Ultra Street Fighter Four, slated for realease early next year, promises a plethora of balance tweaks to the existing cast, the addition of five new characters and a handful of new stages in which to throw hams. But there are some features missing from the current iteration of the game that I feel desperately need to be added before any of this extra stuff can be exciting.
First, the game could really stand to allow players the ability to create and join Player Matches. Ranked Matches can be stressful and Endless Lobbies daunting. Sometimes you just want to hop in a queue, wait for someone else’s name to pop up, check out their win/loss ratio and disconnect status and then hop right in for some fights. Player Matches would not affect BP or PP, that would defeat the purpose; They could, though, have their own sort of win tracking just to allow players to judge who to fight and who to pass on, but that isn’t really necessary–purely a benefit I’d like to see added only if given the time.
Second, once a player match ends, allow the players to hit rematch to instantly dive back into another match. No more spending 30 seconds going through the lobby screens, no more sitting on character selection for a minute or so waiting for your opponent to decide if they want to pick Ryu for the umpteenth time, no more waiting for them to choose which ultra is best–seriously, do you really want to use ultra 2? Really?–and no more stage selection. Just a simple “rematch!” and right back into the action. Shaving off the few minutes between matches seriously adds up, especially on a tight schedule. I’ve had experiences where the time between matches was greater than the matches themselves, which drains out a lot of the fun. The addition of Player Matches could fix that problem.
Should the ability to rematch be added to Player Matches–assuming Player Matches are added at all–it would be ideal to allow for Endless Lobbies to actively shift to a “Player Match” mode when only two players occupy the lobby, regardless of its maximum capacity. Sometimes it takes a while for people to join an active lobby; Sometimes your buddy has to run to the store and grab a six pack before he accepts the game invite, but you still want to keep the lobby open for him to join when he returns, Coors in hand (poor beverage choice, by the way). The ability to actively shift between the two modes, depending on the population of the lobby may be asking a bit much, but talk about a quality of life improvement!
Speaking of quality of life improvements, what about streamers? I’ve watched lobbies run with an AFK (away from keyboard) host streaming in the past. Each time the winning player cycles through everyone and gets back to the host–who isn’t actually playing, mind you–they have to wait for the host to be cycled out and counted as away. It doesn’t take long, but again, removing these little periods of waiting stands to really increase the game’s hype potential. There are a couple of ways to fix this: First, add a host setting like is present in other fighting games (P4A comes to mind) which prevents the host from coming up in the fight queue entirely; Or, a slightly better option, allow players to toggle to “spectator mode” whenever they see it fit. This ability would enable streamers not only to host their streams without cutting into precious match times, but would also allow players to step away for a moment without worry of disrupting the flow of things and would let them hop back in when they were ready.
While we’re on the online modes kick, it’d be great to throw in an online Training Mode. If Capcom wants the title to grow well beyond where it is now, new players are going to have to be able to learn the game quickly. While online tutorials and forum posts are good, it’s hard to compete with the knowledge that can be gained from a good ol’ training session, even if it is across the country.
Lastly, learn from Mike Z. Skullgirls implemented two functions that honestly should have been standard in fighters from the moment tournaments began happening: A quick button check at the character select menu and a 15 frame hold period to pause the game so that start button slip ups don’t result in disqualification. There isn’t really much else to be said about these two features, they’re just awesome and need to be added.
Actually, no, for real lastly, make the fifth character Zubaz.
Source: Two Best Friends Play Wiki
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