Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix

The Street Fighter universe is populated by numerous excellent games, most famously (for many) Street Fighter II, but several interesting spin-off games have spawned from the core fighting genre. One of the best examples is this game, Super Puzzle Fighter (with a title that maintains the Street Fighter penchant for increasingly mental nomenclature), a game reminiscent of classic puzzle games like Tetris.

The game involves the usual tray that collects shapes dropped at regular intervals from a mystical sky. In this game, they are dropped in pairs comprised of a combination of two main types of element: a basic square block, which can be one of four colours, and reactive, shimmering circles, also one of four colours. At its most simple level, blocks can be removed by positioning a shimmering circle next to blocks of matching colour. The more blocks that are destroyed, the more get sent to your opponent. Of course, things get far more interesting as soon as you realise that you can cause a chain reaction by positioning a reactive circle so that, following the destruction of one set of coloured shapes, the circle will be put in contact with a block to set off a second reaction. What follows is a nerve-wracking balance between setting up extraordinary combos and making sure your blocks don't rise too high. The risk is that your best-laid plans could, at any time, be blocked by shapes dropped from your opponent's side.

Super Puzzle Fighter II

The puzzling is well balanced, as all good puzzle games should be, and the available depth resulting from the ability to use chains gives the game a serious and enjoyable tactical edge. The only small downside on the gameplay side of things is that, just like Tetris, it's sometimes best not to make a good start, since the blocks handed to you often lend themselves to a stronger counter attack. Slightly frustratingly, the best way to play is to start slowly and prepare a single finishing blow.

Actually, finishing blow is a fairly apt term in this game. Puzzle Fighter's novelty is that, in a similar way to Mario automatically traversing a platform level as you play Tetris, Street Fighter characters, such as Chun Li and Ken, fight it out as you play, producing moves of severity matching the effectiveness of your attacks in terms of blocks. The characters are very cartoony (moving away from the more-realistic forms seen in Street Fighter), but it fits with the overally cutesy puzzler feel. As a result, the graphics aren't advanced in anyway, but it's all very bright and cheerful, doing the job adequately enough. The sound is of similar quality, doing the job, but not breaking any records. Each character has their own themed arena, with a related tune playing, inter-mixed with various hitting noises and taunts cast by the opposing combatants.

Super Puzzle Fighter II

The game's strength of course, doesn't lie with technological prowess, but it doesn't matter, since the puzzling element doesn't suffer as a result. What's more, the game actually comes with an online versus competitive mode and offline multiplayer modes that really add a huge amount of value to this title. It's a shame there doesn't appear to be 4-player online support, but for the occasional 2-player online encounter, the game does the job very well.

Puzzle Fighter hasn't a huge amount of competition from any console, though it will always be compared with classics such as Tetris. Given the cost (it's a cheap Store title), it's certainly worth a look, particularly if this is your sort of game. If you've decided that you don't like thighs as big as Chun Li's, or you can't stand falling blocks, then perhaps give it a miss, but for everyone else, this is a great addition to the store.

Game details

Game logo

Publisher:

Capcom

Developer:

Capcom

Players:

1-2

Online:

1-2

Release:

2008-06-26

Trophies:

0

Review summary

Gameplay:

Brilliantly addictive multiplayer puzzling

Graphics:

Very basic but they do the job

Sound:

Also simplistic, but reasonable

Lastability:

The multiplayer keeps this going

7.7

Volcanic

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