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SVC Chaos: SNK vs. Capcom
game: SVC Chaos: SNK vs. Capcom
two star
posted by: Matt James
publisher: SNK
developer: Playmore
ESRB rating: T (Teen)
date posted: 12:00 AM Tue Nov 16th, 2004
last revision: 12:00 AM Tue Nov 16th, 2004

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I have been dragging my feet for a couple days now, getting started on this review. The best games are the easiest reviews to write. You are excited about them, there are lots of good things to go over, and you have usually talked to your friends about the game so much that you have verbally written most of the review before even sitting down to the computer. Oddly enough, horrible games are pretty easy reviews as well. They offer lots to complain about and plenty to make fun of. The hard reviews are the mediocre games. The games that don't do anything very well but don't really fail either. These are the games that try nothing new and in no way help to advance video games as a medium. Just like the movies, a lot of video game sequels fall into this category. Instead of being a real experience they feel more like a company's attempt to squeeze every cent out of something the fans once loved. Of course if people didn't continue to spend money on these types of projects they wouldn't get made. So, whether it is the fault of the greedy corporation or the lemming-like consumers, SVC Chaos: SNK VS. Capcom is a shallow experience from a pair of beaten to death franchises. But it isn't the worst fighting game ever made.

So what is a reviewer to do? An execerise in how many different ways that I can write "this game is OK," perhaps? Could be a challenge, but I don't imagine it being entertaining and it wouldn't give a very good idea for the feel of the game. I could write a "by the numbers" review. The type that you can get anywhere. I could give you a number score, maybe a five out of ten, for the music, graphics, and such. That isn't any fun to write, though. And let's face it, it's all about me. Besides, I want to give you an idea of the experience, not just the stats. Oh, and let's not forget that I am expected to write at a certain length. So even if I didn't care about boring my audience, or boring myself, I would still have to figure out how to fill out my review based on a game that lends no inspiration.

I think I hate mediocre games more than, well, games that I hate.

So what about SVC ChaosSNK VS. Capcom? Right off the bat I am struck by the redundant name. Does it really need a SVC and a SNK VS. Capcom? Don't they mean the same thing? Couldn't it just be SNK VS. Capcom: Chaos, or SVC Chaos? Heck, drop the chaos. It wasn't really all that chaotic. Just don't name it SVC: SNK VS. Capcom, cause that is just stupid.

The game does offer online play, which is a cool idea. I was excited to try my Street Fighter skills online (I am more of a Street Fighter fan than an SNK fan). Unfortunately it didn't run very smooth, and my Street Fighter skills apparently suck. The buttons seemed unresponsive during play and twice as much online. I was having trouble doing moves that I have been doing for roughly ten years. Finding a game was frustrating as well. Most the time it appeared as if no one else was online. But if I clicked the quickmatch button again it would usually find someone. I never once found someone using the optimatch feature, even when I left all the options open. (For anybody who doesn't know, optimatch lets you select specifications for which games you will be shown while quickmatch shows you any game that is available.) I do have to give SNK props for the coolest feature I will never use (although many will, I am sure). You have the ability to make copies of your online games so that you can relive you glory. You can watch yourself kick somebody you will never meet's butt, over and over again. I would rather fill my hard drive with every Styx album, but I know a lot of people will dig this.

I am sure a true fan will write me and tell why I am wrong but the graphics don't feel any better than when I was playing virtually the same game on the Playstation. The character models certainly haven't changed in all those years. But that is what the people who typically buy these games want.

There are all the typical game modes: arcade, survival, versus, and practice. There were a few that were new to me: color edit (you can change the character's colors), X-box live, and replay. These all offer just slight variations on the same gameplay though, which, like I've said, is the same competent yet not exceptional gameplay we have been playing for years.

The thing is, this game does what it does, and that's all that it does. The people who will buy this game are going to mostly be fans. They will expect a certain type of game and they will get that. Anybody else will probably be disappointed, especially when you can get your hands on a copy of Soul Calibur 2 brand new for $19.99 these days. I used to really like the Street Fighter games. I always kept one around for when I needed a break from the more demanding games. I haven't owned one in a while and had hopes for this game. Frankly, I think I would rather play one of the old ones instead. They could have done something, anything to the franchise. I was ready for that. I would have lapped it up. They didn't. So instead I have to write a mediocre review about a mediocre game. Oh well, I get to write a review for a game based on the Bad Boys movie franchise next. There has got to be tons to say about that. I get all tingly just thinking about two poor voice actors trying there best to sound like Will Smith and Martin Lawrence. Do you have to be able to act well to pretend to be bad actors?

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