Title :Street Fighter EX + Alpha
Platforms :Sony PlayStation
Publisher :Capcom
Game Rating :8.8
Review by :Ken Gagne

Once again, Capcom has taken an old title and attempted to make it new. Except this time, they've actually done a good job of it. It may not be Street Fighter III, but Street Fighter EX Plus Alpha for the PlayStation puts a fresh spin on an familiar series. 

The fighting system is similar to the original Street Fighter II family: gone are the Alpha counters and air-blocking of the Alpha series, but Super Combos remain, as do some Alpha characters, and plenty of new ones. A total of 23 fighters are available. There are four one-player modes and two practice modes, including a great goal-oriented training session. 

The graphics are mostly polygonal, like Tekken, and look great. Battles take place ia 3D arena, but most action occurs two-dimensionally. Only a few characters can move in and out of the field freely. 

The music is great, with heavy guitar when appropriate or occasionally something lighter. Clever rhythms set the pace always. The characters speak briefly in Japanese, yet somehow sound menacing even in this language. 

The control is nearly flawless. Some moves, such as the spinning piledriver, are nearly impossible to pull off, but that's tradition. Executing devastating combos simply take practice to master, not patience to prevent frustration in battling difficult controls. 

Adjustable is the challenge level, letting anyone get a crack at the bad guys. The opponents fights well, but not cheaply. Each character's endgame sequence can be saved to memory card for viewing any time. 

Once you get past the long name, this Street Fighter is one heck of a fighting title. Capcom has still not put their most famous fighters into a true 3D environment, but this comes close. Given its new look, it's a great way to experience an otherwise weary series.

This article is copyright (c) 1997, 2007 by Ken Gagne. All rights reserved. Not to be distributed without permission.

Original publication: Sentinel & Enterprise, 19-Dec-97