We can debate if X-Men versus Street Fighter should be considered a classic game, but for fans of the Capcom versus series there is no doubt this game made an impression when it arrived in arcades during the spring of 1996.
Street Fighter versus X-men was the third game to feature Marvel characters. The game pits X-man versus X-man and street fighter versus street fighter in a tag-team battle system. When I first laid my eyes on this game I was hooked and spent many hours and many more quarters perfecting my team of Gambit and Ken.
The game was perfect for the arcade with its fast style, multiple combos and special moves. One of the good things about the game was if you played any of the other Capcom fighting games it was an easy transition and even if you didn’t many of the basic moves and specials were not hard to learn and pull off. However, to chain together moves and perform aerial combos took practice.
Graphically the game was nothing out of this world, by then other games had come along with better looking graphics, but the point of XSF was gameplay. XFS had a comic book look to it from the design of the characters to the animation of the moves and background. The sound was also decent offering remix versions of themes from the Street Fighter series and prior Marvel related fighting games made by Capcom.
During the single player game you would fight a series of teams consisting of both X-Men and Street Fighter characters, when you got to the last two fights you went up again the team of M. Bison and Magneto and then the big daddy boss, Apocalypse. The sad thing about Apocalypse was he was so easy to beat it was a joke he had like three moves all easily block-able or avoidable. His strongest attack was his mega drill which you could super jump over to avoid. After you turned the big A into melted goo you had to fight your partner. What was funny was sometimes that was the hardest fight and to lose to your partner was a series humiliation. (Not that it ever happened to me mind you)
The line up for the X-men was Cyclops, Gambit, Rogue, Storm, Juggernaut, Sabretooth, Magneto and Wolverine. For the Street Fighters it was Ryu, Ken, Cammy, Chun-Li, Charlie, Zangief, Dhalsim, M.Bison and Akuma.
Some felt there were cheap moves and combos to the game. It was possible to perform some wicked aerial combos and finish off your opponent with a double special, but overall if you learned you character you could do well even with some of the weaker ones like Storm and Dhalsim.
When X-Men versus Street fighter game came to the Playstation it was gutted due to the memory limitations of the console. They took out many of the animations and there was noticeable slowdown, but the worst was the removal of the tag mode which just killed the game. On the other hand the Sega Saturn’s version was pretty much a perfect arcade port.
We all know games like Marvel versus Capcom came after with lots of fanfare, but for me there will always be a warm place in my heart for XSF. When the game showed up at my local laundry I had the cleanest clothes in town for many months.
So I finally got my video setup working so this is me actually playing the game. Don’t worry we will have better videos and intros in the future, but hey, first one!