Version Reviewed: 1.0
Device Reviewed On: iPod touch 4
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Capcom continues their series of classic games released on iOS with Final Fight. This is one of the games that defined the beat 'em up genre that was popular in the early 1990's. The game has players control Guy, Cody, or wrestler-turned-mayor Mike Haggar in a quest to take down the Mad Gear crime syndicate and rescue Haggar's daughter. A wrestler-turned-politican? How unrealistic. This is a beat 'em up in the classic tradition, meaning the screen scrolls left to right, and there's a timer ticking away that never actually becomes a threat unless the player needlessly meanders or dawdles about. Fans of the Street Fighter series, especially the Alpha incarnations, will notice several enemies in the game who appear as fighters in later Street Fighter games.
Similar to Street Fighter II Collection, the port/emulation is very well-done, with nary any slowdown or other technical issues. The controls use the same 8-way virtual joystick that worked well in Street Fighter IV. The beat 'em up gameplay largely holds up, and the influences on other games in the genre are clear, though this game is faster-paced than games like Streets of Rage are, as well. The best part of beat 'em up games is to team up with a friend to take on waves of goons, and Bluetooth multiplayer is in this version of the game.
Of course, beat 'em ups tend to have a point where the experience starts to go sour and the game becomes repetitive, and Final Fight reaches the point about halfway through the singleplayer mode. There's unlimited continues, so there's just no threat of failure, no matter how challenging the game gets. The worst part is that the game doesn't actually save progress when returning to it later; progress resuming is done through iOS multitasking, so if the app gets closed, then all progress is lost. This means that seeing the end of the game may be quite difficult for most people.
There's a very limited audience for this game, and it's people who have friends with iOS devices who want to play multiplayer with their friends with this game. Otherwise, it's best leaving this one to history.