Capcom Fighting Collection Review

Richard Walker

You could never accuse Capcom of not making the most of its vast, seemingly bottomless library of arcade classics. We've had numerous beat 'em up bundles, Street Fighter collections, and expansive Capcom Arcade compendiums, and now here's some more. Before you baulk at the idea of another fighting collection from Capcom, however, it's worth taking a good look at what you're getting with this one. For fight fans and anyone even remotely curious about the company's illustrious arcade past, Capcom Fighting Collection is essential.

Is there anything more iconic in fighting games than a Hadouken?

As well as loads of seminal Darkstalkers games and a single version of Street Fighter II - which also happens to be the most definitive – you've a few rather obscure titles worth investigating. In a nutshell, Capcom Fighting Collection bears much more than a cursory glance, if only for previously Japan-only entries of Darkstalkers, and the first time that fantastical fighter Red Earth (known in Japan as ‘War-Zard’) has been available outside of the arcades. And while Red Earth is rather odd - with its orb-based special moves and menagerie of weird characters - its artwork and mechanics are intricate enough to warrant your interest – replete with elemental magic, mythical creatures, levelling up, and stuff.

The collection’s curios also extend to slightly lesser-known games, like 1997's Pocket Fighter (known in the west as Super Gem Fighter Mini Mix), which offers an unusual twist on Capcom's fighting titles, with a selection of chibi characters from the Street Fighter series and Darkstalkers games. Like Red Earth, Pocket Fighter involves collecting gems and orbs to power up your character, giving both games a strange, almost RPG leaning.

These games, alongside mecha brawler, Cyberbots: Full Metal Madness – a companion piece, of sorts, to scrolling beat 'em up Armored Warriors (included in the Capcom Beat 'em Up Bundle) - stand out as genuinely compelling additions. And, given the inclusion of western and Japanese versions of each title, this feels like a substantial package. A Training Mode for each game offers plenty of scope to dabble and get to grips with, while online support across the board means nigh-on infinite replay value. Furthermore, it's exceedingly difficult to find many of these games anywhere else, and, as such, this collection represents a unique opportunity for aficionados to plug gaps on their fighting game CVs.

Any self-respecting fighting enthusiast will be here for the five Darkstalkers games alone, which include Darkstalkers: The Night Warriors, Night Warriors: Darkstalkers’ Revenge, and Vampire Savior: The Lord of Vampire, while Vampire Hunter 2: Darkstalkers’ Revenge and Vampire Savior 2: The Lord of Vampire are available here for the first time outside of Japan. Dipping into each of these, you can see the gradual evolution of the series, although, fundamentally, they're by and large very similar to one another, save for the introduction of new characters, new moves, and other fairly subtle adjustments. There's no denying their intrinsic quality, however. And, indeed, the same can be said of all ten games stuffed into the Capcom Fighting Collection – the sheer calibre of what's on offer, in terms of fighting game excellence is enviable.

If you ever needed evidence of Capcom's pedigree when it comes to crafting quality fighting games, with lovingly rendered pixel art and gorgeously smooth animation, these are ten stellar examples. Hyper Street Fighter II: The Anniversary Edition is a welcome reminder of just how seismic Street Fighter II was, this particular version released to coincide with the series' 15th anniversary, in 2003, crowbarring in an array of features from every iteration of SFII and Super SFII. Almost twenty years on, this Anniversary Edition remains a superlative, wonderful way to celebrate Street Fighter II's lasting legacy, and it most definitely deserves a place in this collection – its impact upon the genre is not to be underestimated.

Just a werewolf fella fighting a Frankenstein's monster fella. Nothing to see here.

Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo, meanwhile, seems like something of an outlier, being a Tetris-like puzzler in which you stack coloured gems then attempt to zap them with orbs, in essence executing moves against your rival. It's the perfect game to throw on between bouts of Darkstalkers and Street Fighter II. Factor in a Museum brimming with concept art and BGM on top of the ten games, and it becomes remarkably easy to get lost in Capcom Fighting Collection. You could while away hours simply bouncing between games, which is why it would have been nice to have manual save files for each, rather than a single shared quick save option for suspended progress. It's a small gripe, but one worth highlighting.

Again, Capcom is to be applauded for providing yet another superb compendium of seminal fighting games. Having the entire Darkstalkers series in one place is something of a coup, and bothering to include some deep cuts and arcade-perfect ports, as well as an online mode with lag-free rollback netcode (and the ability to play solo during matchmaking), makes this a pretty comprehensive and thorough walk through some of Capcom's finest arcade moments. Pair Capcom Fighting Collection with the Capcom Beat 'em Up Bundle, and you have pure arcade face-punching nirvana.

Capcom Fighting Collection

A knockout combo of ten arcade greats – including five sensational Darkstalkers games – Capcom Fighting Collection represents fantastic value, online play with rollback netcode the icing on a delectable ass-kicking cake.

Form widget

Cracking tunes, many of which will stoke feelings of nostalgia. It's like being back in the arcades, without the smell of cigarettes and sweat.


Pure 16-bit heaven, with that uniquely inimitable Capcom artwork and energetic animation – all ten games look gorgeous.


For fighting game purists, you can enjoy everything 'as-is' with a range of settings, while fighting newbies can play with simplified inputs. Everyone's welcome!


Ten games, some with both English and Japanese versions, as well as Museum content, and online play with rollback netcode, all beautifully presented. Lovely stuff.


Not the most imaginative of lists – play each game, complete each game, complete all the games with every character, beat a game without using continues, and so on. Pretty bland.

Game navigation