Final Fight: Streetwise

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Final Fight: Streetwise
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[This game] doesn't look good, doesn't play well, and can't even get its unlockable bonus, the original arcade game, right. -GameSpot
Genre: Beat-'em-up, Action-Adventure
Platforms: PlayStation 2
Xbox
PlayStation Portable (cancelled)
Release Date: NA: February 28, 2006
EU: April 7, 2006
Developer: Capcom Production Studio 8 (PlayStation 2)
Secret Level (Xbox)
Publisher: Capcom
Franchise: Final Fight
Previous Game: Final Fight Revenge

Final Fight: Streetwise is a beat 'em up game published by Capcom and developed by the U.S.-based Capcom Studio 8.

Why It Sucks

  1. The game suffered executive meddling from Capcom.
  2. Insane story, which starts just fine, canonically taking place after the events of Final Fight 3 (Cody is kidnapped and his brother Kyle must rescue him), but quickly becomes a jarring, stupid mishmash of sci-fi, street gangs, religious beliefs, and drug use.
  3. The game is offensive to Christians, as they're portrayed as heartless psychopaths who kill others because they don't like them, then proceed to turn them into mutants using drugs and rein-act scenes found in the Bible using their mutated corpses.
  4. Script is full of forced, excessive profanity, which explains the M rating for the game.
  5. While the game encourages exploration of Metro City's four districts, all of the areas are rather small and lack any rewards for doing exploration.
  6. The reputation aspect of gameplay doesn't make any meaningful differences to the world. Earning more respect simply amounts to getting a different reaction from an NPC.
  7. To gain access to story missions, you must play the mini-games which range from mundane to bizarre. These include but are not limited to entering keycodes, matching pairs of cards, trashing cars (a callback to one of the bonus games in Final Fight 1 and 2) and stomping on cockroaches and drug-induced rats.
  8. level-specific mechanics which don't work. In one stage, Guy and Kyle must escape from a burning house before it explodes. To do this, Kyle gets a fire extinguisher to extinguish the flames blocking their path. The problem is that some fires can't be put out unless you spray them from a specific distance, and the time limit is very short. Guy's AI can be quite erratic, too. At least there's a sound effect to let you know that you're spraying at the fire while you're trying to.
  9. The challenge of defeating enemies is only based on their numbers, not their skill in combat. Put simply, the enemy AI is dumb for some of the parts.
  10. Acquiring additional attacks are made obsolete due to the idiocy of your enemies, which means you can defeat them by simply hitting one button. You'll quickly choose to buy upgrades to your attack damage and health instead.
  11. Outdated graphics, despite 60 FPS support.
  12. Camera frequently becomes obscured by objects or zooms in too close, which is especially a problem when fighting enemies.
  13. It includes a port of the original arcade game, but it runs at a low framerate and controls awkwardly.
  14. No Xbox 360 version, despite the game coming out three months after the console.
  15. It effectively killed the Final Fight franchise!

Redeeming Qualities

  1. Good soundtrack. You even get to switch between songs during gameplay!
  2. Passable voice acting.
  3. Decent, if unspectacular fighting system.
  4. Two-player arcade mode can be fun.
  5. It's great to see Cody, Guy, and Haggar once again.
  6. Despite being bland, the graphics are mildly decent, especially the characters' facial animations.
  7. Tough enemies and bosses don't flinch when hit, which may add for some strategy.

Reception

Streetwise received mixed to negative reviews upon release. The PS2 version has a Metacritic score of 43 based on 37 reviews, and the Xbox version has a Metascore of 42 based on 29 critic reviews. It was also a commercial failure, selling only 70,000 copies across both platforms worldwide. Shortly after the game's release, Capcom shut down Studio 8.

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