Last week we announced SFxT Mobile would arrive on iOS 5 devices later this summer. Today we add Guile, Dhalsim, Hwoarang and Paul to the Mobile version, as well as share some new iPhone screens and gameplay details.
As with SFIV Volt, the controls have been optimized for a touch screen device. Instead of multiple punch or kick buttons, Punch, Kick and Special Moves each have one dedicated button, along with one “X” button that tags your partner in/performs the launcher attack. As with Volt, pushing forward plus a button, or back plus a button, performs a different attack; Ryu, for example, will throw a fireball if you tap “SP” only, but will dragon punch if you hit forward plus SP. Basically like SFIV on iOS.
The SFxT-specific twist comes in the way the teams interact. To win a match, the goal is to beat the “primary” character, while the secondary character can be tagged in for support while the primary regenerates a portion of his/her health. Once the secondary character is in the mix, the Partner Gauge will slowly deplete, and once it’s empty the primary character comes back in.
Interestingly, the secondary character has no actual life bar – taking damage merely eats away at the Partner Gauge, shortening the amount of time they’re in the battle before being forced back out. They can’t be “beaten,” merely shoved back out of the match while the Partner Gauge refreshes. This forces your main character back in early, limiting the amount of health they recovered.
Pandora Mode still sacrifices one character to empower another, but in SFxT Mobile using it doesn’t have to mean the end of the match. Here, you only lose your secondary character; once the eight seconds are over, your primary character is still alive, just without the ability to tag out for a health recharge.
We’ll have more on the game, including modes and pricing, in the leadup to its launch later this summer. I was kind of surprised by how much I enjoyed SFIV on iPhone, so I’m eager to play the full version of SFxTM and see if it gobbles up my commute time in the same way.