Super Street Fighter 4 Arcade Edition PC Performance Analysis

At last, PC gamers can finally enjoy some spectacular fights that will pump up their adrenaline with Capcom’s Super Street Fighter 4 Arcade Edition. Oh yeah, SSF4AE has also been released on the PC and to be honest – and as we’ve said in the past – we knew that it would eventually hit our beloved platform. So time now to see how this little fella performs on a modern-day PC.
As always, we used an overclocked Q9650 (@ 4.2Ghz) with 4GB DDR2, a GTX295, the latest ForceWare drivers and Windows 7-64bit. Super Street Fighter 4 Arcade Edition doesn’t require a really high-end PC to run, which is natural as this is a fighting game. The game is optimized for dualcores, although it scales well with quadcores. If your dualcore CPU is overclocked, you won’t encounter any performance issue at all. If, on the other hand, you are running on default settings, there is a possibility to notice some minor slowdowns. In this particular case scenario, owners of a quadcore will certainly notice better framerates and smoother gameplay experience.
Even though the game doesn’t stress the CPU, it will certainly heat up your GPU’s. Well, at least if you own a GTX275, or if you plan to run it in 3D stereo surround. We run the game at 1080p with maxed out settings (including the in-game available amount of FSAA), and we didn’t any slowdown at all. SSF4AE’s benchmark run with 130fps and the SLI scaling was great. We then tried to run the game in Single-GPU mode and noticed that our first GPU core was stressed out. Although we didn’t encounter any slowdown, we noticed a 50fps hit at the game’s benchmark, meaning that the game ran at 70fps. So owners of a GTX275 (or equivalent) will definitely enjoy this bad boy in its full glory.

As with its predecessor, SSF4AE supports Nvidia’s 3D Vision and the 3D illusion effect is really great. We tested it with its latest update that brought enhancements to the game’s Nvidia 3D support, so make sure you have applied this particular update. With 3D Vision’s advanced settings, we managed to achieve incredible pop-out effects and a nice amount of depth. Given its ‘static-in-the-Z-axis’ environments, 3D Vision works great without major ghosting. This basically means that newcomers will get used to even high amounts of depth very easily.
Graphically, the game is similar to SF4 as there haven’t been any major improvements. The new stages are great and have a better use of dynamic lighting. SSF4AE’s artistic style is by far the best we’ve ever seen and showcases how cool cell-shaded graphics can be. Like most multiplatform games though, there are some graphical issues here and there. For instance, the characters are a bit ‘blocky’ when the camera is pretty close to them and most of the shadows are of low-quality. Still, those issues won’t bother you as SSF4AE’s style manages to overcome all of its technical limitations.
As a game, SSF4AE is simply amazing. The online functionality has been improved. It is far better than before, and we didn’t encounter any latency issues. The game’s roster is huge with lots of new characters. Let’s not forget that SSF4 didn’t appear on the PC, so if you are a fan of the series you should definitely get it. A lot of characters have been nerfed/underpowered, while others are still a bit more powerful than others (like Zangief). Make sure though you have plugged an arcade stick, as the game uses a special technique called p-linking, which is pretty difficult to pull off with a keyboard or a gamepad. If you want to stand a stance against good SSF4 players, you’ll need to master p-linking and pull off all those funky combos.

All in all, Super Street Fighter 4 Arcade Edition is astounding and performs great. It doesn’t require a high-end PC, scales great with quadcores, looks lovely, has a unique style and in a platform where there aren’t many fighting games, this is the best you’ll ever get. At least until the release of Mortal Kombat Arcade Collection – that will also feature online functionality.
Enjoy the following screenshots!