Street Fighter V (PC) Review

By Athanasios 11.03.2016 1

Review for Street Fighter V on PC

Even without being a fan of fighting games (or without being a gamer, in general), the name 'Street Fighter' will surely ring a bell - and how could it not do so? Street Fighter II: The World Warrior came and made the genre extremely popular, spawning a gazillion sequels, alternative versions, comics, and movies (*say it with a Raúl Juliá voice* "Of course!!!"), and all this not without good reason, since it was very entertaining, despite being relatively simple. It's 2016, and, after a two-year hiatus from Ultra Street Fighter IV, the king is finally back. Unfortunately, the launch was… disappointing at best, with a product that felt largely unfinished.

Evident by the vibe of an intro that pits the franchise's iconic duo against each other in a battle that serves as a tutorial, Capcom has created a simpler and slightly slower Street Fighter that leans a bit towards the non-hardcore demographic, with moves that are easier to pull off, and without the need for a one-sixteenth-of-a-second precision. Furthermore, the existence of the Casual Mode lets people have fun online, without having to worry about rank or league points. Generally, Street Fighter V makes it easy for newcomers to learn the core mechanics in a matter of hours, while leaving enough room for veterans to try out intricate combos and such.

The second obvious thing is that the extravagant, plus vibrantly coloured, cartoony style of Bengus (which began with Street Fighter Alpha, and entered the world of 3D in Street Fighter IV), has evolved, with characters that have even more exaggerated physiques and expressive facial characteristics, and who are sometimes cool, sometimes sexy, and sometimes funny. Sure, not everyone will appreciate the new look, but those who will are in for a treat here, with everything looking as if a 3D animation/claymation has come to life, with the only nit-pick being the fact that, apart from a few special attacks, the camera doesn't move around much. As for the sound portion of the game, the actual battle sounds and "war cries" sound great, and the hard rock-ish/electronic OST is very catchy, despite the severe absence of 90% of the classic tunes.

Screenshot for Street Fighter V on PC

Being the competitive brawler that this is, though, looks are just that - looks. The "meat" lies in the gameplay, and, fortunately, it's very entertaining to say the least; fast without being frenetic, technical without being perplexing and very accessible without ever feeling dumbed down. Those expecting something new and revolutionary, however, should look elsewhere (Arc System Works, maybe?), because this neither reinvents the wheel, nor does it create the teleporting chamber. In other words: this is just a solid fighter, with none of its features really standing out; a variety of special abilities, an EX gauge that can be used to power up special moves or perform super combos, and so on.

That being said, it does have some nice gadgets of its own, all revolving around the V-Gauge ('V' for 'Versatile'); a secondary meter that builds up by using a V-Skill (medium kick + medium punch), which is a simple offensive or defensive move, unique for each character. Once the V-Gauge starts to fill, it will enable the usage of V-Reversals, which are powerful counter-attacks, and V-Triggers, which are, once again, different for everyone, with some being instant attacks, while others providing a temporary boost, like a higher hit count, extra speed and strength, or even an "electrification" of special moves.

Screenshot for Street Fighter V on PC

One of the series' biggest strengths has always been its varied roster, and this doesn't disappoint at all. Balanced karateka like Ryu and Ken; strong grapplers like Zangief and R. Mika; fast movers like Chun-Li, Vega, and Cammy; versatile characters like Karin; aggressive ones like M. Bison, Birdie, and Nash; and… the weird, like Dhalsim, who, by the way, looks ten times cooler with a beard and as a Sikh. There are no silly Ryu/Ken palette swaps here, since everyone has their own style, as well as pros and cons, with the best example being Nash, who, instead of being a simple Guile clone like he used to be, is a wholly different martial artist - although still lethal.

The four newcomers are a mixed bag. Necalli is a fierce wrestler/body slammer who seems to be very into Aztec fashion, Laura is a slightly more fast and technical grappler, and Rashid is a generic looking Middle-Eastern, with an equally generic set of moves, with most leaning on the acrobatic side; nothing bad about them, and nothing special, either. F.A.N.G, who is M. Bison's second-in-command, is also an "okay-ish" fighter, who can generally be described as a "neutral" one. He, however, introduces poison for the first time in the franchise's history, with many of his moves draining the opponent's health until they manage to land a hit on him, in effect luring defensive players to get "angry."

Screenshot for Street Fighter V on PC

There's an elephant in the room, though, and it's not the various bugs and netcode issues that were discovered post-launch, because most have been ironed out, and Capcom is doing a relatively good job at rapidly upgrading its product. The real problem is the absence of popular characters, such as Blanka, Guile, and Balrog; modes, such as Arcade or a 100% complete Story; or unlockable costumes and such. The available Survival mode is awesome, since it uses a risk/reward system where score points act as currency for buying supplements for the next match, and there is a tiny prologue section in the Story mode, but that is all. Why did Capcom release half a game? The developer's answer to this goes something like, "We're sorry, but every future update will be handed to you for free!"

This means that unlocking characters (with the first wave starting sometime in March) or anything gameplay-oriented will be achieved via in-game fight points, which can be gathered by playing the game, and especially the Story mode (which will be ready June, and will flesh out the gap between SFIII and IV), with Zenny money ($1 per 100 points) being used for instantly unlocking content, or buying cosmetic-only items, like premium costumes and such. This is a system that needs to be seen before drawing any conclusions, and yet, even in its current state, Street Fighter V is very enjoyable and worthy of a purchase - as long as people can stomach the fact that they'll have to wait for certain things, and as long as the promise of this never having a Super, Ultra, Hyper or Turbo edition gets fulfilled.

Screenshot for Street Fighter V on PC

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10

Capcom has made a terrible mistake by releasing one of its flagship franchises at full price, but with half the content. Strange as it may seem, however, and even though Street Fighter V currently feels like an Early Access title, it is a worthy purchase because of three things. First, the Japanese developer is truly doing a great job at rapidly updating and fixing some of the stability problems; second, there won't be any need to spend money on any future updates, since all content (apart from some cosmetic elements) will be available for free; and, finally, the actual battles are very enjoyable - simplified without being simplistic, and, thus, catering to both casuals and pros alike.

Street Fighter V (as well as other games in the series) can be bought from Play-Asia.com in Steam format and on PS4 today, along with many other great digitally released titles on the likes of PlayStation Network, Nintendo eShop, PC via Steam, and so on, across all regions.

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Developer

Capcom

Publisher

Capcom

Genre

Fighting

Players

2

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

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Yea Your right the game does feel a bit unfinished. They may be doing with Street fighter 5 the same thing Nintendo did with Splatoon. Release a small basic game and give you endless updates. I thing they just release another Splatoon update. I plan on getting the PC version myself trying to save money from buying a 400 or 500 dollar console LOL ! But really for me Im a big fan of RYU hese pefect in the game. Second though for me would have to be Sagat. Were is he ?.. What happend to him?.. Is he dead ???????????........ Hopefully not. I thinking he is in hiding disguised as a different fighter tranning to be champion of the world again. Really hope and pray we will get to see him as future DLC for the game. Long live the master of Muay Thai and original king of Street Figher, the Master Grand Champion of Thai Land, also Ryu greates rival SAGAT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!        

( Edited 15.03.2016 14:14 by curtiscdragon )

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