Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection (Nintendo Switch) Review

By Rudy Lavaux 30.05.2018

Review for Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection on Nintendo Switch

There's hardly anyone these days who could be interested in side-scrolling fighting games, be they 2D or 2.5D, and who hasn't played a Street Fighter game. Even the most recent entries keep selling in the millions on home consoles and still draw people to the arcades wherever these are still in activity. Street Fighter laid down the basics of what would become in the early 1990s the biggest money-making genre in the arcades and perfected it early with Street Fighter II, and the legacy lives on to this day in this series but also in the many other franchises that tried to replicate or even build onto that success, be they from Capcom or from other prolific studios, like SNK. Street Fighter II sold like hot cakes on the Super Nintendo but, admittedly, through subsequent generations of hardware, the franchise has not shown up all too often on Nintendo hardware, so the 30th Anniversary Collection showing up on Switch is quite a big deal since it brings a lot of these classic games for the first time on Nintendo hardware, offering potentially a far better deal than Ultra Street Fighter II, released on the same system at launch last year.

The package includes twelve games, no less. Street Fighter, Street Fighter II - The World Warrior, Street Fighter II: Champion Edition, Street Fighter II: Hyper Fighting, Super Street Fighter II: The New Challengers, Super Street Fighter II Turbo, Street Fighter Alpha: Warriors' Dreams, Street Fighter Alpha 2, Street Fighter Alpha 3, Street Fighter III: New Generation, Street Fighter III: 2nd Impact and... Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike! Each game, when selected, comes with its custom border around the screen to compensate for the fact that they are all 4:3 aspect ratio games at core. These borders can be turned off but not changed, sadly, with each game limited to its own custom border. Screen filters include scanline simulation, which works better in TV mode 1080p than the handheld mode 720p where they don't line absolutely perfectly, as was the case in games like Sonic Mania. An "Arcade" filter simply seems to be making the image slightly blurrier, and lastly filters can also simply be turned off altogether. For an exact multiple in terms of pixel height and width and perfect square pixels, the default scaling setting is the way to go, which slightly letterboxes the image on the vertical axis, as well as horizontal, while full stretches that 4:3 image to fill the whole vertical height, while the last one, stretch, fills the complete 16:9 frame and frankly does not look very good as it is all squished.

The usual main modes of play for each includes a classic arcade mode, pitting the player against the CPU controlled opponents that everyone knows and loves, versus mode for two-player battles on one system, and training mode. An important thing to note to best appreciate the value of the package is that it does not really hold twelve fully distinct games when all is said and done, since there is some redundancy in content and features between some of these releases. In truth, it only really holds five, of which only four are fully fleshed out with features.

Screenshot for Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection on Nintendo Switch

Those are the original 1987 Street Fighter, Street Fighter II, and its two updates, Super Street Fighter II and its Turbo upgrade, Street Fighter Alpha and its two numbered sequels, which actually show more differences between each other than other sub-series in the franchise... and, finally, Street Fighter III and its two updates. Each of these only has online and training mode support for the most up-to-date edition of each "sub-series." That is to say: Street Fighter II: Hyper Fighting, Super Street Fighter II Turbo, Street Fighter Alpha 3 and Street Fighter III: Third Strike. The original 1987 Street Fighter does not support online play or training mode at all. Speaking of these modes, the most important addition to these classics is, of course, the online component. This comes in several flavours, such as Online Arcade mode, which lets the player play in solo for a while and be interrupted on varying frequencies of the player's choosing by incoming new challengers. These are, in fact, other players online, hopping in to challenge you just as would happen at an arcade when another player joins in the fun at the same cabinet. Besides that, more classic modes, like Ranked and Casual battles, are also part of the package, which are essentially the same as "For Glory" and "For Fun," respectively, in Smash Bros., for comparison's sake. Lobby creation and joining one are the way to go to play with distinct players, such as friends, rather than with randomers. Last, but not least, online leaderboards are naturally an included function.

The biggest question will be whether the online battles are laggy or not and how they fare. Sadly, however, the experience at time of writing is pretty sub-par. It would seem that the emulation itself of the games included waits for data between two players to be fully processed before even getting on to the next frame of animation, resulting in jittery animation and music stuttering. It is pretty bad to witness, really. It depends on each player's connection, of course, but the experience at this point in time points towards it being barely playable, even at the best of times.

Screenshot for Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection on Nintendo Switch

As a result, right now, this collection cannot really be recommended for its online play. It would seem that the included input lag setting does not seem to do anything to improve the connection, either. Lastly, players are free to indicate to the game the level of opponents that they wish to encounter, be it novice players, average, or true experts, to ensure proper match-making, and this seems to be working well so far.

Naturally, the Switch version also includes local wireless play with another Switch owner, but the interesting draw of this version is the local tournament mode. This simulates the real world arcade tournament mode where four cabinets would link up to participate in eight-player tournaments, two per system. That works just as well in tabletop mode as in TV mode, of course, and it is easy to imagine players who make their own Switch arcade cabinets with dock and arcade sticks enjoying this mode a whole lot. With that being said, however, nothing prevents two players from battling it out on the same system, be it in tabletop or docked mode. Using the two Joy-Con bundled with the system, special moves do come out surprisingly well indeed, even when using the tiny joysticks. Using the directional buttons for direction input using both Joy-Con works, but is understandably not very comfortable, so if a d-pad is preferred, a controller with a good one on it will be preferred. On the go, however, split Joy-Con do work really well. Since a single Joy-Con has just the exact number of inputs for two players to enjoy fighting on the go, it proves to be a perfectly viable solution, although the use of the Joy-Con straps is highly recommended for optimal comfort of play with the SL and SR buttons. Finally, training mode is fully fleshed out with input display, a customisable dummy second player to take hits, and behaves as desired for the sake of training, which newcomers - if there are still any - will be grateful for.

Screenshot for Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection on Nintendo Switch

Nevertheless, the arcade versions of Street Fighter games, and this is more evident with the Street Fighter II variants, are harder to play than their well-known SNES conversions, so newcomers will want to take a look at the difficulty settings, which can be set independently for each game from the main game selection menu, and crank it down a little to make things more enjoyable for them. With its good value, this package can be easily recommended for anyone new to the series and willing to get accustomed to its loveable characters throughout much of the series' history.

Speaking of which, the museum feature presents design documents, character sprite and profile viewer, and a complete history of the series and its ties to other Capcom franchises over the years, such as Final Fight or Rival Schools. For any Street Fighter fan, while obviously anyone could still wish for more and more content and argue that the EX games could also have been included, for instance, or that the Switch version does not include a free digital copy of Street Fighter IV to download for all pre-orders... this Switch version has some aforementioned perks that other versions don't have and perhaps the only thing that is likely to feel better over other versions, again at time of writing, is the online component, although early reports seem to indicate that even the online on the PS4 version is also a "hot mess," so prudence and hopefully patience is recommended to see whether Capcom is capable, or even willing, to fix this with an update in the not-so distant future. For those interested to know, the title weighs in at only 5GB when downloaded from the Nintendo eShop, so potential buyers worried that the digital version may take up too much space on their system or SD card may put such worries to rest since, all things considered, it is not very big, but then again the titles contained herein were not exactly huge to begin with, either.

Screenshot for Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection on Nintendo Switch

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

Even when taking into account that some of these games are not very different from one another, the content on offer in Street Fighter II 30th Anniversary Collection presents arguably the best value for money in that specific genre on Nintendo Switch and the bonus features, like museum and sprite viewer, are actually well worth checking out for lovers of the series. However, one of the main components, the online mode, is not really enjoyable in its current state so, unless a fix is on the way, this removes some of the fun that there would otherwise be in playing this on Nintendo Switch. What remains, however, is the only version that can easily be enjoyed wherever, whenever, and with whomever and that should never suffer from disc rot due to the sturdy cartridge format, and which won't look any worse here than anywhere else due to these games not being exactly very recent.









C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   


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