During its much-awaited Street Fighter 6 showcase event, Capcom showed off what may be the most complete fighting game package gamers have seen in recent memory.
For years, Capcom’s premiere fighting game franchise struggled with the fallout from Street Fighter V‘s disastrous launch. The latter game launched in a barebones state back in February of 2016, lacking a fair number of staple features, such as an arcade and story modes, focusing mostly on multiplayer content.
While updates have since seen Street Fighter V turn into a decent game, the critical and financial backlash that the company suffered is something it seems eager to not repeat for the game’s successor. Indeed, a fair number of what the company revealed for Street Fighter 6 focuses on content, such as the open-world World Tour mode, targeted at non-competitive fans of the series.
At the Street Fighter 6 showcase, hosted by American rapper Lil’ Wayne, Capcom doubled down on these features. Here, it gave fans a deeper look at modes such as World Tour and Fighting Ground, helping drive the point that Street Fighter 6 would be a more complete package at launch than its predecessor.
Roleplaying in the open-world World Tour mode
The World Tour mode is Street Fighter 6‘s biggest “new” feature. We put the word “new” in quotes because this feature already appeared in a Street Fighter game before—1997’s PlayStation port of Street Fighter Alpha 3 (as well as its later Street Fighter Alpha 3 MAX port on the PlayStation Portable).
This time, however, World Tour looks to capitalize current popularity of open-world role-playing games, featuring actual free-roaming environments for the player to explore. Previous trailers already showed off one of these environments—Metro City, the Street Fighter verse’s analog for New York. The recent showcase showed off one more with the developing Asian nation of Nayshall.
In Street Fighter 6‘s World Tour mode, players will be traveling between these locations using Flight Tickets, all in the hopes of meeting and training under each of the fighters in the game’s roster. Here, players can build their characters’ bond with their masters, building personal connections and learning their special moves that they can then use for themselves.
Here, World Tour mode incorporates a fair number of RPG elements. On top of learning moves from their masters, players will also be able to earn Skill Points as they level up that they can use to further customize their moveset—more on that later.
At the same time, the new open-world free-roaming environments lead to more types of combat. Players can encounter hot-headed enemies that’ll challenge them to fights in these areas. These fights, however, will not just be the usual one-on-one fighting game battles but can involve multiple opponents and even allies, including the players’ current master.
All of this is on top of various mini-games and events available in the open world. With all of this, World Tour mode alone makes Street Fighter 6 feel like a more complete package than any fighting game released in recent memory.
Take your custom fighter and fight others in Avatar Battles
The natural culmination of players leveling up and customizing characters is, of course, getting them to fight one another. This is where Avatar Battles come into play.
In Street Fighter 6‘s online Battle Hub, players will have the option to forego the usual matches with the game roster and fight with their custom avatars instead.
Now, this has been done before with the Soul Calibur series’ create-a-souls function. However, Street Fighter 6‘s version could take things to the next level with the possibility of being able to mix and match special moves as players learn them in World Tour.
Beyond that, however, players will also be able to form Clubs with other players. This will let them create a custom Club emblem and Club uniform that only members can show off.
It’s a small touch, but one that could help foster a better sense of community and allow for rivalries between clubs in the game’s online mode.
Even more small details and touches
Beyond the game’s big new features, what helps make the Street Fighter 6 package feel more complete is the care Capcom seems to be putting into everything else.
For one, even traditional modes are getting extra touches. Versus mode, sectioned off in the game’s Fighting Ground section, allows for team battles for teams of up to three characters. In addition, it also features the unique Extreme Battle mode, which sees players fight alongside fun gimmicks, such as having to dodge running bulls while attempting to score knockdowns.
Meanwhile, the games’ private lobby system looks to be quite fleshed out as well. For one, it’ll allow multiple matches to play out at the same time. This is unlike most fighting games which only allow one match at a time, with players usually swapping out when they lose.
Of course, Street Fighter 6 also features ranked matches for those looking to see how they stack up online. Here, Capcom is taking steps to reduce the anxiety of losing a match in certain ranks. For one, players in Diamond rank and below will have one-time protection against going down a rank. Meanwhile, players in Rookie rank will no longer lose League Points when they lose. Finally, players in Iron-Gold and Master ranks will not suffer League Demotions. (Read: The Capcom Pro Tour’s $2 million prize pool is a good start, but we’re not out of the woods yet)
The care and attention to detail also carry over to the game’s aesthetics. In a first for the series, Street Fighter 6 will feature battle damage that characters incur over the course of a match. In addition, the game will also have features designed for accessibility, such as a “sound accessibility” option for players with visual impairment.
New characters are coming
When Street Fighter 6‘s roster was leaked last year, the identities of the game’s first year of DLC characters was also revealed. Now, Capcom has given out the schedule of these characters’ release windows.
Rashid, the first DLC character, will arrive in the Summer of 2023, followed by A.K.I. in the Fall, and Ed in the Winter of 2023-2024. Series staple Akuma will round out the first year when he arrives in the Spring of 2024.
Try the game now
While Street Fighter 6 looks to be a complete package, some players may still be on the fence about the game. Those players, as well as anyone looking forward to it, can actually try the game out right now. At the showcase, Capcom announced that players on PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 could download the game’s demo immediately, with PC and Xbox Series getting the demo on April 26.
As has been the case with everything associated with the game, Street Fighter 6‘s demo features more than what is usually found in fighting game demos. For one, players will be able to access character creation and try out a short snippet of World Tour mode.
Meanwhile, those simply looking to fight will be able to play versus either the CPU or even another player offline. The only catch is that only two characters are playable—Ryu and new poster boy Luke—and that there’s no training mode.
All in all, the demo is a great teaser for the full game.
Street Fighter 6 arrives with all its new modes and features on PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series and PC via Steam on June 2. 2023, with an arcade release planned later on.
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