Puzzle Fighter | CAPCOM
R.I.P PUZZLE FIGHTER
What could have been.
by Felipe Parada
It's wasn't you...it was CAPCOM.
Where do I begin with this one? Oh yeah, that's right, Capcom has kindly reminded us why "games-as-a-service" suck. Unfortunately Puzzle Fighter had been added to the ever growing list of failed monetized games. The iOS and Android port of the highly popular '90s puzzle series already shut down it's in-game store back in April and will shut down indefinitely on July 31st. This is only 8 months after the games initial release back in November 2017, only 8 MONTHS!!!!
This comes as a disappointing announcement because the game was actually very good. I am a huge puzzle fighter fan and was searching high and low for a suitable current puzzle fighter replacement but sadly I couldn't find one. I still have to stick to my Super Puzzle Fighter HD Remix on my Xbox 360 So you can only imagine my excitement when the game actually dropped on Google Play Store. Just loading up the game and hearing the iconic "Puzzle Fighter" intro brought me back to a time of arcade bars and securing your spot in line by placing a quarter on the control dash and yelling "I got next!"
The visuals and re-mixed soundtrack fit perfectly into a mobile sized version of this game. Although I am surprised that this game never got a proper remake on consoles, sadly I don't see that happening any time soon. I was happy just being able to select my favorite fighter and drop some gems for some crazy combos.
Puzzle Fighter | CAPCOM
I was a bit surprised seeing how much the game format changed. No longer were you relegated to just 1 character, you could now select a team if 3 fighters each with different styles and support strengths. Took some time to get used to but I do appreciate the change of pace and added strategy when you fight with 3 characters. Characters span from many Capcom titles like Viewtiful Joe, Street Fighter, Dead Rising and Darkstalkers just to name a few. You have daily login bonuses and quests that grants you additional cards, coins and gems. You can really play this game without spending a dime but you know the downside to that. You can tell that this game was designed with card collecting in mind which brings me to my next point of the poisonous economic model of the loot boxes system.
Let's point out the obvious, this game was littered with in game purchases and loot boxes. The always online function meant that we were always subjected to those pesky timers and god forbid if the servers went down. This system was applied to both the single player and multiplayer modes. It is a bit easier to appreciate considering that this is a free to play product, but it doesn't make it ok.
Specific characters purchases were time-limited and the game was specifically designed to drive players to collect as many cards as virtually possible. So if a player had fewer unlocked characters, that would put you at a severe disadvantage strategically because your support strategy was for more limited. I experienced this many times during online battle mode where some fighters in my class had overpowered support characters. It almost felt like I was being punished because I wasn't abiding by the poisonous micro-transaction rules.
You don't need me to tell you how much micro-transaction suck. This such a bummer because the game is an absolute blast to play. I still play my old XBOX 360 version and saddened to see that this new iteration failed so quickly but that's the case in today's gaming market. If you can't find a way to monetize a game, then you might as well not release it at all.
How times have changed