Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Mash and Scream Techniques of a Street Fighter

If you were a child of the late 80's and early-mid 90's (ok and a geek) you probably have fond memories of wasting lots of your money playing Street Fighter at an arcade. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, Street Fighter was a cool game which involved picking a character, say Ryu from Japan (on the left here), or Chun Li from China, or Dhalsim for India, and in later additions you could even get Bison the super boss, then you would, yup you guessed it, fight in streets, to see who would win in a best of 3 matches. The aim was to beat all the characters to then eventually beat Bison to be the Street Fighter of the WORLD!

Now, the skill wasn't in the ability to jump around, kick and punch but in the ability to remember and know how to do the special maneuvers with the joystick and keys to get special combos (like Chun Li's spinning bird kick). These special moves only worked if you did something like: for Ryu to do a Hadoken (fire ball) it would be Press D, DR, R + any punch button and Ryu would release a glowing blue projectile ball.

Now, just because I'm a geek, and I had geek like qualities when I was 14 didn't mean that I could play this game. No, I completely and utterly sucked at it. And I know the special moves don't sound difficult, but I found it nigh on impossible to do. My little cousin, who is 6 years younger than me, would play Street Fighter at the arcade, and always let me play the second round, knowing full well I would never win. The thing is, even after 100s of fights, he would always look up at me, his little 8 year old face full of disappointment as I mashed frantically at the key pad, to try and get him to do SOMETHING other than just get his arse pummled, all the while screaming "Come the fuck on! The special move doesn't work! The special move doesn't work! I'm DOING it right though! What the fuck is happening??!?", After the inevitable defeat my cousin would then sigh, look at me, shake his little 8 year old head, take over and defend his honour.

Last week, Calvin downloaded Street Fighter II Hyper Fighting for his high definition, fully spec'd, really expensive XBox 360. I'm not bad at console games. I can kick butt with a sniper gun and a sword on Halo. But nearly 14 years after I first played Street Fighter, my street fighter techniques are still as pants as ever. Playing it on Sunday, it got to the point where my thumb and hand was so badly throbbing with pain and cramps after I would constantly try to push the kick button to get Chun Li to beat Honda, that I eventually just put the Xbox controller on my lap and just mashed all the keys with my fingers at the same time. Let me tell you, mashing does no Spinning Bird Kick make.

Ah. If my baby cousin (now 22) could have seen me on Sunday. He would still be shaking his head in disappointment. Then take over and win the 3rd round for me.

Here's a video of what could happen if you actually knew what to do, and you weren't, you know, me. Look at the geeks and nerds!! Enjoy

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