Final Fight: Streetwise
Capcom revives a longtime favorite to the 3D realm. So how's it measure up?
Preview by (Email)
May 25th 2005
This one just came out of left-field, because I never saw it coming. Capcom is currently working on a sequel of sorts to the long-running Final Fight series. If the demo is any indication, they might have a chance at bringing the classic street brawls into the limelight of 3D.
Metro City is rife with thugs, gangs and vandals of every persuasion. Cody and his lesser-known brother Kyle keep a weary peace in the city through their own brand of hooligan tactics. Having the street cred necessary to keep things in check, the so-called peace of Metro breaks when Cody is kidnapped by a mysterious group. Leave it to Kyle to set things right, and bust some serious ass of anyone who gets in his way.
Streetwise plays a lot like other Final Fights...or as close to it as it can get in a 3D environment. Kyle has an assortment of combos at his disposal as well as an Instinct modifier that increases his speed and strength. The Instinct bar drains as you use it and quickly refills as you pummel thugs and never insures victory. Also new to the series is a lock-on button - a definite must for any 3D action game. Then there's a bevy of weapons to be found lying among the streets of Metro and laiden among the bodies of your foes. The whole action aspect is very straightforward...and very brutal.
From the usual three-string punch combo to devistating throws, everything in this game looks like it hurts. Weapons only add to the ferocity - using .45s on unarmed gang members, breaking pool sticks over mafioso types and shivving the life out of hapless bums; it needs to be seen to be believed. Kyle beatings are telltale as well, and it all reflects the rough-and-tough, do-or-die atmosphere of Metro quite well.
The demo sets you and Kyle off into 4 stages, two of which involve a pit fight and a bar-room brawl. The bar fight was a blast, as I had Kyle beating the life out of Italian mobsters with whatever I could set his hands on. Cody is in the fray as well, lending all sorts of added chaos into the mix. The pit fight was quite disappointing, since it becomes painfully clear that Streetwise wasn't developed with one-on-one fighting mechanics in mind. The jaunt through Metro was a short one yet quite memorable...and painful.
According to Capcom, more depth will be offered by way of free-roaming areas, multiple missions you can undergo and a '"street cred" system that increases your chances of taking on better jobs and getting help from other thugs in the city. Overall its shaping up to a game that reflects its intense grit in every way - visuals, audio and gameplay pull no punches.