When it comes to puzzle games, there’s plenty to choose from. Most of them are pretty basic, following one of a few standard concepts. You’ve got your stackers, your poppers, and your mazes. Stackers are games like Tetris, Poppers are games like Bubble Bobble, and Mazes are games like Snake. You’ve also got a handful of games that implement a couple of these concepts into one; Dig Dug is kind of a Maze Popper. And then you’ve got Super Puzzle Fighter 2 Turbo. While definitely a Stack Popper, it implements something all it’s own.
Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo is a Street Fighter puzzle game. Combining elements of Stacking games and Popper games, it takes puzzle games and fuses them with fighting games. Any fan of the puzzle game genre can tell you right off the bat that this game is SUPER addicting. So much so that if you’ve got somewhere to be in an hour, I would highly advise against starting a game of this. You’ll find yourself trying to beat the CPU (who is admittedly very tough) over and over again, getting frustrated because just when you thought you had them on the ropes, they break out a massive combo and end you then and there.
One of the things that makes this game so unique is that each character has a different “Counter Gem”. As you can see in the image above, Ryu’s counter gem is a vertical arrangement. Some characters have horizontal arrangements and some have even weirder arrangements. What this “Counter Gem” is for is if your opponent is about to send over a huge attack, but you complete a Counter Gem, you won’t receive their blocks. It’s super useful in a pinch, but it takes time to set up and if you aren’t quick, it’s easy to get interrupted. Another unique gem is the “Power Gem”. Power Gems are formed by stacking blocks of the same color in at least a 2×2 pattern. Although a 2×2 is necessary to form a Power Gem, you can make them as big as you want and they don’t necessarily need to be squares. When broken, this entire block is sent over to your opponent and it can seriously mess them up, especially if it’s sent over in the midst of a combo. One cool detail that accompanies the game is that whenever blocks are broken, the character sprites at the top of the screen do one of their signature moves from their actual fighting games; the bigger the gem combo, the bigger the move. For instance, Ken will use his shoryuken and Ryu will use his hadouken.
The game itself is a little quirky, with characters all saying things that may seem a bit out of character for those who are familiar with the series. In addition to the Street Fighter characters, there are also several characters from Dark Stalkers and Night Warriors. The reason the game is so happy go lucky in nature is because the whole thing is kind of a joke. While the game is incredibly fun and addicting, even the name was a joke that developers made about their own game: Super Street Fighter 2 X which was called Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo in the NA release. The reason it’s a parody is because there are no other Puzzle Fighter games. As is the norm with Street Fighter games, there are several hidden, unlockable characters. Some are comical and some are a bit more ferocious.
All in all, Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo is an excellent game to play single player but is even better in a 2p vs match. It makes a great party game and a great tournament game as well because it’s play style and fast paced speed creates tons of hype.
If you’re interested in playing the game, but don’t have access to the disc, a PS1, or don’t want to pirate the game, there is an HD version of the game called Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo HD Remix (that’s a mouthful) available on Playstation Network for PS3 and Xbox Live Arcade for Xbox 360. In the newer version there is up to 4 player versus, a spectator mode, online play and rankings and three new gameplay modes that were featured only on the Sega Dreamcast version.
My name is ChristianCoal, thanks for reading everyone!