A playthrough of DVS's 1998 unlicensed versus-fighting game for the SNES, X-Men vs. Street Fighter.
This video shows two separate playthroughs. The first is with Ken, and the second (beginning at 9:54) is with Cyclops.
I recorded this awhile back, and since I recently uploaded a video of the recently released Unholy Night, this seemed to be a good follow-up. X-Men vs. Street Fighter was also released on a physical cartridge, and also pulls assets from well-known, highly successful games.
The majority of the graphics were pulled from the Japan-only PS1 X-Men vs. Street Fighter EX game. This includes what remains of the intro and ending screens, character sprites, and stage backgrounds. Since this was released on a 16 megabit cartridge, huge sacrifices had to be made to accommodate the eight playable characters here. The animation has been put through the shredder, so the fighters awkwardly jerk and bounce about, and the backgrounds are now completely static. The game does look nice in a freeze-frames though - the SNES's color palette handily manages to paint a nice looking picture.
Of course you have to be realistic with your expectations. The PS1 couldn't faithfully reproduce the game - its version was a hatchet job of a port, so the SNES really stood no chance, no matter how talented the developers may have been.
The sound has almost has been lifted almost entirely from the SNES port of Street Fighter II on the SNES. The tunes are verbatim copies (right down to the airplane sound, despite there being no airplanes nor map screens present), and most of the sound effects and voice samples have been similarly lifted. It's a bit weird to hear Psylocke with Chin Li's scream, that's for sure. And I love how the announcer always yells, "Round. Fight!" with no number. And how Cyclops' optic blast is accompanied by a Zangief spinning clothesline grunt.
The gameplay feels like it's desperately trying to be Street Fighter II, but the lack of animation, the uneven speeds (which seems like a result of incorrectly programmed timings that should've normalized the speed to compensate for the missing frames), and the hit-or-miss special move inputs (again, probably a timing issue) make it inconsistent and awkward at best. At it's worst it's a complete mess. Some of the supers are present, though, which was quite a pleasant surprise.
Still, I have to admit that there is some impressively ambitious work here. SFA2 used a 32meg cart and a special coprocessor to decompress assets on the fly when it was brought to the SNES, and the bigger, more demanding XvsSF arcade game stood no chance on a such a tiny cart. Yet, they managed to cobble something together that almost works in one form or another. Unholy Night is definitely a more solid game, but between the disparity in the state of homebrew development tools between 1998 and 2016 and the sheer scope of what was attempted here, X-Men vs. Street Fighter is a significantly more impressive feat. That doesn't make it good, but it does at least earn it a bit of street cred, in my mind.
Anyways, it's a cool novelty, so for better or worse, I hope you enjoy this playthrough of X-Men vs. Street Fighter for the Super Nintendo. I actually had a lot of fun playing it.
No cheats were used during the recording of this video.
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