13/08/2015

☆ The Mystical Four World Warriors ☆ #Retrogaming #Gamersunite #StreetFighterV

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They were the untouchable street fighters........

They had an allure and an aura about them......

They struck fear into a generation of gamers........

They were the greatest world warriors we'd ever seen.........

They were Balrog, Vega, Sagat & M Bison

The Legends
In 1991 these four Street Fighter characters were revered by all the kids who huddled round arcade cabinets to put their 20p into the Street Fighter cab. 

They were a thing of legend. 

When somebody got as far as Balrog the interest levels would go up a level in the Video Shop or Chippy as everyone sensed that maybe today someone was going to clock the game......then 2 minutes later that challenger was flat on his back as Balrog nailed the final punch into Ken's chest (everyone was always Ken round my way) 

The notoriety of the final 4 in Street Fighter 2 was part of the massive draw of this epic video game.

The fact that you couldn't play as these bad ass fighters meant that the legend of who they were grew even stronger. 

At that point we knew nothing about these mysterious fighters as it was pre internet and all we knew is that this game was awesome.

Lots of talk in the arcade was always about "Imagine if you could play as Balrog, Vega, Sagat or even M Bison!" 

It was always fun to think of these cool scenarios. Just imagine being able to pull off a Tiger Uppercut with Sagat! A wall dive with Vega or a Psycho Crusher with M Bison!!

All this talk of the characters made the allure of the game grow stronger. The mysterious nature of the final four meant that stories and urban myths grew around the back stories of these behemoths.

I loved all these stories and it seemed to also fuel the need for the pirated versions of SF2 to be released. The Street Fighter movement was massive and still is to this day.


Familiarity Breeds Contempt 
Now here's the crux of the matter......

For me the series lost some of it's allure when Capcom introduced the ability to play as the final four. No longer were they untouchable characters we could only dream about playing as. They were now in the roster and open for players to master the previous mystical moves of the top four.

I would  have loved it if Capcom had made these characters totally unplayable for the entirety of the series. Imagine that....

Yes players would have yearned to play as them but the initial mysticism and enduring appeal would have lasted so much longer.

Inspiration 
I was inspired to write this article after reading a really cool piece by Rings and Coins that talks about the naming convention for the final 4 in Japan and the rest of the world. Head over there now to read that awesome article.

What Are Your Memories Of Facing the Final 4 World Warriors In Street Fighter 2?

Let Me Know In The Comments Box Below