An Introduction to the USFIV Omega Mode Characters: Part 2
Wussup guys? If you're hype for OMEGA Mode -- I know you are -- then you're in luck as Ayano-san sent over a ton of new information on many changes to the character's attacks! Hit the jump to check out the new moves, a recap of the "Wild Costumes" and Capcom Pro Tour Asia from Game Start 2014 in Singapore!
Hey everyone, Tomoaki Ayano here!
Last week I was in Singapore for the video game expo GameStart 2014. As you might have heard, we showed off some new costumes there, so today Id like to talk about those and also bring you Part 2 of the Ultra SFIV Omega Edition introduction. First up, more Omega character info!
Gigaton Blow: A powerful EX follow-up to Balrogs EX Dash Straight.
The Gigaton Blow uses three bars of EX meter, so youll need full meter to pull it off after an EX Dash Straight. Maybe this could be just the move you need when you want to put your opponent down for the count...
You cant really hit-confirm it, so youll have to think of good ways to land it.
Horn Breaker: A command throw.
Balrog goes all-in with head blows. You could call this a special move version of his Dirty Bull. It dishes out quite a bit of stun.
Balrog also has new options for his close and long range attacks, making him into a more aggressive character.
My inspiration: A wild bull with giant horns.
Rose Thorn: A new variation that can be triggered from Vegas Barcelona Attack. As the name suggests, this is a sharp, dangerous kick move. It can be performed after flying over an opponents head, making it a difficult move to read. You might get hated on for using it. Heh heh.
Ryu: Is this gonna be the throw? Or the claw attack?!
Vega: Rose Thorn!
Crimson Crucify: A version of EX Rolling Crystal Flash that uses two bars of EX meter. This is a rushing multi-hit move that does big damage.
Though Vega mainly specializes in single-poke attacks, now he has a multi-hit combo that does big damage too.
We always conceptualized Vega as a character who is strong in the air, so we wanted to expand on that concept.
My inspiration: An even thornier Vega.
Tiger Raid: A kick combo that finishes with a powerful flying kick. This is very similar to the move from the Alpha series.
This move can be linked from a medium kick, so if youve got the meter you can look for ways to hit it after one of those. And since it sends the enemy flying, you can use it to help push your opponent into a corner too.
Sagat also has target combos and feint moves, making him a character who can use his legs pretty freely. And with his projectile he can keep up the pressure at both close and long range.
My inspiration: Sagat going beyond the title of The Emperor of Muy Thai!
Psycho Crusher Omega: A more powerful version of the Psycho Crusher that uses two EX bars. After hitting his opponent with the Psycho Crusher, M. Bison can pound his enemy with an uppercut for an explosion of Psycho Power!
After the hit he even gets his trademark pose in! This also counts as a hit!
Psycho Sever: A new movethe fierce and EX versions give Bison the overhead he's always wanted.
Now you can repeatedly pressure your opponents with Double Knee Presses, and then break through their defenses with the Psycho Sever.
The properties of Bisons existing moves have been changed, and with new command normal and special moves youll have fresh new ways to play Bison!
My inspiration: The evolution of a dictator!
During the forward-moving kick version of Ashura Senku, use two bars of EX meter for another version of the Shun Goku Satsu. Trick opponents into thinking its a normal Ashura Senku, then hit them with a surprise attack!
There have been many changes and additions to Akumas EX moves, starting with Hyakkishu. Try some of them out and it wont take long for you to discover that youve got a completely different Akuma on your hands.
My inspiration: Akuma having a lot of things to do in the air!
A striking attack that can be used in combos. It doesnt have a whole lot of reach but it comes out fast and doesnt cause a lot of pushback, making it easy to use in combos. You can also use it together with EX Focus Cancels to create various new combos.
Pictured above is the EX version. Its not only powerful, but also causes crumple stun.
Now you can send Goukens EX Hadoken flying in three different directions depending on your button combinations. You can use this in combos, and its also good for keeping your opponent in check.
Goukens versatility has really improved. Take a good look at all of his moves and choose the play style thats right for you.
My inspiration: Gouken with a stronger ground game!
EX Sonic Boom
EX Sonic Boom stays still on the screen for a bit before flying towards the opponent. I guess you could call it a set-up move.
Follow after it to apply the pressure, or...
Use a Yoga Teleport while the Boom is holding to teleport behind the opponent for a mix-up.
And theres a new special move toothe Chariot Tackle! Use it for new combos!
Seth has always had a lot of moves, so weve balanced them to make them easier to use.
My inspiration: Seth coming at you from both the ground and the air.
So, are you getting a clearer picture of what Omega Edition is all about? All 44 characters are getting changes that will further emphasize their individuality. Next week well be covering Abel, Viper, Fuerte, Rufus, Cammy, Fei Long, Dee Jay, and T-Hawk. The theme is New ChallengersSFIV/SFII!
Now, to change gears a bit, at GameStart 2014 in Singapore we showed off the Wild series of costumes. The animal-themed costumes in SFxT were a hit, so were bringing that theme over to USFIV. Lets take a closer look at the five characters we showed at the event!
This is Ryu.
A Japanese-style wolf. Just perfect for the lone wolf that is Ryu.
Heres Cammy as a fox.
The English-style clothing goes well with the fox look.
Like me, you may have no idea who this is when you first see it, but take a closer look and youll realize that its Dudley. The bulldog look really brings out his aggressiveness.
The goat version of Gen.
The goat look preserves the image of an old warrior, and his chilling stare is a kind of scary. This costume suits Gens background as an assassin, dont you think?
And last but not least, octopus Hakan!
So Hakan is all about being oily and slippery. We were thinking, What animal goes best with that...? And everyone unanimously agreed on an octopus! Heh heh.
And once he oils up, hes going to be even more octopus-like! I love it!
We still havent finalized the release date for Omega Edition, but as soon as we do well be sure to let you know.
Speaking of GameStart 2014, we held the Capcom Cup Asia Pro Tour finals there. Taking the crown was none other than Japans own Daigo Umehara.
Oh yeahcheck out the picture below of the huge USFIV LCD display that was in the events escalator hall! Pretty cool, huh?
Anyway, thatll do it for this week. Next week well bring you more new Omega Edition info. See you then!
Regarding the USFIV Vega Bug
Hey all, with the recent release of version patch 1.03, a new issue involving Vega has surfaced which may affect the experience of our players. Firstly, I'd like to apologize and secondly let you all know that we're working hard on a fix which we expect to be released by the end of the year.
Continue on for a description of the issue and how to resolve it if happens while you're playing.
EDIT: This post has been edited with even more detail on how to recover from the various bug states.
If an airborne opponent trades attacks with Vega as he performs Rolling Izuna Drop after the Flying Barcelona Special Super Combo it causes the opponent to become frozen in mid-air, unable to move. Depending upon timing, there are also instances in which Vega himself is also rendered unable to move.
This issue currently affects those who are PS3, XBox360, and Steam.
For those who are affected, please follow the recovery steps below in order to get back to enjoying USFIV as quickly as possible:
- If one player is frozen and Vega is not, have Vega hit the frozen character to unfreeze them.
- If both players are frozen:
- And you're offline, pause the game and quit back to the main menu, before a time over occurs, otherwise you will have to press either the PS Button or Xbox Guide Button to quit the game entirely.
- And you're online, wait for the match to time out. Approximately three minutes after that, you will be ushered to the next round. If this occurs in the final round, you will be taken to the results screen as normal. You are not disconnected from your opponent on PS3 or Xbox 360, unlike PC where your connection is cut from the opponent.
As of this writing, we have determined what causes the issue, but fixing it will take some time. We are working toward having a fix implemented by the end of the year and will continue to update users when progress has been made.
Once again, please accept our apologies on the matter and thank you for your continued support of Ultra Street Fighter IV.
Street Fighters in UFC
What if your favorite Street Fighters were real people who could take on the world's best from the UFC and had to solely rely on their martial arts to win? According to Bryan Lee, he thinks this would result in some pretty interesting fights and has went as so far as to draw some of the greatest UFC fighters going up against the legendary SF warriors. Continue over to Vice to see the rest of Bryan Lee's amazing art.
An Introduction to the USFIV Omega Edition Characters: Part 1
A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of announcing the completely free and new update coming in the future which will give you all access to Omega Edition of all 44 characters in USFIV. What I didn't give you however, was information on the characters and what attacks you can expect to see.
That's all going to change today however, as the blog today breaks down the Omega Editions of the initial World Warriors. Be sure to check back weekly, as we unveil more and more of the Omega Edition Characters.
Hey everyone, Tomoaki Ayano here!
Winter is finally here. It seems like we just breezed through fall (um, no pun intended), but here I am still wearing a T-shirt. Maybe its time to break out the sweaters...
Anyway, starting this week, and for about the next seven weeks, Id like to talk about Omega Edition and how it affects all 44 characters. We revealed Omega Edition at TGS 2014, and since then lots of people (including people inside the company!) having been asking about the changes to their characters. Today Id like to take this opportunity to answer some of those queries.
First, though, Id like to outline what Omega Edition is, for those of you who are like Omega what now? So, here are the basics:
- Omega Edition is a new option available under the Edition Select feature. This will bring the total number of selectable editions to six, including Ultra.
- As this version is completely different from all others, it does not include the Red Focus and Ultra Combo Double systems introduced in USFIV.
- Omega Edition will be available as a free update! (Well let you know exactly when its going to be available closer to release time.)
Now lets take a look at some character-specific changes and additions!
Hanagashi: Forward + HP + HK to activate damage-nullifying armor.
Some of you will get it just by looking at the screenshot, but this is pretty close to the parry system from SFIII.
While the move is active and after absorbing an attack, Ryu can use EX meter to deliver a follow-up strike. This gives him another form of defense in addition to the Focus Attack and is sure to completely change up his footsie approach!
Ryu also has new target combos and has gained both offensive and defensive options.
My inspiration: I guess you could say we wanted a showcase of Ryus moves from all of the SF games that have been released up until now.
Shippu Jinraikyaku: Use two bars of EX meter for a powerful multi-hit move.
You can combo into this move for big damage. This is sure to make Ken players think more carefully about meter management!
The Reppu Hadoken also got a lot of buzz at TGS. In Omega we really wanted to emphasize Kens kicks, so he also has a few new kick moves too.
My inspiration: Ken with his hands tied behind his back.
Houyoku-Sen: Use two bars of EX meter for a multi-hit move.
This SFIII move is back! Its an interesting move and there are lots of different ways to land it.
Other changes: Chun-Lis Kikoken has been changed from a charge move to a command move to make it easier for her to press forward. She also has Hakkei to nullify other players projectiles!
Many of her command normals and specials have been greatly changed from SFIV, making her a character who can really hit those hard-to-reach places.
My inspiration: I wanted a strong female character who can really apply the pressure.
You know, Honda is a sumo wrestler...but its easy to forget that since, except for his Hundred Hand Slap move, his moves arent particularly sumo-like. In SF were calling this Zuri Fugaku, but in sumo its known as Yorikiri, the act of pushing someone out of the ring by their belt. Honda starts off low and attacks the opponent twice on different levels, while the EX version adds a third attack. Its extremely powerful, but also leaves him fairly exposed.
Speaking of sumo, you gotta have the salt throw, right? The Salt Toss doesnt do a whole lot of damage, but what happens if you get a KO with it...?
These changes give Hondas versatility a big boost. In the playtests a lot of people felt like he was now qualified to take on the title of the worlds strongest. Honda top tier? Heh heh.
My inspiration: going back to Hondas sumo roots.
Ever since SFII, Blankas been all about getting in there with ball attacks. In Omega were going to radically change that up.
Lightning Mole: Blanka charges up, disappears into the ground, and then jumps out with a charged attack!
Use it to throw off your opponent or set up a good readthere are many ways to incorporate this into your game. In addition to his aerial and grounded moves, Blanka finally gets a move that takes him underground. Hell have a high degree of versatility that will let players develop their own playing styles.
Use two bars of EX meter to use the Lightning Grenade, an invincible hop into Lightning. Skilled players will be able to incorporate this into combos. Blanka also gains the ability to perform moves from the Coward Crouch. The first step to enjoying Blanka is to properly learn all of his moves.
My inspiration: the lightning-charged green beast.
Omega Zangief is still a grappler, so we wanted to give him moves to help set up his throws. This attack hits on different levels. Use it to drive your opponent into a corner and pressure them with the possibility of a throw! This is a command normal forward-attacking move that Gief can use together with Banishing Flat to keep the opponent in your sights.
Chrome Head: Press Forward + FP for a small jumping headbutt.
Just like in the Alpha series, this is a move that moves him forward and causes low poke moves to whiff.
My inspiration: Zangief with even more cyclone (hard to imagine, I know...!).
Sonic Break: Now it's possible to fire off more than one Sonic Boom when using the EX version! Hit two punch buttons again for a second and possibly third extra Boom, each at the cost of an additional bar of meter.
Talk about explosive! This is good for when you want to keep your opponent out or do some chip damage. Sort of reminds you of his good friend Charlie, doesnt it?
Guile also gets the CPS1 Chain and Blitz Combination, moves that SF series fans may find familiar. These changes increase his versatility and put a few new tricks up his sleeves...or, er, pant legs.
My inspiration: not only is it harder to get in on him, but now he can get in on you.
Yoga Legend: Use 2 bars of EX meter for an invincible chop, a multi-hit moves that sends your opponent flying into the air!
As the name suggests, this is a move that packs quite a punch. Its a good move to go for if you have meter to burn. You can also use the Yoga Rapture to lure your opponent in before unleashing the mid-hitting Yoga Chop. In Omega, the theme for Sim is definitely yoga!
My inspiration: Dhalsim continuing to refine his abilities beyond mere mortal levels.
Well, Ill wrap up the first installment here. I hope you enjoyed it! Next week Ill be covering the four bosses plus Gouken and Akuma. Hope youre looking forward to it!
ScrewAttack vs FUNimation USFIV Battle
This Thursday, October 23rd at 8pmPST/10pmCST, ScrewAttack will be going up against FUNimation in a 4 vs. 4 battle royale in USFIV. For those interested on seeing which of the two companies has the best players, you can check out it on either the Screwattack or FUNimation channels.
Capcom Cup 2014 - Location & Details Revealed
On Saturday, December 13th, sixteen of the world's best Street Fighter players will battle it out for over $50,000 and the title of Ultra Street Fighter IV World Champion.
As the culmination of the first season of The Capcom Pro Tour, both Capcom and Twitch are pulling out all the stops to ensure that our grand finals, The Capcom Cup, will be a spectacular experience for all types of Street Fighter fans.
The battle will be going down in the heart of downtown San Francisco, at the historic Warfield Theater . This 2300 seat concert venue has a fantastic stage, balcony seating, and will feature commentary feeds for the crowd so you can follow along with the action live. We are also proud to welcome The Megas, who will be rocking your face off with some killer Street Fighter songs throughout the show.
There will be a ton of fun Street Fighter related activities on hand, including some awesome booths from our Sponsors, cosplayers, as well as signing sessions and announcements from legendary producer, Yoshinori Ono.
For the ultimate Capcom Cup experience, we are launching a new VIP program, limited to 300 tickets. Our VIPs will receive a premium seat on the ground floor, as well as a SWAG bag featuring the official Capcom Cup t-shirt, program book, and more.
Best of all, the VIP ticket will get you exclusive entry into the official afterparty, going down at the Folsom Street Foundry . There will be tons of games, an open bar serving Street Fighter inspired drinks, as well as other fun Street Fighter related activities. Come party with Capcom, Twitch, the top players, and other VIPs as we celebrate the conclusion of the first year of the Capcom Pro Tour. Tickets will go on sale shortly via EventBrite for $75.00. Check back soon for the link!
Save the date and spread the word, this is one Street Fighter event you are definitely not going to want to miss. Stay tuned to www.capcomprotour.com for further details, and we hope to see you there!
When gameplay and narrative get along
Hey guys: remember Resident Evil on the original PlayStation? Lets talk about it.
In its time, Resident Evil was considered groundbreaking for placing both player and character in a highly restrictive scenario with very true-to-life rules and consequences. Charactersand playerswere required to keep track of and maintain supply of their ammunition, healing items, and more as though they were real-life commodities. It may be hard now in this age of narrative-driven, realistic games to fathom that that was ever a remarkable thing, but remember that RE came at the tail end of an age where virtually all video games were action platformers instilled with zany dream-world logic, where items were intangible icons obtained by running full-speed at them and bullets were giant yellow balls that spewed endlessly from your guns with perfect, unwavering trajectory and impossibly fast firing rates.
↑ We used to just not ask questions.
In Resident Evil, bullets came in bullet boxes. If you wanted to fire bullets from your gun, you had to find boxes of bullets, stop, pick them up, load them, and then properly ready your gun to be fired. Furthermore, shooting an enemy in the head would produce a different effect than shooting it in the torso, would produce a different effect than shooting it in the legs. It was up to the characterand playerto aim the gun at the desired body part for the desired effect. All of these things were groundbreaking in that, despite the preestablished lunacy of the video gaming medium, they all made logical sense. Given the narrative scenario presented by the game, even (nay, especially) someone who had never played a video game before might have assumed that any or all of these elements would be in play.
↑ Nothing could top this level of realism.
And so it was in this way that Resident Evil was, for many video gaming enthusiasts of the 1990s, the most immersive game ever, placing players more thoroughly in the shoes of a protagonist (two, actually) than any game they had experienced before it. Whether players were conscious of it or not, Resident Evil marked a new milestone in what would come years later in certain erudite circles to be known as ludonarrative resonance.
I understand if you find that word to be dauntingeven the word processing software Im using to write this, whose sole job is to process words, didnt recognize it. Likewise, I understand if you think the word is pretentious: I ont never needed no lu-do-na-ree-tive resomacation to teabag your momma last night! you may be thinking. Rest assured, there is a whole separate essay to be written on the teabagging phenomenon. But also rest assured that ludonarrative resonance is just a fancyand handily succinctway of saying that thing where the game gives you a good reason for doing the stuff you do instead of just arbitrarily slapping rules and objectives together.
If youre unfamiliar with this idea, I recommend you check out this essay by Escapist forum-goer Jezixo. But Ill try to summarize it here as succinctly as possible.
The ludo aspect of a game is its gameplaythe things you can and cant do as the player; the ways you interact with the game, as dictated by its rules, including its control scheme. Virtually every piece of interactive entertainment has this, however simple. The narrative is the greater context provided for those rules and actions, be it through cutscenes and text, or simply the skin of the game itself&mda**** graphics, sounds, and music. Mega Man, for example, without its narrative, is just a game about a square hitbox rising, falling, and shooting out little pellety hitboxes at other square hitboxes that disappear after contact with X number of pellets. With its narrative, which is primarily conveyed via simple graphics and sounds, its about a noble robot boy jumping around and blasting other robots created by a mad scientist bent on world domination. In Mega Mans case, the narrative is simple, but pretty crucial to the players motivation. Otherwise its just a convoluted set of arbitrarily rules you have to memorize.
Ludonarrative, then, is the combined interaction of these two elements of games, and ludonarrative resonance is when those two elements are in harmonythat is, in Jezixos words, when the player is allowed to do things and given a strong reason why they should do them. This is the opposite of the more oft discussed ludonarrative dissonance, which is when, to again borrow Jezixos words, the player is allowed to do things which they are only given reason not to do, or disallowed from doing things they are only given reason to be able to do.
If, for example, a games cutscenes portray the protagonist as someone averse to physical violence, but the gameplay segments encourage you as that protagonist to murder dozens of people, the so-called ludo and narrative elements are dissonant with one another. How much that matters is of course up to each player to decide, but I do feel that this dissonance is often whats at work when people describe a game or aspect of a game as video gamey. It seems to be something that avid gamers just accept about games, but that can alienate people less familiar with the medium. They just spent ten minutes of exposition establishing you as a noble samurai and now youre beating up the locals and taking their money!
↑ "You told me these wings were legendary, and now I find you dying horribly?!"
Nowadays, most games are made up of ludo and narrative components that are sometimes resonant, sometimes dissonant. Returning to the Resident Evil example, consider how the game goes to great lengths to establish a very real-world philosophy toward possessions: namely, that they are finite commodities that take up space, are exhaustible, and scarce. This is both an aspect of the Resident Evil narrative (i.e., Jill and Chris, trapped in a mansion, must scavenge for supplies and be selective in which ones they carry) and an integral gameplay system (i.e., you must scavenge and be selective). In this sense, the ludo and narrative are resonantthe player has a convincing reason for doing the things he or she is required by the game to do. After all, Jill and Chris only have so many pockets. And its not like they knew there would be
At other times, however, players are required to suspend disbelief. Certain safe rooms scattered throughout the game contain item-storing chests. Inexplicably, an item stored in one of these chests can be retrieved later on from a separate chest in a separate room, as though the chests are all connected via some magical item vortex. As far as Ive witnessed, most players seem okay with this. The game is convincing enough overall, and this this one concession the game offers is such a boon to the player, that it proves to serve the greater good with no substantial drawback. The designers might have been able to come up with a more convincing narrative for the system if theyd tried, but given the technical limitations of the time and the unobtrusiveness of the simple box system, albeit magical, they probably just bit the bullet. Im no pro designer, but I cant think of a better system that would have worked on the tech and preserved the solitary atmosphere of the game. Besides, the box has since been embraced by the Resident Eviling community as one of the video gamey charms of the earlier games.
At any rate, I think that sort of shows how games can have a combination of resonance and dissonance between their gamey and narrative elements. Sometimes games are gamey, and thats okay! But I do think the video gaming medium is at its most interesting and admirable when those two elements are in harmony.
Thinking about it, Capcom has actually explored this harmony in some interesting ways over the years, both big and small. The following is a list of cases some colleagues and I thought up, but I wholeheartedly encourage you guys to contribute your own in the comments!
- Devil May Cry 4 - The Red Queen.
If you havent played Devil May Cry 4, I hate you. Just kidding. But I do recommend you play it. Nero, the games newly introduced protagonist, wields a sword called the Red Queen, which unlike most swords, can be revved like a motorcycle engine. Revving the sword with perfect timing during an attack causes it to power up the subsequent attack, which can in turn be revved to power up the next attack, and so on. To rev the sword, players press the L2 button or Left Trigger as Nero in the game does pretty much the exact same thing, flicking the sword handles trigger. This is reflective of a recurring element I have noticed in Capcom design, which I call tactile resonance or haptic resonance. Im not sure if there already exists another term, but what I mean is that the actual control input, the action the player literally does with his or her handwhich, to be sure, is part of the ludois designed to resonate with the on-screen action, which is an element of the narrative. As an example of ludonarrative resonance it may not be as deeply integrated as Resident Evils survival concept, but its a pretty neat idea. Consider how rare it is for a controller input to have any meaningful correlation with the characters in-game movement. On a PlayStation controller X is usually Jump, but thats a tradition rooted more in ergonomics than in a desire to mimic the act of jumping on a controller. In other words, no games narrative ever gives you a good reason that a button with an X on it should represent jumping.
New innovations in input methods such as motion and touch control have led to something of a proliferation of this concept, but I feel its still rare for a game to do it as classily or with as much respect for precision as Devil May Cry 4.
Recent shooters have adopted a tradition of using a controllers triggers to replicate the real-life sensation of pulling a gun trigger (and indeed the triggers themselves have become more trigger-like over the years), and yes I feel this would be another example of tactile resonance.
- Monster Hunter (the first one) - Attacking with the analog stick.
The original Monster Hunter on the PlayStation 2 was a quirky, quirky game. Man was it quirky. If youre a newer fan of the series, you may not know that you originally had to use the right analog stick to perform attacks. In the history of video games, Jet Li is the only one to do that and live to tell about it. But Monster Hunter gave it a go! The relevance here is in the fact that the stick motions sorta kinda mimicked your avatars weapon motions. This was most apparent with the Great Sword: tilting the analog stick upward would cause the avatar to perform an upward slash; tilting left would activate a horizontal slash. I wish I could say that the tactile resonance extended beyond that, but the many weapons of Monster Hunter were simply too complex and nuanced to be express fully with a rubber-tipped knob. I do like to imagine a world where switch axes are controlled with transforming controllers, but for now Im happy with the reliable clickiness of traditional button inputs.
- Okami, Okamiden Drawing stuff, being a deity.
Okami on the PlayStation 2 presented another simple example of tactile resonance with the celestial brush mechanic, wherein players draw certain symbols with a magical in-game brush by mimicking the brushs motions with the analog stick. The resonance was debatably enhanced even further through the use of the Wii and PS3 versions motion controls, such that players were able to actually wield the controller like a brush in their hand. But I feel the tactile resonance truly hit its peak with Okamiden on the DS, where players were able to literally draw the desired symbol on the screen with a stylus. We even released a brush-shaped stylus for full effect. Its a simple idea, but another rare case in which the player and in-game avatar are performing nearly identical acts.
More interesting still is the deeper ludonarrative resonance the brush mechanic presented on a conceptual level. Think about it: In control of a divine avatar (the mother to us all), the player is able to freeze time at will and manipulate the two-dimensional game world with his three-dimensional brush as simply as one manipulates a painting by adding new strokes to it. The player with complete cross-dimensional control over the game world is not unlike the all-powerful, transcendent deity presented in the game itself. In some sense, a person playing a game is perhaps always comparable to a deity in that he or she is exacting control on a world from outside that worlds confines, not to mention the fact that the player has the power to shut off that world at any time; but only in Okami do both the narrative and the ludo highlight that idea.
- Steel Battalion - The entire freaking idea.
Steel Battalion on the original Xbox was, it seems to me, the comically uncompromising culmination of the tactile resonance concept. I say this with utmost respect for the work and as a proud owner of that rad, rad Steel Battalion controller. But think about it: The game holds that tactile resonance with such importance that no traditional controller would do. Instead, they created a one-to-one replica of the in-game cockpit controls that cost $200 at retail and included two control sticks, multiple pedals, and about forty light-up buttons.
According to the games Wikipedia article , one of the primary objectives of Steel Battalion as stated by producer Inaba-san was to show "what can be done in the game industry that cannot be done in others. I feel that the gaming medium shines its brightest when it creates these ties between player action and narrative context, and I suspect that that belief was at the heart of Steel Battalions development.
- Street Fighter - Street fighting.
I touched upon this in my blog about the many parallels between Street Fighter and Monster Hunter, but theres an incredibly clever bond in the Street Fighter series between the in-game narrative context and the psychological experience players have when at the helm against a human opponent. On a psychological level, Street Fighter matches are incredibly similar to the experience of actually engaging in a martial arts bout, and Im confident that anyone whos partaken in both will agree. Just as Ryu and Ken would actually have to read and manipulate one anothers psychology, so too do the players. Moreover, the special moves in the game mimic the actual experience of practicing specialized martial arts techniques that require precise execution in order to be effective. Its simple and its brilliant: The narrative depicts two people having a fight; The ludo requires that two people have a fight.
- Dragons Dogma - The Ur-Dragon.
Dragons Dogma is in fact full of unique examples of ludonarrative resonance, from the way its Pawn Sharing mechanic is explained narratively to the storys cyclical nature which coincides with subsequent playthroughs. But to me the most interesting example, perhaps on this entire list, comes in the crusty, purply form of the Ur-Dragon .
For the sake of this topic, I will talk only about the online version of the Ur-Dragon. For the uninitiated, this battle in the game differs from all others in that it is an asynchronously cooperative experience that incorporates all other online Dragons Dogma players. Narratively, as the Ur-Dragon phases into the dimension of a given Arisen, so too does he manifest in that corresponding players game, presenting a boss battle. All damage done by the player to the Dragon in a ten-minute span is tallied up, and the Dragon flies off, phasing into some other dimension (i.e., another players game) to face another Arisen, whose contributed damage will in turn be added to a grand total.
Once again, the ludo aspect and narrative aspect are in resonance, which, yes, is probably an easier thing to achieve when the story deals with magical, mysterious beings since you can explain away crazy gameplay mechanics with an equally crazy narrative and no one will call foul. But the games acknowledgement of the existence of many concurrent Arisens spanning an equal number of dimensions means that its narrative takes into account the fact that multiple people bought Dragons Dogma. That, after all, is the only way that the Ur Dragon story makes sense. In fact, the more people who bought and played the game, the more damage is done more quickly to the Ur-Dragon.
This, in my mind, goes beyond ludonarrative resonance into something Ive never even heard of beforelike, I dont know resonance between the games market success and its narrative. Weird, right? For the record, more than 420 generations of Ur-Dragon have lived since the games release in spring of 2012. Thats a whole lotta asynchronous cooperation.
↑ Rare footage of the online Ur-Dragon actually dead!
- Dead Rising - Doin it your way in the zombie apocalypse.
Dude, you could write a whole essay on how Dead Rising is relevant here. In fact, I did . In short, its a game with a setting, but its about whatever you say it is. We love Dead Rising round here.
I know I say this at the end of every one of these mammoth posts, but phew! I, for one, am exhausted. So now its your turn! I want to hear your examples of times when a games ludo and narrative components are in glorious harmony. It could be big, integral things, or little bitty things like the way Mega Mans charge buster is executed by holding and releasing a button as though holding and releasing the shot itselfI think that counts!
Or if you dont have any examples but just have some feedback on this here post, I welcome that as well! Thanks for readin! <3
USFIV Available on PS Now for PS3 and PS4
Good news North American PS Now subscribers! USFIV is now available to play through the PS Now Open Beta on both PS4 and PS3. For those who might not be aware, PS Now allows you to stream games directly onto your console. So head over to PS blog for more information and stream USFIV now!
More Capcom PC deals on GamersGate
More Capcom PC deals this week with GamersGate's string of Capcom 48-hour sales. Expect to see Capcom deals on their site now through October 5th, starting with the ones below.
Dungeons & Dragons: Chronicles of Mystara - $14.99 | $7.50
Resident Evil 6 - $39.95 | $10.00
DmC Devil May Cry - $49.95 | 24.98
Ducktales: Remastered - $14.99 | $7.50
Resident Evil 4 HD Remastered - $19.99 | $10.00
Fairy Bloom Freesia - $7.99 | $1.60
Resident Evil Revelations - $49.95 | $12.49
Remember Me - $49.95 | 24.98
Dead Rising 2 - $19.95 | $9.98
Super Street Fighter IV Arcade Edition - $29.99 | $7.50
Resident Evil 5 - $19.95 | $9.98
Bionic Commando: Rearmed - $9.95 | $1.99
Devil May Cry 4 - $19.95 | $4.99
Dark Void - $9.95 | $1.99
Age of Booty - $4.99 | $1.00
Dark Void Zero - $4.95 | $0.99
Super Street Fighter IV Arcade Edition (Four Pack) - $89.99 | $22.50
Dead Rising 2: Off the Record - $29.95 | $14.98
World Gone Sour - $4.99 | $1.00
DmC Devil May Cry Costume Pack DLC - $3.99 | $2.00
Resident Evil 6 Onslaught Mode DLC - $3.99 | $1.00
Remember Me: Combo Lab Pack DLC - $3.99 | $2.00
USFIV Version 1.03 Patch & Omega Mode Announcement
In our continuing desire to ensure that USFIV is a game by the fans for the fans, we will be releasing the version 1.03 patch in October. This patch will address some issues that were pointed out by the community, add the delayed wake up option to the dummy in training mode and for our PC users, more improvements to the online experience.
The version 1.03 patch improves upon the version 1.02 patch released earlier this year by addressing more of the issues brought to our attention by our most diehard fans. Some of the fixes you can expect to see are the Decapre and Rolento changes introduced in the Ver B. patch reverted, as well as Codys Light Ruffian Kick once again causing a hard knockdown against airborne opponents as it did in AE 2012. There are more fixes being included, which well disclose closer to the release date.
For those of you out there who desire to practice your setups in the face of delayed wakeup, Im pleased to announce the addition of the delayed wake up dummy option in training mode. Now that this setting is available, Im really eager to see how this will advance the game and if anyone will be able to create setups that account for both normal and delayed wakeups.
And lastly, for our PC players, weve heard the concerns you have voiced and have some fixes coming your way that should definitely improve your online experiences. For example, we noticed that when players were in the middle of matches, they were still getting pinged by those outside of the match, thereby creating slowdown. Weve fixed it so that this will be no longer the case. Additionally, a few other connection fixes are going in as well, all of which should reduce the connectivity issues experienced by players.
Were not stopping there however! In our ongoing effort to make sure that Ultra SFIV is the greatest version of SFIV yet, we plan to bring you a completely new, completely free and most importantly completely fun version of your favorite 44 characters in Omega Mode later this year!
For those wondering, Omega mode is a completely new mode in which every character has been modified and outfitted with new normal and special attacks, resulting in a refreshing take on the characters youve come to know and love over the last six years. As the primary goal for this mode was fun, we placed more emphasis on making the characters feel new, than on their balance. This means that strong, fan favorite attacks such as Kens Shinppu Jinrai Kyaku and Sagats Tiger Raid make their return while other characters such as Zangief gain new abilities, like being able to combo into his command throws.
Words however, dont do this mode justice, so weve decided to show a quick video of the madness you can expect to see with in Omega Mode.
Now I know the next question that comes to mind is, will this be playable online? My answer to that is it most definitely will be! But as this mode is for fun, Omega mode will be restricted to unranked matches only. Additionally all official Capcom tournaments and Capcom Pro Tour affiliate tournaments will use the default Ultra balance, not Omega mode, as the tournament standard.
Once again we would like everyone for their continual feedback. We are committed to making sure that USFIV lives up to it being the best iteration within the SFIV series yet. Be sure to check back later on for a full breakdown of the version 1.03 patch and for more information on Omega mode as it becomes available.
EDIT: Pointed out that the version 1.04 patch is scheduled to come out in October, while the new Omega mode will be coming out later this year.
EDIT 2: The patch was incorrectly listed as "1.04" when it indeed "1.03." All instances of "1.04" have been replaced with "1.03."