While AE is still fairly new, so far the consensus is that overall, Super was the better balanced game.
So…why don’t we just play Super then?
I’m being serious here, please hear me out. As far as I can tell, the only reason we are playing AE right now is because it’s the latest version, and it’s what the Japanese top players are playing. In Japanese arcades, AE doesn’t have a “Play regular Super SFIV” option so if they want to keep up with the arcade tournament standard, they kind of have to play AE.
But that doesn’t matter to non-Japanese gamers. We don’t even have arcades anymore. And why should we care what the Japanese are doing? Either way, major western tournaments such as EVO will be run on console. On console we can choose to play Super or AE. So again, if Super is the better game, why play AE?
In order for this to work, we would have to as a community come to a consensus that we wanted to play Super over AE. If tournament organizers picked Super over AE, most other players would get on board with that. While some players would be unhappy (sorry Makoto fans), if Super is really the better game I feel a change like this would be better overall.
I also feel that the Japanese could eventually get on board with this. Back when there was no AE, they were slowly but surely making the transition. They were playing online more, organizing console tournaments, and coming to tournaments overseas.
Obviously we should let a little time pass and see how things eventually pan out in AE before making a decision such as this. For now I just wanted to bring up the possibility and perhaps start some discussion about it. If given the choice, I would probably pick Super over AE.