Do you recall how unhappy many people were with Street Fighter 5 when it was released because it lacked substance? In complete contrast is Street Fighter 6. It’s a spectacularly feature-rich fighting game with an excellent 18-character roster of both new and returning fighters depicted in a killer new art style, an incredibly ambitious online When it comes to training tools and systems to help you get better at fighting games, Battle Hub is the online fighting game lobby system that puts all others to shame. Although not all of Street Fighter 6’s blows land, those that do are utter knockouts. The game takes many swings in many different directions.
Since Street Fighter 2, each game’s gameplay has been largely characterised by a special mechanic. There were parries in Street Fighter 3, focus attacks in Street Fighter 4, the V-System in Street Fighter 5, and the Drive System is currently in Street Fighter 6. And it’s the finest the series has ever had, in my opinion.
Drive Rush, Drive Parry, Drive Reversals, and Drive Impact are the five potent skills that each character may use, and they are all controlled by their Drive Gauge. Overdrive special techniques, Drive Rush, Parry, and Impact are also available. Drive Reversals allow you to get an opponent off of you while you’re blocking their attack for a cost of two bars, Drive Rush allows you to quickly close the distance between you and your opponent for a cost of one bar (or cancel out of certain normal attacks for a cost of three bars), Drive Rush costs two bars, and Drive Impacts… well, we’ll get to those in a bit.
The fact that this system offers so many options and gives you access to them all at the beginning of each round is one of the many reasons I adore it. There is no building up of this metre or concern over how much you will have for the subsequent round. Three options were available to me: I could begin aggressively by using a Drive Rush right away to apply pressure; save my metre for Overdrive special techniques to increase the damage of my combinations; or do neither.; or fish for a crouching medium kick and then Drive Rush cancel it to generate significant damage from a single hit.
These are only a handful of the choices, and controlling them adds to the enjoyment of Street Fighter 6’s already highly intellectual gameplay.
A New Generation of Warriors
Twelve of the 18 characters in Street Fighter 6 are returning, while the other six are completely new. Despite this, even the returning characters feel new because of the unique idiosyncrasies that have been introduced to their move sets. Cammy can now charge her special moves and give them V-Trigger like qualities, and Dee Jay has a tonne of new feints that make him an incredibly tricky character to use and play against. As an illustration, when Ken utilises several of his special techniques outside of it, his command run now alters their attributes, giving them EX-like capabilities without requiring him to activate Drive Metre.
Meanwhile, the newcomers are among the finest additions to Street Fighter ever. With a ninja-inspired moveset that allows her to close the gap with rapid teleports, piledrive you into the ground with air throws akin to the Izuna drop, and confuse you with complex jumps from half a screen away, Kimberly stands out as a standout. Jamie, on the other hand, is a buzzed melee powerhouse who can buff himself by sipping from his flask. Once he consumes four drinks, pretty much all of his moves turn into extremely dangerous multi-hitting attacks that completely confused me until I practised against him in training mode.
Almost every sort of Street Fighter character is represented in this. With Zangief and Manon, you have your grapplers; Ken, Jamie, and Cammy, your rushdown fighters; Guile, Dhalsim, and JP, your zoners; and Marissa and Honda, your powerful bruisers. It fulfils all of my requirements for a roster.
The ability to provide your character moves from every fighter in World Tour is its strongest feature.
The promise of being able to equip your character with moves from every other fighter, though, is the finest aspect of World Tour and what actually acts as the carrot at the end of the stick. By the end of the campaign, I was able to teleport behind an opponent with Dhalsim, strike them with Zangief’s Spinning Piledriver, and then quickly reappear in their face with Ken’s Dragonlash Kick. It’s exciting to be able to modify my character in ways that would render them completely useless in the actual game.
A character’s style must be levelled up for a very long time before you may learn new moves from them. You do this by merely utilising them, however even though I only utilised Ken’s and Luke’s throughout the mode, I failed to fully maximise any of them. After the roughly 20 hours it takes to complete World Tour, there are still plenty of unlockables for those who enjoy a good grind, but given the abundance of rewards that can be unlocked by maxing out each character’s ranks, I would have preferred a much faster rate of new unlocks.
Even though I still have a lot of problems with World Tour, I ultimately had a good time playing it. It’s a mode that’s more specifically designed for players without a lot of fighting game expertise, and I believe that they will benefit greatly from it. There is a tonne of content to discover in the two very large open worlds to explore (each of which has day and night versions with their own set of side-missions to discover), the character customization options and the manner that Street Fighter 6 rewards players for learning the game’s core principles by dressing them up as side missions and minigames.
The Minor Details
The fact that Street Fighter 6 pretty much nails everything you could want in a fighting game outside from its major modes is what really gives it the advantage. It offers the finest training mode I’ve ever seen in a fighting game, replete with frame data and cancel window data, superb netcode, and very realistic graphics. helpful character guides that make it incredibly easy to learn a new character from scratch. These findings are based on my gameplay in the three betas, including the open beta, and pre-launch. You can search for replays with a tonne of different filters to help you learn matchups; there is crossplay across Xbox, PlayStation, and PC; you can create and join clubs; load times are incredibly quick; rematches are almost instantaneous; combo trials that teach you practical combos for a variety of situations; and so on. These characteristics are also present in a lot of fighting games, although very few of them do so, and certainly not all at once.
Additionally, Street Fighter 6 should be commended for making a genuine attempt to welcome novices in creative ways. There is a new Modern control scheme in addition to the World Tour mode that lets you play without worrying about character-specific command inputs or combo approaches. Similar to Smash Brothers, special moves are assigned to a button and a direction; there is a button for each light, medium, and heavy attack; you can perform combos by holding down an assist button while simultaneously pressing one of the three attack buttons; and you can use super moves by pressing two buttons simultaneously.
The fact that those using Modern Controls don’t have access to all of a character’s normal moves maintains an even playing field, but the ability to perform special moves with the simple press of a button is a tradeoff that appeals to even experienced players.
Additionally, there is a new Dynamic control scheme that is only useable offline and effectively allows the AI pick the attacks for you if you just want to hold forward and repeatedly press one button to do special techniques and combos. Capcom has actually thought of everything in this case.
The 2D fighting game genre has long regarded Street Fighter titles as benchmarks, but Street Fighter 6 seems especially noteworthy. The starting roster is the strongest Street Fighter has ever seen, the online netcode has been flawless through three betas, and the number of smaller details that it nails right out of the gate is unprecedented. The Drive System is a game-changer for Street Fighter 6. It gives players a wide range of options to choose from, from powerful attacks to defensive maneuvers. This makes for a more strategic and exciting fighting experience.
It’s so fantastic that even the single-player World Tour’s terrible plot and glacially slow growth only cause a jab of harm to its figurative health bar. No matter your level of experience with fighting games, Street Fighter 6 is a must-play.