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CONSOLE: Game Boy Advance DEVELOPER: Capcom PUBLISHER: Capcom
RELEASE DATE (NA): October 30, 2001 GENRE: Fighter
// review by Matt

Who's afraid of Shin Akuma?

Street Fighter II has been ported to pretty much everything at this point, and has received countless updates and fixes. Once such iteration, Turbo Revival for the Game Boy Advance, has got to be simultaneously both a fantastic fully featured re-release and the buggiest piece of crap Capcom has ever put their name to.

I sure as hell wonder what Capcom were thinking porting a fighting game with six buttons onto a handheld that only has four (if you count the shoulders). Typically, the game maps both the low and high punch to the same button and the same for the kicks. This doesn't really render the game at all unplayable and combos seem to work fine, but it's the principle of the thing.

This is, in essence, a port of the Super Nintendo version of Street Fighter II Turbo but with the later arcade release features added. So in terms of content, this re-release nails it. You get the general and expected arcade and versus modes (via link cable, nice!) and a practice mode. But as you play and obtain "VS. POINTS", more things are unlocked. Survival Modes (survive a car!) and characters become unlocked through extended play, making the game one of these "play and earn" slow burners. You get drip-fed content as you go, like a small rodent trapped in a cage.

The presentation is gorgeous. Even though the Game Boy Advance can only wrangle out mediocre quality sound, the game music is still decent. The soundtrack even features the "pinch" themes from the arcade version. Each tune has been remixed slightly to better suit the GBA sound chip. But that's not the only remixed thing. Some stages are notably different, and the game is teeming with far more colours than the previous versions of the game. To look at, this game is pretty impressive, minus the issues.

But how bad can those issues be, really?


Get your fists out of my face. You're blocking the screen.

Turbo Revival IS a port of the Super Nintendo version but with added arcade features. So where the typical game sprites used are the Super Nintendo variety, when the new moves or features from the arcade are used the sprites will actually grow in size. Except for Akuma, because he seems to be full arcade size anyway, for no discernible reason. Perhaps they couldn't be bothered to size him down seeing as he didn't exist in the Super Nintendo version.

Various repeatable glitches exist but none more prominent and noticeable than the Akuma Glitch, easily found by seasoned Street Fighter II players. If you play as Ryu, win every fight (not every round, however) without losing, and pull off a good handful of super moves, then you will not be fighting M.Bison at the end. Instead, you will be fighting Akuma. Or would be if the game didn't completely lock up and freeze. At least the game auto-saves, so you'll have him unlocked.

Other glitches are just as hilarious. You can enter Survival mode while also triggering Arcade Mode, fighting enemies while also trying to destroy the infamous car or as barrels rain down from the sky. There are also major translation issues, because M. Bison, Vega, and Balrog all have their victory quotes mashed up like carrot and swede.

And with the game lacking any kind of save deletion feature, if you're on the receiving end of the "Best Time" glitch then you'll never be able to set a personal best ever again, because how are YOU going to beat a time of 00'00"00? Oh, if you ever encounter Akuma in the arcade mode, this will guarantee your times are screwed up forever.

So here we have an example of a game that punishes you for doing well. How does this even happen? It's a shame, these glitches put a dampener on what is a fairly decent version of Street Fighter II. At the very least a fix exists online for the ROM courtesy of RomHacking.net, but the original game remains tarnished forever thanks to a bunch of damaging glitches that were somehow overlooked.


Kick it, Danny—er, Chun-Li!


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