It's fun to ignore facts (or how not to mention SFIV arcade in the US if you write for a game mag)

Shaggy April 11, 2008 0

To readers of this site, it’s no news that Capcom is looking to bring Street Fighter IV to the US. But this established fact seems to evade the mainstream gaming media, in particular GameInformer. In their latest issue (#181) they have a preview of Street Fighter IV and in it they do mention the Japanese arcade version of the game but otherwise list the game as “TBA” or To Be Announced in regards to what platforms it will show up on, completely ignoring the fact that the game has been announced for US arcades (an explanation for which is in the comments below). All they say about the eventual release is the following:

Speaking of quasi-guarantees, you can pretty much count on Street Fighter IV appearing on Playstation 3 and Xbox 360 despite Capcom’s silence on the home console front

Of course one thing that is guaranteed is that it will see a release in US arcades but in reading the GI article you would have no idea of that tiny yet important fact. It is not entirely surprising to see this sort of treatment since we have heard from sources that various print media have it in for the arcade scene and that the mags would try and report about SFIV without mentioning the arcade version if possible. So here is the evidence of that fact and we’re happy to point it out and do the job that the print media should be doing in the first place.

UPDATE: I do need to make a correction here – it appears that the guarantee I mentioned is not a guarantee at all about the US version of Capcom as it seems that a distributor has not been found for the game in the US yet. That does not mean that the game is off the table as far as a US release goes so I stand by the fact that I think that the possibility of a US arcade release should have been mentioned in addition to the console versions (which also seem to have not been 100% confirmed either but were mentioned anyways). So I apologize for jumping the gun on my assumptions.

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  1. catfishman April 11, 2008 at 5:14 am - Reply

    I’m looking forward to playing this game, but I have one question: do arcades really exist in North America any more, though? My experience is that to play new arcade machines, one eother has to go to a movie theater, or a big, popular bar or Lounge. When I do manage toi find an arcade, it’s usually full of remeption machines, like the pusher and stacker machines.

  2. editor April 11, 2008 at 10:04 am - Reply

    Ah – the games mags are really on the amusement industries case. Am not surprised that Game Informer wrote this, rumors abound that their editorial team wrote off arcade games years ago. As said before, most arcade mags hate arcade as it detracts players from console, is difficult to report on, and dose not advertise in their mags.

    I noticed that a number of mags tried to report on arcade, found it too difficult to get facts and started ‘borrowing’ from AH and TSR. I had to send a email to one telling them to cease borrowing copy without attributing where they got the information (made more friends there).

    Regarding ‘do arcades really exist in North America any more?’ – seems a weird question when AH just run a feature on Tekken 6 in SoCal.
    RePlay mag claims over 3,000 independent, Namco runs 400 sites, Sega has over 20, C.E.C 2,000, D&B 47, Pirates Pete 300 etc. I know this is not as big as the heyday it is still worth consideration… unless you write for a console mag!!

  3. Tom April 11, 2008 at 6:38 pm - Reply

    I’m a little disappointed in Game Informer. How could they not mention it being an arcade release in the US. Especially a game like street fighter which is one of the games that I played most in the arcade.

    You would think a game like SF4 would bring some attention to the arcades. But apparently not.

  4. Mr-Phelps April 11, 2008 at 7:08 pm - Reply

    Maybe the Hardcore Gamer Magazine might mention something?

  5. Shaggy April 12, 2008 at 2:48 am - Reply

    I can definently see about HGM mentioning something since they are one of the very few mags that are arcade-friendly. I’m not sure when their next issue is coming out though.

  6. Shaggy April 12, 2008 at 3:41 am - Reply

    Oh and to respond to Catfishman above:

    Editor already mentioned that there are at least 3000 arcades in the US – as far as finding a good one that really depends on where you live. I live in Utah and in the most populous county of the state I know of 8 different arcades, just in this valley and I know of more outside the county. A couple focus on old games, the others tend to have newer games to play. California has a number of arcades as well as does Vegas. I plan on opening my own arcade sometime really soon, as soon as the landlords can pull their heads out of their back-ends.

    With as much hype as SFIV has, many operators are going to be doing all they can to get their hands on it, and if it is reasonably priced then that will drive sales even more.

  7. Geo April 12, 2008 at 12:54 pm - Reply

    Actually the last XBox 360 Mag. has a report of STFIV, they talk about the arcade price, features, and other stuffs….

  8. Shaggy April 13, 2008 at 6:36 pm - Reply

    Cool good to hear that at least one mainstream mag isn’t anti-arcade.

  9. fubarduck April 13, 2008 at 9:43 pm - Reply

    According to Seth Killian of Capcom (who I contacted less than a month ago), there are still no concrete plans for a U.S. arcade release, meaning there may not be one. Those in the industry who plan on investing in SF4 have already done so, as the reservation deadline from Capcom Japan was in mid-March.

    A U.S. release would be great as it would probably mean wider access (probably via larger amusement chains) and a more entry level price for single machines, but the ‘hardcore’ arcades will be importing without a doubt.

  10. editor April 13, 2008 at 11:46 pm - Reply

    Thanks fubarduck.
    We are running in the Stinger the coverage we received from US and JP Capcom – it would seem that all US distributors (main sources) have passed on the SFIV cab. Capcom has not made any offers on kits yet, hoping to have found a complete route rather than a partial.

    The safe money is that like T6, operators will have to buy their own kits from HK (direct), such as the ones advertised by ncsxshop.com – so starting the ‘direct’ revolution. This all smells like the last flaying of the American amusement trade before the new industry asserts itself.

    Finally, I would be very careful of ‘members’ from Capcom commenting on the arcade release. It seems that a lot of Capcom employees (especially in the US) claim that they both know whats happening with SFIV, and the amusement industry. I know Japan is not 100% happy with some of the ‘expert’ comments!

  11. Shaggy April 14, 2008 at 2:00 pm - Reply

    Thanks for the gracious response Fubarduck.

    If I’m wrong about it then it’s egg on my face but either way there is no reason that the possibility of a US arcade release couldn’t at least be mentioned since every other version was. Perhaps I jumped the gun though on the guaranteed part of the post though, I’ll update it.

  12. editor April 14, 2008 at 5:26 pm - Reply

    no gun jumping Shaggy – there are three websites taking orders for SFIV kits.
    No matter how some will try and cover their butts, SF is arcade bound. Just check out CoinopExpress for the latest orders!

  13. fubarduck April 14, 2008 at 6:22 pm - Reply

    No problem Shaggy. My comment wasn’t ill-intended, just thought I’d pass along the information.

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