Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown Review

Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown is the opposite of everything that is currently happening in action games. While the competition wants to pack so many modes, colors, Tag-Team combinations and other graphic effects into their electric actiongrounds, AM2’s five-year effort sits quietly in its Dojo, meditating on the purity of the competition and the precision of the action. It is distilled action games-mind games, dexterity and Timing on a digital screen-and it is a masterpiece.

In truth, the differences between this and Virtua Fighter 5 are minimal. wrestlers are a little lighter on the feet and faster, throw reversals are easier, and some minor balancing issues have been optimized. There are also some new scrappers in the form of lanky Cum Muay Thai karate fighter Jean Kujo and the always fun Sumo finisher Taka-Arashi. The real surprise, however, is the price and delivery method. The fact that the best Version of Virtua Fighter is now a downloadable game-and costs only a tenth-is a fine example of everything that is right in the modern gaming industry.

You could say that Virtua Fighter 5 has aged like a good wine, but it does not feel like it has aged at all. It is still a beautiful and extremely relevant action game that invites a new audience to fall in love with it. Virtua Fighter has long had a reputation for being too complex and dull to enter, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. While Button Bashing won’t get you anywhere, the skill level – one of these three key tenets of the genre – is actually far lower than Street Fighter IV or its brother Tekken Crossing.

Instead, the focus is on Timing and distance in the ring and an innate understanding of the character you’re playing with. Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown, like the rest of the series, is in love with the martial arts it represents. Thus, not only Judo, Shotokan, Vale Tudo and TaeKwonDo are imitated in their movements, but also in their fundamental philosophies. Understanding Goh, for example, requires knowledge of his list of moves, but also the recognition that his aggressive Judo brand implies all possible possibilities to close the distance and throw the opponent on the head. Try to use it in another way and you will be knocked down.

Fortunately, Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown’s masterful Dojo mode is a perfect way to learn each character. It’s an interactive tutorial that lets you play each move individually, with video demos for more challenging links and a painless reset button to bring you and your training dummy back to the center of the ring. Even playing a unique Movelist with a character is enough to understand exactly how they work, and from there you can choose the strike that you will eventually form your own strategies. Just like real martial arts.

Once in the Ring, what does Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown offer that its competitors can’t do? His closed action is probably the next traditional action games have come to replicate mixed martial arts, with strike and Combos against walls that cause much more damage, and the command of the center of the cage is as important as knowing which button does what. As the matches flow, they are a fluid hypnotic spectacle, as one-Upmanship, aggression and counter-action blend seamlessly. A round can end in seconds or be played Up to a timeout, depending on the Psychology of the wrestlers and the strategy each player uses. It is this purity, balance and tactical depth that makes Virtua Fighter 5 Final Showdown the best in its class.

At such a low price, including fully formed online action, character customization (by DLC, but it’s completely optional) and the best AI in the business, he’s a real grandmaster.

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