Powerstone Review

Introduction
A friend of mine (thanks Maz!) told me about this new upcoming game for the Dreamcast by Capcom, which as most of you will know, was responsible for the Street Fighter anthology of fighting games.

Most of you might deride Capcom (and rightly so) for dropping the ball when they so clearly had the lead in fighting games, and allowed Sega/Namco/Square to advance the genre with 3D-polygon based games, such as the Virtua Fighter, Tekken and Tobal series.

"... the screenshots of the game looked pretty impressive, showcasing Dreamcast’s ability to handle explosions, transparencies and incredibly detailed 3D stages"

But not me. The SF fighting system remained highly enjoyable for me. I remained loyal to the series, all the way from SF2: World Warrior, through Champion Edition, Turbo: Hyper Fighting, Super SF2: The New Challengers, Super SF2 Turbo, SF Alpha, SF Alpha 2, to SF3 (and its various incarnations). Even Capcom’s attempt to extrude SF into 3D, SF EX, was great fun to play (OK, the graphics were nothing to write home about).

Along the way, I also dabbled in X-Men vs SF, Marvel Super Heroes vs SF and Marvel vs Capcom but couldn’t really get the hang of the slightly modified SF engine.

Screenshot from Dimension-S

When I was told of the all-new Capcom game, I was a little skeptical when I realised there was no Ryu nor Ken* in it.

I had tried playing Star Gladiators (developed for the arcades on Playstation hardware, and later released on the Playstation), which was one of Capcom’s attempts to move away from the SF engine and concoct a new fighting system, but wasn’t too impressed with the game.

*yes, I am one of "those" players who just never learned to play any of the characters.

At one stage, when I had the SNES, I ventured to master some of the other characters, but I always felt they all lacked the cool factor, and always reverted to my stalwart Ryu/Ken.

PS I avoided the Van Damme SF movie which tried to use Guile to carry forward the movie, but loved the Japanese anime movie, which placed the eternal conflict between Ryu and Ken as the central theme. That’s my bias.! =)

Still, the screenshots of the game looked pretty impressive, showcasing Dreamcast’s ability to handle explosions, transparencies and incredibly detailed 3D stages, and tempted me to part with S$85 (US$1 S$1.7) to be one of the first to own the game. After all, I figured, the only other way I could play this game was in the arcades (released on Sega’s arcade Naomi chipset) and it wasn’t likely it would arrive in Singapore shores anytime soon.

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