Capcom and Namco Bandai come together with the aim of delivering the ultimate fighting game, one designed to delight followers of both series’ while picking up new fans along the way. Capcom is no stranger to the crossover concept, with its characters clashing with those from Marvel and Tatsunoko for a few years now, but it has never been able to take on its chief rival until now.
There is an equal balance of Street Fighter and Tekken characters but the game leans more towards the Street Fighter style of combat while still incorporating the Tekken tag and manual throws. It can get confusing at times and can feel like the developer has just mashed the two titles together without thinking too much about the gameplay.
A few new modes have been added to mix up the gameplay a bit, which helps to make it appear fresh. Unlike previous games, you do not cycle through characters on your team when they get knocked out. Instead you lose if one of your fighters falls. This is probably the most annoying part. You have a whole gang of characters to use, so why oh why can’t you use them all to finish the round?
Gem and Pandora modes add different boosts and can assist in overcoming tricky opponents by lending you that extra something to get you through. There are two different types of gems: boost and assist. Boost gems increase your speed, power, attack and defense in a match and are activated through certain combos. Assist gems give auto blocks and cancels and are triggered automatically. This does cost some on your cross gauge but if you need it, it is there. Some of the gems are only usable in Pandora mode.
Pandora acts as your final fail safe, offering you ten seconds in which to defeat your opponent. You can choose one fighter from your roster with unlimited cross gauge. This can be a good way to win but if the opponent is good at blocking and evading attacks it may not be effective.
The introduction of these new components means the game often loses its challenge. This, combined with the fact that the match ends when only one of your fighters is defeated, leads to extremely short and repetitive clashes. This is incredibly frustrating and it could so easily be rectified. Looking at gems from a strategy point of view, it could allow less experienced players to have more of a chance against difficult opponents, but overall this doesn’t add anything to the game for veterans.
Playing online can get a little clunky as most fighting games do, but the real let down here is the lack of multiplayer options. There are ranked battles where you can play by yourself or in co-op. Endless Battle is set in a lobby where players fight each other while the crazy (and at times intense) Scramble Battle sees four players on the screen at the same time engage in an all in team fight.
Street Fighter X Tekken doesn’t have much to offer outside of the novelty of seeing the characters and gameplay of the individual franchises combined. It feels rushed and just smashed together in the hope of a good outcome. This title may please some hardcore fans of the series, but many gamers, including most outsiders, will find it dull and repetitive.