New in the Arcade: Street Fighter II Turbo: Hyper Fighting

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Street Fighter II Turbo: Hyper FightingThe biggest fighting game franchise ever, Street Fighter, picks up the pace with Street Fighter II Turbo: Hyper Fighting. Choose from twelve unique challengers and take a trip around the world with one ultimate goal: Conquer the World Warrior tournament!

Capcom didn’t have much need for a deep story when it came to producing the Street Fighter series, but over the years the details started to fill in. At this point, though, it was mostly about the character that you thought was the coolest. Do you respect Ryu’s stoic presence, Ken’s flashy moves, Chun-Li’s lightning-fast kicks, or Blanka’s wild style? Or, do you show your dark side by choosing to play as one of the game’s four villainous boss characters? Whatever your decision, you’re immediately on a plane to a variety of destinations across the globe. Face Guile on a military base in the U.S., Zangief in a Soviet factory, Dhalsim in a temple in India, or E. Honda in a bathhouse in Japan – the game lives up to its name, so be ready to fight anywhere and everywhere! It all leads up to the final showdown with the big boss M. Bison on the streets of Thailand, a challenge that demands many coins and continues to this day. Bored of watching someone else play or want to prove to your friend they can’t take your Vega? Drop a quarter in at any time and challenge them!

Those familiar with Street Fighter II and the follow-up Street Fighter II: Champion Edition will feel immediately at home here, as SF2 Turbo is really just an official souped-up SF2: CE. At a basic level, moving your player around with the joystick (simply pointing upward to jump) and landing a range of punches and kicks with 6 attack buttons is extremely easy to grasp. But the series’ real innovation is special moves, allowing you to throw fireballs, defy gravity with spinning kicks, shock your opponent, and even teleport. This particular entry’s primary innovation is just cranking up the speed, so quick reflexes and precise timing are even more essential whether you’re taking on the single-player campaign or going head-to-head with an arcade rival. The game is both fan service and intellectual property protection, as it was developed and released in response to widespread SF2 bootlegs and fan hacks. The people wanted bigger, better and faster Street Fighter, and they couldn’t wait!

Luckily, Capcom learned quickly that sometimes the players make the game. While the Street Fighter series can sometimes seem frustratingly good at milking multiple sub-and-pseudo-sequels from each numbered entry, the series is a smash for a reason. Countless fighting games were heavily inspired by SF (with SNK’s Fighters’ History notoriously toeing the line between imitation and inspiration), and the 6-button configuration became the gold standard in arcades (and fighting sticks produced for home use). It wasn’t until Midway’s 1993 release of Mortal Kombat that another fighting franchise really took a noticeable shot at Capcom’s throne with a intentionally unique approach. Twenty-plus years later, Street Fighter is still the king, and Street Fighter II Turbo: Hyper Fighting is still one of the best fighting games of all-time!