Tale of the Tape: Two Very Different Fighting Games

As I sit down to write this on my brand new ASUS ROG gaming laptop, I am starting to feel a change in my gaming lifestyle. Over the years I’ve always thought of myself as more of a console gamer, and even though I dabbled on the occasional PC game from time to time, I never was able to see why people preferred to play more on PC.

Then I tested Fallout 4 on my laptop, and my opinion of PC gaming started to change. After being able to play at 1080p resolution on medium to high settings, reaching frame rates of between 30 and 60 frames per second, I was instantly hooked.

Same with going through XCOM 2 again on a more capable system. Yes, it still had its issues and bugs as when I played it on the old laptop, but in the end the experience was much smoother. Lastly today I made my first ever full price Steam purchase with Far Cry Primal, so I’ll be giving that a run through to see how it works out. I’m hoping for the best.

It’s scary, that with the exception of what this column is about, that I have not played either the Xbox One nor the PlayStation 4 since the laptop arrived. Granted some of that time was spent going to MAGFest and recovering from illness and car trouble, but even so I was playing more on PC. Does this mean that I am converting over to the so-called “PC Master Race” and leaving consoles behind for good? Of course not. I will still be covering games on both the Xbox One and the PS4, but it does mean I will continue to broaden my horizons.

And I will do that right now. Let’s get back into the console side of things. My history of trying to play Street Fighter V since its release has been a rocky one. A few weeks ago I finally gave in and traded in my Xbox 360 to eStarland. With many of the games I owned being carried over to the Xbox One via backward compatibility, I looked at my 360 and thought “why do I still have this?” So in the end after trading the console in and whatever physical games I still had for it (with the exception of Fallout 3 and a few other discs that were backwards compatible,) I ended up with about $100 in store credit. A week before SF V was supposed to come out, I ordered $75 in PlayStation Network cards, a result of me refusing to put my credit card on the PSN servers after the hack a few years ago. However, that turned out to be a mistake, as the ever so responsible (and I’m saying that very sarcastically) United States Postal Service lost that shipment, despite them listing it as delivered. The case is still under investigation as of now and I’m hoping to get it resolved soon. But in the end the cards I was going to use to get SF V were lost, and I wasn’t able to pre-download the game.

Thankfully Gamefly came to the rescue, and shortly after my return from MAGFest, they were able to send it to me. However, trouble with my car (which turned out to be a corroded ground wire) caused me to live at work for a week and I wasn’t able to get home and play the game until my week was over. The first experience I had playing it was this Wednesday morning, and despite hearing all the negative press about the game, particularly in what was in it, I still wanted to give it a try.

Wow, they were not kidding about how much was in the game, especially on the single player side of things. Starting my story mode with Ryu (which I’m going to say right now, with the still images and voiceover looks far more inferior to the anime and in-game cutscenes of Ultra SF IV,) I finished his part of the story in less than 10 minutes. Yes, TEN MINUTES! I couldn’t believe it. That’s how shallow this game was as far as single player content is concerned. Yes, I know I still have the story modes for all the other characters as well, but with getting them done, all at 100 percent, I am sure the game would only last…TWO HOURS! Even worse, when I tried to check out other options such as the in-game store, I am greeted with a simple pop up notification saying “this will be available after the March update.”

ARE YOU KIDDING ME? You make this epic announcement stating how Street Fighter V is going to be a console exclusive on PlayStation 4, have all this hype leading up to the launch, including several betas for those who pre-ordered the game, and this is what you come up with? And worse of all, you have the audacity to charge the game at FULL PRICE? This is more of a beta/early access game that actual early access games I played such as Elite Dangerous and Ark, only those were PRICED as preview games, not a full $60! And now Capcom says they are “considering” an Arcade Mode for the game? Well that’s just nice and thoughtful of you, considering that arcade modes have been available since, I don’t know…WHEN FIGHTING GAMES WERE FIRST RELEASED! This is Marvel Vs. Capcom 3 all over again. You just watch. Four months from now Capcom will release “Street Fighter V Complete” for $60. I’m calling it right now.

I was able to play something else yesterday. Mortal Kombat XL was also released. Yes, I went through Mortal Kombat X, and I still speak positive about the game to this day. But XL, and its accompanying Kombat Pack XL and Kombat Pack 2 (which I purchased) added four new characters to the game: Bo’Rai Cho, Leatherface (from the Texas Chainsaw Massacre films,) Alien (from, uh, the Alien franchise) and the surprisingly good Tri-Borg, which is basically three separate characters in itself. In addition, pit fatalities finally make a return, as well as new skins for original characters, and for those who didn’t get him on Day 1, Goro is now playable. I know it doesn’t sound like much compared to a full release like Street Fighter V, but with the new characters, I actually enjoyed my playtime with Mortal Kombat XL even more.

And why is that, you may ask? It’s because Mortal Kombat X as it stood without the expansion, already had tons of VALUE! The constantly revolving Living Towers still keep the game fresh almost a year later. Plus, going through a much longer arcade mode tower four more times to see the new endings feels a lot better than playing through three to five quick matches and being finished with all the characters in two hours.

And how much did I spend for Kombat Pack 2? $20! So I ask you, Capcom. Do you value?

Currently Playing: Far Cry Primal (PC,) XCOM 2 (PC,) Fallout 4 (PC,) Mortal Kombat XL (Xbox One)

Waiting For: The Division (Xbox One)

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