Gameplay, Story and Value:
Super Street Fighter II is an updated version of Capcom’s Street Fighter II fighting game which adds four new playable characters, most notably Cammy, to the game. It’s also one of the few games on the Sega Genesis which makes full use of a 6-button controller.
For me personally, that last bit is of particular interest as I grew up with the understanding that fighting games were meant to be played on the SNES thanks to its more versatile controller. This belief was due in no small part to my never having a 6-button Genesis controller as a kid. Now that I have a couple, it was kind of a neat experience playing a Street Fighter game on the Genesis, though I think I still prefer a SNES controller…
On the topic of controls, Super SF2 handles just as well here as it does anywhere else, which is pretty good. A, B and C initiate a light, mid and strong kick while X, Y and Z are for light, mid and strong punches. Holding back will block attacks and each character has a variety of special moves. While the controls were fine, I couldn’t help but notice how slow this version of the game is compared to, say, Street Fighter II Turbo. Having an option to adjust speed would have been really great. Still, everything was smooth and responsive.
Character selection is good, providing options for different playstyles. I’ve always preferred the all-around balanced style of Ryu but there’s still a lot of fun to be had experimenting with other fighters.
In addition to the traditional arcade mode, Super SF2 also has standard versus options in addition to a cool tournament mode.
Presentation, Music and Sound:
Visuals are good for the most part, though some stages clearly had more effort put into them than others. There’s also some noticeable framerate fluctuation, though never enough to actually hinder gameplay. Fighters all look distinct from each other both in their character sprites and fighting animations, and special attacks all look great. The stages are all animated in some way or another and add a lot of personality to the game.
Music and sound effects are all great, and the classic tunes and digitized “Hadouken!”s still hold up, but everything in the game sounds somewhat low quality. The music is muddy and voices are scratchy. I don’t know if it’s the Genesis version specifically or just the game. Honestly I’d have to remind myself if it sounds like this across all 16-bit versions of Street Fighter, but either way it’s too bad.
Street Fighter is one of my favorite fighting game series of all time, and that’s thanks in no small part to me growing up with the 16-bit console versions of the game. Sure, Street Fighter Alpha 3, Street Fighter 3rd Strike, Ultra Street Fighter IV and soon Street Fighter V are all leagues better than this classic, but SF2 just holds up so well as a fighting game that I really don’t mind playing it at all, and still feel it has a charm all its own.
As for the “Super” iteration, aside from the inclusion of Cammy I don’t think I really like anything about this one more than Street Fighter II Turbo. It’s a fine game by itself, but you can’t help but notice how slow it is compared to future versions.
Final thought, this version of the game for the Genesis totally should have been called Mega Street Fighter II…