Review by AzNGaMeR

"Street Fighter style characters in 3D battle royal, can we say "FUN"?"

Whenever you hear the word Capcom, you would think of either the 2D fighting Street Fighter series or the survival horror Resident Evil series. However, you would never think that they would leap into 3D fighting game for the Sega Dreamcast. Well, they did and it is called PowerStone. Frankly, Capcom has done a darn good job without making any mistakes. PowerStone is fast pace action fun that brings you into a whole new type of 3D fighting style.

Power Stone has shown as again the “arcade perfect port”, after all, the arcade used the Sega Naomi hardware. So they used the same code for the arcade on to the Dreamcast. In another word, the models, textures, and sound effects are identical. If it is Naomi based game, then the graphic is always clean, crisp, and clear. The music has a little bit of Capcom style in it. When you listen closely to some of the stages’ theme song. It kind of sound like good old Street Fighter stage theme.

PowerStone is not your average 3D fighting game. Many tactics was unseen in any other 3D fighting games. For starters, you can pick up almost every single objects on the screen and throw it at your opponent (by pressing Punch + Kick together or Throw button). Either that or you can just slide it towards your opponent (by pressing Punch only). But the opponent can also catch the object and toss it right back at you (when object is close, press Throw button). You can throw things from chairs to giant barrels, anything that is highlighted in red or blue circle, you can pick it up and use it as your weapon. Also, you can either swing around any light post or beam to kick your opponent or you can just grab it and swing the beam at your opponent. That’s not all, you can also jump and grab onto the roof and dive down with an air throw. Or you can grab down ceiling fans to crush your opponent.

Second, you do not have block in PowerStone. Now, now, do not panic this is what makes PowerStone more interesting and balanced gameplay. Remember Ehrgeiz where you just block when your opponent does some chain combo on you and then you just start attacking after you see an opening hit? Capcom knew that was kind of lame so instead you have to evade or dodge the projectiles being thrown at you. Now you have to think of your feet or else you are dead.

Since you can use the props in the arena as weapons, how about some real arsenal weapons for you to use against your opponent? Sometimes during a battle, there will be a treasure chest “teleport” into the arena and when you open it, you might can some nasty weapons help you out. If you are lucky, you might get a bazooka, flamethrower, or a handgun. Of course, if you are unlucky, you might just get a bomb (small or large) sword, metal pipe, or molotoy cocktails. Now some weapons have time limit so they can not have it forever. However, one hit by your opponent, you will lose your weapon and makes you offense-less.

Capcom did not name this game ‘PowerStone’ for no reason. When you first battle, you and your opponent each have one PowerStone. One powerful hit or throw, you will lose your stone and your opponent can collect it. Now a third stone will teleport into the game later and once you collect all three, your character will transform into a more powerful self that is hard to knock down and have new power moves. Like any other Capcom fighting games, there’s always a time limit with that and before you run out, you might want to do the power finish move where you simply press the L or R button of the controller. This will drain your meter down to zero, however, it will take a lot of damage on your opponent if you hit him/her.

Overall, Capcom has down a great job from leaping from 2D fighting to 3D fighting. However, no matter how hard you put in the single player, the computer is still kind of dumb and ‘easy’ for some reason. Even though the single player has much to desire but if you get a group of friends (if you have any) and have a 2 players fight, you will see the true power of the PowerStone. The bottom line is if you're a current or potential Dreamcast owner, PowerStone is a must-have game.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 05/30/00, Updated 08/07/01

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