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Virtua Fighter 4 Evolution

Out in arcades since last summer, coming to Japan in a few weeks and unlikely to ever appear over here in the UK unless sales of Virtua Fighter 4 pick up is Evolution.

To the untrained eye this is Sega going head to head with Dead or Alive Beach Volleyball in the rip-off stakes. But experts like ourselves at Thunderbolt have discovered much more than the two new characters, kick boxing Brad Burns and blue-haired judo pro Goh Hinogami. Existing characters from VF4 have all been tweaked as well as the backgrounds. There are also 3 new modes which are an extensive training mode, a Tekken force-like mission mode and a quest mode (much like Soul Calibur).

Its this new quest mode that makes Evolution shine. Pick a character from the roster and travel around various arcades in Japan, taking on opponents and rising through the ranks of a national VF tournament. Its here where you will fight an army of 500 or more individual opponents, including some members of the VF development team with their skills and abilities accurately modelled.

Training mode now includes moves from top VF players while the collectable items and clothing that made VF4’s Kumite mode such a compulsive experience have been upgraded to feature yet more items to
unlock and earn. Delving deeper down into evolution will uncover replays of entire bouts between Japan’s finest players. These are useful to study and learn from or to try and convince your mates that they are your gamesaves.

However, on playing Evolution in an arcade I wasn’t too impressed with the two newcomers. To our average skilled players Goh is just a clone of Akira, while brad is just another predictable Tekken man – lots of kicks, a bad attitude and a dress sense worse than Jonathon Ross. Oh wait, he’s got style.

A UK release is currently unconfirmed, but if Sega are reading this, then YES PLEASE I’D LOVE A COPY!

The author of this fine article

is a Senior Staff Writer at Thunderbolt, having joined in June 2002.

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