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Fighting games on the Nintendo Switch will be a complicated affair

You’ll be fighting controllers before your friends

Ultra Street Fighter 2: The Final Challengers

Ultra Street Fighter 2: The Final Challengers is the latest incarnation of the legendary fighting game as well as one of the first fighting games announced for the Nintendo Switch. While it looks similar to Super Street Fighter II Turbo HD Remix, this new version packs a host of new features. It also marks the first appearance of Violent Ken in a Capcom game.

Capcom shows off some of the game’s humble beginnings in the announcement trailer with footage from arcades and various young players brandishing Super Nintendo controllers at local tournaments.

This is where things will get complicated for Nintendo Switch owners.

It’s great that the Switch comes with two controllers in the box. That means you’re already set to play with a friend from the get go, and it will be enough for many fans of the game.

Screenshot from Ultra Street Fighter 2’s launch trailer

But you’ll notice that the Switch’s controllers, the Joy-Cons, only feature analog sticks. Playing a fighting game with any degree of precision on an analog stick is tricky, and the better you get at the game, the more you’re going to care about that precision.

Owners of the PlayStation 4, the Xbox One and hell, even the Super Nintendo didn’t have to worry much. The systems’ controllers came with directional pads, which are much easier for casual fighting game play. You’re stuck with analog sticks by default on the Switch.

If you want to upgrade to a better controller scheme, you’re going to be stuck paying for it.

When you look at the accessories for the Nintendo Switch, you’ll notice Nintendo does have the Pro Controllers, coming in at $69.99. Much like the Pro controller for the Wii U, this controller offers a d-pad, better grips and better shoulder button placement.

If you want a tighter fighting game experience on even the casual level, you’re beginning to approach the troubles of the modern fighting game player: it’s an expensive hobby.

If you factor in the cost of the system ($299.99), rumored prices for Ultra Street Fighter 2 ($39.99) and the cost of the Pro Controller ($69.99), you’re looking at an over $400 investment to play a single game well. And whenever we get confirmation of legitimate fighting game sticks, which shouldn’t be less than $100 if they’re worth your time, your costs increase.

It’s difficult to imagine why a game would launch on a platform that, by default, doesn't come with controllers that would be a good match for the gameplay. And despite the marvelous technology put into the Joy-Con controllers, it’s a shame that the barrier for entry into the world of fighting games remains this high.

The next level of puzzles.

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