Street Fighter III: Third Strike Online Edition: Full Access Playthrough

Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike is an oddity in gaming, it's universally recognized by fighting game nerds as the most technically perfect entry the genre has ever seen,but it's also one of the least played by regular gamers. 3rd Strike Online Edition is set to right that wrong with a graphically updated, streamlined version of the game that offers arcade perfect gameplay and proven GGPO netcode that delivers near seamless online play. We sat down withCapcom'sDerek Neal, who gave Chris and Ia crash course on what3SO is bringing to the table, and then casually destroyed me in the match we played.

I also caught up with Derek at EVO this past weekend and did a quick interview about some 3SO specifics for players new to the franchise. Derek gave new players some character recommendations, and elaborated on a couple of the online features we didn't get to talk about in the FAP:

Do you have any character recommendations for someone that’s brand new to Third Strike?

DN: “Ken is a really good character who’s also user friendly, he’s a really well rounded character. He’s one of those characters that’s good because he has no obvious weaknesses and he’s got a little bit of everything; he’s got good footsies, he’s got good combos, good mix-ups.

That said, a lot of people play him because he is easy to use, and pretty good. So I’m hoping that players who get started with him feel out the game, try out the trial system, and get used to some of the stuff the other characters can do, and maybe branch out from there and apply the lessons they’ve learned to some of the more esoteric and interesting characters.”

Any characters that new players should avoid?

DN: “Q and Twelve are probably bad starting points, both of them are weaker characters in the Third Strike universe, they’re not unplayable or anything, but you really need to know what you’re doing and play really smart. You have to take a lot of advantage of Third Strike’s systems in order to play those characters well. So if you’re new and starting off in the game it’s unlikely that you will be able to progress as quickly as with a character that has a lot more options and flexibility like Ken.”

How does the online player ranking system in 3SO function?

DN: “There’s a skill system which keeps track of your individual player skill level, and separate from that there’s an experience progression where by winning matches online and completing difficult challenges, you gain experience and level up. So you can never go back in the level system, where you could go back in the skill system. So if you lose a bunch of matches, your skill level might go down but your experience level is something that will always go up.

In matchmaking we take both of those things into account. The biggest thing is your skill level but there’s a subsidiary component that looks at your experience level and what you’ve achieved in the game, and both of those things are factored together when the game tries to figure out who to match you up with.”

Can we expect to see GGPO integration in any other Capcom games?

DN: 3rd Strike is, in a lot of ways, a testbed for a lot of features that people like myself, Seth Killian and Christian Svensson feel very strongly about and want to see in all of our future fighting games. What actually makes it into our future fighting games is almost wholly dependant on fan response to these tests. Like, we’re kind of testing the waters right now, so if fans come out and support this game wholesale, then absolutely Capcom’s going to want to put these features in.”

Aug 4, 2011

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