Friday, March 15, 2013

Demo Friday: making the monies

In which I continue to fall for Capcom's every scheme.

If you see someone playing this way punch them as hard as you can.
This is not the first time Capcom has bundled up some old software in an attempt to drum up funds. We have already had Super Street Fighter II HD Remix, Street Fighter 3 Online and Marvel vs Capcom Origins. Each release packed in more options, more history, more to do outside of the games themselves. Darkstalkers Resurrection has built a large meta-game around the game itself, replete with in game achievements that unlock historic bonuses and more ways to look at the game than anyone will ever use. This is all good, but it is a fighting game, one that some people still play on a regular basis, so I am going to judge it accordingly.

And yes, that means that I purchased it before playing the demo and spent most of last night getting beaten like a red headed stepchild.

The similarities between Darkstalkers and Street Fighter end with them being sprite based fighters. Street Fighter has always been on the slow side, almost contemplative, and that is part of why I like it. Darkstalkers is entirely pressure based, almost as much so as MvC3. This means that if you aren't attacking you are getting hit, but it also means that if you are using the wrong attacks you are getting hit as well. I spent many matches wondering why my attacks were getting stuffed until I figured out that most fierce attacks, at least for Raptor, were meant as combo enders and were not safe to throw around anywhere else.

Good for you, he says mockingly.
Most special moves were similarly useless outside of very specific circumstances. This creates an odd dance, where players bounce around, air dashing back and forth, looking for an opening to hit a quick string of attacks that end in a knock down which allows mix ups on their wake up. Having never played much Darkstalkers before I was not prepared and I am not sure that I like it. Street Fighter 4 and Street Fighter vs Tekken have spoiled me with multiple wake up options. After Blanka gets knocked down an EX upball or EX electricity beat everything but safe jumps. Shotos have wake up uppercuts that, when used sparingly, proved the same thing. Hell, even Paul if SFxT has the wake up shredder.

This points to a weakness in my game, but I need these options. In Darkstalkers the only options I have on wake up are block correctly or eat a big combo. When there are high, low and instant overhead attacks coming in I always guess wrong. I suppose I could just not get knocked down, but I am not very good, so that isn't going to happen.

Darkstalkers doesn't work for me not because it is old but because it is so foreign that I don't have the endurance to learn it and the people who know how to play it never stopped. The same think happened with Persona 4 Arena: great game but outside of my grasp. I will play Darkstalkers again, because I own it, but I don't think I am ever going to be any good at it.

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