Street Fighter is a series that one can constantly go back to and have a great time with. With each new entry of the franchise, clever new mechanics and a new coat of visual paint make the core fighting that has defined a genre for years feel refreshed. Street Fighter 6 once again injects a shot of adrenaline into the fighting game scene with a new story and incredibly solid gameplay and controls. Not only is the roster a diverse palette of characters with unique fighting styles, but Street Fighter 6 is a buffed-up experience for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series consoles, and PC that is the total package for anyone that loves fighting games.
Unlike its predecessor, Street Fighter 6 comes out the gate swinging with a bunch of game modes and features to keep one busy. If you’re focused on getting into matches and learning characters for that competitive craving, the local and online Versus modes will provide everything you need. But for everyone that’s into Street Fighter but not necessarily competitive with the world, all of the game’s single-player modes like World Tour and Arcade will have plenty for you to enjoy. The best part about this Street Fighter sequel, which previous games always stumbled on at the start, is how much it caters to everyone in various ways that still feel tailored to the series. Street Fighter 6 is a game for everyone and possibly a good way to introduce someone who has never played Street Fighter before.
Besides looking great with its visuals, the level of detail in every stage and character is fantastic, Street Fighter 6 also has a killer soundtrack. Nodding back to the days of Street Fighter 3: Third Strike, there’s a bigger emphasis on hip-hop music and hard beats that put the street sound back into Street Fighter. The main theme song for the game, which was heavily used in marketing, is heard in different spots depending on what mode you’re playing. But the rest of the game’s soundtrack is still hard-hitting and fits with the vibe. There are arguably not many memorable tracks that stick out like in previous Street Fighter games, but every background track falls in line with the tone of Street Fighter 6.
Something different for Street Fighter 6 is the inclusion of commentary tracks for matches. This lets you pick from a selection of eSports and celebrity commentators to give a play-by-play during matches. This is similar to the commentators you would hear in a Madden or NBA2K game but applied here for Street Fighter. You can have notable FGC commentators like James Chen or Tasty Steve, as well as celebrities like Zelina Vega from WWE, giving their color commentary and expertise during your matches. It’s a first for the Street Fighter series with varying results.
If you have the setting on, the commentary is constant through every match you play, but you can change some of the settings to just be encouraging to you. Some of the commentary does feel broken up and repetitive in a few places, mostly because it’s based on what’s happening in a match. Not everyone will enjoy this, especially if you don’t plan on attending any tournaments or regularly watch streams of Street Fighter matches, you might find it annoying. But for others who do, it’s doing what it’s supposed to do.
Besides all of that, how good is the core fighting? Matches are standard one-on-one bouts; with the traditional Street Fighter gameplay we’ve come to know over the years. Street Fighter 6 however mixes things up with control options, giving players a choice between a Classic six-button and Modern streamlined control layouts. Modern controls let you do special moves and combos with simple button inputs, allowing someone who doesn’t know the joys of quarter-circle and diagonal inputs to still hold their own in battle.
While most people will most likely stick with the Classic style, Modern is a great way to try out new characters or get someone accustomed to fighting games. Both options will cater to different players and will work with varying degrees depending on who is in control. However, the Modern style has a few setbacks that nudge players toward the Classic style. Attacks and combos won’t do as much damage with Modern inputs as opposed to Classic, so if you’re able to pull off combos the true way you’ll end up doing more damage to an opponent.
The roster this time is well-rounded, with a lot of different styles of play to pick from. Classic fighters from the Street Fighter 2 era once again make their return with new moves and tech to utilize, as well as a fresh look to fit their stories and place within the story. If you’re a big Chun-Li, Guile, or Honda player from back in the day; you’ll have to take some time to find out what new tools are there to improve your gameplay.
But if you’re open to trying out some newcomers to the series, Street Fighter 6 has some very interesting fighters that might appeal to you. Jamie, Kimberly, Manon, Lily, JP, and Marisa are all new characters with their own unique fighting styles. Learning the tricks of their trade will take time, but the diversity of their strategies and gameplay when matched up with the rest of the world warriors is a spectacle in of itself. Everyone will have their favorites and their mains to go with, but you’ll be doing yourself a disservice by not trying out a few of these new faces in some matches.
For some, the best place to do this would be in the Practice mode of Street Fighter 6, which has plenty of tutorials and trials to help you learn the ins & outs of the game and every character. But World Tour is the mode where you’ll really explore things you wouldn’t normally try out. World Tour mode is like a role-playing game that have you creating a character and roaming around Metro City, getting into battles, and following a story tailored for here. Your custom character can meet the various world warriors to learn their moves, help out those in need, and get immersed within the Street Fighter universe in a way not possible in previous games.
Running around Metro City is a great distraction from playing standard matches online and offline, offering you a different look into Street Fighter that really adds something unique for those who have never gotten into the series before. It’s not a game mode that will turn you into a pro player, but it is something interesting that caters to the more casual fan of the series.
For most fighting game players, the easiest comparisons to World Tour mode would be if you took SEGA’s Yakuza series and Mortal Kombat Deception’s Konquest Mode together, and then put a Street Fighter skin on it. Unfortunately, a lot of World Tour can get very repetitive, very fast with their constant fights against random people in the streets. Most battles in World Tour will last a very short time, while the occasional fight against a known legendary fighter will last longer.
One problem that fights in World Tour mode suffer from is how unbalanced some of the damage output can be, with some opponents you run into dealing massive damage with each of their attacks for little to no reason, making encounters with them nearly impossible. Leveling up your character’s fighting style, equipping new clothing, and using items can definitely help alleviate this, but doesn’t make it less annoying to deal with. Unless you explore enough of Metro City and other areas you visit to complete side quests and other battles, you might struggle with a few of those tougher fights.
But if you’re done messing around offline, the Battle Hub in Street Fighter 6 will help match your skills up against the world. The online modes are very good, with many different things to engage with for those who like to be competitive. You can use your custom character from World Tour to roam the Battle Hub and challenge other players, as well as participate in tournaments and Extreme Battles with special conditions. There are even sections of the area for people to spectate other matches and play classic Capcom games that are offered.
Playing matches online will reward you with fight money from daily & weekly challenges that you can spend on extra items to equip your character, as well as online titles and display effects for your profile. It’s also great how Street Fighter 6 lets you select various filters for matchmaking in Battle Hub, allowing you to only search for players of specific regions and control styles. If you only want to play against others using Classic or Modern controls, you can do that without much hassle.
But Battle Hub isn’t the only way to play online. You can set up Custom rooms and join matchmaking straight from the Fighting Ground tab in the main menu. This lets you get online without having to go through Battle Hub at all and immediately get into matches. For some, this won’t be a big deal, but it’s nice to have options for how to dive into the modes that you want to play. Rather than loading up your custom character and roaming the Battle Hub for a match, the game can just skip that and get into matchmaking. The Capcom Fighter Network also makes a return in Street Fighter 6, allowing you to connect with your friends and other players you run into easily. There are plenty of search and filtering options to build your network of players to play against, as well as set up lobbies and matches, or watch replays of past fights.
As a total package, Street Fighter 6 is a successful knockout that has a lot to offer to everyone, whether you’re a newcomer or have been playing Street Fighter for years. The roster offers a great variety of fighting styles and options to check out, giving you the deepest Street Fighter game of the series. Updates will definitely be a thing in the future to address balancing, but what is already there is an incredibly strong foundation. There’s a ton to play and explore before even thinking about hopping online to play against friends, which is great for any fighting game. You’ll definitely want to make the time to see what new tricks this heavyweight contender of gaming brings to the table.
Are you going to play Street Fighter 6 on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series consoles, or PC? Who is your favorite Street Fighter character of all time? Let us know your thoughts down below in the comment section!
Street Fighter 6
This game is very fun to play either alone or with friends, for both newcomers and long-time fans of the series. The roster and core fighting is very good, with a ton of options to explore. Other modes like World Tour are interesting and offer something unique to try out. The online mode is very fun and offers a ton of options for playing against others. Other features like in-game commentary are hit or miss, but clever ideas that add to the total package.
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