The Vita is nothing if it’s a not a device that can port console-quality to a convenient pocket-sized version. It’s proven that it’s up to that task with “Little Big Planet Vita,” “MLB ‘12 The Show,” and now with “Street Fighter X Tekken” (“SFXT”).
Let’s get this out of the way firstly: Yes, “SFXT” for the Vita feels identical to its console counterpart. The look, gameplay, and sound, transferred nearly flawlessly, making cross-platform online play a reality. Having said this, this does limit its audience to people who were fans of the original console version. If you weren’t a fan of this fighting mash-up before, this mobile version isn’t going to change your thoughts.
While gameplay is unchanged, the compact nature of the Vita’s buttons does take some getting used to. Even after I made it past the learning curve, I don’t think I’ll ever be used to the pain it caused my left hand. The left stick moves, and the left shoulder button is an important one. Those buttons being so close together makes for some tricky finger movements, and occasional cramping.
Both front and rear touchpads are thrown into the mix too. They are helpful when needing some extra, non-physical buttons to press. The four quadrants of the screen act as buttons. They can be hotkeyed to a combo for your favorite character, or can be mapped like any other button. I found myself preferring the virtual buttons compared the hard-to-reach, left shoulder button.
The Vita version includes the entire console version’s character DLC at no additional cost, granting a whopping 55-character roster. To add to the freebies, Capcom included 38 alternate costumes. This makes this an attractive purchase for big fans of the game that are also Vita owners.
There are other subtle differences added onto this pocket-sized fighter. The KO Monument is a unique and new feature that chronicles your online prowess. Defeating more foes adds to your monument. However, I found that winning online is no easy task on a game that has been out for this long. Most of the people I ran into were clearly the hardest of the hardcore fight fans that bodied me before Cammy could exclaim, "Spiral arrow!"
Cross Platform play is the game's standout feature. This makes it possible to play PS3 users with flawless online functionality. It feels as if you're playing someone locally, which is essential for a fighter that requires pinpoint accuracy. Syncing trophies between the PS3 and Vita is fast and easy.
Other than that, this is the same game we saw months ago. I loved it then, and I continue to be fond of Capcom’s work with it. It still has the annoyances like matches that habitually time-out due to the short round time, and the useless activation of “Pandora Mode,” but the core fighting action remains on this pocket version.
For my review of the console version, you can check it out here.
8.5 out of 10
Lossless fighting action compared to its console counterpart
Cross platform play provides a large online community
Comes with character and costume DLC
Buttons and sticks come with a learning curve
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