M. if c. The nal type is Canceling. For Cancels.

you can build itit and use it to explore six fantastic worlds. or. he still has his j.LP-c. which can absorb attacks and continue to execute. Combined with his EX Hadouken’s distance-control and the Tatsumaki to dodge reballs. You can also cancel f+HP into a special attack. HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN . floats. Allows the attack to hit an opponent who is in "Float" state.IF YOU CAN DREAM IT. the player. using your tools CHARACTERMECHANICS PropertiesIntroduction Each character has a dizzying arsenal of moves and techniques which form the foundation of their playing style. or hit you out of the air with his 2-hit j.. and he has one of the slowest-recovering c. or instead link a HP Shoryuken. While he doesn’t have the ground-pressure tools and footsies that Ken has. Ryu epitomizes it: He cannot be played to his fullest potential without learning the EX Focus Attack/Dash Cancel technique.LP combo.MK crossup (which works particularly well in the corner) and can bait throw attempts with EX Tatsumaki (it hovers in place and vacuums in the opponent). you get the point. He has great pressuring ability and can capitalize for heavy damage in any opening. High attack.HK sweeps in the game. However. YOU CAN BUILD IT. follow it up with a c. and cannot be blocked at all. Be careful not to use it in close range. Must be blocked standing. OU . Property Low Overhead Grab Cancel Armor Break Float Juggle Explanation Low attack. Ryu has the powerful ability to link after his f+MP overhead. which is relatively safe if blocked. > 16_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV Japan R YU If it flies. or drives. Command Normals Sakotsu Wari Mizo'ochi Kudaki Special Attacks Hadouken Shoryuken Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku EX Hadouken EX Shoryuken EX Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku Super Shinkuu Hadouken Ultra Metsu Hadouken Properties (Overhead) (Cancel) (Float) Properties (Cancel) (Cancel) (Float) (Break) (Juggle) (Cancel) (Float) (Cancel) (Float) (Juggle) (Break) (Float) Properties (Juggle) Properties (Juggle) Command f+MP f+HP Command QCF+P DP+P QCB+K (Ground or Air) QCF+PP DP+PP QCB+KK (Ground or Air) Command QCFx2+P Command QCFx2+PPP ryu’s movelist Style: Ansatsuken (Modi ed) Health: 100% Stun: 100% Overhead: f+MP Air Throw: No Kara-Cancel: far HK TheEternalWanderer If you truly wish to learn the new SFIV system. FADC and juggle with your Ultra (this is the basic method of using Ryu’s Ultra). The following information on each Street Fighter will utilize concepts and terms from the Mechanics section of this article.. However. Can be interrupted with an EX Focus Attack or a Super Combo. to utilize them to their fullest potential. Penetrates an attack with Super Armor and stops it immediately.LK-c. followed by an Ultra in the corner. Close-ranged grab.LP to start a combo. or link into a c. so it is recommended that you familiarize yourself with that rst before continuing on. his Ultra is only useful in combos (not as a reversal). Over 100 unique parts and blueprints give you the power to create an unlimited array of ingenious new vehicles to tackle over 150 different challenges. Must be blocked crouching.MP and juggle you with an Ultra. Causes your opponent to be in "Float" state until they fall to the ground. He is also able to combo his c. he’ll always remain a threat when played carefully and consistently. Has Super Armor.MK into an EX Hadouken and juggle with an EX Tatsumaki. If you see it connect on your opponent. it is up to you.

j.f+P HCB+K Charge d. and then goes mid. which has just as much range and allows Ken to set up a new pressure situation. and can juggle after an Electric Thunder in the corner.u+K (Cancel) (Float) Press Punch x5 (Cancel) (Break) Charge b.f+P Properties Command (Juggle) (Low) (Overhead) Charge b. It also has massive invincibility on startup. Another move to abuse is his Amazon River Run (df+HP) slide.HP->HP. The majority of damage will be dealt from carefully chosen normal attacks. Style: Electric Shock & Wild Fighting Overhead: b+MP or f+MP (Hold MP) Health: 105% Air Throw: No Stun: 95% Kara-Cancel: None > Federative Republic of Brazil BLANKA 18_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV_COVER_19 IV_COVER_19 . such as comboing c. where you can skip the second HP and instead land with a c. his f+MK kick allows him to get in close without losing frame advantage.f+P Command Charge b.f+PP (Overhead) Charge b.f+PP HCB+KK Charge d. including Sagat’s low Tiger Shot! His standing HP and neutral j. and the nal hit (Tenshou Kyaku) launches for a juggle opportunity.b.MK! Style: Wu-Shu Health: 90% Stun: 105% Overhead: Hazanshu. her Kikouken projectile works well with her MK and HK as anti-air measures.LP -> EX Hyakkan Otoshi.f+KKK Command Normals Surprise Forward Surprise Back Rock Crush Fear Down Amazon River Run Special Attacks Rolling Attack Backstep Rolling Vertical Rolling Electric Thunder EX Rolling Attack EX Backstep Rolling EX Vertical Rolling EX Electric Thunder Super Combo Ground Shave Rolling Ultra Combo Lightning Cannonball Command b+KKK f+KKK b+MP or f+MP (Hold MP for Overhead) d+PPP (Low) df+HP Properties Command (Cancel) (Break) Charge b. but it can’t Armor Break so savvy players can Focus through it to punish you. EX Vertical Rolling has ve frames of full-body invincibility. not specials. this gives him ample opportunity to set up a cross-up. He still has his Surprise dashes which can cross-over opponents (f+KKK or b+KKK). after HP Hand Slaps. he has fewer opportunities for high-damage combos. One of her best mix-ups by far is her j. Honda can immediately charge for a Level 3 Focus Attack that’s almost impossible to escape from.MK. allowing for precision cross-up attacks. but while his techniques and tactics are simple to learn. Also.b. However.f. and the EX version envelops his entire body in electricity.LK-EX Hyakuretsu to juggle with her Ultra in the corner.f.HOND A Command Normals Kouhou Kaiten Kyaku Kaku Kyaku Raku Kakusen Shuu Kinteki Shuu Kenku Kyaku Tensho Kyaku Head Stomp Wall Jump Target Combo Special Attacks Kikouken Hazanshu Spinning Bird Kick Hyakuretsu Kyaku EX Kikouken EX Hazanshu EX Spinning Bird Kick EX Hyakuretsu Kyaku Super Senretsu Kyaku Ultra Housenka Properties (Overhead) (Float) (Juggle) (Float) (Float) Properties (Cancel) (Float) (Cancel) (Overhead) (Break) (Cancel) (Float) (Cancel) (Float) (Cancel) (Overhead) (Juggle) (Break) (Float) (Juggle) (Cancel) (Float) Properties Properties (Juggle) (Break) Command df+LK df+HK f+MK b+MK After Kinteki Shuu. If you hit someone in mid-air with j.f+P (Overhead) Charge b. His Zutsuki (headbutt) serves as a solid anti-air measure and breaks through armor. but if it trades. d. Ken’s MP Shoryuken has better invincibility frames than the HP version. Ken’s Ultra is geared to re-capture momentum with brute-force invincibility. his mix-up game becomes extremely powerful.u+MK In Air. Fortunately. If you’re in a pickle. and can link attacks together to combo into a Rolling Attack.LK/LP x3. it cannot Armor Break.HK and mix-up opportunities with his Hyakkan Otoshi.HP-HP Command Charge b. turns into an overhead. making it better to use against jump-ins. It may not be ashy. padded glove. If your opponent activates a Focus Attack. especially for Zangief! (see the chart later in this guide). When Ken manages to close distance. or throw. His Super can adjust distance with the button used. the Fear Down (d+PPP) which dodges reballs.b. Either of these versions can punish holes inside an attacker’s blockstring. Up-Forward j. And like 3rd Strike Chun. His Electric Thunder is immune to high attacks. After linking c. Hold K to fake close MP-HP Command QCF+P DP+P QCB+K (Ground or Air) QCF+PP DP+PP QCB+KK (Ground or Air) Command QCFx2+P Command QCFx2+PPP Command Normals Shikofumi Target Combo Special Attacks: Hyakuretsu Harite Super Zutsuki Super Hyakkan Otoshi Oicho Throw EX Hyakuretsu Harite EX Super Zutsuki EX Super Hyakkan Otoshi EX Oicho Throw Super Oni Musou Ultra: Super Oni Musou ken’s movelist Properties (Overhead) Command df+HK close MP(1st hit)-df+HK Command Press Punch x5 Charge b. her j.LP -> EX Hand Slaps -> c.u+KK HCB+PP Command Charge b. useful for anti-air but may not be as good for ground-based reversals. and is so fast that it can link after c. The EX version even goes through reballs and comes out instantly.f+PPP Style: Sumo Wrestling Health: 110% Stun: 110% Overhead: df+HK Air Throw: No Kara-Cancel: df+HK (Special Only) > blanka’s movelist Japan E. so Ken’s biggest potential for damage is to cancel into his Super instead. this trap is almost impossible to escape from. For anti-air. it is even more important for Ken to use his superior ‘footsie’ techniques to dominate the ground. Hand Slaps are great to use against someone getting up or after a Saving Attack. His special attacks are even better. MK After Kenku Kyaku. it combos poorly.LK combo. On characters that don’t have an invincible wake-up option. like j. and many characters have dif culty punishing it on block. and now has a new command crouch. her opportunities require massive EX meter-burning.b. allowing her to capitalize well on Focus attacks. then PP Properties Command (Juggle) Charge b. e. Blanka has some stupidly good tricks going for him.u+K HCB+P Press Punch x4. so don’t go crazy with it. Her Kaku Kyaku Raku (df+HK) cross-up kick works very well against cornered opponents (especially after throws). if you connect an HP Hand Slap.HK -> MP -> c.f.HP+HP will blow through the armor before the Focus can hit you. His Ultra is ridiculous: It starts as a low attack.LK -> c.b.MK -> LP -> HP Rolling Attack as a bread-and-butter combo. her Ultra is fairly quick and can punish reballs and many blocked sweeps.u+KK (Cancel) (Float) Press Punch x4.f+K Command Charge b.f.u+K Press Kick x5 Charge b.HK (Jump away) Air Throw: Yes Kara-Cancel: f+MK > People’s Republic of China CHUN-LI Be warned: “Technical” is also euphemism for “hard work” (some prefer “high-maintenance”).HP-HP chain. a Focus Attack or Hand Slaps.honda’s movelist Command Normals Inazuma Kakato Wari akato Fumikomi Maegeri Shiden Kakato Otoshi Target Combo Special Attacks Hadouken Shoryuken Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku EX Hadouken EX Shoryuken EX Tatsumaki Senpuu Kyaku Super Shoryu Reppa Ultra: Shinryuken Properties (Overhead) ( ) (Overhead) (Cancel) Properties (Cancel) (Cancel) (Float) (Break) (Cancel) (Juggle) (Cancel) (Float) (Break) Properties (Juggle) Properties (Juggle) Command b+MK f+MK f+HK.f+PPP Properties chun-li’s movelist Warriorof theJungle TheLegsof Legend Chun-Li is one of the most technical characters in the game. Because Super gauge takes so long to build. a great cross-up j. you can use EX Spinning Bird Kick as your “Get the hell off me” button. then KK Command Charge b.Style: Ansatsuken (Modi ed) Health: 100% Stun: 100% Overhead: b+MK. and is safe on block! However. Blanka’s EX Backstep Rolling is now controllable in mid-air. TheCrimsonKingof Brawling Properties (Cancel) (Cancel) (Break) (Float) (Float) (Grab) (Cancel) (Cancel) (Break) (Float) (Grab) Properties (Juggle) Properties (Juggle) (Break) TheHot-BloodedWrestler E. Expert players should learn how to Charge-Partition her dash into the Ultra. and jump-back HK works as an instant overhead for that last bit of damage to KO your opponent.HP also work as extremely effective anti-air measures.u+KK Press Kick x4. The Rolling Attack is extremely dif cult to punish. His Ultra might not have the best priority. He also has exceptional range with his j. Where Honda is surprisingly good at is his wake-up game. you’ll recover in time to set up a mix-up or the following combo: c. She also gains a new chain combo with the Kinteki Shuu (b+MK). and the Hazanshu is a good attack for leaping over reballs. However.f+PP Charge d. His LP Oicho Throw can be ticked after several crouching light attacks.f+K Charge d. then PP Charge b. many attacks. d+MK (x3) Jump near a wall. including Ryu and Sagat. f+HK Air Throw: No Kara-Cancel: f+MK > United United States of America A KENMASTERS KENMASTE For players still uncomfortable with the new mechanics.f+P Charge d. and even kara-canceled from his Shikofumi (df+HK) overhead! Since the Oicho cannot be quick-recovered from.f. allowing you to punch brick walls without hurting yourself. If you connect.Honda has often been an underrated character. Outside of juggle combos. and can be canceled directly into a special attack. which has invincibility frames on the way up (EX is fully invincible as it rises). but the damage (and meter) adds up quickly.f+KK (Hold b or f to move) Charge d. Like Chun-Li. He has great range and speed on his normal attacks. Ken ts like a comfortable. you can juggle with EX Spinning Bird Kick or jump again and use your Head Stomp to build meter. Ken is easier to learn for beginners. which knocks down and goes under every reball in the game.MK to continue the pressure. he requires an expert player to fully utilize his potential.LK-c.f. or (if it was blocked) follow with a kara-throw (f+MK). Ken can choose to either combo into the HP Shoryuken (it has huge horizontal reach). you can link a far HK afterwards for free damage.b. In a zoning situation. Ken can also choose to jump over his opponent and land a solid cross-up j. She has the fastest dash and FADC.

and the PPP Lariat is temporarily invulnerable to high attacks. d+HP g p Diagonal Jump. amazing air-to-ground attacks like his cross-up body splash (j. the EX Banishing Flat won’t come out). it has invincibility frames. You can also use his far HK to advance closer into grab range. because there are some attacks that punish Sonic Booms reliably (see later in this guide). Think of it instead as a power-up to all of his normal attacks. About the only thing he’s missing is an Armor-breaking attack. Zangief will still be vulnerable to combos(9 frames of recovery). the hardest-stunning attack (neutral j. Vertical Jump.LK -> c. his headbutt).df. d+LK g p. Guile still has his cross-up j.df. the EX Flying Powerbomb. you can use c. All versions nullify projectiles and cover distance faster than dashes (use after an SPD). Furthermore.LP. The Sonic Boom isn’t just a projectile.) If this is the case. d+HP) and his new air stomp (j. but takes slightly longer to activate than the LP Screw Piledriver. they’re dead meat. and can be blind-con rmed from long distance with standing and crouching jabs (perform LP -> EX Banishing Flat from long distance. The Somersault Kick serves as a decent wake-up attack. and that he has no fullscreen distance options against characters like Blanka and Akuma. Finally.if the LP misses. Finally. Command Normals Chopping Straight Spinning Back Knuckle Knee Bazooka Rolling Sobat Reverse Spin Kick Guile High Kick Target Combo Special Attacks Sonic Boom Somersault Kick EX Sonic Boom EX Somersault Kick Super Combo Double Somersault Ultra Combo Somersault Explosion Command f+MP f+HP b+LK or f+LK b+MK or f+MK Close b+HK or f+HK (Float) df+HK c. Guile recovers almost instantly after throwing one. Unfortunately. and a far-reaching sweep (df+HK).u+KK Properties Command (Float) Charge db. The EX version is the opposite. and should almost always be on the offensive with a Sonic Boom plowing the way ahead of him. especially since it will miss crouching characters.LK -> c.uf+KKK Properties (Overhead) guile’s movelist Style: Martial Arts/Pro-Wrestling Hybrid Health: 100% Stun: 90% Overhead: f+MP Air Throw: Yes Kara-Cancel: MP TheSecretBlade For some reason. you must correctly time the link between c. while the KKK Lariat will dodge low attacks.Command N Normals Flying Body Attack y g y Double Knee Drop ee p Headbutt Long Kick Special Attacks Screw Piledriver Banishing Flat Double Lariat Turbo Lariat Flying Power Bomb Atomic Suplex EX Screw Piledriver EX Banishing Flat EX Flying Power Bomb EX Atomic Suplex Super Combo Final Atomic Buster Ultra Combo Ultimate Atomic Buster Properties p (Low) Properties (Grab) (Cancel) (Float) (Float) (Grab) (Grab) (Grab) (Juggle) (Cancel) (Armor) (Grab) (Grab) Properties (Grab) Properties (Grab) Command Diagonal Jump.u+K (Juggle) (Cancel) Charge b. if you connect Guile’s Super.uf+K Properties Command (Juggle) Charge db.if your opponent is still on the ground during the startup animation.db. You can still combo into it.MK-f+MP Properties Command (Cancel) Charge b. d+MP or d+HP df+HK Command 360+P DP+P PPP (Hold b or f to move) KKK (Hold b or f to move) 360+K (Far) 360+K (Close) 360+PP DP+PP 360+KK (Far) 360+KK (Close) Command 720+P Command 720+PPP zangief’s movelist xx xxx xxx xx Style: Russian/American Pro-Wrestling Health: 120% Stun: 120% Overhead: None Air Throw: No Kara-Cancel: None TheRedCyclone > Russian Federation ZANGIEF ZANGIEF G Out of the box. As for his EX Screw Piledriver. it’s a little more vulnerable than in previous games.LK and his excellent arsenal of normal attacks (try out his b+MK and f+MK Sobat kicks for footsies). even if it hits. ying across the screen like a bullet and hitting twice (but it does not knock down). you can follow up with his Ultra! HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN > United States of America GUILE © 20_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV . Guile’s only had two special attacks in his entire Street Fighting career.db.LK -> c. moreso because of its Armor Break properties. including Ryu’s Ultra). or off of Guile’s High Kick (df+HK).f+PP (Juggle) (Cancel) (Break) (Float) Charge d. He also has a running grab with Armor. However. and the LP version travels so slowly that Guile can attack before it reaches his opponent. His main weaknesses are that he’s a large target (not too much of a handicap). It can also juggle if you hit an opponent with a traded Somersault Kick. it knocks down. MK) which has huge downward range (helpful against Guile’s Flash Kick). and are confusing as hell to counter (see the guide later in this article).LP -> HK Somersault Kick. The EX version doesn’t have this problem. if blocked. Almost. That’s okay. as long as you don’t chain into the attack you’re trying to cancel (this is the number one reason for failure). but leave Zangief slightly vulnerable to attack. but you can use EX Banishing Flat’s multiple hits to do the job. both Lariats can be ‘steered’ with the controller (hold back or forward). In a combo like c. The Banishing Flat deserves deeper examination. because that’s all he really needed. though. his Ultra grabs instantly.f+P (Cancel) (Break) (Float) Charge d. Zangief is one of the most dominating characters in the game: He has the highest stamina (120%). It also has invincibility frames. His Lariats also retain their initial priority as anti-air reversal attacks (as well as dodging ALL reballs.HP as an alternate anti-air to cover the zones where the Somersault is weakest. u+HP. Many jumping characters can stuff Guile in mid-air if the Somersault isn’t executed early enough. (The EX Somersault Kick has enough invincibility frames to cover him.

and the slowest forward dash in the game. and his teleports give him some crazy mix-up options from full-screen. and the EX Dash Upper can be followed up with c. you can use his Back ips (PPP or KKK. like Chun-Li. It serves as anti-air only from long distances. breaks armor.f+PPP or KKK Command Normals Fake Kick Step Low Kick Step High Kick Heavy Tiger Elbow Special Attacks Tiger Shot Ground Tiger Shot Tiger Uppercut Tiger Knee Crush EX Tiger Shot EX Ground Tiger Shot EX Tiger Uppercut EX Tiger Knee Crush Super Combo Tiger Genocide Ultra Combo Tiger Destruction balrog’s movelist Properties (Low) (Juggle) (Float) (Overhead) Properties (Cancel) (Cancel) (Cancel) (Float) (Cancel) (Break) (Float) (Cancel) (Float) (Cancel) (Float) (Cancel) (Float) (Cancel) (Break) (Float) Properties (Juggle) Properties (Juggle) Command Press HKx2 quickly f+LK f+HK f+HP Command QCF+P QCF+K DP+P DP+K QCF+PP QCF+KK DP+PP DP+KK Command QCFx2+K Command QCFx2+KKK TheLion’sRoar Style: Boxing Health: 110% Stun: 100% Overhead: Dash Swing Blow Air Throw: No Kara-Cancel: None Balrog is solid. If you lose his claw.u+K (Hold b or f to move) Charge b. It dodges many attacks and even command throws (like Zangief’s Screw Piledriver). too! TheHonorableEmperor The King of Muay Thai is so powerful in this game that he can completely shut out any opponent’s game plan. Vega also has one of the farthest Focus Attacks in the game.b.Command N Normals Yoga Shock g k Drill Kick Drill Headbutt Yoga Tower Special Attacks Yoga Fire Yoga Flame Yoga Blast EX Yoga Fire EX Yoga Flame EX Yoga Blast Yoga Teleport: Behind (Close) Yoga Teleport: Front (Close) Yoga Teleport: Front (Mid) Yoga Teleport: Front (Far) Super Combo Yoga Inferno Ultra Combo Yoga Catastrophe Properties (Overhead) ( ) (Float) (Cancel) Properties (Cancel) (Cancel) (Break) (Cancel) (Cancel) (Cancel) (Break) (Cancel) Properties (Juggle) Properties (Float) Command b+LP In Air. as well as having the ability to juggle! To make things worse.. and can combo his Ultra off of crumple-stun if charge-partitioned. and even El Fuerte’s shenanigans (though you can still be grabbed).u+P Charge d. or a FADC’ed Tiger Uppercut.MP.f+K Charge d. d+K d K In Air.df+PP (Hold PP) Charge d.f+PP Charge db. On the other hand. sets up like the normal Barcelona Attack. His d+HK slide is slower than molasses and is easily punished. varying length) for full invincibility. standing and jumping attacks by holding back on the controller. so after a Focus Attack. If you happen to have a Super charged up. d+HP d+PPP Command QCF+P HCF+P HCB+K QCF+PP HCF+PP HCB+KK DP+PPP (Ground or Air) DP+KKK (Ground or Air) RDP+PPP (Ground or Air) RDP+KKK (Ground or Air) Command QCFx2+P Command QCFx2+PPP dhalsim’s movelist (Cancel) (Break) (Break) (Juggle) (Float) (Juggle) (Grab) Izuna Drop Remove Claw EX Remove Mask Super Combo Flying Barcelona Special Rolling Izuna Drop Ultra Combo Bloody High Claw Properties (Grab) Properties (Break) Style: Yoga xxx xx x Health: 90% Stun: 90% Overhead: b+LP.LP or c.f+PP Charge b.df+K Charge b. his Step Low Kick is safe if blocked. the EX Rolling Crystal Flash works best. only right behind your opponent. and then not losing the charge accidentally. the Turn Punch will give you a ready retaliation option for Focus Attacks due to its Armor-break property. Both characters can hit him crouching with a jump-back overhead attack.LP -> Buffalo Headbutt. which can give his HK Tiger Knee Crush full-screen range! His Tiger Shots also recover quickly. The Dash Swing Blow. whenever Sagat has an Ultra charged. because the Ultra will juggle (use KKK for better vertical range). and can also kara-cancel into a special attack.HK on counter-hit.u+PP Hold PPP or KKK.db.f. the Barcelona Special. you can punish reballs and some openings. his mid-range options are terrifying. c.LK is an effective cross-up. Furthermore. jumping in on him amounts to suicide. or an anti-air Focus Attack. When you re-appear. and can often be canceled into a HP Yoga Flame (which gives frame advantage on block). Characters like Vega and Chun-Li gain a slight advantage against him because of this. and his j. while being an Overhead. also allows Balrog to follow up with a c. As for Anti-air options. which sets up for an Ultra. If you have an Ultra charged.f+K Charge b.u+KK (Hold b or f to move) During Barcelona. his short-range normals like db+LP and b+HK have surprisingly good priority. TheBlood-StainedClaw vega’s movelist Command Normals Piece of Mercury Cosmic Smart Backslash Short Backslash Special Attacks: Rolling Crystal Flash Scarlet Terror Sky High Claw Flying Barcelona Attack EX Rolling Crystal Flash EX Scarlet Terror EX Sky High Claw EX Flying Barcelona Attack Properties (Float) Properties (Cancel) (Break) Command df+MK df+HK PPP KKK Command Charge b. While he’s still stretchy (with limbs and slides going under projectiles). TheSpiritualSeeker Of the Four Kings of Shadaloo.f+P or K Command Charge b.df+KK Charge b. The Buffalo Headbutt can also go under reballs and can be comboed from linked c.LK -> c. your punches lack range and damage. Unfortunately. and certain combos become easier to perform because of his height (including Vega’s EX Flying Barcelona Attack). Release Command Charge b. which lets you counter moves like Abel’s Wheel Kick.df. His Tiger Knee Crush hits twice. It also connects off of his Step High Kick (f+HK). Because Vega lacks anti-air options.f+KK Charge b. his drills can’t be used as offensively. and his EX Dash punches all have Armor.db. which has odd juggle properties (much like Ryu’s j. and will force many players to jump out of frustration. more than enough for any situation. Outside of this. he lacks solid anti-air options. you’ll often have to backdash instead.LK -> Dash Straight -> Super. Vega dominates on the ground. and if spaced correctly. allows him to cancel into a special attack on hit. Balrog’s Super and Ultra will change to uppercuts (for anti-air and juggles) if you use Kicks instead of Punches to execute it. His one weakness is his sheer height. Keep in mind that while his limbs do stretch. This is bad. sagat’s movelist Style: Muay Thai Health: 110% Stun: 110% Overhead: f+HP Air Throw: No Kara-Cancel: f+LK (Specials Only) > United States of America > Kingdom of Thailand BALROG SAGA T 22_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV_COVER_23 IV_COVER_23 . you can cancel into that. Along with Zangief. his Ultra is only useful for full-screen punishes. you now have an instant aerial attack and will land immediately to continue your combo. The Yoga Tower is an evasive move.f+P Charge db. his Scarlet Terror has poor ground length and is easily countered. f+HP or b+HP near opponent DP+P DP+PPP Command Charge db. but has speed and full-screen range. He also has the longest-reaching Focus Attack. uf+KK).MP). his Ultra is easier to combo into than Ryu’s! It will connect after a deep j. An FADC or traded Tiger Uppercut can be followed up with a Step High Kick.LK. There is NO option to teleport to the other side of the screen.MP. because if his mask falls off. It’s rare for a Turn Punch to hit Final status (it requires 56 seconds of charging!).HP (Jump away) Air Throw: No Kara-Cancel: None > Republic of India DHALSIM Dhalsim.df+P (Hold) Charge d. j.u+P Charge b. he suffers a 25% defense penalty. the EX Buffalo Headbutt has 15 frames of invincibility.HP (Jump away) Air Throw: Yes Kara-Cancel: HK > Kingdom of Spain VEGA Special Attacks Dash Straight Dash Upper Dash Ground Straight Dash Ground Smash Dash Swing Blow Buffalo Headbutt EX Dash Straight EX Dash Upper EX Dash Ground Straight EX Dash Ground Smash EX Dash Swing Blow EX Buffalo Headbutt Turn Punch Super Combo Crazy Buffalo Ultra Combo Violence Buffalo Properties (Cancel) (Float) (Cancel) (Float) (Cancel) (Low) (Float) (Break) (Cancel) (Float) (Break) (Cancel) (Overhead) (Float) (Float) (Cancel) (Armor) (Float) (Cancel) (Armor) (Float) (Cancel) (Armor) (Low) (Float) (Break) (Cancel) (Armor) (Float) (Break) (Cancel) (Armor) (Overhead) (Float) (Float) (Break) (Cancel) Properties (Juggle) (Break) Properties (Juggle) (Break) Command Charge b.b. it becomes the Rolling Izuna Drop and is surprisingly effective. playing nger Twister(tm) to access your remaining buttons. f+P or b+P near opponent Command Charge db. His MK has insane range and speed. but where it really shines is if you popped them up with his Buffalo Headbutt. You can also “Tiger-Knee” the teleport (Finish the motion with up-forward before pressing PPP or KKK) so that it activates right off the ground.f. you can shorten all of his crouching. has no recovery penalty and can cross-up his opponent after the second hit! You can lock an opponent down with a c.uf+PPP Style: Spanish Assassination Arts Health: 100% (75% without Mask) Stun: 90% Overhead: j.MK -> LK Tiger Knee Crush blockstring which leaves few openings for your opponent to escape. however. It lacks priority.u+P Charge d. It can also dodge attacks and projectiles during the back-turn (18 frames).LP attacks. plays in a completely different fashion than from before. If you’re in a pinch. The EX Barcelona Attack’s initial leap is an attack! You’ll need to aim it at the opponent (Charge d. Basically. keep your distance and be ready to slash them out of the air with j. but will destroy 50% of your opponent’s life. he has the slowest Dash Cancel in the game. His modi ed Cosmic Smart (df+HK) now launches opponents and is safe on block. especially when used with his Ultra (Yoga Catastrophe is the new Aegis Re ector). Vega drew the short straw. if not blow their head off. Even if you never charge it for that long. his Super Combo.LP -> c. Vega’s Barcelona Attack. If you grab your opponent. as you’ll have to deal with losing all of your kicks or punches.df+P Charge b. His air options aren’t lacking either: j.uf+P During FBS. Learning how to use the Turn Punch can be tricky. then nished with his Ultra. but where Dhalsim falls short is with FADC. an air-throw.. the Yoga Teleport makes for a poor escape move when you’re cornered. Also.f+KK Charge d. and he loses his gear faster than a Chippendale stripper. Unfortunately. While he has no Command Normal attacks. and his Tiger Uppercut still hits like a ton of bricks. And on wake-up. and also combos from c.df.df+PP Charge b.MP is an effective jump-in. To go through reballs. and you can cancel out of it with a special or normal attack. It can combo after a Cosmic Smart and sets up for an Izuna Drop.f+P Charge b.

and his standing kicks have great reach and priority. When hitting people out of the air with his Hell Attack.f. His air options are just as strong: he can capitalize off of mid-air Hell Attacks (j. Viper can also punish reballs with a high-jump Burning Kick. then any upward direction). Her HK and Double Kick (f+HK) both dodge low attacks on startup. Computer Forensics Game Programming. and inherits the ability to jump-cancel certain attacks for additional combos.f+P Charge b. Best of all. the Skull Diver and Devil Reverse falls are both vulnerable to being Focus countered. giving way to a mix-up mind game. Network Security. and can even defeat Zangief’s Double Lariat. making it an invaluable tool against Guile’s Sonic Booms.bison’s movelist Command N Normals Hell Attack acks Special Attacks Psycho Crusher Double Knee Press Head Press Somersault Skull Diver Devil Reverse EX Psycho Crusher EX Double Knee Press EX Head Press EX Somersault Skull Diver EX Devil Reverse Teleport: Behind (Close) Teleport: Front (Close) Teleport: Front (Mid) Teleport: Front (Far) Super Combo Knee Press Nightmare Ultra Combo Nightmare Booster Properties ( ) (Float) Properties (Cancel) (Break) (Cancel 1st) (Overhead) (Overhead) (Overhead) (Juggle) (Cancel) (Break) (Juggle) (Cancel 1st) (Float) (Overhead) (Juggle) (Overhead) (Juggle) (Overhead) Properties (Juggle) Properties (Juggle) Command j g g p j. and HP has brief invincibility and can juggle an opponent twice if the rst HP Thunder Knuckle was an early anti-air. Burning Kick. MP is faster.BISON M.u+KK After EX Head Press.VIPER www. and the move can also cross-up opponents after a jump-kick (you can combo into it in the air). P (Hold b or f to move) Charge d. Digital Video. Unfortunately. PP Command QCFx2+P Command QCFx2+PPP c.u f+MP f+MK Command QCF+P QCB+K (Ground or Air) DP+P QCF+PP QCB+KK (Ground or Air) DP+PP After Seismo or Thunder. She can also cancel her Thunder Knuckle and Seismo Hammer to recover faster with a feint (press PP immediately after the startup animation). The Thunder Knuckle is really three specials in one: LP goes under reballs. it’ll probably be your biggest meter drain. Also. Robotics and Embedded Systems 24_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN . keep in mind that you can follow up with any attack on the ground if you only press MP once. even into her Ultra.BISON M.viper’s movelist Style: Way of the Secret Spy Health: 90% Stun: 95% Overhead: f+MP Air Throw: None Kara-Cancel: None MissPerfect Of the four newcomers.b. Command Normals High Jump Viper Elbow Double Kick Special Attacks Thunder Knuckle Burning Kick Seismo Hammer EX Thunder Knuckle EX Burning Kick EX Seismo Hammer Feint Super Combo Emergency Combination Ultra Combo Burst Time Properties (Overhead) Properties (Juggle) (Cancel) (Break) (Float) (Float) (Cancel) (Cancel) (Break) (Float) (Float) (Cancel) (Float) Properties (Juggle) Properties (Juggle) Command d.UAT. or an Ultra.828. and her j. and his EX Devil Reverse is an invincible escape as it goes up. and can fake you out! That’s not all. and he has a j. Software Engineering. but if it gives you the opportunity to combo into your Ultra. Game Design. which can actually be used to make combos. especially useful after her back throw.MP->MP during Diag. The EX Head Press has invincible start-up (great as anti-air). His EX Psycho Crusher absorbs 1-hit reballs (like Zangief’s Banishing Flat) and has a huge hitbox.f. she’ll need to constantly be on the offensive and combo. combo. Web Architecture.f+K Command Charge b. Crimson Viper is the ashiest.f+K Charge d. go for it! > United States of America C. and can be jump-canceled into her HP Thunder Knuckle. his Ultra is invincible on start-up..u+P (Hold b or f to move) Charge b. Her Focus Attack is also rather slow.HK works as a crossup. Her Viper Elbow (f+MP) is both an Overhead and an advancing short-jump attack. making it good for anti-air escapes. P (Hold b or f to move) Charge d. EX version will get you out of the corner and knock the opponent down.GEEK Geeks transform into Alpha-Geeks by becoming fluent in: 877. His Devil Reverse looks identical to a jump on ascent.MK cross-up.u+K After Head Press. EX Double Knee Press goes full-screen through reballs. and the most complex. combo. Much of his game will be spent teasing out openings with his Devil Reverse and well-placed Double Knee Presses for minimal recovery. such as the EX Psycho Crusher or Ultra. can launch.u+PP DP+PPP DP+KKK RDP+PPP RDP+KKK Command Charge b.m. Her EX Seismo Hammer has massive invincibility frames. She pays a price for this versatility: She has 10% less health and deals about 20% less damage than average. as it will ‘grab’ airborne characters. Viper’s normal attacks are decent. The Burning Kick also combos into Ultra in the corner. though. Artificial Life Programming. you will only be able to juggle with techniques speci cally with the Juggle property. Dictator lacks an overhead or kara-throw for ground mixups.. aka “Dictator” can lock-down an opponent with his Double Knee Press.f+KK Charge d. She is the only character in the game that has a High Jump (Tap down. Network Engineering. Jump Command Charge b. In order to keep up. If you hit it twice (j.b.Bison. EX Burning Kick acts as a decent wake-up and gets opponents off of you in a hurry.f+P Charge b. Her special attacks take some time to explain.f+KKK Style: Psycho Power xxx Health: 100% Stun: 95% Overhead: None Air Throw: No Kara-Cancel: None > TheDemonFromHell Shadaloo Shadaloo Crime Syndicate h M.4335 LEARN: Digital Animation.edu > 877.MPMP chain). In a pinch. and can juggle after a Hell Attack for full damage. Because of its versatility. does a TON of damage (as much as some combos).uat.MP-MP) with followup juggles. Digital Art and Design.

armor break/overhead. Release (Juggle) DP+K (Armor) QCF+PP (Armor) QCB+PP (Break) (Cancel) (Float) Hold KK for 8 seconds. QCF+P (Juggle) (Float) (Cancel) DP+P (Float) (Cancel 1st. catches opponents out of the air. and works well after his c.HP that reaches halfway across the screen. ability to cross-up.Bison’s Hell Attack (juggle state). f+LK+HP). he has an Ulltra that rushes across half the screen like a homicidal madman. HK During HBD. If it counter-hits. and he’s fast.Command N Normals Front Kick acks Special Attacks Change of Direction Second Middle Second Low Finish Middle Finish Low Wheel Kick Marseille Rolling Sky Fall Tornado Throw EX Change of Direction EX Wheel Kick EX Marseille Rolling EX Sky Fall EX Tornado Throw Super Combo Mushin Ultra Combo Muga Command f+MK Properties Command (Float) QCF+P (Overhead) After Change. goes through reballs. has invincibility and does more damage than Sagat’s EX Tiger Uppercut. Beware though.MK. a spin-kick (Messiah Kick) that can EX as an invincible wake-up and has combo (LK).HP. His Tornado Throw is a little slow. Finally.MK is also a decent cross-up and works after a Tornado Throw or Ultra. The Habanero Back Dash is slightly different. His Ultra (Shin Shun Goku Satsu) however. forces his opponent to stand on hit. The “Mids” always come faster than the “Lows” and are guaranteed to combo if the initial Change of Direction hit.HK has the same property as M. a safe attack with frame advantage on hit (Gordita Sobat). and gives him frame advantage (just enough to sneak another attack in). he has a c. Hold b or f to move) that can be performed immediately off of the ground. which sets him up for a Triangle Jump into his wall-options: either the Tostada Press or the Fajita Buster. He’s so beginner-friendly that it almost seems unfair. El Fuerte also has his close HK. But if his opponent trapped behind the air reball. LP. which is extremely fast (4 frames). HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN TheUltimateFist akuma’s movelist Style: Ansatsuken (Unsealed)? Health: 85% Stun: 85% Overhead: f+MP Air Throw: None Kara-Cancel: HP. close HP -> LK Tatsumaki -> HP Gou Shoryuken. Release (Juggle) DP+KK Properties Command (Juggle) QCFx2+K Properties Command (Grab) QCFx2+KKK (Hold b or f to move) Properties TheManWithoutAPast TheDancingGiant The only thing more ridiculous than Rufus’s appearance is how good he is: He has a controllable dive-kick (df+j. His j. you’ll mainly be comboing c. you could con rm a launch before nishing with the Ultra! For distance. it leaves him as vulnerable as a blocked Ken sweep (-6 frames). Akuma can throw air reballs at varying angles (determined by button. he has a rolling low-kick (d+MK) that’s safe on block. and all Kicks lead to the Picadillo Jump. a hopping urry of attacks (Snake Strike) that. knockdown on hit. the EX version even has two points of Super Armor!). The EX Guacamole Leg Throw has massive invincibility. which launches and sets up for his Guacamole Leg Throw. but not for long). LP+LK (close) DP or RDP + PPP DP or RDP + KKK (Float) (Cancel) QCF+PP (Cancel) HCB+PP In Air. attack frames in the air. his j. Finally. but the initial startup can be Focus countered. The Tostada Press is a huge part of El Fuerte’s pressure game. and that dive kick hits like a Mack Truck. which can be performed repeatedly. and its angle gets him away from cross-up attempts.MP into Change of Direction.HP is blocked. he has the second-highest health in the game! His normal attacks are just as crazy. MK After Messiah Kick. The Sky Fall will grab opponents out of the air. HK Style: Misunderstood Karate Health: 115% Stun: 95% Overhead: f+MK Air Throw: None Kara-Cancel: None > United States of America RUFUS TheCourageousHurricane Command Normals Zugai Hasatsu Tenma Kujin Kyaku Special Attacks Gou Hadouken Shakunetsu Hadouken Zankuu Hadouken Gou Shoryuken Tatsumaki Zankuukyaku Hyakki Shuu Hyakki Gouzan Hyakki Goushou Hyakki Goujin Hyakki Gousai Ashura Senkuu (Far) Ashura Senkuu (Short) EX Gou Hadouken EX Shakunetsu Hadouken EX Zankuu Hadouken EX Gou Shoryuken EX Tatsumaki Zankuukyaku EX Hyakki Shuu Super Combo Shun Goku Satsu Ultra Combo Shin Shun Goku Satsu el fuerte’s movelist Properties (Overhead) (Overhead) Properties (Cancel) (Cancel) Command d+MP At peak of jump. Akuma has a more devilish option. and his air reballs travel so slowly that land behind it to maintain his offense. forcing opponents to adapt to it. an overhead/anti-air cross-up body-slam with invincible start-up (Tostada Press). Up-Forward (Overhead) f+MK Far MK-MK Properties Command QCF+P QCB+P During HD/HBD: LP (Overhead) During HD/HBD/Triangle Jump: MP (Grab) During HD/Triangle Jump: HP (Grab) During HBD. which can Armor Break. It is also possible to gain frame advantage with the Habanero Dash -> Stop combination after a close HP. To top it off. HP During HD. if EX’ed. a back dash (Back Step) and cancel (Stop) option.HP. Finish Middle Air Throw: None Kara Cancel: None > French Republic ABEL Abel is a deceptively effective character. Because of these options. Therefore. He can win any reball ght with his Shakunetsu Gou Hadouken (3 hits for HP version). His bread-and-butter is dive kick or air reball. Akuma can also decide to charge a Focus Attack. which cancels into a dash with time to spare. QCF+PP (Juggle) (Float) (Cancel) DP+PP (Juggle) (Float) QCB+KK DP+KK Properties Command (Grab) LP. the proverbial glass cannon. and a spin-attack (Galaxy Tornado) that can nullify reballs. does not have many frames of invincibility (the Super version is much better for this). Command Normals Triangle Jump Drop Kick Target Combo Special Attacks Habanero Dash Habanero Back Dash Stop Tostada Press Fajita Buster Propeller Tortilla Back Step Gordita Sobat Caramale Sliding Picadillo Jump Quesadilla Bomb Guacamole Leg Throw EX Habanero Dash EX Habanero Back Dash EX Quesadilla Bomb EX Guacamole Leg Throw Super Combo El Fuerte Dynamite Ultra Combo El Fuerte Flying Giga Buster Command Jump near a wall. His Wheel Kick is great for punishing reballs. throw or low attack. though it isn’t nearly as good as Ken’s. but is vulnerable to throws. you’re looking at a free combo. His Habanero Dash is dif cult to track. low (MK) and overhead (HK) options. nothing (Break) (Overhead) After Hyakki Shuu. allowing you to juggle with his Ultra or EX Snake Strike. MK. El Fuerte throws his entire body at you to attack. d+MK Command QCF+P HCB+P In Air. and uppercut newcomers. f+MP (Special Only) > Japan AKUMA 26_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV STREET FIGHTER IV_COVER_27 IV_COVER_27 . and during it. df MK (Hold f or b df+MK to move) f+MK df+MK f+HP Close LK-HK Command QCF+K After Messiah Kick. but the “Lows” do more damage. but in icts terrifying damage. His mix-up series is the Change of Direction (QCF+P).b+LK+HP Style: Lucha Libre Health: 90% Stun: 100% Overhead: Tostada Press. After a blocked Focus Attack. if his c.ight to catch grounded opponents. f+MK. far HK Air Throw: Yes Kara-Cancel: None > United Mexican States True to Lucha Libre form. with a quick LK-HK chain. He has also has the Hyakki Shuu (“Demon Flip”) that leaps into the air and follows with a dive kick.LP. HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN ELFUERTE Akuma has low health but high offense. juggles after a c. launch. His far HK is a double-kick that advances him similarly to Ken’s. and his Quesadilla Bomb. F+P (Low) After Change. Mastering it as an anti-air measure will completely change the nature of late-game strategy against you. and gives you options for low and overhead attacks. EX version res two). and can also chain from his close LK. and his Ultra is an invincible ying grab that can be steered in mid. juggle after LK Tatsumaki. K (Grab) After Hyakki Shuu. It has invincibility frames (allowing it to pass through reballs). in that the Fajita Buster gets changed into the Propeller Tortilla (which is unblockable). MK (Low) During HD.f+LK+HP Properties Command (Grab) LP. His far HK launches for an EX Snake Strike or his Ultra. His Marseille Rolling makes him temporarily invulnerable to attack. rufus’s movelist Command In Air. he can dash in and activate his Shun Goku Satsu (Super or Ultra version). and punishes just about everything. F+P (Low) After Second. The real killer in his toolbox is his humble Front Kick (f+MK). LK (Float) (Cancel) During HD. which is now even easier to execute (it’s now three motions instead of ve: LP. He also has a small kara-cancel with HP. In the air. Akuma can approach with impunity. but veteran players familiar with dive-kick strategy can shut his Falcon Kick game down if they’re careful. F+K (Break) (Float) (Overhead) QCB+K QCF+K (Float) DP+P HCB+P (Float) QCF+PP (Break) (Float) (Overhead) QCB+KK QCF+KK (Juggle) (Float) DP+PP (Grab) HCB+PP Properties Command (Juggle) (Break) QCFx2+P Properties Command (Juggle) (Break) QCFx2+PPP Properties Command Normals Falcon Kick Virtua Kick Glory Kick Fragrance Palm Target Combo Special Attacks Messiah Kick Messiah Finish (LK) Messiah Finish (MK) Messiah Finish (HK) Galaxy Tornado Snake Strike EX Messiah Kick EX Galaxy Tornado EX Snake Strike Super Combo Spectacle Romance Ultra Combo Space Opera Symphony Properties (Juggle) (Float) (Overhead) (Low) (Float) Properties (Float) (Cancel) (Float) (Low) (Overhead) (Juggle) (Break) (Float) (Cancel 1st) (Juggle) (Float) (Break) (Juggle) Properties (Juggle) (Break) Properties (Juggle) (Break) abel’s movelist QCF+P DP+P QCF+KK QCF+PP DP+PP Command QCFx2+P Command QCF+PP Style: Judo Variant xxx Health: 110% Stun: 105% Overhead: Second Middle. K (Break) (Cancel) (Float) Hold K. F+K (Overhead) After Second. As for normal attacks. and can vacuum opponents with the EX version. LK After Messiah Kick. most players tend to dash in and throw. he gains a low sliding attack (Caramale Sliding). and many characters can quickly punish him for it. and relatively safe recovery distance (he’s punishable. a command throw that only ‘hits’ standing enemies (Fajita Buster). his Super is easy to link into after his Drop Kick (LP version has 3f startup).LP. but recovers slowly. P After Hyakki Shuu.HK) QCB+K (Ground or Air) DP+K (Low) After Hyakki Shuu. but is invincible to throws (the EX version is invulnerable to attacks) and allows him to dominate in close situations such as a blocked Focus Attack dash-canceled into a throw. To get in closer. Creative use of the Habanero Dash allows you to control the entire stage.

At high levels of play. Ultra EX Sonic Boom df+HP EX Dash Straight. EX Banishing Flat HP Headbutt. EX Sonic Boom (during Lariat recovery).HK (C) HP (F). For clari cation. EX Rolling Attack EX Banishing Flat Super. HK Tiger Knee (F). f+P) HP Super (H) Near corner. EX Barcelona Attack. EX Seismo Hammer. EX Change of Direction (F) Tostada Press.HK. c. EX Barcelona Attack HK Super (S) Step then MK. Ultra (F or C) df+HP (Beats Lariat startup at max distance) HK (F). HK Somersault Kick (F/C). Ultra EX Sonic Boom HP (H). Ultra Ultra c. Ultra HK.Bison: C. Double Lariat (C) HP (F). EX Tatsumaki Hazanshu. HP Super. EX Wheel Kick. EX Rolling Attack EX Banishing Flat HP Super (S). Ultra (S) -LK. Character Ryu: Ken: Chun Li: Blanka: Zangief: Honda: Guile: Dhalsim: Balrog: Vega: Sagat: M. LP Snake Strike (C). HK Super LP Super MP Change of Direction. HP (F). the Jump frames are listed as Startup+Air-Time. Ultra (H) Dash then c. EX Gou Hadouken >Counter Attack Examples Here’s what to look for when doing the above moves. Ultra (F/C) HP (F). Step then Ultra (S) Step then c.Honda’s Zutsuki (Headbutt). Ultra Near corner. c. is faster because of the necessity of performing an aerial Yoga Teleport immediately off of the ground. EX Messiah Kick (C). f+P) HP Super f+MK Step then c. HK Super HP Seismo Hammer Ultra (H) Habanero Dash -> Caramale Sliding.HK (C) EX Shoryuken (F). Burning Kick EX Change of Direction. EX Shakunetsu Hadouken. EX Buffalo Headbutt (F/C). LP (F). Ultra (C) c. HK Double Knee Press.HK (C). LK (F).HK (C) LP (F). HP Super. Knowing if your Ultra can be comboed into is especially important.MiscellaneousCharacterData This information will be useful to help gauge your character against your opponent’s. Ultra HP Galaxy Tornado. HK Double Knee Press. If your opponent’s Ultra misses and has more than -30 frames of recovery (disadvantage). c.HK (S) LP Dash Straight. Blanka’s Rolling Attack. Ultra (C) HP (F). HP Tiger Uppercut (C). Dhalsim’s jump startup. Headbutt (late)(F/C). EX Wheel Kick (F). EX Messiah Kick Tatsumaki. Super. this actually gives him a ~30 frame jump. LP Super (H). c. Ultra Guile's Sonic Boom (Charge b. EX Dash Upper (F) HK (F). HK (F). Notice that Zangief has the highest jump startup. you may be able to bait them into wasting it. it is rare to see an Ultra used outside of a combo because of the severe penalties involved in missing. This is because he needs extra time on the ground to execute a 360 or 720 degree motion (e.HK (C). Take a look! 28_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV_COVER_29 STR ET GHTER V STREET FIGHTER IIV STREET FIGHTER IV_COVER_29 . c.Honda's Headbutt (Charge b.HP (F). Ultra EX Habanero Dash -> Caramale Sliding. EX Galaxy Tornado -- Blanka's Rolling Attack (Charge b.HP (S) Super. and Guile’s Sonic Boom. c. Ultra df+HP.HK. Propeller Tortilla (F). c.f+P) Tatsumaki.HP. Ultra (C) Tenma Kujin Kyaku (F). HP (F). c.Bison C.: Screw Piledriver) without accidentally jumping.MK (C) E. Ultra (F) HK (F). c. Ultra (F/C) Far HP (F).HK (C).HK (C).g.MP (C). Ultra EX Double Knee Press Viper Elbow. Ultra (C) Seismo Hammer (F/C). Ultra Ultra EX Tiger Shot. LP Thunder Knuckle.MK (C). E.MP. Ultra (H) Step then df+HP (H) Near corner. EX Ground Tiger Shot c. EX Barcelona Attack (C). These attacks include: Zangief’s Double Lariat. In effect. you can set up a combo starting with a Level 2 Focus Attack. especially if they seem safe on block. Step then f+MK Dash then HK Super.MK (C) HP (F).Viper: Abel: El Fuerte: Rufus: Akuma: Zangief Double Lariat (PPP) HK (F). c. c. HP LP Dash Straight. HK Double Knee Press (C).Viper Abel El Fuerte Rufus Akuma Health 1000 1000 900 1100 1050 1200 1000 900 1100 1000 1100 1000 900 1100 900 1150 850 Stun 1000 1000 1050 1100 950 1200 900 900 1000 900 1100 950 950 1050 1000 950 850 Dash Speed 18 18 15 19 21 26 19 32 18 20 18 17 19 16 16 20 18 Backdash Speed 27 27 22 27 26 26 26 29 24 22 29 25 27 25 19 27 25 Jump Speed 4+36 4+36 4+41 4+37 4+34 6+37 4+36 3+56 4+36 4+35 4+36 4+40 4+36 4+36 4+39 4+39 4+36 Ultra Startup 10 9 6 10 3 0 6 11 10 Varies 9 11 6 13 4 8 4 Ultra Recovery -25 -50 -47 -15 -41 n/a -77 +44 -25 -30 -48 -35 -201 -30 n/a -13 n/a Combo into Ultra Yes Yes Yes Stun Only Yes Stun Only Yes Yes Yes Stun Only Yes Yes Yes Yes Stun Only Yes Stun Only THE APPENDIX DA A T >Key: (F) = Far (C) = Close (S) = Must Block Standing (H) = Works Even If Hit Can’t gure out how to defeat a certain move? These are our recommended attacks to retaliate or counter troublesome special attacks. on the other hand. c. Hyakku Goujin (F) c. EX Hadouken EX Hadouken. Step then MP (S). HK (F).Honda Blanka Zangief Guile Dhalsim Balrog Vega Sagat M. everything else Counter-Attack Options Chara Ryu Ken Chun-Li E.HP (F). Super. Ultra df+HP.if you know how your opponent uses their Ultra.

Capcom. Fei Long. but as of press time. Also. Since most arcades and tournaments now use the Japanese style of joysticks (the gumball kind. though there are reports that Mad Catz will also be creating an of cial joystick. For dedicated players. Dzuy Vuong. Those of you who remember Street Fighter EX + Alpha and its top-notch “Expert Mode” missions will be pleasantly surprised with the tools available to learn the game’s mechanics.com. One of the best sticks on the market is the Hori Real Arcade Pro 3 (HRAP3) for the Playstation 3 (also PC compatible via USB). we highly recommend that you purchase an arcade-quality joystick to play Street Fighter IV. Kentaro Inoue.looking ahead ConsoleT alk INTO THE HOME FUTURE >SpecialThanks This guide would not have been possible without extensive help from key staff. the ghting game community and my friends: Shoryuken. Andrew Alfonso. there’s also a deeply-involved Training mode that teaches you basic and advanced combos with each character. and Joanna Micco. Dan. Family Fun Arcade. it is a given that console players will have access to online play. For console versions. MarkMan. Bebop. Early test reports look favorable in Japanese networks. Gen and Rose. Scott Tsai. Ed Ma. Arcade In nity. practicing on a Japanese-style joystick will allow you to instantly translate your console skills over to the arcade. New playable characters for the console version will include Sakura. Denjin Arcade. and the game’s architecture was developed from the beginning to be optimized for this purpose. 30_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV_COVER_31 IV_COVER_31 . or as downloadable content. we don’t know for certain. and seeing how well that netcode holds under cross-country conditions is a different beast altogether. not the bat-sticks). Ultradavid. Yoshinori Ono. The advantage of having an arcade-quality stick like the HRAP series is that broken parts can be replaced with new arcade hardware that you can purchase through various vendors online. While you can expect to pay over $100 USD for hardware. New characters may end up shipping in the game itself. Gouken. but Japan is about the size of California. it is a very sound investment.

Furthermore. I want to assure players that the feel of the game is not thrown off due to the 16:9 display. was a very deliberate decision. and what other minor tweaks were discussed with gameplay? Ono: First. Both the dev team and our quality assurance team came to this conclusion. or will it be patched later on? Ono: Kara-canceling is no bug and it was no oversight. You can then exploit this knowledge when on the other side of the ring. I think you l realize that it has a feel that is different from previous iterations. But that’s when the pros kick it into overdrive and let us see what they’re really made of. The big challenge was in deciding where to draw the line. It was. What kinds of contributions have top-tier players like Daigo. On top of that. Obviously. but we feel that the depth it adds to the gameplay was a big enough merit to justify its inclusion. In IV. Furthermore. As for the Super Armor in IV. we are using a brand new arcade board (Taito X-2). we could risk blowing our goal of bringing back lapsed SFII players. That’s what the team is focused on right now.that some characters that make use of wall jumps like wall. is to bring an SFII-era ghting tool into the 21st century. Capcom’s attitude about III is that the complex gameplay system Our goal was to lower the barrier of entry into this game to the point that even those who don’t traditionally play ghting games won’t feel daunted by it and can jump right in. each playing at their own skill level. We were careful to build the game around this feature to minimize negative effects and ensure that the general rulebook for IV was suited to it. How complete do you feel SFIV’s core mechanics are? Do you plan on experimenting with new game-play features and game engine tweaking in future installments (making it more complex). Should I get a chance to make an updated version. and for the most part. then change it up on them and whip out something entirely different. the concept behind IV is chess. Instead of focusing on unnecessary additions. HGM: As of this interview. Only after we know how our DIRECTOR Y OSHINORI ONO in that game is the main reason that it is still so widely enjoyed to this day. their reaction to their own move. Even if you know your opponent’s character inside and out. do you prefer them to be run with a ‘locked’ character selection. it all serves to give us a glimpse at the kind of characters these ghters are. and she will continue to ful ll that role in the future. This is why a team with so much experience in the ghting games of that time period is so well-suited to this particular project. We basically created a big team composed of both Capcom and Dimps staff and developed the game hand in hand. so I want to do what I can to get the game in those players’ hands as soon as humanly possible. Was kara-canceling deliberately left in SFIV to add to the game’s depth. It’s really the only way to win. no matter the series or title we speak of. HGM: For SFIV tournaments. there have been no announcements to bring SFIV arcade cabinets to the United States. You didn’t have to learn what moves could beat another character’s moves because you could just Block it and retaliate with a super. I think we’ve looking at minor tweaks to the original rulebook and not a reinvention of the wheel. I highly recommend that players experiment with as many characters as they can to deepen their knowledge of the game. That said. to be rather unbalanced. Has Capcom decided nally whether or not to release the arcade version in the American arcade market? Ono: Well. That doesn’t seem fair to me. especially when a 7-foot tall Russian bear-wrestler is about to crush you. Was this feature ever discussed for previous Street Fighter games (excluding Vs. We’ve tried to do everything possible to extend the life of the game and allow for deeper and deeper strategies to develop throughout its lifetime. That said. Here in Japan. it Ono: I really prefer the locked style of tournament play. Chun-Li and Vega. HGM: One addition to SFIV that shocked me was the new Super Armor system. Is the market in Japan for arcade machines able to support that kind of pricing? Ono: Well. no matter the game. harkening back to SFII gameplay. When you actually sit down to play the game. I want gamers to appreciate her strength as well as her beauty. we have achieved this goal. and the machines can be networked in clusters. the move to 16:9 indeed brought several challenges to the table. the fact that the main gameplay surrounds the idea of managing the distance between yourself and your opponent means that we had to carefully use the space given when it comes to jump arcs and the like. This opens up many more strategic options in both the offensive and defensive realms. We decided to spice things up by tuning the cancels to suit a feint-heavy gameplay style as well as the traditional cancel uses. at rst glance. Is there any basis to this? Ono: This is probably the result of steering the general gameplay as much as possible to encourage “yomi”. That is why it’s always good to hear from fans who love III. like in Super Street Fighter II Turbo. but the problem is that if we had spent too much time and energy skewing the game in favor of the pros. That’s where we started with our tuning. including the original Street Fighter that started the series. HGM: Players have already begun utilizing SFIII’s karacancel glitch (to extend range on throws and attacks) in SFIV. That said I wouldn’t put my money on changes so sweeping as to completely rewrite the rulebook. Which is not to say that these two games are identical. From what I’ve heard from fans at various events and arcades. and you can see that things are quite dif cult. HGM: How big of a factor was the Focus Attack system when designing the new characters and adapting classic ones? Ono: Well. but it serves another very important role as well in that it gives us an opportunity to show off the characters personalities. included deliberately. you can deepen your offense and defense options even further. or will you focus more on character balance and development (making it deeper)? Ono: Well. it actually has deeper strategy because of the importance of learning character-speci c matchups. The pros have also jumped on board. HGM: I felt that with SFIII. do you advocate players to stick with one character. I’d really like to spend some more time with this rulebook and continue observing the way people play. HGM: SFIV has returned to a more ‘simpli ed’ system. throw. made to the SFIV development process? Ono: Well. will it be left alone. however: Chun-Li. This is especially useful when dealing with the new characters as they haven’t yet had time to enter the consciousness of the average gamer. we decided to cast the net as wide as possible and open the game up to more people. or the freedom to change characters? creator interview HGM: The rst thing that caught my attention with SFIV development was that it was developed with Dimps. HGM: 14. It is well known that Dimps employs a substantial amount of old-school ghter-era staff members that have worked on many revolutionary ghting games. and some fans have been cool enough to seek us out at various events to get a chance to play. reballs and other projectiles needed special attention since they have high priority and can be thrown from all the way across the wide screen. I think the most important thing is to know your opponent. showing us that our target market is indeed vast and giving us con dence that we have not left anyone behind. and I think we’ve come up with something unique as a result. This is the concept on which we based all of development for IV. Since all of these features are sold as a full set. but it so happens that the holder of the number 1 rank on the Grandmaster chart in IV is a player who goes by the name UMEHARA. Ono: As you can imagine. and it wouldn’t make sense to stop him with a simple jab. You can draw your own conclusion. But with SFIV. we steered the gameplay to focus more on distancing yourself from your opponent or closing that gap when necessary. There are a few machines oating around. I can’t make any claims as to whether this is actually the real Umehara. I really like her new changes built upon her SFIII:3s foundation. after what date do you anticipate we could get access to the console versions? Ono: I’m focusing all my energy on getting the game out sometime this winter season.000 wins with his Ryu (if he hasn’t exceeded that already). and this is why we are engaged in a co-development scheme with Dimps. but she appears to be a character with a very high learning curve again. but arcade owners here [in Japan] probably viewed it as the standard deluxe or premium machine price. we have no intention of simply giving up and negotiations with possible distribution partners are ongoing. It’s perfect. And by that. The timing is such that you can pull it off almost as soon as the thought hits your brain. I have the feeling that this change. Capcom is very happy to hear that SFIII has a place in the hearts of so many hardcore fans. I can tell you quite a bit about some of the minor tweaks we implemented. They would love to jump onto SFIV if there was a mode that eliminated Ultras and Focus attacks but brought back Parrying. In that sense. We knew that problems would pop up here and there as a result of this decision. as you insinuate above. or was it an honest oversight? And if it was unintentional. might have a problem reaching the wall at times. Like I’ve said before. even though it is easier to introduce to people. That does leave us with a little less focus on the hardcore. the rst thing I would do is lean on the information we’ve gathered from players and make sure that our adjustments are in line with what people want. You can fake your opponent out by feinting or making them think you’ll do something speci c. the Focus Attack system serves many purposes. but we think we’ve come up with a really strategic ghting tool that will show its depth as time goes on. As you say. it is important to remember that we are treating SFIII and SFIV as very different beasts.dashes. As for me. it’s almost like you win by getting a checkmate rather than a knockout. Instead. Players in Japan and elsewhere in Asia have access to the arcade game. In order to prevent a series of sure-thing counterattacks. all the way down to a grandfather and his grandson playing on a folding table in the backyard on a relaxing Sunday evening. We’ve already run a few tournaments in Japan and we’ve found that limiting the character selection is more fun for the audience as it brings about some match-ups that would seem. the last of the SFII series. HGM: I’ve noticed that in SFIV. There is one exception. HGM: What kind of challenges did you have when designing the game for a 16:9 screen ratio? It seems HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN Ono: An argument could be made that the parry system in SFIII: 3rd Strike took on a similar role to the Super Armor. Ohnuki. we have matches that run the gamut from televised and hyped showdowns between Russia and America. HGM: Finally. and others. or the reading and predicting of an opponent’s moves. Fine-tuning the balance when it comes to these cancels was a challenge. At any rate. it is really the result of wanting to add a gameplay element that would be available to anyone. it’s there to add a layer of strategy. that would suit the images of the characters themselves. HGM: I’ve heard from many SFIII:3s players that don’t want to stop playing SFIII to play SFIV because of the time invested into learning the Parrying system. We worked with the rulebook of II as the base and built on top of it. although minor. let me address the quick-recover issue you bring up. HGM: It’s fun to be playing updated versions of the original twelve Street Fighters. I mean that it’s a tool accessible to a variety of users. It’s a bit like chess in that way. how to use it effectively. for now. when to unleash it and when to hold back these aspects — was extremely dif cult and narrowed our audience for III. We’ve tried to tune the game so that the cancel system has some depth and isn’t just a two dimensional process. The way attacks can be layered and the fact that throws are generally very powerful in this system made it necessary to allow for a brief period of invincibility in the back dash maneuver. Was this idea ever brought up during development? Ono: Well. it was easy to be lazy with strategy and matchups because of the tactical superiority of the Parrying system. but fans in North America and Europe aren’t so lucky. allowing for some harrowing matches. This is why it’s comes d es e them s so important to try to look for patterns and make educated guesses about how your opponent will move. actually. It was the great equalizer. That’s the quickest way to mastering any game in the genre. The type of move they perform and the way they pull it off. Firstly. I‘ve also noticed invincibility frames on back. the unfortunate reality is that the arcade market in the States isn’t exactly healthy. our primary goal is to get the game out there so that people can begin delving into this ghting tool. In the end. albeit with a different feel.jumps. We’ve broken this system down into three basic components or options that a player has and they are crouching sweep kick. let me start by saying that IV’s basic gameplay system is based upon Super Street Fighter II Turbo. so we have tuned the game to this end. IV is much closer to II in regards to rules and gameplay. Once the PS3 and Xbox 360 versions are released. we want her to stand out as our heroine. we were able to handle wall jumps without any major issues. I’ve seen some amazing matches at these tournaments. of course. since the basics were already in place for the transition to the new aspect ratio. you cannot quick-recover when being thrown. it’s equipped with ID card readers. Add to that the fact that Capcom USA doesn’t have access to the sales network it once did on the arcade front [Capcom Coin-Op USA closed in 2004]. if you back dash your way out of a Focus Attack. If parrying has any negatives. it would have to be that really mastering it — knowing how to activate it. 32_COVER_STREET FIGHTER IV HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN STREET FIGHTER IV_COVER_33 IV_COVER_33 . we will have that many more players out there giving feedback and allowing us to research their reactions. You can see our dilemma. It makes perfect sense to include it for EX attacks. Rumor has it that the legendary Umehara Daigo is well on his way to racking up 10. By knocking out the above two issues at a relatively early stage. the core of their gameplay hasn’t changed much. The concept of this game. actually getting your hands dirty with a variety of characters will help you to understand what they’re capable of and what their strengths or weaknesses may be. What was the rationale behind these changes. HGM: In general. Wall jumps and other maneuvers should feel pretty much exactly like they always have. What kind of relationship does Capcom and Dimps have and how did Dimps contribute to SFIV’s development? Ono: Dimps is co-developing the game with Capcom. but the majority of potential players are eagerly awaiting a proper home port. so a lot of effort is put into tuning her and establishing a solid and unique feel for each title in which she appears. With chess. arcade players are only now beginning to dig deeply into the game. a brand new cabinet. and that would inherit the type of gameplay that parrying brought to III. Each game plays by its own rulebook. we decided to make certain moves resistant to recovery. or to learn multiple characters? Ono: No matter the era. As for back dashing. the techniques people spent time honing in III will not work in IV. we put a lot of energy into avoiding turning the game into a combo-fest.That said. At least that’s the way I look at it. HGM: The price tag for a set of SFIV cabinets seems to have shocked players. Why does Chun-Li keep changing so much from game to game? Ono: Chun-Li is the eternal Capcom heroine. who developed The Rumble Fish. Basically. titles)? really comes down to how they use them. audience feels will we embark on any major adjustments. and special move throw. it is indeed a pricey proposition. adding new layers and tweaking things here and there.

$500 In the early 80’s. Bounty Bob Strikes Back! (1984) Atari 5200 $250 . If you own a copy of Atlantis. So. Bounty Bob Strikes Back was the of cial sequel. your ordinary copy of Atlantis might just turn out to be the crown jewel! Bangai-O: Prize Edition (2000) Sega Dreamcast $600-$1300 While the regular release of Bangai-O is hard to nd. this title barely made it out the door. was available for most platforms and computer systems of the time. The actual game play is the only way to determine which version is which.750. Bounty Bob Strikes Back was a sequel that actually bested the original. Besides. Released without a box. you might want to pop it into you Atari VCS immediately. HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 3_TOM. a. The game supports eight-player network game play. the Knights Templar and even Indiana Jones. and what a crazy hobby that entertains us! While this is a listing of valuable games. the game itself had a high video production value and included footage from the popular 1983 Blue Thunder movie featuring the high-tech helicopter of the same name. This special version included an autographed themed phone card and poster. the label did not even feature the game title or manufacturer. but the game was scrapped and never made it to store shelves. While the other games for the Action Max system are easy to nd. Who knew that mining could be so much fun? It should also be mentioned that the software box and full color poster that were packaged with the game are even more valuable than the game itself! HOLIDAY 34_FEATURE_LET’S RETROGAME HOLIDAY LET’S RETROGAME A feature by Michael Thomasson of Good Deal Games HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 3_TOM. but never published (and so.k. At least. this was the only non-launch title to make it to market. no matter how much disposable income he may have to indulge in the hobby! Air Cars (1995) Atari Jaguar $100 The only of three announced titles for the Atari Jaguar by Midnight Entertainment Group to be released.199. after which the top four players would compete in a special tournament to be held in Bermuda for a chance to win $10. a very common title published by M Network and worth about four bucks! sticker identifying the game as the “winner’s trophy. even the controller overlay was omitted. it is also a historical article. a Japanese gaming contest awarded ve copies to the ve highest scoring contestants. what you could expect to pay in a theoretically “average” sale. Blue Thunder (1987) Action Max $100 World of Wonder decided to enter the videogame business in 1987. Air Raid (1982) Atari VCS. These are known as prototypes. However the back page of the instruction manual had the layout if you wanted to attempt making your own in Arts n’ Crafts class. be sure not to pay over three grand for Air Raiders. These prices do not take into account passing uctuations caused by industry events. This compilation completely disregards game quality and only deals with rarity. These anecdotes may give clues as to why these games have become so valuable. Consider these prices a “baseline”.. While video games are not often characterized as being miraculous. certain video game titles have been actively sought after by collectors in a manner as rigorous as the quest for the Holy Grail by King Arthur’s knights. Air Raid was encased in a solid blue plastic casing and featured a distinctive “T-shaped” handlebar grip.” ten (and only ten) new cartridges titled Atlantis II were custom programmed for the competition and sent to those players who previously submitted “perfect” scores. In most cases the popular games are also the best ones to play. sealed copy of a title is going to sell for more than an unsealed or damaged copy. The game. when alll good llittle hardcore gamers give and receive the al good ittle hardcore gamers give and receive the . The original sequel to Miner 2049er was Scraper Caper. Obviously. This new version awarded points more sparingly and played at a much faster speed… and required that results be submitted within a two-day period! In November of 2006. In January of 2000. Bounty Bob’s predecessor Miner 2049er. a rare CatBox and some poor saps willing to play this horrendous action battle game. we’ve put together this handy retro wish list to show our loved ones — who may need a guide to what we’d love — what we want for Christmas! According to Christian mythology. they are still available from time to time for a price. BAKER. this version is next to impossible. Atari 2600 $1000 The “Defend Atlantis” contest required players to mail in a photograph of their high score in Atlantis. one copy of Atlantis II was listed for auction on E-Bay for a cool $1. What a crazy world we live in. While Atlantis II was packaged in a box with a substandard “Atlantis II” sticker on the box.” Try your best on your regular version to match the winner’s score of 60. in order to help turn that fantastical dream into reality. Therefore many games mentioned in this article play horrendously. but for only a few systems.a. if you can manage to nd seven more copies of this rare game.000. it came coupled with only a manual in a cardboard insert. however. The game itself is identical to the standard release. The label artwork featured an illustration of alien saucers aggressively battling helicopters and jets over a city full of high-rise buildings. games they ve been drooling over all year. and are obviously very rare. Any prototypes appearing here would only tease an interested individual. went unsold at that “bargain” price. * Editor’s note: The prices you see in the following article are rough estimate averages based on what is the likely price in the current market. but their unique VHS console played more like their Teddy Ruxpin than a videogame. you may never want to actually play them. which usually translates to a hefty monetary value. A pristine. To narrow down the numerous “ nalists. LET’S RETROGAME HOLIDAY_FEATURE_35 HOLIDAY_FEATURE_35 . Interestingly. and had minimal distribution since the unit failed on arrival. So.689. and while you may wish to own them.The holiday season s wonderful time of year. it was important to offer juicy tidbits as to why each game listed was. While the game played in a miserable manner similar to the other light gun games on the Action Max. never mass-produced). SCARF. when The holiday season iis a wonderful time of year.a.k. or the way price will vary according to condition of the game. that’s how we think it should work. So. Perhaps one of the best playing games of the era. while many games featured in this article may be dif cult to obtain for one’s personal collection due to a lack of income. the cartridge label itself remained the same. SCARF. and see if you could have been awarded such a prize. It did nally get released. Most were meant to remain “in-house” or be destroyed. few individual sales are really average! Atlantis II (1982) Atari VCS a. games they ve been drooling over all year. the Holy Grail is the chalice used by Jesus during the Last Supper and is said to possess miraculous powers. BAKER. while selecting the games to be featured. but time proves that sometimes they survive. Because prototypes are often one-ofa-kind objects. The end result is that bad games ultimately have a lower manufacturing count and poorer distribution. Atari 2600 $3500 The sole release by the oddlynamed company MenAvision. their actual value is extremely hard to determine due to a limited transaction history..000. but the jewel case packaging included a Unreleased Prototypes (ANY) Priceless There are many games that were completely developed. The games featured in this article are those that demand or have demanded an amazing amount of cold hard cash to acquire. There is nothing more appealing to a collector than to own something that was never meant to be in one’s hands. What publisher Imagic did not anticipate is that more than four players would max out Atlantis’s the score counter. but it was so late to arrive that most of the game’s following had forgotten about poor Bob. As a side note.

Despite the candycoated paint job given to try and make this release a kid’s title at the time. Even if you nd a copy. the player controls a canine that has to navigate a maze to reach the trademark chuck wagon. BAKER. the rarest of the three. with Iron Soldier 3 being recalled due to incompatibility with certain Nuon-enabled players shortly after release. The fact that one would have to own a dog that consumed a great deal of Chuck Wagon brand dog food and have a parent willing to take the time to collect. narrowly escaping a malnourished dog in hot pursuit! When Purina hired game developer Spectravision to program an Atari VCS game around the famous commercials. the marketing didn’t work so great… kids don’t drink rum. Motocross Racer. If you want a copy of this hard to nd game. Magical Chase is a TurboGrafx-16 title that was heavily in uenced by the popular Cotton series. the irony is not lost that this game was developed by the company… Rare! Iron Soldier 3 (2000) Nuon $100 . ahem. ensured this game was delivered to few households at the time. Other XONOX dual cartridges combined the games Tomarc the Barbarian. LET’S RETROGAME HOLIDAY_FEATURE_37 HOLIDAY_FEATURE_37 .com. Boston Clean Sweep (1982) Vectrex $1. This title may be the only game ever to be released that features a gorilla that sets ame to protagonist’s heinie. SCARF. Mr. some of the specially-made competition cartridges were given away to contest nalists. nding a way to actually play the game can prove to be quite elusive! Donkey Kong Country Competition Cartridge (1995) Super Nintendo $200 to $500 The popular rental chain Blockbuster Video hosted the Blockbuster World Videogame Championship II in 1995. has emerged to play off the mystique surrounding the history of the game and the hunt for rare titles.k. it is not as rare as many other Atari titles.000 . Only eight games were released for the platform. made its way ONLY to certain seedy video rental stores. Chase the Chuck Wagon was only available via mail order. The remaining undelivered inventory was later destroyed. They were also brie y made available to Nintendo Power subscribers. the NUON eventually became a graphics processor that added additional functionality to several branded DVD players that included the technology. Since e it was direct-to-video in distribution. Robin Hood and Sir Lancelot. a. a new technique involving cross marketing evolved and the recently a new online game auction site with the same name.500 Purina wasn’t the only company who thought having a video game about their product would make for great marketing. before copyright restrictions led to the clever name change. complete with a witch who ies the unfriendly skies on a broomstick. Darxide was the nal international release for the Sega 32X. and A company named XONOX released several combination titles that featured two games on one cartridge. despite its game play similarity to Nintendo’s own Tetris. HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 3_TOM. Boston Clean Sweep was regular Vectrex Clean Sweep with Mr. Iron Soldier 3 was also later released on the PlayStation platform. Boston? Yeah. Boston plastered on. It was released only in Europe and compatible only with European hardware on a European PAL 36_FEATURE_LET’S RETROGAME HOLIDAY HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 3_TOM. come ‘on: how cool is Chuck Norris! He can slam a revolving door! If you do not collect his game he’ll introduce you to the only two hands that can beat a royal ush… Chuck Norris’s right hand and Chuck Norris’s left hand! Congo Bongo (1984) Intellivision $300 This game. Over the years it has gained a false reputation of being dif cult to locate. Artillery Dual (1983) Colecovision $100 industry was forever changed for the worse! While the game is scarce. Each spot would involve a miniature covered wagon that would emerge from an open bag of their branded dog food and race through the kitchen. But. Chase the Chuck Wagon (1983) Atari VCS. go gure)! Magical Chase (1993) TurboGrafx 16 $250 For a rare title. Less than a grand are believed to be in circulation among those not too ashamed to admit having paid cold hard cash for them. Boston was a liquor company. and in some locations were even sold as used games in Blockbuster discount bins following the event. and just as dif cult. The gameplay is simplistic and theme would bore even young children. SCARF.$2.Bubble Bath Babes (1991) Nintendo Entertainment System $500 to $750 A Taiwanese company by the name of Panesian released. based on the 1983 Sega coin-op. Bubble Bath Babes. BAKER. some NTSC versions were released in Canada and found their way across the border onto US soil. This illusion of rarity evolved from the game’s original distribution method. Mr. The title was not sold in traditional retail establishments as s Nintendo certainly did NOT give the green light to a nude bathing woman surrounded by bubbles. In the game.$200 Originally revealed as VM Labs’s gaming platform “Project X”. remember guys? But. was the only of three planned Sega Intellivision titles to reach the market. Note that this game was the sequel to the rst two installments of Iron Soldier on the Atari Jaguar. dang it. what a lovely collectible we now have to dream of nding in a Boston thrift store some day (they were actually based in Kentucky. The TG-16 hardware is only capable of rendering a single background layer.a. because while most Intellivision games were packaged with controller overlays. Magical Chase soars above other TurboGrafx-16 titles due to its extensive use of multi-plane scrolling. and not the usual NES cardboard box. you will need to embark on a ‘magical chase’ just to get your sweaty hands on a copy! Even more ironic is the fact that the developer’s name is Quest. during which Donkey Kong Country tournaments were held in many of their stores. Congo Bongo did not include a set. Never heard of Mr. The title itself has become a synonym for rare video game hunting. Following the tournament. Since only two and half thousand copies were manufactured. Mr. Darxide (1996) Sega 32X $400 Originally set to be released as Dark Side. the AES home version is worth well over twenty times that amount. so creating parallax scrolling via multiple layered sprite graphics accomplished “the impossible” and made Magical Chase a real stand-out title for the time on the system! Metal Slug (1996) Neo-Geo AES $1000 While the arcade MVS version is common and sells for around fty bucks. Atari 2600 $50 to $500 Looping almost continuously on the only three television networks in the early ‘80s were commercials for Purina’s Chuck Wagon dog food. and to obtain a copy a customer had to mail in several proofs of purchase from the bags of dog food and then wait eight to twelve weeks for delivery via snail mail. Completist collectors can stop hunting after acquiring the game. While not rare in the least. Chuck Norris Superkicks / television. Bubble Bath Babes was packaged in a VHS-style case. mail and add additional payment to cover postage. box and manual. ChasetheChuckwagon. no paint job can hide the fact that this is a real SCHMUP! Technologically. the game name itself could not have been more prophetic. The gameplay is very similar to Gradius. While most were released in PAL format in Europe. a “handful” of adult titles for the original Nintendo Entertainment System. Accompanied by Hot Slots and Peek-A-Boo Poker. and sometimes those do fetch a bit more.

De nitely a quirky release. Each row of six Space Invader aliens were replaced with the letter characters P E P S and I. one could argue that it is much more “holy” than the other holy grails listed in this article.a. Only a dozen of the twenty-six gold carts have surfaced since 1990. Quadrun (1983) Atari VCS a. The Rad Racer score would be multiplied by 10. The top ninety nalists were awarded a gray edition of the cartridge. While most of the gold carts have sold for around six grand. it had one late release. SCARF. Sales executives that attended the meeting were give one of the 125 copies created. complete a lap in Rad Racer and then score as many points as possible in a game of Tetris with any time remaining using a specially designed cartridge. the club released exclusive titles via mail order only to club members.k.k. Originally only six thousand copies were produced. On four separate occasions. those who have the game are hard pressed to part with their copy. each entrant must have collected fty coins in the rst level of Super Mario Bros. Atari 2600 $200 to $300 The Christian faith group Sparrow created The Music Machine as a companion to its record albums.This low quantity. high quality 2D production slipped out quietly when 3D gaming was becoming all the rage in the industry. While Virtual Bowling nets half a grand. there actually were famous gaming tournaments. Nintendo Power also awarded an additional twenty-six World Championship cartridges in a contest. and Canada. Panzer Dragoon Saga is worthy to be considered a rare nd. These cartridges are gold in color. the Tetris score would be multiplied by 25. This “Coke Wins” title was used until designer Omarzu revealed the proper name (Pepsi Invaders) years later. It is actually the fourth. Power Lords (1983) Odyssey2 $150 When the Odyssey2 was conceding defeat to competitors Atari. innocent children Stevie and Nancy carry a basket and gather angels.S. Since it is so adored. and since those awarded were not avid game players. The Wizard. who knows how these have circulated over the years or even how many are known to be left in existence.000 each were made to try and meet demand. Power Lords was based on a failed action gure line of the same name created by Revell. Do you have one of the remaining fourteen copies in your collection? Panzer Dragoon Saga (1998) Saturn $200 to $300 This critically-acclaimed role-playing game is highly sought after and demands a high asking price more for its gameplay and popularity than actual rarity. BAKER. Collectors beware. and as a result. A fantastic game that is worthy of its hefty price! SD Gundam Dimension War (1995) Nintendo Virtual Boy $1000 Forget about how hard it is to nd Jack Bros.a. 38_FEATURE_LET’S RETROGAME HOLIDAY HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 3_TOM. the most recent sold to a New York collector for $15. as there are bigger sh to catch in the small Virtual Boy pond.. SCARF. Quadrun is recognized for being the rst of two VCS titles to feature voice synthesis and to do so without any additional hardware.000 Similar to the adventures of Fred Savage in the Nintendo promotional movie. BAKER. Most believe Saga to be the third game in the series. Pepsi Invaders (1983) Atari VCS a. Other changes in gameplay included unlimited lives and the inclusion of a three-minute time limit. similar to the Zelda cartridges common in circulation. and warranted the limited release after a test group consisting of mostly young girls stuck their noses up at the rather unusual play mechanics of the game. The game was only of cially released for the Odyssey. there were two titles that rarely reached these shores: Virtual Bowling and SD Gundam Dimension War. as numerous counterfeit versions of Pepsi Invaders are in circulation. although a prototype version exists for the Colecovision. Atari 2600 $500 to $2000 The Coca-Cola company commissioned Atari to modify their popular Space Invaders game to be distributed at their 1983 sales convention in Atlanta.k. along with an Atari VCS console. The game was packaged as a solid black cartridge in a imsy Styrofoam shell. because every Odyssey2 game published ended with that same interjection! Anyway.000. In order for competitors to qualify for the tournament.000 to $10. Since The Music Machine was only sold in Christian bookstores and created to enhance moral values in players. Atari 2600 $300 to $850 Atari had a fan club in the early eighties that included a subscription to Atari Age Magazine. LET’S RETROGAME HOLIDAY_FEATURE_39 HOLIDAY_FEATURE_39 . which is also quite valuable. Nintendo World Championship p Cartridges (1990) Nintendo Entertainment System $3. as Panzer Dragoon Mini was released for the Sega Game Gear. the real score is the SD Gundam anime turn-based strategy game Dimension War. hearts. This game is readily available and budget priced on numerous platforms such as the Nintendo Wii. allowing Nintendo fans to prove themselves against a six minute timed blend of several popular Nintendo titles of the time. but later two additional shipments of 12. In the game. for the Virtual Boy. Nintendo staged a thirty city Powerfest Tour in the U. Playstation 2. and then all three scores were combined into a nal total.a. Approximately ten thousand Quadrun copies were released. mustard seeds. Coleco and Mattel. While many import Japanese Virtual Boy games made it stateside when the system went belly up prematurely. Power Lords! Don’t think that the exclamation point makes it a great game. Quadrun was one such title. behind the original Panzer Dragoon and Panzer Dragoon Zwei. Game Boy Advance and Sony PSP. but collectors want the “real deal” and it will cost them! Music Machine (1983) Atari VCS a. and as a result. HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 3_TOM. harps and other symbols of virtue. the gaming community incorrectly referred to this game as the game’s victory message that ashed on the screen.

Waterworld was released only to Atari Club members.$100 .$80 . BAKER SCARF. The last three prizes were never awarded and would certainly be considered real world holy grails unto themselves. zones and boss battles.$1. the Earthworld Talisman.000 Texas Chainsaw Massacre (Wizard Video.000 .$200 Daytona USA: CCE Netlink Edition (Sega.$550 Myriad 6 in 1 (Myriad. only created 1. we wish you only the best of good fortune in your en est r endeavors! Thanks to AtariAge.$150 . Atari 2600) . 40_FEATURE_LET’S RETROGAME HOLIDAY HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 3_TOM. So.800 .$80 . Saturn) .$300 Ninja Gaiden Trilogy (Tecmo.$400 .000 .$120 Akumajo Dracula (Konami. The fourth and nal game.$120 Condor Attack (Ultravision.$80 .Stadium Events (1987) Nintendo Entertainment System $300 to $1000 Stadium Events was recalled for being so good! Really! But of course there is more to the story. StarFox Super Weekend Official Competition Cartridge (1993) Super Nintendo $200 Between April 30th and May 2nd 1993.$2. SCARF R LET’S RETROGAME HOLIDAY_FEATURE_41 HOLIDAY_FEATURE_41 . is your wallet up to the challenge? Certainly! Obtaining a single game on this list will award you the best holiday gift ever along with bragging rights among your peers and be the centerpiece of your collection! Fan boys.$200 Jack Bros. grab yourself an inexpensive region-free European version. and not really collectable. Dreamcast) . consisted of the Waterworld Crown.500 Blockbuster World Video Game Championship II (Sega Genesis) . Atari 2600) .$90 . However. the Fireworld Chalice.com for permission to use some of their images.$350 What began as Adventure II quickly evolved into its own large-scale intellectual property. Atari 2600) .$150 .$800 . Each of the Swordquest titles was packaged with a DC comic book that explained the plot and included clues to help direct the player not only to the solution of the individual game but also a part of a large scale contest. was cancelled when Warner Communications bought and took control of Atari. Swordquest: Waterworld (1983) Atari VCS a. Atari 2600) . Atari 2600 $75 . the SMS was much more popular in Europe. PC Engine) .$600 Birthday Mania (Personal. These tournaments were held in the United States and the United Kingdom and used special competition cartridges that played differently than the regular version of StarFox. SNES) . Atari 2600) .$250 Battlesphere (4Play/ScatoLOGIC. ARDCORE _VOLUME 3_TOM. Following Earthworld and Fireworld.$50 .$1. the only cosmetic difference is a UPC sticker slapped on the packaging.$100 .500 Virtual Bowling (Japan) (Virtual Boy) .$150 Mine Storm/Mine Storm II (GCE. Approximately 2000 copies were distributed only to test market in Woolworth Department stores.$150 . So now you know all about the legendary titles we all dreaming of owning some day.500 Tactics Ogre (Atlus.. dreamers and collectors.000 . It shared the same plot as its Genesis older brother.$800 Sonic the Hedgehog (1987) Sega Master System $200 The original Sonic the Hedgehog was released for the Sega Genesis while the Sega Master System was on life support in the United States. This input device allowed the player to play the game with his feet by stepping on designated postions on the pad itself.$150 . Even so. Well.k. Will you ever possess one? Very unlikely. BAKER.000. valued at $150..$100 .$250 Radiant Silvergun (Japan) (Treasure. if you simply want to play the game. and even vacation packages. X68000) . SNES) .$180 .000 Crazy Climber (Atari 2600) $70 . Atari 2600) . This was eventually used as a pack-in title and is extremely common. Atari 2600) .$2. This controller was later replaced by Nintendo’s own “Power Pad. However. several retailers hosted tournaments to promote the new Super Nintendo title. Other Stocking Stuffers We Ran Out of Space for Akumajo Dracula X: The Rondo of Blood (Konami.$600 .$50 .$120 Guardian Heroes (Sega. BAKER.000 Lochjaw (Apollo. seeing the writing on the wall.500 .$200 . The game used an accessory called the Family Fun Fitness Mat.$150 Video Life (CommaVid. Saturn) . so Sega released a “dumbed-down” version for the older and inferior Master System.$300 Sonic Adventure Limited Edition (Sega. Airworld. Approximately 2. Atari 2600) . Genesis) .$120 Earthbound (Nintendo.$80 .000 copies of the competition cartridge were manufactured. Many cross-promotional StarFox-themed prizes were awarded such as pins. NES) .$120 Tetris (Sega. Will you stumble across even one of them in the wild? Doubtful.$250 Mega Man X3 (Capcom. One game became four and the Swordquest series was born.$150 . Prizes. not to actual StarFox destinations in the Lylat system. Saturn) . SCARF. Saturn) . the game was also released in small quantities as an of cial late release title in America. but it is suspected that only about a fth of those made it into customers hands before the Big “N” ordered them back in order to bring the product under Nintendo’s own wing and release it as World Class Track Meet. SNES) .$12. Vectrex) . Nintendo Power also offered a few remaining cartridges in their catalog for a limited time.$200 . which were released via regular retail channels. StarFox.$2.$75 Spiker Super Pro Volleyball (Intellivision) . Will you ever see one? Uncertain. Bandai of cially released the game in 1987 with Nintendo’s permission. This recall makes Stadium Events the rarest of the 800+ NES titles. Virtual Boy) . get ready to pay many golden rings for essentially the same item! Spider-Man: Web of Fire (1995) Sega 32X $100 to $150 The nal domestic release for the “doomed from the start” Sega 32X is also the rarest on the Sega Genesis expansion platform.$15.$400 . Sega.. Playstation) .$5.$1.$250 Dragon Force (Working Designs.$9. the vacation packages were to exotic locales across the globe. Jaguar) . and nally the grand prize. Atari 2600) .000 Gauntlet (Answer. (Atlus.$250 Malagai (Answer. mostly worthless.$75 Eli’s Ladder (Simage. Other collectors know very well of their existence and their demand is unmatched.” Note that the Power Pad and World Class Track Meet cartridges were packed in with many NES consoles as a Power Set Bundle and are very common. Saturn) .$200 Kizuna Encounter (PAL) (SNK.500 copies of this title featuring Marvel Comics friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. If you’re a collector. While the game plays the same.$300 Psychic Killer Taromaru (Time Warner.$200 . but offered some new stages.$120 Halloween (Wizard Video. Neo-Geo) . apparel including t-shirts and jackets. the Airworld Philosopher’s Stone. The Sword of Ultimate Sorcery. only to have the game recalled after its initial shipping. HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 3_TOM.a.$1.$2.

albeit with somewhat confusing button controls as opposed to true spatial recogniton. Twinkle. You won’t be able to recompose pieces note by specific note. in the end. flies in the face of convention. underlying your y controller inputs every single time. Wi d Fir ? Perh ingi haps migh i ht lik eati ting h t epi ic a theme h ever? With Wii Music. Even without specific note control. it’s time to start playing. Nintendo’s own back catalog of games. okay. Here’s hoping for DLC.This means that at the outset. now anyone can make music. Say what? More Nintendo game music would also have been nice. e If you’ve got a Wii Balance Board. Want a Latin-jazz “Twinkle. Aside from the main Jam mode. and sounds good Who knows musi happ usic appens od. While there is a certain c validity to the frustration of these gamers. you have the ability to create custom remixes of tunes you’ve known all your life. too. You can freestyle with it. Wind & Fire? Perhaps you might feel like creating the most epic Legend of Zelda theme d t singing Earth. replacing them are public domain tunes such as “Yankee ga ames Doodle. and bam. As long as you follow the overall beat of the song you choose. you have the ability to dozen instruments fill the instruments parts group. and give it all you’ve got. There is no easier way to make music and play recognizable songs than by playing Wii Music. which you may remember from Miyamoto’s conduction of a virtual orchestra to the Zelda theme at E3 2006. Nintendo has added a connection that’s hard to explain. their beats. don’t come any more novel than this. Nintendo c s has stripped the concept of the “music game” down to its bare essentials. There’s Handbell Harmony. which p g y need . tain button tons bam. All of this is wrapped up in a package no different from Wii Sports or Wii Fit in terms of aesthetics. Me. During your improvisation. g Th The meat of the title. Don’t I Already Have an iPod?” syndrome that haunts many licensed music games. Give me more licensed tunes and I’ll add more points. much like clay. and well-known tracks from ” ” Do oodle. soothing pictures s t picture es and happy Miis once again permeate the proceedings. music happens. In place of all of the flash. In Jam mode. frills. l it’s a blast. Wii Music’s tracklist is a far cry from all of the rock fantasy he c games out there today. Afterwards. Large fonts. a mode that recognition quiz helps to teach music recognition to those who may need it. you and the game will still come out with something that a sounds really good. music happens. set p y. In other words.Wii Music will be frustrating and boring. set up in the form of a quiz show. where you just pick an instrument. and the laughter of other delighted t d people. but only Maestro or Handbell to five or six. Just as the game says. and it sounds good Who knows how it s happening (well. I love being the oompa-loompa tuba-d00d or the cowbell-banger. Nintendo says good. It’s great to mess around with any time you feel like having some crazy pointless fun. SecondOpinionbyDJPubba Sco e 4of5 SecondO i ionbyDJPubba Score:4of5 Second Opinion by DJPubba Score : 4 of 5 Publisher: Nintendo · Developer: Nintendo · Rating: Everyone Genre: Music · Category: Possibly Psychic · Release Date: 10/20/08 42_REVIEW_WII MUSIC HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN I had a ton of fun playing this. This means that at the outset. and licensed master recordings we’ve gotten used to. Probably the only truly bewildering downside is the lack of song variety in any of these side modes. a There is a certain type of gamer that Wii Music is not for. however. and who believe that games absolutely must rank their players based on some sort of t performance criteria . You can Jam to any song. Say goodbye to Metallica and Iron Maiden. ability pick from about pick from about five dozen instruments to fill the six parts of a group. or cooperate with friends to make a song’s melody. the game automatically figures out how to make your added ingredients sound their best. I can tell you now that their voices will be w drowned out by the sound of ringing cash registers. Whatever happens. though? I’m waiting eagerly for all the drunken Wii Music YouTube videos. lets you play with the songs. To them . Wii Music does for music what Wii Sports did for popular sporting events. and will put a smile on your face. thus far. Apparently y Apparent tly Nintendo did. campy ‘80s hits such as Wham’s “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go. classical music. It’s hardly infallible. you can add notes. be happy. you can. you can save it in a music video format and trade c it around online. you’ve got Pitch Perfect. Finally. you can n perform it however you wish. there’s a Virtual Drum Set waiting for your use. but there it is. but has the potential to get deep when you least expect it. happening (well okay Nintendo says certai ways certain ways. What Nintendo has accomplished with Wii Music is a widening of the potential c audience for music games that goes beyond the mainstream popularity the genre nre currently enjoys. It deftly sidesteps the “Hey. the likes of which few developers are capable of creating. or make it totally crazy. You know they’re coming. but as long as you have one iota of musical inclination in your body. their rhythm. you press their buttons. around onli d line. c w coming. N Most games only allow you to play their songs one way. Little Star?” How about dogs and cats si ing Ea h Wind Fi e? Perhaps you might feel like creating the most epic dogs and cats singing Earth. then stripped away even more of the traditional “game” aspect. Best of all. You wave the Wii Remote and Nunchuk in certain ways. and are encouraged to. who live for increasing multipliers and high scores. but it works far more often than it doesn’t. you can make any given song more awesome than it used to be. Families are going to go absolutely nuts over this. okay. there’s Instrument Improv. Jam mode. it becomes your e own.people who play c r music games alone with plastic instrument replicas. It’s a connection between user and medium. in a way e that may seem spiteful to a hardcore traditionalist. you c outset. you press their buttons. Wii Music. scor res. If you’re old enough to remember a little PSX gem by the name of Um Jammer Lammy. Nintendo intend there’s chord theory in the code). bend and twist notes. it doesn’t require any budget-destroying fake plastic instruments. know nows w it’s happen pening (well. subtract notes. It’s always their notes. Music games. There’s also Mii Maestro.Reviewed by Racewing Once you pick your instruments. harmony or rhythm elements more or less significant. lets you and up to three friends play through certain songs entirely with handbells in a setup reminiscent of Guitar Hero. colored note tabs. who try to play for absolute absolute tonal and rhythmic perfection. Final Score: 4 of Final Score:4of 5 Score of5 Score: f WII MUSIC_REVIEW_43 .

as someone who’s not musically c inclined. complete with dynamic camera angles that show off Sonic’s best and speediest moments in style. in playing those games. How are they going to experience it? interact interact with this title. Is Wii History next? y SM: I think that one thing that Wii Music helped to reinforce for me was that c there really is a wide selection of topics of interest that span all ages. But as an adult now. I hope you’ll take that all into account and look at Wii Music from that perspective c when you’re playing the game and then talking about it to people.and 16-bit songs. are fabulous. which allows you to control Sonic like a superfast race car (with a sweet Outrun 2-style drift to boot). I’m wondering if there was any thought of localizing it for different territories. then I think you’ll find this game interesting. what I experienced was that I had this passion c for creating video games for thirty years and this passion for creating music for thirty years. on-stage atYoyogi inTokyo held our media event and was able get on-stage in front of a very large audience and perform a song together with the director of this game in front of a thousand people or more. So. Question: You’re prohibited from ever talking about your hobbies but then you accidentally revealed that you have a deep interest in history. sequel or a Zelda sequel. g p y players past g games. on October rather embarrassed about playing people. So. Those were two subjects that I had absolutely no interest in whatsoever as a child and hated. because these well-done stages cry out for the treatment. when we decided to cut down the instruments to sixty. but. assuring that every one of these stages has rewarding. c Of course. event. Using the Wii t d list worldwide. I’m not very good at playing instruments. and I think it’s a mistake on my part. We wanted the music in the game to appeal to a very broad audience. there’s a lot of different genres of games. SM: This ti SM: Thi time around we wanted to h This around d wanted to have one song list world ide. Really. across narrow walls and past precarious platforms. game or a Zelda game are going to a interact with this title. In a bold yet cautious approach. I was keenly watching how he c responded to Wii Music and whether or not he. we ended up removing some of those. they’re very well made and they’re very fun. on October I’m rather embarrassed about playing in front of other people. as well as Sega. I often found that. Sonic’s got some new moves. in the song selection this time around. Shigeru Miyamoto: Because we knew [this is] such a new and different kind of game. Regarding the second…. Miyamoto shared with us. because that will make it easier for them play song improvise the song easier for them to play the song and improvise the song. with Music. And my feeling was that if. there are a lot of different skill levels of gamers. instead. Finally. where you control the cool blue hedgehog we all know and love. I’ve developed quite a deep interest in those. I personally thought that creating a game out of music was something that was very difficult to do. games like Guitar Hero. give them the creative freedom to try to bring their own personal creativity and their own flair to music creation. October 2nd at Yoyogi in Tokyo. Using th t ldwid i the Music system. So when I say that I think that Wii Music is very good for elementary education c or first-step music education for children. but. Obviously. in fact. as a musician. Over all those years. until Sonic and the Secret Rings and Sonic Rush Adventure came to his rescue. the reason I think that actually stems back to my experience in elementary and middle school with studies in history and geography. That’s an opinion that I have formed after seeing the final product. would think it was fun. and probably not many people in the mass market would be as familiar with those songs. and I was able to get on stage Yoyogi in Tokyo. The daytime stages. and I found something interesting in that experience and found a way to take that experience and translate it in the form of a video game. but it seems like the track list is the same across all territories. But that doesn’t mean that I am a good musician. eliminating many analog-stick mishaps that plagued Sonic last generation. answers and thoughts which Mr. as well as ef ciently take out multiple baddies at once with a respectable and responsive combo system. more a recently. I think that’s because I have the perspective that allows me to understand what kind of role history and geography can play in the world. unlike a product like WiiFit where… you know. I’ve been making games for thirty years. As for the question of whether or not it would appeal to core gamers…. I feel that the games that I’m making are based on a more universal. we do a create those games [while] trying to take into account the experience and knowledge that players of those franchises have had in the past games. inherently human sense of fun that I think doesn’t really change. you’re going to find that people who have that core musical interest are going to become obsessed with the process of rearranging their songs — to the point that among the Wii Music audience you will find people c who are as “core” of a gamer at Wii Music as you would in any other franchise c or genre. Having that long experience of not really being able to find a way to turn music into a video game product… seeing the end-result that we’ve achieved with Wii Music has left me very happy. It’s a shame. we wanted to focus on songs that people will know by ear for the most part. and. I think it would be interesting to go forward with localized song c lists for different markets. you can’t have limitless fun zooming around these great levels with a friend or online opponent. of course. and that whole time I’ve been a musician and a big fan of music. Sonic Unleashed is the game that Sega’s now touting as the real return to console form for their company mascot. Simultaneously. reviewed by racewing For fans of Sonic the Hedgehog. ” But what I really experienced with those was that. To me what those games reflected was — games that were trying to allow people to be the very best cover band that they could be. One. I called those “music games” myself — and I looked at those and thought. with WiiFit. He was a director with me for the last twenty-plus years. my goal wouldn’t be to try to allow people to join the best cover band that they could join. With regard to the NES songs — I would assume that everyone here is familiar with the very large number of songs from the NES and Super NES era. The Sonic Boost allows for a burst of speed on the ground but also in the air. Now. complete with multiple paths and junctions through courses. double-jumps and stretchy arms allow him to shimmy along poles. I m rather embarrassed about playing front other people But. There’s a director that some of you may be familiar with who works with me. And that’s why I’ve been suggesting that perhaps Wii c Music is a better way to start music education than starting with basic tools. Throughout the development of Wii Music. regardless of your age. when I looked at them from o my perspective of being a musician…. then they’re going to be more interested in the principle of music theory.5D perspective kicks in for about half of each stage. as a game designer. He knows absolutely nothing about music and cannot play music whatsoever. After the negative overall reception given to SONIC the Hedgehog (2006). my thoughts and [feelings] about this game are really [a] little bit different from a lot of the other games that I’ve made.InterviewwithShigeruMiyamoto Interview with Shigeru Miyamoto Shortly before launch day. We were among several different magazines and web sites who were invited. I think that people have probably heard me say that I think this title is very well suited to an elementary musical education for children — a very good first step to really introduce children to the key theories of music. the man behind many of Nintendo’s most popular game franchises including Wii Music. over the last ten-plus years we’ve seen what people now call “music games” start to emerge and take form — games like Beatmania and. Maybe it’s a question of the degree of interest in music that might result in some people’s confusion as to the audience for Wii Music. if we’re able to introduce children to the joy of musical creativity from the outset. improvise song. for the Wii and PS2 versions of this game. SLEASHED O I NC U N Publisher: Sega • Developer: Sonic Team/Dimps • Genre: Action • Category: Supersonic • Release Date: 11/18/2008 • # Players: 1 • ESRB: E10+ 44_REVIEW_WII MUSIC HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN 4_BLEEN SONIC UNLEASHED_REViEW_45 UNLEASHED_REViEW_45 . hailing from Sonic Rush Adventure is Dimps’s great stage design. SM: I don’t think there were any other instruments that were weirder than what we have in there. So. while the gameplay itself is very fun. There were many other varieties of guitar. Furthermore. we feel it is very important that we always look at how people who have never played a Super Mario Bros. making it great for avoiding bottomless pit-deaths. in fact in my college days. It was a very liberating experience to feel like… here was this instrument that finally I can play and know that I’m going to play it well and be able to let out my musical creativity in front of a large audience. And on that note. During nighttime. we held our media event. How title. there’s a lot riding on Sonic Unleashed. why were there so few classic Nintendo tracks? I think I’ve counted only three 8. With all this planning. the enjoyment that I got out of them was very different from the kind of enjoyment that I get out of playing music. The game often sports Secret Rings’s behind-the-back perspective. I can easily say that at least for one platform. “You know. I feel that with Wii Music we’ve managed to achieve that. The one thing that I think I regret g c regret most about Wii Music. and then further still. was that we didn’t include a mandolin. Sonic Rivals’s 2. I mentioned to you that I’ve been playing music for thirty years. When I looked at those as a game designer — you know. So unlike Sonic Rush Adventure. But [what] we are finding is that people who’ve played the game and spent a good deal of time with it are reacting very positively to it and writing some very long things about it. the famous character’s stock was put in serious jeopardy. In the case of music. again. Obviously. and my hope is that c we’ll have as many people as possible who’ll be able to play Wii Music and c experience what it’s like to have that creative freedom in creating music. I were to create a music game. particularly when it comes to the ability to relayer parts and rearrange songs. our feeling all along has been that it will be one of those long sellers that doesn’t race right out of the gate. Question: I know it’s a very broad range of instruments and there were some weird ones — we saw the cat in a dog suit and the karate practicing guy — and I’m wondering if there’s anything weirder than those that didn’t make the final cut. and. and I’m not very good at performing publicly. and I think that Wii Music is the kind of game that is able to take a person’s interest in music — c whether it’s deep or just a budding interest — and grab a hold of people. when I looked at games like Beatmania and Guitar Hero and [saw] the fun of those games as games. for me personally. the Werehog’s quick scampering movements. The Quick Step allows for fast horizontal movement without any break in the action. Sonic Team’s built two distinct versions from the ground up for two separate sets of platforms. has Sega gotten things right? Having played from start to credits. But. I had started a diet t t that had me weighing myself every day. If you’re the type of person who starts tapping your hands or humming when you listen to music on a CD. The only bad part about all this is that there appears to be no multiplayer whatsoever. and it wasn’t something that I strove to try to create from the outset. long-term replay value. We didn’t really look at it in terms of how it would appeal to so-called “core gamers” versus so-called “casual gamers. it’s mission accomplished. In addition. I think c that with Wii Music. and he’s a producer now. but I was never really able to find a way for the two of those to come together. Question: What kind of demographic did you have in mind when creating the game? Did you expect this to appeal to the “core gamer?” SM: When I create a game — not just Wii Music but any game — I don’t really c focus on a particular audience or particular age range. I think that. was that I think the game’s fun. What follows are what we felt were some of the more interesting questions. among people who are casual gamers there are people who have very intense interest in music creation. they going experience it? experience c With regard to Wii Music there were two things that we looked at in creating it. we were given the opportunity to meet with Shigeru Miyamoto. Question: Forgive me if I’m wrong. I really just focus on those innate human experiences and that type of entertainment is something that spans generations. while. In creating a game like a Super Mario Bros. The appeal of this game is based upon people’s ” own personal interest in music. but rather to let them move beyond that rather basic level of music training of trying to replicate existing music. Sega wisely tapped Dimps (the minds behind the Sonic Advance and Sonic Rush games) as designers of the daytime versions of stages.

Whether it’s looking at a beautiful forest waterfall while playing as the Werehog. like Sonic was last generation (oddly enough. feel surprisingly rewarding. Mega Man 9)? Riley: I agree with the fans that it would be great so stay tuned and see what comes down the pipe. Also making a return appearance are the much-maligned “town” stages from SONIC. Fortunately. The Wii rendition of Sonic Unleashed is the best console Sonic game since probably the Dreamcast days. So the engine was also built from the ground up to allow for this. The ghting and platforming are still fairly speedy. but as the gameplay matured everyone came to see the promise in the Werehog element as it grew and matured. This time. The voice acting is as cheesy as it’s ever been. and have designed levels that stand up to a lot of replay. but we’ve heard that to justify several past Sonic games that have come 2 DO I I N N PNO 46_REVIEW_SONIC UNLEASHED Second opinion by Zippy • Score: 4 of 5 .. after a while I simply stuck with the Gamecube controller. and Hashimoto-san did the programming and design. a la Capcom’s recent efforts (Bionic Commando Rearmed. Much of it calls forth memories of Sonic Rush Adventure—which it should. the Hedgehog now stops on a dime). With the power behind all the new plaforms we can continue to take that kind of gaming to new levels and make it that much more intense and make sure gamers continue to feel the speed they look for in a Sonic game. Unleashed for the Wii boasts huge worlds. in which they were two of the creators of the original Chao. Score: 4 of 5 I T R I W: NE VE P T I KR L Y ARC IE under re (at least by critics) for this very reason. and even howls. In the daytime Sonic controls a lot like he did in Secret Rings. and clearly playtested. Some of the levels such as Apotos were in near nal form months ago and I’ve been enjoying playing them on a regular basis since then.5D. The best part of this game is that it’s actually welldesigned at its core. what do you hope to accomplish in terms of the Sonic character and his franchise with Sonic Unleashed? Riley: The goal is to re-launch the franchise with a high-quality. things are very manageable and control well. who is the game design lead/director/ technical lead and Kawamura-san who is the art director. Sonic Unleashed is just the rst game. Patrick Riley (Producer at Sega of America) was kind enough to answer our questions. Dressing all these wonderful visuals is a feast for the ears. to add “gameplay variety”. the whole of Sonic Unleashed is slightly greater than the sum of its parts. the framerate never. odds are you’ll slow down to check out the scenery. dare I say. Kawamurasan did the art design. F N LS O E 4 f I A C R: o5 HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN 4_BLEEN SONIC UNLEASHED_REViEW_47 UNLEASHED_REViEW_47 . I counted all of ve situations (out of a couple hundred) where I actually felt frustrated. expansive backgrounds and terrain effects. Once people get this game in their hands. and many of them worked on major titles for other companies and this is their rst game for SEGA. ever dips. containing extra lives and secret missions waiting beyond some novel puzzles which involve switching back and forth between Sonic’s two forms. namely Hashimoto-san. uses a technique known as “Global Illumination” in which the re ections of colored light around a scene is calculated and baked into a pre-rendered lighting pass. color. and are actually. I’m sure you will all enjoy Sonic Unleashed and its 2D/3D gameplay elements. The Werehog can be somewhat slippery. but hats go off to the actual sound direction in this title. HGM: Given the above. and the next-gen versions somehow end up completely dropping the ball. the Hedgehog Engine is an investment in future SEGA games. While. Rounding everything out is a completely optional hub world with special bonus rooms. Even if the absolute worst happens. features and bene ts of the Hedgehog Engine? How does it help in making Sonic Unleashed a more fun game? “[The] Hedgehog Engine is an investment in future SEGA games. HGM: What. HGM: Any chance of a 2D console Sonic revival. In the meantime. The background music eschews the hard rock of most currernt-era Sonic games and instead is a fusion of jazz and old-school game tunes. Sonic fans who own the current crop of Nintendo systems can once again hold their heads up high. So you can see that there is a rich history of true Sonic experience behind this game. which was created by some of the team members making the game. however. do Sega and Sonic Team consider its classic form of high-speed platforming gameplay to still be viable in today’s industry. I can’t really fault it either. The development team has really nailed the combination of 3D with 2. we went to them to nd out just where they were planning to go with all of this. and at night you use the manipulate the Werehog’s arm actions yourself. Interestingly enough. busting with light. Usually invisible walls in games are a sign of trouble. because what’s here de nitely works. outside of the handheld market? Riley: Absolutely. as well as with Sonic’s future. since Sonic runs so fast. Even during the Werehog’s sections where they’re largely absent. the need for an engine to be able to stream textures and geometry is extremely important. this almost makes up for it. Still. In the end. or spinning through dizzying loop-de-loops as Sonic with your point-of-view going from the bottom up. but it’s a base from which we can develop future Sonic titles and titles of other genres without having to start from zero on the engine and toolset. exactly? We’ve heard the of cial reason. a good way to relax after all that pent-up adrenaline’s been coursing through your systems from the daytime missions. Also. Even given the blistering speeds Sonic moves at here.. immensely enjoyable game. Many are younger. they’re little more than graphic menus and text boxes. One side effect that I enjoy is that it’s always dif cult to encourage exploration in the game while simultaneously asking players to run 300 miles per hour to get a top rating. As the Werehog. he gives off whoops and hollers that show he’s having fun being the Fastest Thing Alive. As Sonic runs through stages. for example?) Riley: We de nitely wanted to try something a little different with Sonic and appeal to both Sonic fans and people outside of the normal target audience. as an older fan. “ Riley: The Hedgehog Engine. but here their presence often saves the player from headaches and unfair deaths off of stage sides.. However the leaders of the [Sonic Unleashed] development team were not on SONIC the Hedgehog (2006). This makes for vibrant and detailed scenes that feel like high-end computer animation. HGM: In a nutshell. on the whole.. exactly. HGM: Just what happened to the SONIC the Hedgehog (2006) team? Is anyone from it still involved in this project? Riley: Some of the Sonic Unleashed team members were on SONIC the Hedgehog (2006). Finally. Is there a reason Sega and Sonic Team stick to their guns in this regard? (Are all the characters and differing gameplay concepts that popular with the younger audience. While the setup’s all right. energetic and passionate team members working on their rst game. but many of them were not. keeping the pace of the game fast. only this time.man. Fortunately. and they’ve been making quite a bit of noise to make sure the gaming press knows it. we had to wait 8 years and suffer a human/hedgehog romance just to get this. since the composer for that game also worked on this. Hashimoto-san and Kawamura-san’s last big console Sonic project was Sonic Adventure 2. There were skeptics internally here at SEGA as well. are the speci cs. there’s one system where things are as they should be.Sonic Unleashed is a fairly Big Thing(tm) for Sega. he’s snarling and aggressive. I can’t bring myself to embrace the Werehog decision. they will see that the team has proven that it is possible to keep adapting Sonic to the modern era and there is still room for him. The Werehog gave us a chance to include that element of exploration. Motion controls are also present. HGM: Why the Werehog.

On my way back to the battle. focusing instead on quirky character and level design. giving them more incentive to focus their re. Other personas include a beat boxin’ DJ. Gen-san. I was prompted to meet up with fellow squad members at a rendezvous point and then press on to the main objective. Our hero’s nemesis is an evil construction company. lead by the diabolical President Hyousuke. Sounds cool to me. Goban n Publisher Irem Publisher: Irem r Developer: Irem Release Date: 6/30/08 6 6/30/08 0 Genre: Plat r er Platformer atform Category: Beat ‘em up Be ‘em up # of Players: 1 Rating: 3. a deep sea diver. placed the reticule of my sniper ri e over his head. With Resistance 2. Goban E. This is due to the innovative squad rivalry system that focuses battles in different areas of the map instead of letting front lines form on their own. you can even play the part of hack psychologist. After killing several enemies without dying. the player limit has been raised to a whopping 60. armed with his trusty oversized hammer. Old school gaming enthusiasts will appreciate Gen-san’s quirkiness and ought to give it a try. i Ikuze! Gen-San: Yuuyake Daiku Monogatari follows faithfully in the footsteps of its predecessors.Speak softly and carry a big hamm That’s the motto of Gen-san. Irem doesn’t try to reinvent the game play wheel. Ikuze! Gen-San features the adventures of an honorable carpenter who battles the minions of a greedy construction company. Future iterations of the series appeared on various 8 and 16-bit systems throughout the decade.5 Every Daiku no Gen-San game follows the same basic platformer formula of jump. and the next minute you’ll nd yourself dashing through a restaurant. latest installment in Irem’s venerable Daiku no Gen-San platformer series. Ikuze! Gen-San: Yuuyake Daiku Monogatari. When my session began. which is simply unheard of on consoles. My ‘tour guide’ was Insomniac community director James Stevenson. This particular battle takes place at night. Add a frantically fun eight-player class-based co-op mode to the mix and this may just become my new multiplayer game of choice. On top of that. mwhahaha. the game is still over owing with useful additions and features that truly enhance game play. “this kind of cooperation never happens in PUGs. I originally thought that having so many players interacting at the same time would be confusing and produce intense lag. by BigWyrm Wo Impo ting? Worth Importing WorthImporting? Worth Importing? m ng g Ikuze! Gen-San: Yuuyake Daiku Monogatari is a solid. Platform veterans will nd themselves right at home jumping over obstacles and smashing Gen-san’s many foes.BLEEN IKUZE! GEN-SAN: YUUYAKE DAIKU MONOGATARI_IMPORTS_49 . this causes framerate problems. Time to seek revenge! James told me that there were several areas to gain access to the rooftops.” I guess we just needed some direction. but they will always ght over the same territory. smash and repeat liberally until the world is fully cleansed of evil. and many more. I still wanted to go back for more. the enemy wasn’t too thrilled with losing their real estate because a furious battle erupted all around me. mer. my squad met up at the indicated point and we all attacked our objectives like a welloiled machine. the hero of the hammer. What makes the game unique is the wide assortment of bizarre opponents and situations that you encounter. but neither happened. While vibrant backgrounds and large character sprites make the game aesthetically appealing. I took cover on a rooftop. players earn extra points for killing rival squad members. and that team is randomly pitted against an enemy team for the duration of the match. English-only gamers shouldn’t have much trouble navigating the menus. The baseball costume will channel his inner Ichiro. y Resistance 2 When Insomniac introduced the gaming world to Resistance: Fall of Man. allowing him to knock bad guys out of the park. making him faster. Hyosuke’s men are overdeveloping the city. But despite having so many players. The newly giddy citizens then aid him in his quest by engaging in acts of civil disobedience against their former oppressors. Gen-san can smash away NPC’s troubles by using his hammer on big frowny faces that are supposed to represent their emotional trauma. The Daiku no Gen-San series cut its teeth in the side scrolling beat ‘em up platforming heyday of the early 90’s arcade and home console scene. These rival teams will be directed by screen prompts to ful ll different objectives. takes to the streets to ght off waves of construction company minions. Gen-san decides to right this wrong by assaulting the company in a whirlwind of blue collar violence not seen since the happy-go-lucky union-busting days of the 1920’s. Gen-san even made an English language appearance on the NES in an obscure title called Hammerin’ Harry (complete with goofy early 90’s box art). This simple yet effective idea ensures that teams will always attack their objectives in a group (if they can follow orders). Despite not knowing each other. This variety of fun and interesting venues will help take the edge off of the naturally repetitive side scroller formula. Grenade and rocket explosions sent bodies ying while gun re ripped through friends and foes alike. The hero. disrupting its peaceful small town tranquility and causing its citizens grief. if unspectacular. The sushi master costume turns our hero into a short order cook who can wallop enemies with a gigantic sh. The game’s preponderance of one hit kills will also make for many frustrating moments. I was cut down by sniper re from above before I even arrived. Continuing on my session. At its heart. Even after playing Resistance 2 multiplayer for several hours. is the same side scrolling beat em’ up that you’ve been playing since the days of River City Ransom and Double Dragon. I just waited for him to come up and seek revenge on me.” I thought. so I ignored the re ght and stalked my killer. Review by: E. The game plays a little too slowly and leisurely compared to its more famous platforming cousins. i platformer. you’ll be happily riding a merry-go-round and a ferris wheel before facing down a mad scientist’s weather machine. “Wow. I was thrust into a large urban map called Construction that had several pathways snaking throughout the buildings and debris. and BAM!! But rather than rejoin the battle. As an added bonus. dodge. Apparently. We charged forwards and tore through a group of Locust only to be dropped by some wellplaced grenades at our feet. fans were surprised at how well the PS3 could handle such intense 32-player re ghts.5 of 5 3 o 3. 48_ONLINE_RESISTANCE 2 HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_. which helps to enhance the laser re and explosions (of which there were plenty). The game’s main innovation comes from a costume change system that allows Gen-san to assume the role and skills of a variety of different professions. slowing the game down at very inopportune times. Hopefully he noticed that it was the same player that just killed him twice in a row. I was able to activate a personal shield that protected my front and was large enough to also protect one or two comrades. dodging cooks while helping a waitress and chef nd love. more powerful. who explained to me that every player is automatically placed on a team when they enter the fray. although the storyline will remain a mystery. or altering his attacks. As far as pure gameplay is concerned. Ikuze! Gen-San won’t knock your socks off. Each unlockable costume changes Gen-san’s attributes. One minute.

it does not work well in practice. or blue power ups and bombs that can clear the screen in an instant.Back in the early ‘90s. Yuna allows the player to interact with the story by inputting commands such as “look. Period.. and tons of gratuitous eye-candy. thankfully. When the screen lls with bullets and enemies. edge-of-your-seat high octane shmupness. but still not much action. neither Yuna nor Yuna 2 have much to offer. Ginga Fukei Densetsu: Sapphire. you’ll most likely only play with Charatte’s ship. the PC Engine was giving Nintendo’s Famicom a run for its money. the Ginga Ojousama Densetsu Collection is a must own for any gamer. That said. If only. success often depends more on familiarity with the level than quick re exes. For fans of Akitaka Mika.BLEEN GINGA OJOUSAMA DENSETSU COLLECTION_IMPORTS_51 . green.Ginga Fukei Densetsu: Sapphire. With lighting effects. 50_IMPORTS_GINGA OJOUSAMA DENSETSU COLLECTION HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_. fans of Akitaka Mika were treated to an actionless graphic novel adventure in Ginga Ojousama Densetsu Yuna. akin to what Treasure did with the GameCube port of Ikaruga. Sapphire holds its own as one of the best shooters ever made and the PSP port does not disappoint.Raiden and Radiant Silvergun. the experience is akin to navigating the Titanic through artic waters.. Kozo E. Famous for his work in the Gundam series and his Mobile Suit Girls character designs. Publisher: Hudson Soft Huds Hudson f Hudson Soft son Developer: Hudson Soft Hudson Sof Hudson Soft Genre: Dating/Combat Sim/Shooter D ting/C mba Sim/Shooter Dating/Combat Sim Shoote /Com at oot Category: Girls in Space! Girl Gi ls in Space! Girls pace ce! Release Date: 7/30/08 7/30/08 7/30/08 0/ # of Players: 1 Rating: 4 of 5 f Review by: E. which really showcased the console’s superior 1-megabit CD technology. Instead. Thirteen years after its debut. Ginga Ojousama Densetsu Yuna 2. but. Until now. Sapphire’s style and action make up for any of its shortcomings and this PSP port is a top notch example of a quality game withstanding the test of time time. The weapon system seems like it was yanked straight out of Raiden featuring a primary cannon that can be leveled-up by collecting red. Accessible from the main menu is an art gallery featuring many Akitaka Mika originals as well as what appears to be concept art for the three games. this is a must own title for any shmup a cionado. for the action is scant while the save points are few and far between. While the four available spacecraft each have a unique weapons set. For those who do not understand Japanese. or for anyone who likes busty anime girls in mecha suits. There is a third attack that can be discharged using the Select button. the nal product could be described as the opposite of an awe-inspiring shooter. It was not until the third game in the series. but while this is a nice feature in concept. few gamers have ever experienced this frenetic shmup. while Nintendo was dominating the US videogame market with the NES. The original aspect ratio requires the game to be played in a tiny viewing screen that is only uses about half of the PSP’s wide screen. Unfortunately. that Akitaka Mika’s original concept was used to create one of the PC Engine’s greatest gems. much of the game’s dif culty seems to be born from your ship’s comparative lack of speed coupled with a large hit box. Although Yuna and Yuna 2 are unplayable without intermediate Japanese language skills. gamers wanting to experience this golden oldie needed to make an investment that makes the PS3 suddenly seem cheap by comparison. with a few new additions. Sapphire’s art direction certainly compensates for any shortcomings in its mechanics. The sequel. and many of them. but the button con guration is so awkward that unleashing this attack is a recipe for instant death. Playing with Charatte’s ship helps a bit. The PSP port gives the player the option to change the viewing mode for all three games. The gallery itself is almost worth the price of admission. Similar to Radiant Silvergun. Instead of frenetic. was essentially more of the same. Why? Because it packs one of the rarest and greatest shooters ever released on the PC Engine . the short bursts of manic action climax at the end of each level with boss battles that are nothing short of spectacular.. for it’s anything but. You’re okay as long as you know exactly where the icebergs are. The vertically stretched version lls a little more of the screen without much noticeable distortion. Originally intending to create a shooter featuring his trademark mecha girls. The level design may well have served as Treasure’s inspiration for Radiant Silvergun: short levels with legendary boss battles. The Ginga Ojousama Densetsu Collection for PSP presents today’s gamers with quality ports of three such classics. Nevertheless. Yuna and Yuna 2. At $300 for a used copy of the original release. however. If only the developers had implemented a vertical display option. Sapphire has continues. parallax scrolling. Two popular genres on the PC Engine.” Yuna 2 ups the ante with some basic dungeon crawling aspects as well as turn-based card battles versus rival characters. the fastest in the eet. Sapphire can be described as a hybrid of two classics . and the full screen mode is ugly and virtually unplayable. these should be considered icing on a delicious shmup cake. Koz Kozo ozo z WorthImporting? Wort Worth Importing? t thImporting? Yes! For shooter fans looking to play Sapphire at about onetenth the price of the PC Engine version. The language barrier. If you have intermediate Japanese skills. not to mention hundreds of dollars worth of 20-year-old hardware from Japan. The developers certainly squeezed every ounce of graphical horsepower from the PC Engine when they created Sapphire. there is hardy a prettier 16-bit shooter. to optimize the PSP’s beautiful widescreen display. Akitaka Mika created the concept for Ginga Ojousama after being approached by Hudson.” “talk” and “move... Don’t mistake the fact that the levels are short to mean this game is easy. spinning polygons. the differences aren’t so great as to be a consideration in selecting your ship. and at about one-tenth of the cost of the PC Engine version. Ginga Ojousama is a game franchise that spawned the development of a popular series of anime also known as Galaxy Fraulein Yuna. starring a futuristic beautyqueen. present entertaining storylines that fans of the anime will de nitely want to check out. included 2D shooters and graphical adventures. Ginga Ojousama Densetsu Collection is a great value and a must import. is just too great for casual import fans to endure 30 minutes of story for the few minutes of action Yuna and Yuna 2 present. Ginga Ojousama Densetsu Collection offers excellent bonus content.

and downright cute atmosphere. your character is accompanied by a companion pet that follows her wherever she goes. a gang of troublemaking evil witches.Are you a good witch or a bad witch? Are you a good witch or a bad witch? Not since the days of The Wizard of Oz has there been such exciting witch on witch action as seen in Bouken’s upcoming arcade shoot ‘em up. with interview by E. While Trouble Witches exquisitely executes the standard shoot and dodge shmup formula. With the push of a button. however. you can download the demo at the game’s of cial website. gigantic bosses and unnecessarily high concentrations of weapons re that are found in your modern shooters. you’re evading bullets like Neo in the Matrix. As you can imagine. Trouble Witches will be coming soon to an Akihabara arcade near you! If for some reason you don’t live in Japan. The Good Kind of Trouble? From Doujinsoft to Arcade Game. If the enemy ship is then destroyed. Enemies are just as plentiful and dangerous as in any other frantic shooter. In Trouble Witches. the magic barrier gives players a different strategy for survival. While in play. A variable meteor shower of bullets? No problem. that pet creates a temporary spherical barrier that causes all enemy projectiles to slow to a crawl. Don’t let the pretty scenery fool you though. With the magic barrier system. it features a unique innovation that skews the equation. Departing from the gritty. futuristic space motifs of R-Type and Ikaruga. rather than dropping houses on their foes. That money can then be spent on power ups at the oating shops that appear mid-stage. Trouble Witches is a stylistic deviation from the average fare. You can also expect more than a few visits to the infamous purgatory of bullet hell. Trouble Witches features a cheery. Trouble Witches. However. and you risk creating a massive wall of angry projectiles with no escape. this magic barrier system fundamentally alters the game play. in this case) instead take to the skies on their magic brooms for a good old fashioned magical shoot fest. More akin to the Twinkle Star Sprites and Keio Flying Squadrons of the shmup universe. Goban. don’t expect Trouble Witches to be a walk in the park. with a steady hand and some deft maneuvering. These unfriendly skies are lled with the same endless waves of merciless enemies. colorful. With any luck. we take a look at what kind of wacky hijinx Bouken’s upcoming horizontal shooter gets into. Taragan 52_IMPORTS_TROUBLE WITCHES HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN TROUBLE WITCHES_IMPORTS_53 WITCHES_IMPORTS_53 . Rather than relying on rote memorization of enemy patterns. gamers on this side of the Paci c will soon see this title magically appear on their favorite home console’s download service. Keep your barrier up for too long. the good guys (or girls. Publisher : Bouken • Develo per: Bouk en • Genre : Shmup • Categ ory: Witc hes! • Play ers: #1-2 • Release D ate: Wint er 2008 An import feature by Pink Godzilla’s E. Despite the game’s disarming cuteness and your handy magic barrier ability. However. you’ll take control of a team of wanna-be Glindas as they take on the Daughters of Amalgram. then all of its bullets in the barrier turn to gold. you will also nd yourself frequently escaping certain death in one of those impossibly daring last second dodges that are the hallmark of a great shoot ‘em up experience.

Har uken. The ve Trou s like a . ’t ask. ds like you’ll ha programmin cades this wi hes in HGM: Soun creating Trou witches. ble Witches.” e tle uncertain KK: Althou m the genres sailor out ts founded. To be the game w ter. bu winter. ox Live es turn into We probab game seem is barrier sy team raphic. bers. We’ on the horiz lves witche tter. g along? cards. are th strong roots s ends up though. itch with st Shop your w get it rig would lik power up extra time to release. in the ations! So e force el developmen ble Witches : Congratul sier for re enters th just ve mem ou ea of y HGM ing it much release of Tr am consists When enem ayer maybe? a stateside hes The core te iderable mak cons KK: seeing Arcade. ely been extrem e the days of shi: Sinc of evil have a Kondou Kou Witches is g the forces in ept. W On Xbox Live long has Tr . w we were a lit different fro Bouken was elsewhere. attacks an light RPG HGM: How a limited might be su has some game saw HGM: You ble Witches rsion of the strange t. hen the pl ouble Witc speed slows y attacks. Althou ihabara. mastery of th ne on the mer demog ican KK: Abou of course. t for the larg Bouken do KK: a hit on your ha sailor out ts developmen e ve g and gam nter. The is year ’s dence at th ble boost of con ic voted Trou e received a But w n the publ hes e Show whe ouble Witc . While Bou ame develo ly have probab Japanese g ican gamers ny was ry few Amer ve e compa and analog. though. It ons the laun wrapping up aking RPG rrently various reas m t for re cu on? s in famous for summer. be KK: I certa ouble Witche in developm g given Bo elements. Tr Tokyo Gam best in show g is the the top ten So how bi HGM: Witches into n we’ll be the bullet es that mea team? t do d. but everyo e hardcore ga for an Amer m score. wanted to m presented its nally opportunity 54_IMPORTS_TROUBLE 54_IMPORTS_TROUBLE WITCHES HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN TROUBLE WITCHES_IMPORTS_55 WITCHES_IMPORTS_55 . which justify a US ponry. Don me at “witc hes hits the ar mpletely Japan. The HGM: Wha is a gamer we didn’t lik erica who counter Mag Trouble Witc game that mers in Am release of itch will en ld take the s to pect of the ng magic e enough ga ge. is r. how do l spacec stereotypica rrier ter? its magic ba typical shoo m the pack is e eld. hes apart fro a magic forc Trouble Witc ts create KK: What se cast spells to witches can system. Xb the projectil 08. be received honest. sinc year ould on. d in 1987. X evade enem ve?!?! How near future? ots. th both digital Today. Trouble te girls battl ore peace involving cu ing this conc ho must rest n. So was original ch date has soon. however itches at PA the player to HGM: Just red those sh d Trouble W ite well enemy that y to a high lopment? demonstrate received qu defeats the d have ins. to the strang cute witche ead of your ppen to be also just ha brooms inst itches on from your featuring w itches differ W sides es Trouble HGM: Be raft. Founde s in Japan. So e or that w ic hes. pment comin is the develo d unique wea rprised. we wou as g cute witche for purchasi improve up K: Mid-sta ther there ar rin ul K whe could ins are usef shooter star ronger thought we e to play a s. until recently. The ke K: Well. back to this concept invo me even be sign. Twenty to how well ake a shoo elf. uken’s en. In Trouble Witc l in . The make the ga graphic de e cheongsa of KK: Ther tra time to r rivals. m shooter? been pushed e are. of the compa ever heard tabletop RPG degame. the si popularizing of l in a new type down instrumenta eir hand at recently sat ing th Magazine pany’s Bouken is try dcore Gamer uss his com ooter. ttest new re about Troubl ho Tell us a little anime Magazine: amer manga and Hardcore G Sailor Moon.cog in the ken is a keypment industry. th e es a lot using the ex battling thei nds. ny. your w on. Troubl e Witches. You had blishers in that was co el pu when e a game Don’t worry work it will do w to mak HGM: n dent e typically as we wanted gh we’re co of games w . to disc scrolling sh esident of Bo Koushi. instant hi HGM: So KK: The PC gh it seem coming an inly think so s ent. th release in Ak ly surprisin version of Tr game is still ny rd st the arcade at a compa rsion of the tion. e s later the Akihabara. These co ht. pr with Kondou e Witches. h quicke by that ere was so eal platform ints? nished muc whenever th question is ins for? Po obably the id e only t are the co Arcade is pr at heart. and the t one year. it’s ha ase this pa for a sequel le s combina arcade ve how is it th HGM: With ly set for re ere any plan making a in RPGs. lease. we been in deve K co ly coul ed to be stem. Develop Japa witches w es who popular in aturing cute battling boss g shooter fe created by side scrollin at they have e world th s.

taking the four gems inside with it. each unused ball is one point at level’s end. A 3D structure of cubes of various colors rotates in the center of the screen. and Cubello looks at them with envy in its heart. or clear off the center cube to complete the level. which draws in all the unused goo balls to be whisked away to their eventual HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN fate. By: James • Score: 4. some menu translations (very little Japanese knowledge required!). there’s much more strategy available in move selection than ever before. B j Bejeweled T i t l d Twist http://www. The maps introduce some new gameplay elements. The rst wrong move clears all the pips and the second one knocks 1x off the multiplier. and Portal: Still Alive delivers a good number of levels to beat your poor.C’mon baby do the baby. an angelical chorus indicates that the next time you pick up said ball you’ll activate a Super for mass damage. but the overly-careful strategies needed make it more work than play. with an excellent soundtrack and a storytelling style all its own. Play it. smiley faces. This makes Bejeweled Twist easily the best in the series.5 of 5 Rakugaki Showtime is just plain awesome. and when the bar is full the multiplier increases. abused skull against. the reason it’s fun to play is because it’s easy to play.00 R k Rakugaki Sh k ki Showtime ti Japanese PSN (PS3/PSP) • 600 yen (~$6) C b ll Cubello l WiiWare • 600 points ($6. the. complete with a collection of new bonus levels ranging from simple to pure evil. Portal is nally available by itself. How could a game where you play as little scribble people that throw tons of crap at each other and cause massive property damage not be. on the other hand. such as the deadly red surfaces that allow cubes and portal gun shots to pass through. The counter can be generous to start with but it only gets crueler as the levels go by. but they seem happy enough to link together to somehow reach the exit pipe. and bad things happen when it hits zero. can be reused as many times as needed. Game Over is now reliant on the bomb gems. Connect four cubes of the same color and they fall off. and at about $6 on the Japanese PSN it’s a steal. In tangible form. and passing it over will lead to a sad and empty life of regret.. and the dif culty level ramps up quick.5 of 5 The goo balls of World of Goo have a problem. The only downside is that GlaDOS has no new speaking parts.com.00) Developer: PopCap Games • Genre: Puzzle Release Date: 10/28/08 • # Players: 1 Developer: Treasure • Genre: Action Release Date: 6/24/2008 • # Players: 1-4 Developer: Skip • Genre: Puzzle Release Date: 10/13/08 • # Players: 1 Now this is how you evolve a series that’s not only appeared on just about anything that’s capable of running a game but has been cloned endlessly to boot! Bejeweled Twist takes the classic gem-matching formula and gives it a few tweaks. can’t be disconnected. If you’ve ever wanted to own a legit copy of the game. with an extra three shots added to the magazine to a maximum of ten. and each move decreases it by one. What these changes accomplish is to throw the board wide open.hardcoregamer. Wham. Once you hit enough stuff with the smiley faces. and that’s more than enough to justify playing Portal one more time. and be happy. once joined.com • $20. adds to your building’s structural integrity. The normal black balls shoot out support tendrils to all other balls in range and. and more! By: Ashura • Score: 5 of 5 Some puzzle games work better than others. resulting in a game that not only feels both fresh and familiar but is also far better than its predecessors. You’re given a lot of choices in weaponry. but the random nature of the colors added to the magazine leaves you screwed too often. but thankfully they’re completely oblivious to being processed by a megacorporation into all manner of beauty and food products. Cool characters and the ability to play with up to 4 friends at once are just a bonus. this Japanese-only PS1 game costs upwards of $200 to buy. however. As the levels go by new species of goo are revealed.popcap. The central game is still as excellent as ever. It’s the promise of new content that makes this version so appealing.00) World of Goo PC: http://www. Each level either adds a new gameplay element or re nes an old one in a new way. Each ball used. with the Remote controlling a cursor that highlights a cube’s edge. though? There’s not much more to this game than that: you pick up stuff and throw it at the other people until they die. Quick to pick up. but there’s strategy in knowing when to take a hit to either set up a giant combo or arrange to clear a bomb. and of course the most deadly of all. Rocks. With a move always available. each one adding a new wrinkle to construction. and it’s very easy to see the lack of a strut cause a wobbly tower to collapse on itself or sway just a bit too close to a destructive spinning gear. On the plus side it’s new levels for one of 2007’s best surprises. this is the easiest way. On most levels. The controls are smooth and accurate and there are a good number of levels. Check out http://ashura. Each move lls in a pip on the multiplier bar. It’s no longer necessary to match three in a row to make a move. Tapping the A or B button lands a colored cube on the cursor. and brain-consumingly addictive to boot. By: James • Score: 4. Chell runs through GlaDOS’s challenges in exactly the same way that gained Portal more awards and fan-love in its four hour completion time than any ten fty-hour epics. but taking a turn without clearing any gems has a nasty effect on the multiplier.5 of 5 Portal: Still Alive XBOX Live Arcade • 1200 points ($15. but if you’ve been denied it due to a lesser-powered PC and a bizarre aversion to all that extra Orange Box content then it’s time to rejoice. ICBMs. By: James • Score: 2. It’s pretty simple and has the seeds of addiction. The most obvious change is how the gems move.95 Developer: Valve • Genre: First-person puzzler Release Date: 10/23/08 • # Players: 1 Developer: 2D Boy • Genre: Puzzle Release Date: 10/13/08• # Players: 1 Everyone should have played Portal by now. The green balls. thank ya’ ma’am. WiiWare • $19. bam. and also causes the entire structure to rotate in a new direction depending on the angle of the shot. and the free-form style of building structures gives each level plenty of replay.com for some help picking up this game from America. making the challenge levels feel lifeless. By: James • Score: 5 of 5 56_DOWNLOADS HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN 4_BLEEN DOWNLOADS_57 . while the clear drool balls can only attach at one point to form a goo-rope. Bombs are standard gems with a counter on them.2dboy.. Homing Missiles. Although combos are still arrived at by luck more than design. however. Grenades. Run out of shots and the game’s over. There’s always at least one move available on the board somewhere. World of Goo is simply fantastic. A mouse-click causes a wheel to spin one quarter rotation clockwise. What they really want isn’t clear. too: Black Holes.

.

investment and exploration wear thin. You ha . HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN 4_BLEEN Get that anch or! h n the ng the ontin ing by continu by continui r u drea s our dream h d lihood follow your all likelihoo is to where in Your plan the seas. as you merrily supply a region such as Bordeaux with all of the sweet goodness it can handle. Either way. Since th or even es story of a re’s ealthy an r returned the tirely. the merchant there will start to pay less for the merchandise (and your connection in Lisbon will charge more on his end). This design choice seems odd at rst. Confrontations begin when one ship is adjacent to another on the map and one of the captains chooses to attack. turning to ery brine tradition of much wat family tion. Aside from the dated production values and some occasional quirks in the interface. e fantastic s necessar the same out from th your hand m d of ingredient the 20th ce rely within oduced so aters stan variations history pr d y so squa harted W relevant in Aside akes Unc ual destin gdoms an citing and on human m in eye ur virt ation. or to build better vessels at shipyards. of course ory ocean ye at e that the king an explor e has enjo es ury. The ather. ince inc ss who p pr said for not looking ad? Oh. and to make their impact obvious. w in any nu accessible your . then trav Unless yo merce. sure that ble shipm ion of suita y to your by a select e glor will restor Success Exhumed by honestgamer Fleet and seek was never as popular as hide and seek. the Star Trek symbol is after us! The scale seems a little askew here. You can play a role in those proceedings here by investing money into neutral ports. m is in some h the Waters have with ry a Uncharted e (with na ctions you i te int ra and sinc suring that nre before to you. You’re then given control of your eet as the ships maneuver about the limited space to set up cannon volleys. trade routes. aters is an any key franchises commonly harted W winds and aps most act e ects. so it’s important to plan your routes carefully.. m The lack of you might ularly aggr el example. you ar fa y m e family na ill metim 16th cent who wi so of the 16th ce-noble once-nobl he br nk of rial tasks the brink in yo begins on begins on e you impe ve giv e game n complet at ha yo that you ca new tige and a f pres for p e there’s a t t e an title. Koei seems to be content to let subsequent installments remain only in Japan. the at made od time ar ean swells is br and oc games th y for a go e crowd Before Koe historical s. but wha r annually and at it niche publ that Mothe known fo e on hand the way th i became awler. the ember of merchant m en cape young d valued . but it adds some depth that otherwise couldn’t have existed on the hardware. tions ex r e Three K y set narr ntrol of yo and revolu plot. two or thre even the an can throw releasing e greed of t really r Nature isher with Turkey. perhaps even broken. Try it soon and see for yourself.aids and ilors. though it for twice sugar purc ve ur investm x and sell double yo you also ha to Bordeau to north because Damn. the battle ends when the enemy agship is defeated (you can loot it and perhaps even add it to your eet) or when your own agship suffers a similar fate (game over for you!). At rst. Here you can turn a few hundred gold into a few thousand. The gambling mini-game is especially fun because your success or failure has a tangible impact on your in-game assets (something that even full..If the combat. onster in on actual gm u to focus slobberin me will be allows yo ga focus a uch of the narrative start with essive. or a merchant.. As notice en His grandf its former expedition . then why the heck are you here? as wind resistance and ocean currents. You don’t simply press and hold the button that matches the direction you want your ship to oat. you si s ts around st Your bald he just rything ett retty prett . Historically. Another intriguing component of the game is empire building. Time passes and supplies dwindle no matter what you’re doing.. 60_GRAVEYARD_UNCHARTED WATERS HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN 4_BLEEN UNCHARTED WATERS_GRAVEYARD_61 . Other nations may try to invest too. but early in the game you’ll probably value each and every member of your force and will prefer to attack from a distance instead. spreading your money around key stops on favorite routes allows you to haggle with marketplaces. limited ro the unconv on asons of out their s Nintendo. you set the compass bearing and then take a hands-off approach until it’s time to tweak your course yet again. even now with all of the competition the title faces. u’re partic . That’s u ss os gos ip yo and soldie ways erchants rn or the local tave pirates. ese ash to the e Portugu cutlass sl mbly. Your job port of Lisb r company l sailor fo of wealth n and a loya a mountai across former into n journeys build the e your ow g will nanc hile makin that ed seas (w is joined rate-infest on the pi l compani your loya ates). the string of historical brawlers we’ve instead received makes a poor substitute for the likes of Uncharted Waters. a d y mostly . Another complication is that you At least it’s not “ke ke ke!” can’t rely on the same transaction to hold equal value if you repeat it too often. so building up a slew of Portuguese ports can become a nice little side challenge. This mechanic forces you to explore other options if you want to remain pro table. Koei was able to add important elements such If that’s true. Instead. Uncharted Waters could almost have been released this year. d none of young . No one particularly cares whether you got that by selling stolen jewels or by legitimately distributing grain from Majorca.. Unc side proj s but perh ters could PG tells th charac of platform entional R les a handful ancestry. ther l he that freedo Efforts su the conclu d Samurai titles were n n an e and Much of ogue and e thrilling Warriors a’s Ambitio ening prol ent of som e Dynasty Nobunag from the op developm ay that th t. Unfortunately. lowed for uch the w se in poin left to the ca is in m and al excellent Your fate are today. As an added bonus. If you’ve built up a virtual army. in th l of gold begins hu nture handfu The adve ve only a is to on. Combat at close range is also possible. a w and neve glory.edged gambling video games don’t generally offer). Uncharted Waters offers diversionary poker and blackjack games at most ports. at. You All of the e a dogs an princess he scurvy se your way. nations nanced pirates to build their wealth and hold within the world. Positioning yourself next to your chosen rival allows you to unleash your swarthy crew. th . to pay for provisions to make the journey. If that’s not enough to excite you. The process is slightly passive and that’s punctuated by the fact that your vessel ashes from one map tile to the next rather than passing uidly along its course. barm in of rival sa ips of Spa attention ous warsh attract the utal winds ce the jeal e as you t br ’ll fa family nam d the mos rself. adventure. whereupon numbers and stats affect the outcome. Holding a full house or a ush and eecing your cheerful opponents of their wealth can mean a lot when it nances that next journey to Bordeaux or an upgrade for your ship. ance of th d and butte lack of an places co warlords ny’s brea e e’s no real early Rom u t ue to the m is due si n the Warriors the compa ch as the usion. there also are plenty of opportunities to battle the enemies of Portugal for a bit of variety and treasure. It’s easy to lose many enjoyable hours to its complexities without even realizing it. that exploration seems rough. For all of its strengths. too e of starva you will di gullet. that approach can work well. en ge ll all left up any in the PG than m a purer R sight!). That’s hase at Li ent. ntury.. Released tcast for re t on ber of way the Super ou en m on who is an society. For ld per sack e of 22 go ng on com enough si e pric not quite spent focu sbon at th . Eve o down to se ls else comes pick up at rs. aside from a single sequel. that. which in turn encourages actual exploration as you seek out the best trade routes.

.

The combat is fast-paced and rarely dull. When she (he?) is suddenly confronted with her own impending death. For example. Co-published by Eidos. Microsoft. I would never have guessed. This wonderfully bizarre caliber of writing is a rule with few exceptions. and the order of the actions is determined mostly by the speed statistic. but he feels it’s worth it. a division of Warner Bros. Some of them even have their own background stories that you’ll never discover if you don’t take time to explore the game. (s08) HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN . their world goes through drastic changes as the Pigmask army invades.lled. the newspaper’s headline changes after every small event in the game. It’s possible to land multiple hits in a single attack by pressing the A button in time with the monster’s musical theme. and 'Games for Windows' and the Windows Vista Start button logo are used under license from Microsoft. the main character Lucas (who English gamers will recognize from Smash Bros Brawl) befriends a mystical being who claims to be ageless and genderless.. and the Xbox logos are trademarks of the Microsoft group of companies. the Crystal Dynamics logo. there’s a newspaper sitting in a junk. fun. and sprites. likable characters. Interactive Entertainment. sad. Earthbound. A Nintendo translation would have been nice but the patch is nally available. some determined by Psychic Points (PP) and others being tool or skill based. In true RPG fashion it takes a while for the Pigmask’s schemes to be unveiled. Wii and Nintendo DS are trademarks of Nintendo. Tomb Raider. At the start of each round of combat you choose the commands for each playable character in the party. dilapidated house which many players understandably neglect to read. Tomb Raider: Underworld. In spite of its insigni cance. MOTHER 3 is a Gameboy Advance game done in the style of its SNES predecessor. All rights reserved. Publisher: Nintendo • Developer: HAL Laboratory • Genre: RPG • Category: Modern Bizarro • # Players: 1 • Rating :C ". "PLAYSTATION" and "PS" Family logo are registered trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. but in a simple rather than simplistic fashion. but who dresses and talks like a 45-year-old drag queen. so now there’s no reason to miss what should have been a true classic entry in the GBA’s library. which itself was an NES throwback. not his cohorts! Forget Japan. No. especially when using the music beat system. The glassy-eyed NPC. and Warner Bros. What’s important is that this a good gaming. "PlayStation". with most characters having distinct names. Home Entertainment Inc. and the Eidos logo are trademarks of Eidos Interactive Limited. is nowhere to be found. The rating icon is a registered trademark of the Entertainment Software Association. Windows. zippy combat.pushes adventure gameplay – not just graphics . Developed by Crystal Dynamics Inc. She is then abruptly carried away by the wind like a piece of paper. Each character has a set of unique abilities." – PlayStation® The Official Magazine ER OA Mother 3 (Earthbound 2) 64_GAMES AMERICA FORGOT_MOTHER 3 by reid young Tomb Raider: Underworld © Eidos Interactive Limited 2008. although guring out the beat takes a good ear and steady rhythm. and vibrant world combine in a perfect example of RPG goodness. The English stuff you’ve never heard about. Everyone approaches Mr. For example. a staple of literally every RPG in existence. this is European and fan-translated gaming. personalities.By reid young There comes a point where you’ve got to stop wondering if a game is retro and just kick back and enjoy it. charming. Xbox 360. but there’s no shortage of dungeons and combat to keep things going while the plot comes to a boil. Eidos. but when an RPG is as cute.to new levels. Battle is fairly basic. the Windows Vista Start button. It gets a bit annoying sometimes. Inc. MOTHER 3 is lled with little touches like this that bring its world to life. Xbox. WBIE LOGO. and touching as MOTHER 3 it doesn’t really matter. Entertainment Inc. Crab for his wisdom. MOTHER 3 follows the story of a family living in a peaceful village that’s in for a rude awakening. A standard attack is usually the most effective. Xbox LIVE. WB SHIELD: ™ & © Warner Bros. she quietly accepts her fate and offers Lucas an encouraging speech. “Retro” doesn’t begin to cover it. but what makes the MOTHER series such a standout is its story. As the story switches from the viewpoint of one character to another during the opening chapters.. The Games America Forgot. Crystal Dynamics. ©2006 Nintendo. MOTHER 3’s “Fan Translation” team stumbled across dozens of such secrets during the two years they spent hacking the game. though. The excellent story.

com Score: 4. And as you would expect. . All rights reserved. When enemies appear on the screen. but using it requires pinpoint accuracy and timing as you only get one shot to get it right when a small red targeting diamond appears on the screen. Rambo features all of the carnage and rage that you could want. As you shoot down enemies the gauge lls. STANDING UP FOR THOSE AROUND YOU IS ARMY STRONG. rst with a movie released earlier this year and now with the release of a new arcade light-gun title by Sega. where gameplay feels slightly different due to differences in the guns. and when full you hit a button on the gun to activate your Rage. STANDING UP FOR YOURSELF IS STRONG. SCARF. On some occasions you even get to use the infamous crossbow with the explosive-tip arrows. This game is already starting to trickle into arcades in the US and Europe. There’s strong. tes Ar r igh ght h ht serv d e d. Staff Sergeant Jeremy Mutart ©20 ©2007 aid for by he ©2007. BAKER. but it doesn’t live up to the already three-year-old House of the Dead 4 that runs on the same hardware. Chuck Norris and of course. And then there’s Army Strong. You need to take them down quickly to avoid taking damage. One other game feature is the ‘Rage Gauge’.com. Sylvester Stallone in Rambo. so keep an eye out for it or ask your local operator to pick it up if they don’t have it. Find out more at goarmy.Review by Adam Pratt of ArcadeHeroes. While the object of the game is nothing new: shoot them before they shoot you.com The 80s was the time of the ‘beefcake macho soldier’ movie genre that was defined by movies featuring people like Arnold Schwarzenegger. which is strange considering that the newest lm came out well in advance of the release of this game. Sega’s Rambo uses actual movie clips from the series at certain parts in gameplay as it documents Rambo’s one man war and the dif culty in dealing with the pain that he suffered through war and its aftermath. The graphics are decent for the game. There are two versions of f the game. Paid for by the United S ates Army. such as when when Rambo wrestles with another soldier. The sound and gameplay make up for it though as it’s a real blast to play when the volume is turned up. and also include force feedback. This plays straight into the Rambo ‘god mode’ cliché and it’s so much fun that you might accidentally yell out the war cry yourself. as the guns are larger and ‘manlier’ than the standard version. 20 id fo it ite it Stat s Army.5 of 5 Publi sher : Sega • De Genr velop e: L er : S ight-g ega un • Gateg # Pla ory: K yers: 1 ill ‘em -2 • Relea all! se Da te: 10/ 2008 66_ARCADE_RAMBO JONES PINBALL 66_ARCADE_INDIANA HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 4_BLEEN HARDCORE GAMER MAGAZINE_VOLUME 4_ISSUE 3_TOM. ll ight reserved. To tie everything together. and doing so rewards the player for both accuracy and timing. and you become temporarily invincible and armed with ini nte ammo. as they are powered by Sega’s PC-based Lindbergh hardware. By Adam Pratt of ArcadeHeroes. a timer will also appear near their heads to show you when they are taking aim. The game starts with First Blood and ends with Rambo 3. This targeting systems also shows up for a few non-crossbow situations. Rambo belts out his war cry. also called Rambo. The strength that comes from not just changing your life but changing the lives of others. The deluxe version ts better into the Rambo mold because of this. The 26” LCD version uses the same guns found on House of the Dead 4 and the 62” DLP version uses the same guns found on Ghost Squad. While the 80s are long gone the Rambo legacy continues to chug along today.

Intel Corporation. . Intel logo and Intel Core are trademarks of Intel Corporation in the U. INTEL. A NEW KIND OF GEAR FOR A NEW KIND OF ATHLETE.COM/GO/GAMING ©2008.DOES BEING IN THE ZONE MAKE YOU AN ATHLETE? The incredible multi-threaded Intel® Core™2 Extreme quad-core processor. Intel. All rights reserved.S. and other countries.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful