NYCC: Street Fighter x Tekken – Gem System and Launch Date Announced

This weekend, Capcom’s Yoshinori Ono (Ono-san!) was on hand at New York Comic Con to unveil the latest info on the highly anticipated Street Fighter x Tekken. Among the most notable bits of info released at New York Comic Con was a working demonstration of the new Gem fighting system.

The Gem system is similar to a character class system normally found in RPGs, however, the Gems are fully customizable and not character specific. With up to 45 Gems available that manipulate a character’s attack, defense, and speed the Gems open up a number of possibilities for seasoned veterans of fight-genre games as well as lower the barrier to entry for the more novice or casual player.

Though initially met with groans from the crowd on hand (and crowd may be too small a word to describe the football field long packed room) the live demonstration with an admitted novice player against Capcom’s own Seth Killian showed that the Gem system can keep things competitive while making the game lots of fun for someone that may not have as much experience.

“4-5 years ago when we began development for Street Fighter IV, we hoped to bring in a new generation of gamers to Street Fighter,” said Ono. “But after a couple of years since we released the game it became apparent that only the hardcore fighters remained. We believe it is because the skill required to compete at a high level became a bit intimidating [to newer players].”

It should be noted that during the live demonstration the House of Slitheran volunteer not only managed to hold her own, but bested Seth before a very supportive house of fans. As Ono-san was quick to note, we all hope it made a fan out of her that day. [Video of the match will be posted in an update] Update: Here’s the video! Apologies for the shaky cam in the beginning.

The Gem system is an add-on to a game that will undoubtedly prove to be a blockbuster not just among hardcore fight fans but will introduce the genre to an entire new generation of gamers. The Gems will add levels of depth to gameplay that could only be possible by expanding on player parity which will ultimately lead to new strategies based on the style of play each gamer is accustomed to. See our Gallery below for some screen shots:

The last big item of the night was the confirmed release date for Street Fighter x Tekken, expect it to hit your local game store (and online retailers) on March 6 in the US and March 9, 2012 in Europe. Also confirmed is the release of a limited edition box for Street Fighter x Tekken including all 36 Gem packs plus an additional 9 included with the Limited Edition, a build it yourself 5-inch arcade cabinet bank, a comic and other goodies.

Expect some heat this coming winter folks. Expect that heat.

Edit: Here’s an official game play video from the good folks at Capcom.

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