All of the new characters are fun and fit in nicely. Only two are completely new, Juri and Hakan, with the rest returning from previous titles. Damage has been reduced across the board leading to longer battles and many of the new characters find success in being offensive leading to less turtling. Every character is unlocked from the beginning.
Though Championship Mode from Street Fighter IV is gone, Ranked is back along with the new Endless and Team Battle modes. Ranked is the same as ever, though players are now both rated overall and on a per-character basis. Endless provides a rotation of up to 8 players; winner stays, loser goes to the back of the line.
Team Battle lets players compete in 2v2, 3v3, or 4v4 matches in pick-up games or with pre-made teams. During all of the gameplay modes, waiting players can observe live gameplay and voice chat. While playing offline, you can queue yourself up for either Ranked or Team Battles via the Fight Request system.
Capcom is really taking replays seriously in Super with a larger emphasis on saving films and sharing them. Not only can players upload replays to the cloud after several wins in a row in Ranked, they can save all of their fights locally. To top it off, players can screen replays to friends.
Finally, online gameplay is much improved from vanilla Street Fighter IV. While the netcode hasn't changed, the game now prioritizes ping over anything else when searching for games. After around 100 quick matches of various types, I've only seen games rated as five green bars. The only time I saw someone with four bars was from someone joining an Endless lobby.
In the end, this doesn't change Street Fighter IV in a huge way. If you weren't a fan of the game originally, Super isn't going to do anything for you. If you are a fan, however, Super is worth every penny. The new online modes, characters, and balance tweaks are excellent and this is what the community will be playing.
Coming to PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, Super Street Fighter IV hits April 27, 2010.
Hey, anyone here like crab cakes? :[