Street Fighter V’s conflicted between players


Cody Achin, Columnist, Scottsdale Chronicle

Let’s Take this to the Empty Streets!

        Street Fighter is one of Capcom’s longest running franchises. In the 90’s, Street Fighter 2 defined what it meant for a fighting game to be a fighting game. Every fighting game since Street Fighter 2, has elements that started in this arcade classic. The motions to pull off special moves, the simple combo systems, the mechanics of playing the game itself. The very name Street Fighter has a reputation as being one of the greatest franchises that the gaming world has to offer. Released on Feb. 16 2016, developer, Capcom released the fifth iteration of Street Fighter, hoping to bring new and old faces to enjoy. Time was necessary for the sake of: testing online post launch problems, learning the new system, and developing experience.

        Street Fighter V brings a fresh new battle system to the controller. Many “casual” players will not know the about the window to land combos, but it is there. Anyone who was familiar with Ultra Street Fighter 4 will tell you that the lenient window to land simple combos, was a very small window. The timing to hit the buttons were so small that this made many “casual” players drop the game entirely. Street Fighter V however, has opened widened this window  and making it much easier to land combos. Not only that, but Capcom decided to remove some other mechanics from the last game. They’ve gotten rid of back dash invulnerability and crouch tech. Simply put, the game is much more fair and has helped alleviate combat frustration. Alongside the technical changes, there are more obvious changes that drastically changes the way you play Street Fighter V. The new Variable System now gives every player a distinct feel to the way they fight. Every character now has certain skills that no other character has, besides their special moves. These new systems are called V-Skill and V-Trigger.

V-Skill gives every fighter a quick, instant action that can give you an advantage fast within the fight and can be activated by pressing both Medium Punch and Medium Kick together at the same time. For example, classic character Ken’s V-Skill allows him to run straight forward your opponent, holding the buttons has him do his classic step kick. This new skill allows to Ken to be played as a rush down character, to continually pursue your foe and to put a massive amount of pressure on your opponent. This is the total opposite of Ryu’s skill. Ryu’s V-Skill gives him the ability to “parry” any attack. Negating the damage that could have been taken from that attack and giving Ryu a chance to strike back right after that parry. These new skills give Ken and Ryu (who essentially played exactly the same for generations,) a whole new feel for them. This isn’t even including the V-Trigger.

The new V-Trigger acts as a hail-mary. When your V-Trigger fills up, you can activate this by pressing both Heavy Punch and Heavy Kick together. This awesome new ability can turn the tide of battle. This acts as a major buff to the character that you are playing. Whether it gives more damage to your character like Birdie, or adds more hits to every attack that you do (Chun-Li.) everyone has different skills, it is incredibly fun to go through the cast of 16 fighters and to test out each one of them.

        The new battle system is extremely fun, however if you were expecting for anything more than to play with your friend or testing your skills online. You are in for a major let down. This is where Street Fighter V takes a major step to its predecessors. SFV is not a whole package. There is no classic arcade mode, no challenges for any characters, and no integrate story mode (there is a story mode but it consist of only three to four single-battles.) The whole lack luster “story mode” they have now can be completed within an hour or two. The only thing people get is a training mode, versus mode, a survivor mode, and online (casual or ranked matches.) That’s not a lot of content. I found it ironic that Capcom wanted this game to bring in the casual fans more than ever, yet they leave out what many casual fans would probably be doing. That’s playing the arcade mode, against the CPU (the computer,) and testing their skills before actually fighting another human. Because many casual fans are put off by fighting against someone else who could potentially beat them. Just not having any feature that supports going solo on this game is a ruined experienced. As of right now, this game is catered to the competitive side of gaming. With people playing with you no matter what. That to me is the biggest fault in this game. Street Fighter 5 is meant to be played with your friends on the couch.

        That is certainly not a bad thing neither. I played hours already with my friends and had a blast. Truly, that is where the game shines. Being next to your best friends and having an all-out duke-fest is the best feeling when playing Street Fighter V. When the party is over however, you’re left with a shallow experience with nothing else to do but to go online, even if you’re unready in the skills department.

        If you’re skilled, then online is just the thing for you. I played many matches online already and found that the net code (the time it takes for the servers to throw out your actions) for this game it’s pretty good, with slight hiccups. For the most part, the net code is great. Four out of five matches I had no problem with competing with people online. The match flowed well and the input lag was kept to a minimum. When the game does have lag though, it suffers greatly. The game does become almost unplayable in cases of high lag. If you are going to play online, there will be little to get in your way other than the occasional laggy matches.

        I’m honestly having a good time playing Street Fighter V. I consider myself to be more on the competitive side of this game, so I had plenty of time to familiarize myself with the mechanics and to enjoy what it brings to the table. However, I realize that it is the casual people that determine if the game should continue to be relevant way past the launch date. For that I’m ashamed that Capcom didn’t already include all of the features that would support solo play. Good news though, Capcom did say that they are going to bring a full story mode in the summer of this year and are going to bring six new DLC characters to the game throughout this year. But including modes that should have been there since the start would have given many more people the incentive to play Street Fighter V.

The Verdict