Lets organize how I view the SF2 scene into proportional groups:
Groups [A,B,C,D,E] like Arcade ST better than * SF2 game on console.
Group [F] truly accepts console ST as a replacement for Arcade ST.
Therefore groups [A-F] are not content with SFHD, but for different reasons.
Because of SFHD, you now also have player groups G,H,I,J,K,L,M,N (SFHD paid registrations were 140 in 2008, 330 in 2009 up about 140%).
The mistake is to assume that all players [A-F] are happier with console ST which would make a pretty even split, in reality, only players in group F are happier to any noticable degree, I think we are grossly overstating the difference that Classic ST would make over SFHD to Arcade ST players.
Many of the top players do not play at 100% efficency on any console setup. Japan players do not play high level matches on console. Why do you think we love Cigarbob’s setup and many top ST players still use Happ Sticks? Why isn’t it a DC ST setup, or a SFHD Classic setup with Japanese sticks? It’s obviously still not the same for many players. The only reasonable option is to move forward with SFHD, which will also allow the ST players use their optimal setup wherever possible.
The issues with SFHD should not really keep it from being played at a top level. We did not wait for Capcom to perfect console ST before switching over to it, there was just a 1000 man SF4 tournament without seeing all of the lifebar and glitching with special moves, i’m pretty sure that we can deal with this… for now.
The correct play IMO is to say that we are definately playing this game for as long as possible, and Capcom knows 12 months in advance what needs to be done, that we (SF2 players) are going to try to get 1000 entries for the game, maybe 50k on the stream in 2010, and that Capcom needs to make things right for those people, they need to get the top SFHD players and Seth and Sirlin in the room and address the universally agreed on issues which include: button config resetting, specials not coming out, etc…
We need to say that SFHD will be displayed, and they can choose whether it’s displayed as a refined piece of software and a statement of their committment to the players, or whether it’s an example of leaving these issues on the table for an entire year. I think they will make the right choice if we do our part.
I also need cigarbob to leave his setup in vegas and stop taking it home…