We had the opportunity to spend some time with one of Capcom's new fighting games, Street Fighter X Tekken, which pits famous characters from Capcom's history against some of Tekken's toughest competitors. We got a look at some of the new characters just announced at Comic-Con 2011 as well, including Poison (Final Fight) and Yoshimitsu (Tekken, Soulcalibur). Our first team of two--Street Fighter X Tekken is a two-on-two fighter--was Poison and Yoshimitsu.
Poison is a deceptive fighter who looks like she might not have much range, but her fierce punch attacks have some pretty good stretch thanks to her riding crop. She also has a projectile that takes some windup time, as well as a special kick attack that throws her up into the air, leaving her quite vulnerable if it doesn't connect. She also seems like a friendlier choice for beginners since it's easy to chain some of her basic movies into a decent combination. Yoshimitsu plays pretty much as he does in the Tekken series, only some of his basic combos take a little more finesse for them to connect properly. He has great range (thanks to his sword) and some pretty tricky moves, like a whirlwind that can suck players closer if they're not blocking. He also retains his pogo sword move that lets him do damage while bounding across the screen, and while we didn't see it, his suicide move is still a part of his arsenal as well.
What became immediately apparent while starting with these two characters was the importance of tag combinations--called "cross rushes" in the game. Upon completing a certain kind of combination, your tag partner will come in and give you an opportunity to keep the chain going. It's similar to what happens in Marvel vs. Capcom, albeit a little less chaotic and a little less rigid as far as deciding which moves you can use, but to be fair, there are some key moves you need to know to keep the juggle aspect of the combination going. At the moment, cross rushes feel like the bread and butter of the Street Fighter X Tekken experience, but we need to spend more time with them to get a better feel for just how crucial they are.
We also had a chance to try out cross assault, a new take on the dramatic battle mode from the Alpha series that turns a fight into a two-on-one affair. The computer determines whom you control based on some unseen parameters, but needless to say, it was pretty fun to sandwich the opponent and take off a fair bit of damage with a simple barrage of jabs. Of course, the trade-off is that it takes up all of your super meter, so in some sense it functions better as a last resort as opposed to a primary offensive weapon.
We then continued playing with a variety of other characters, including Ryu, Kazuya, Marduk, King, and others. For the most part, the Tekken characters have been integrated pretty well, and they each have a distinct feel that makes them seem right at home in the Street Fighter universe. At times, they felt a little stiff, but we suspect that is due to trying to execute traditional Tekken combinations when it doesn't quite work that way in Street Fighter X Tekken. At any rate, it's clear that Capcom has a working base for what it wants to do with the game, but we're curious to see how the game changes over the coming months before its release.