Producer(s) Tomoshi Sadamoto
Initial release date 4 February 1997
Series Street Fighter
Arcade system CP System III
Designer Tomoshi Sadamoto
|Composer(s) Hideki Okugawa
Mode(s) Up to 2 players simultaneously
Platforms Arcade game, PlayStation 2, Dreamcast
Similar Street Fighter games, Capcom games, Fighting games
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Street Fighter III: New Generation (ストリートファイターⅢ NEW GENERATION) is a fighting video game in Capcom's Street Fighter series, originally released as coin-operated arcade game in 1997. Street Fighter III was produced for the CD-ROM-based CP System III hardware, which allowed for more elaborate 2D graphics than the CPS II-based Street Fighter Alpha games (the previous incarnation of the Street Fighter series), while revamping many of the play mechanics. The game, which was designed as a direct sequel to Street Fighter II, initially discarded every previous character except for Ryu and Ken (hence the "New Generation" subtitle), introducing an all-new roster led by Alex. Likewise, a new antagonist named Gill took over M. Bison's role from the previous games as the new boss character.
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Street Fighter III was followed by two updates: Street Fighter III 2nd Impact in 1997 and Street Fighter III 3rd Strike in 1999. A single home version of the game was released for the Dreamcast in a two-in-one compilation titled Street Fighter III: Double Impact, which also included 2nd Impact.
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Much like its predecessors, Street Fighter III is a one-on-one fighting game, in which two fighters use a variety of attacks and special moves to knock out their opponent. The gameplay of the original Street Fighter III has several new abilities and features introduced. Players can now dash or retreat like in the Darkstalkers series, as well as perform high jumps and do a quick standing after falling from an attack. The game also introduced "leap attacks", which are small jumping attacks used against crouching opponents. As well, the player cannot block in the air like in the Street Fighter Alpha series.
The main new feature is the ability to "parry" an opponent's attack. Parrying (blocking in the Japanese version) is the ability to deflect an incoming attack without receiving damage. At the exact moment an opponent's attack is about to hit his or her character, the player can move the controller toward or down to Parry the attack without receiving damage, leaving the opponent vulnerable for a counterattack. Additionally, this also allows the player to defend against Special Moves and even Super Arts without sustaining the normal minor damage that blocking normally would incur. However, parrying requires precise timing.
The other new feature introduced in Street Fighter III is the inclusion of Super Arts. A Super Art in Street Fighter III is a powerful special move similar to a Super Combo in Super Turbo and the Alpha games. After selecting a character, the player will be prompted to select from one of three character-specific Super Arts to use in battle. Like the Super Combo gauge in previous games, the player has a Super Art gauge which will fill up as the player performs regular and special moves against an opponent. The player can only perform a Super Art once the gauge is filled. Depending on the Super Art chosen by the player, the length of the Super Art gauge will vary, as well as the amount of filled Super Art gauges the player can stock up. The players can now cancel a special move into a Super Art, a technique borrowed from Street Fighter EX.
Also, as this and the next two Street Fighter III games run on the CPS III engine, more elaborate 2D sprites were created. Each character is made up from approximately 700–1200 individually drawn frames of animation, with the game running at 60 frames per second. Among the elaborated sprites include multiple hit stun sprites, including a new "turned-around state," in which a character is turned around (his or her back faces the opponent) after being hit. Only certain attacks can put characters in a turned-around state, and grabs and throws can now be comboed, as it typically takes longer for an attacked character to recover from this new type of hit stun.
In 1999, Capcom released Street Fighter III: Double Impact (Street Fighter III: W Impact in Japan) for the Dreamcast, a compilation containing the original game and 2nd Impact. The compilation features an Arcade, Versus, Training and Option Mode for both games, as well as a "Parry Attack Mode" in 2nd Impact, where the player gets to test his or her parrying skills in the game's bonus round. This compilation also allows players to use Gill (in both games) and Shin Akuma (in 2nd Impact only), who were exclusively computer-controlled characters in the arcade version.
The soundtrack to the first game in the series was released on CD by First Smile Entertainment in 1997, while the 3rd Strike original soundtrack was released by Mars Colony Music in 2000 with an arranged version afterwards. The soundtrack to 3rd Strike features three songs and announcer tracks by Canadian rapper Infinite. The themes for the games are predominantly drum and bass, with some jazz, hip-hop, and techno elements. While Yuki Iwai worked on the soundtracks for New Generation and 2nd Impact, Hideki Okugawa worked on all three games.
On release, Famitsu magazine scored Street Fighter III: Double Impact, the Dreamcast version of the game, a 31 out of 40.