Jasco Games is notable for turning popular video game and television franchises into intricate tabletop experiences. From Buffy the Vampire Slayer to Mega-Man, they’ve covered a wide range of bases. However, Mega-Man isn’t the only Capcom title they’re looking to transform; their next project focuses on Capcom’s most popular fighting game series, and was completely funded through a kickstarter campaign in just one day.
Jasco’s Street Fighter: The Miniatures Game features an array of painstakingly detailed figures for up to six players to utilize across the board. The game will include characters from throughout the series’ timeline, from SFII to SFV, and will also feature a unique boss mode that will take up to three players to defeat. Players can also build combos for their character to pack an additional punch, and use Super and Ultra combos to finish off their opponents with finesse.
From Arcade Cabinets to Board Games
Jason Hawronsky, CEO of Jasco Games and co-developer of this project, was inspired by his childhood spent in the arcades. “I’ve built Jasco Games around my own personal 80’s and 90’s nostalgia, and Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat were a HUGE part of my childhood,” he told me. “I spent hours and tons of quarters on the arcade games for Street Fighter II and Mortal Kombat I, II, III, Ultimate III, and Trilogy during the 90’s. I just had to bring them into our catalog. I love these titles, and that’s where it all started.”
His love for Street Fighter doesn’t end there – it likewise stems from an appreciation of its strict punishment-and-reward system. “What I love about Street Fighter is the competitiveness and obvious reward for effort,” he explained. “The more you play, the better you get. You can see it on an almost hourly basis. When you can tell you are getting better, and you want to keep beating your friends or keep your spot at the machine, it really drives you to keep playing. Good fighting games are great about doing this.”
While mechanically different in almost every aspect, Hawronsky’s miniatures game draws from these tools, creating a fast-paced climate where players must think on their feet and utilize their characters’ strengths to win. “The game is designed around a dice/card battle mechanic using a very simple Draw – Move – Fight! formula,” he said. “Each character has unique movesets, character stats, and Ultra Attacks, as well as Events that only their characters can use. This means there are around 30 characters that all play completely different from each other.”
Much like the title from which it took its inspiration, the miniatures game relies on players to gain experience and matchup knowledge in order to increase their skills. “The play style of each character combined with different personal play styles from players are going to make this game so fun to watch and play,” Hawronsky said. “Just like the video game, the players that put the time into the game and learn the match ups and how to read their opponents are going to do extremely well, even in a game with dice!”
Jasco’s miniatures aren’t for collecting days
The game’s pint-sized statuettes aren’t just for looking pretty: players will also use these miniatures to dole out damage as they make their way across the board. Hawronksy wanted avid collectors to be able to give their favorite fighting game statues a use, and therefore incorporated the idea into his take on the classic, 2-D fighter. “The goal for these figures was to create something that collectors are used to purchasing to sit on a mantle or desk and then give them a way to enjoy them even further,” he explained. “We created collector’s statues that actually fight each other! That’s really what we want as adults, buying toys. We want to not only remember the toys, but play with them too!”
Although they won’t be mint-in-box, Hawronsky believes that the miniatures will accrue significant value as the years go by. “I think the value these will have for collectors is enormous,” he speculated. “They are exclusive to kickstarter, conventions, and overstock direct sales, and they are decked out to the 10’s. This game is obviously a passion project for myself and Joe Vargus (Angry Joe), and we wanted to give fans what they have really been wanting this whole time. There are thousands of licensed things you can buy for Street Fighter out there but how many give you memorable gaming experiences like the video game?”
Hawronsky thinks of the fans first, and wants them to own something not only fun, but also valuable, with a story behind it that tells of a passion linked to those who helped fund their $400,000 project. “I think this will be one of the few kickstarted games that only goes up in value,” he said. “There isn’t an online discounter that can make them available at a lower price. We made these for you directly!”
A new challenger enters the ring
After all his effort, he believes that competitive Street Fighter players will take an interest in this new take on the franchise, and feels that his game might even grow its own competitive scene. “Absolutely,” he answered, when prompted with the idea. “The game was designed for anyone to be able to play, but I strongly believe it will grow a competitive scene naturally.”
While taking a different spin on fighting games, he hopes that expanding the Street Fighter franchise in this way might introduce new players to the scene, and give the series a wider audience. “I certainly hope [it does],” he stated. “I know that the fans of The Angry Joe Show have been showing great support, and many of them have never played a game of Street Fighter. I think this is awesome for the Fighting Game Community, and I hope Street Fighter continues to grow toward a larger and larger audience in the future.”
After two years of development and with over $1 pledged toward the project, Jasco Games’ take on the Street Fighter universe is nearly ready for fan consumption. “We are very excited to get this thing into the hands of the fans after over 2 years of development,” Hawronsky said. “I can’t wait to see the final product soon!” Neither can we – March 2019 can’t arrive fast enough!