Street Fighter IV for the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3 is getting a free Championship Mode. As we previously posted, it brings new features. But wait! There's more.
Here's how the tournaments work in the Championship Mode: Tourneys are divvied up into five different levels, making it possible for players of various skill levels to compete on the same footing. Like with tournament play, character selection is "double-blind", meaning you cannot see who your opponent has selected for his fighter. Player score Grade Points (GP) for wins and can use their accumulating GP total to enter higher level tournaments.
Those who win tournaments get Championship Points (CP), which Capcom compares to "prize money". So fighting against players with higher GP means a bigger CP purse. The top 5,000 CP leaders get the option to upload replays that are available for everyone to watch on both the PS3 and the Xbox 360.
As we previously posted, the PS3 version lets users vote in real time on things they think "Funny", "Awesome" or "Beautiful" — and vote every 30 frames (which is 2x per second). There is a cap to avoid total spamming, Capcom points out. Voting is not possible on the Xbox 360 version; however, as we posted previously, players can save their machines and see which inputs players are using.
"The new tournament system is totally addictive," Capcom's Seth Killian tells Kotaku. "Winning takes you higher and higher, but even if you get knocked out in your first match, there's always another tournament starting immediately, so you're never out of the action. With replays, if you're a junkie for great Street Fighter matches like I am, you basically just got the best cable channel in the world for free."
The Championship Mode hits April 24, free of charge.